By guest author Rachel King from Fortune
Fashion brands, from haute couture to street style, have been relying heavily on social media influencers to peddle their clothes. But the true power still relies with the customer, based on new findings from one of the top fashion e-commerce platforms.
Self-described as a “fashion discovery site,” Moda Operandi recently published its first ever “Runway Report,” a new take on analyzing consumer shopping habits with forecasts for fashion trends in fall and winter 2019. Among some of the data points included in the report are the most popular times and days of the week when consumers shopped online for luxury fashion, the most liked runway shows during fashion month showings (covering catwalks in New York, London, Milan, and Paris), and a breakdown on geographical levels as to which cities have the most consumers shilling out for designer labels.
Much of the e-commerce site’s findings are based on what the brand calls “trunkshow data.” Trunkshows are events where vendors present merchandise directly to store personnel or customers. Moda Operandi hosted more than 120 trunkshows during the 2019 fashion month season earlier this year. Because Moda Operandi carries next season’s inventory, the company asserts its customers are “voting” with their dollars on what styles they’ll want to own in six months. Thus, Moda Operandi essentially considers their customers to be on par with department store buyers (employees responsible for purchasing goods and products sold in their respective stores) in dictating which styles the online store should invest in for future seasons.
“This model gives customers more of what they want, while allowing Moda to make increasingly sustainable inventory decisions,” explains Ganesh Srivats, CEO of Moda Operandi, in a statement. “We find that our fashion-forward customer has a high degree of predictive power for what will eventually become a trend.”
Among some of the findings that might be helpful to retailers of all types and price points, Moda Operandi found that its customers flocked to the site most frequently on Sunday mornings and Monday afternoons—quite a way to start off the week. These findings were based on average sessions per day.
Among the U.S. and international cities where customers are spending the most on luxury fashion, there are some obvious fashion capitals, but also a few surprises.
Top 10 Spending U.S. Cities
- New York, New York
- Los Angeles, California
- Greenwich, Connecticut
- Dallas, Texas
- San Francisco, California
- Houston, Texas
- Chicago, Illinois
- Washington, D.C.
- Atlanta, Georgia
- San Diego, California
Top 10 Spending Global Cities
- London, United Kingdom
- Hong Kong
- Doha, Qatar
- Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
- Paris, France
- Kuwait City, Kuwait
- Veldem Am Worthsee, Austria
- Toronto, Canada
- Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
But maybe the real scoop based on Moda Operandi’s data is: What will the hottest trends be this fall? What will everyone be wearing.
Based on the aforementioned trunkshows in February, prepare for a more neutral color palette by the end of the year, with many new things in neutral, grey, white, pink, and green. Also look for long and lean silhouettes, traditional fabrics (tweed, plaids, checkered, etc.), and romantic touches, such as voluminous sleeves, which have actually seen their stock rise over the last couple of years to the point where some commentators affectionately call them “grandma sleeves.”
Shoppers are also driving trends, based on some of the search terms on the rise on the site, including trench coats (a typical fall staple for men and women) but also pearls, headbands, feathers, and curiously enough, tie dye. (Maybe just do not wear all of these things at the same time.)
On the flip side, Moda Operandi also has predictions for what will be out this fall, based on search terms on the decline. Among them: velvet, sequins, leopard, bustiers, and corsets.
With that mind, a safe bet is that less is always more.