Millennial consumers are keen to ‘see now, buy now, wear now’
Younger consumers are without a doubt dictating how brands and retailers operate. The “distracted” generation has a much shorter attention span than other generations, and it turns out that the short attention span means fashion brands and retailers need to move faster for customers.
New research from Kurt Salmon, part of Accenture Strategy, found that fast fashion brands must make speed and agility a top priority to remain competitive and keep up with consumers. Over half of all consumers surveyed wear new items within weeks of purchase and 15% wear items in the same day of purchase. Also, 60% of consumers ages 18 to 24 wear items within a week of purchase and one in five wear items in the same day of purchase.
The ‘see now, buy now, wear now’ mentality spills into online shopping as well. Kurt Salmon Managing Director Dan Murphy said that there is now only a 24 to 36-hour window from browsing to buying. One in five of 18 to 20 year olds want same day delivery and 13% want delivery in less than half a day.
“This insatiable appetite for fast fashion will inevitably continue as these shoppers age,” said Murphy. “There is no reason to believe that younger consumers, who have grown up wedded to devices and social media, will expect anything less than instant gratification in years to come, and continue to possess the same sense of style and image.”
Consumers’ need to have new products immediately is congruent with the ‘see-now-buy-now’ show format. Several brands and retailers such as Tommy Hilfiger, Rebecca Minkoff, Ralph Lauren, Kate Spade, and Zadig & Voltaire in February adopted the show format to increase attention on the collections hitting stores instead of next season’s collections.
Uri Minkoff told The Cut that sales have been up 64% since adopting the ‘see-now-buy-now’ format. Brands have seen similar success with see-now-buy-now capsule collections that were supported with heavy marketing and social media promotion.
“Young consumers have a ‘see now, buy now, wear now’ mentality when it comes to fashion, which has been driven by big fashion houses making the latest designs and styles available to buy straight from the catwalk,” said Murphy. “This is challenging retailers to improve their operational agility to meet rising demand for current trends.”
Murphy added that retailers can win in the fast fashion market by actively engaging their customers, analyzing shopping and social media habits and pre-empt trends.