When was the last time you thought: “I love the outfit I just ordered. Can’t wait to wear it in 4-6 weeks!” Literally never, is my guess.
Consumers have a “see now, buy now, wear now” mentality when it comes to how they shop. Think of all the clothes in your closet: worn once and then just taking up a hanger you need for the last thing you bought. In the fashion industry, Zara pioneered a model based on this mentality in the 1980’s and have followed it since (although, their process does major damage to our beautiful planet).
However, online-only retailers have emerged and championed this model to their advantage. Without having to worry about larger corporations, online retailers are able to manufacture where and when they want, granting them a faster turnaround time. One example (of hundreds) is when Fashion Nova recreated and sold Kylie Jenner’s birthday looks just two days later.
How are all of these smaller brands able to manufacture so much faster than their larger competition? The secret is to have the whole production process stay as in-house as possible. Many major brands and companies still outsource their production which slows down how quickly they can get their products to their customers.
Here at Suuchi Inc., we use a vertically integrated supply chain, meaning that every stage of production is done in-house.
What does this mean for our clients? The quickest turnaround time at the highest quality with the most eco-friendly process.
Instead of trying to predict the next trends in the market, our clients are able to react and cater to their consumers’ demands as they arise. We can replenish our clients’ inventories in as little as 5 days, which means their products can reach their customers at lightning speed.
But, what about the rest of the industry? Many large retailers have closed because they didn’t change from the old model of set launch times and seasons. Speed-to-market has never been the priority for designers and brands in the past. However, within the last decade speed-to-market has become the top priority for brands. Retailers who were unable to keep up with the shift in priorities were buried by those who could.
Luxury brands who once called the shots on every trend and launch date have had to learn how to keep up with an industry that no longer follows their rules. Gucci is one of few high-end brands whose vision includes keeping up with the times. Earlier this year, Gucci revealed the Gucci ArtLab in Florence, Italy. The ArtLab’s purpose is to bring Gucci’s production closer to home in order to increase the speed of their manufacturing process. Despite the obvious benefits of the ArtLab, it isn’t being used to manufacture all of Gucci’s products.
Prioritizing speed-to-market into your brand could be what makes or breaks your success. Being fully informed and teaming up with the right partners are the right places to start as you build your brand.
Written by Lizzie Sessa