Like it or not, we are in the era of all things digital. This has an impact on most industries, but in particular the apparel industry. Customers are expecting to see certain things and if you don’t have what they want, they will move on to another place where they can find it. But, often times it isn’t as hard as you think to make the changes to give customers what they want. Start with the basics: content, e-commerce and PR.

Why you need content

Consumers are demanding to know more about brands. They are no longer just buying something because they like it or because they think you have a good price. They want to truly understand your brand and what your company stands for. This is particularly important for your business if many of your consumers are Millennials. Use your website to showcase your CSR efforts and explain your brand’s purpose, mission and vision. Highlight what you do to go above and beyond and tell your consumers what sets you apart from your competitors. You would be surprised how your content can take a customer’s connection with your brand to the next level. Overall, it comes down to staying relevant in the minds of your consumer, even when they are constantly being bombarded with information. More information on content writing here.

Why you need an e-commerce website

First and foremost, convenience, convenience, convenience! It saves so much time and effort to shop online rather than taking the time to drive to the mall. Cater to the schedules of your consumers by giving them the freedom to shop any time, any way and from any place they want, and an e-commerce website allows you to expand your reach across the country or even globally. This is even more important if your company is only located in a general region of the US.

Another great thing about an e-commerce website is that different platforms allow for different expressions. Online images can showcase products in particular ways that can be very different from the way consumers would see your product by looking at it in a store. You have more control over how the product is styled and you can include multiple images to feature different aspects of the product. This could influence how they see the product, which could ultimately influence purchasing behavior.

In addition, gathering demographic information is easier online because it is seen as a necessary step in completing the purchase, while in stores, consumers are likely to hurry and skip over this important step.

Finally, with an e-commerce site you have the ability to incentivize consumers with promotions such as free shipping. If you have a sale where consumers can save $20 by spending $150, they are more likely to spend more online because of the visual cues of the website and automatic math calculations.

Here are some do’s and don’ts of website design and development and how to optimize website’s for apparel brands.

Why you need your website to be PR-ready

Your company’s website is not just a conversion tool. Use your website as a public relations tool that caters to media relations. Do this by uploading company news in a newsroom section, along with any previous media, blog or influencer coverage of the company, statistics about the company, the current professional lookbook, and a PDF copy of your company’s press kit.

By incorporating these items into your company’s website you are adding both more SEO maximization as well as giving yourself the potential for journalist to find you before you find them (more on that here), which will increase your overall likelihood of having more earned media through organic press hits.

By: Elizabeth Coakley, Public Relations and Marketing Assistant, and Justin Ashwell, Partner