As the government called for an extension of the intelligent lockdown, the uncertainty amongst the Dutch fashion industry grows. Now that the doors of brick-and-mortar shops remain closed, the biggest hurdle is to find new solutions for the growing overstock. What this problem predominantly reveals is the need for collaboration, for creative problem solving and the rethinking of industry concepts. We have listed a few solutions for you.
With an eye on the future, we have to look at solutions that will not harm the industry in the long run.This means that brands will have to reassess their existing business models and look at other divisions of seasons and delivery times. Organisations such as Modint and Euretco have started a conversation about regulating sales periods and additional supporting measures with the cabinet, but this can only work if everyone is on board with this change. "Our starting point is that the fashion industry can only survive this crisis if we work together," says Mike Spoelder, Director Customer Relations at Euretco Fashion (in Textilia). With this goal in mind, brands will be able to postpone the launch of basic styles and timeless pieces to the winter season or even next year.
Now more than ever is the time for brands to experiment with new creative ideas, and increase sales by using their own platforms. With most shops closed, continuing to sell products is particularly difficult for small businesses that don’t have an online sales channel. Brands that rely on wholesale partners, can’t just take back their entire inventory, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to support these retailers. As an example, POM Amsterdam worked together with a marketing agency on a tutorial showing how to set up an online sales channel, helping their clients to easily move to selling online without having to invest in fancy tools.
Increasing sales of old stock
The alternatives that lie ahead of us are, in many cases, a game of trial and error, and will require a new proactive approach to the growing inventory. Another way to tackle this is to sell through online outlets. The rising online platform Otrium offers a partnership with brands, practicing a shop-in-shop format. This allows brands to stay in charge of their products, the way they present themselves online, and the pricing of products. Unlike traditional physical outlet stores, moving to an online outlet platform will take almost no start-up costs.