We all have heard terrible news and numbers about all kinds of damages originating from the apparel industry. Carbon emissions, water waste, pollution, animal lives, gender inequality and human rights are just for starters.
There is no need to crowd this text with statistics on the sad truths about our suffering home; just google the statistics on fashion industry pollution to see it for yourself. You’ll see some unbelievable mind-blowing figures, such as the amount of microplastics from textiles that enter the global marine environment annually: 200,000 to 500,000 tonnes! Not a bad record, ha? These numbers leave no room for nay-voters and the ultimate time to act is NOW.
But reshaping the fashion industry is a complex surgery that can’t be done without its most urgent assistants: customers.
Customers, on their part, can participate in this call in a lot of ways. But our focus here is on the technologies that can contribute to the sustainable fashion industry.
Sustainability is playing out in every imaginable sector, and the fashion industry is no exception. According to a worldwide survey among consumers, 55% of respondents think environmental responsibility is “very or extremely important” in choosing a brand, and 29% tag it as “moderately important”.
Having these kinds of statistics in mind is a constant reminder for apparel business owners to be aware of the damages of neglecting sustainable technologies.
This trend is not going to stop anytime soon, and consumers are planning on buying more environmentally friendly products than before.
Minimizing the packages, switching to eco-friendly shipping programs, reselling the products, and offering optional carbon offsets are a few measures that any brand can take to maintain its position in this trend.
A report shows that 62% of Generation Z prefer purchasing from sustainable brands. The Internet has been -and is- the best friend of Generation Z. This vast source of updates provides them with the latest, and no brand can get away with violating sustainability principles.
Respecting nature, cleansing the air, helping the ozone layer to mend, making the earth a better place to live for the next generations, and all these well-justified causes are more than enough to think and act sustainable. But, you are running an online apparel business store, and there are a number of benefits in capitalizing on sustainable fashion technologies, none to ignore.
- Customer trust and loyalty
- Brand’s reputation
- Waste reduction and better waste management
- Keeping the promises of company values
- Reducing the costs by using renewable sources of energy
And this list goes on.
The most intrinsic aspect of the vast majority of trends is to change fast, which urges customers to buy new products. But this increasing demand doesn’t necessarily have to lead to litter, pollution, and waste of the resource.
Compared to brick-and-mortar shops, online clothing stores have more opportunities to impact and reshape the customer’s attitude and taste. Every small detail in a website’s design and the overall experience of a user can be aligned with the high values concerning sustainability.
This increasing demand for the product on the one hand, and sustainability on the other hand, have faced the fashion industry with some new technological developments and initiatives to choose from.
Traditional materials used in the fashion industry are hard to produce, resource-wasting, and in some cases, unethical. The required water to produce a cotton shirt is the same as a person’s drinking water in 2.5 years.
Fabric, the primary material used in the apparel industry, is a good starting point for a brand to seek sustainable approaches.
Alternative textiles provide manufacturers with recyclable, reusable, and biodegradable material with less waste in production.
Using recycled fibers of agricultural waste such as leaves and rinds, the production of these fabrics in some cases are sustainable themselves.
Traditionally, apparel designers and manufacturers use a rather fixed chart of average sizes for different body shapes. This has been the best solution for mass production for a long time. Obviously, you can’t produce the best fit remotely. But now the times have changed, and everybody -regardless of who and where- has a smartphone.
Customers can scan their bodies and let the technology do the rest. Having a 3D model of the customers means less waste of time, material and other resources in production and delivery, plus fewer returns, which sums up our main concern here: sustainability.
Every living soul on this planet is a key witness to this unbelievable fact: according to a survey, unworn and unrecycled clothes cost $500 billion yearly. Just take a moment to imagine what could be done with this amount of money.
Online reselling business is another initiative to save unwanted apparel and relay it to other channels to resell it. Re-commerce can help the fashion industry to benefit in two ways: saving $500 billion annually and reducing the waste of sources.
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This applied method of data analysis is used to collect actionable, targeted qualitative data in a shorter period of time, compared to traditional qualitative methods.
Artificial intelligence, gathering huge amounts of data on customers, market, different stages of production, selling, shipping and every other related detail, has made this method possible for fashion brands to adapt themselves to new business requirements as quickly as possible.
There are a number of softwares working with this method to make the brands aware of possible defects, damages, or any other potential business threats in real-time. Then they can replace the product and prevent a flawed cycle instantly. By using this method, brands can save money and resources and maximize customer satisfaction.
Virtual Fitting Room
The right size, The first time
Finding the perfect fit with a few clicks. boosts sales and cuts returns
If you’re visiting Robosize, there is a good chance that you already know this technology. And if you haven’t heard about it before, just imagine a real dressing room, but online. How can an online shop reduce the return if customers can’t see how the clothes fit on them? And how should a customer decide if there is no dressing room?
The results of a survey have shown that nearly 63% of American customers were bracketing in 2022, meaning that they have been buying multiple sizes of the same product just to make sure they will get the best fit.
Bracketing means “return,” and return is another synonym for waste of resources, polluting the air, threatening more human and animal lives, etc. And sadly, it’s the killer of every effort made to maintain a sustainable business. Now it’s easier to contemplate the necessity and beauty of what Robosize has to offer.
Note: read about virtual fitting rooms for e-commerce businesses.
Although “sustainability” sounds like a modern term, it has a long root in history. Hans Carl von Carlowitz, in his 1713 book, used “Nachhaltigkeit,” the German equivalent of sustainability, for the first time. But it has never been more needed and articulated than now.
If you’re a customer, you need to care about it, even if it’s just to protect yourself. And if you have an online apparel business, you need to care, too, because you have to be able to make and keep loyal customers. Sustainability is no longer a chic attitude to brag about, and everyone knows a thing or two about it. The Internet has provided quick access to the ever-growing information sources for all the users on the planet. So, instead of denying it or refusing to adapt the business accordingly, everybody needs to find solutions on the matter, which is exactly what Robosize is: Solution.