By all indications, Amazon has such a big piece of the online clothing market that it doesn’t worry about much. Commanding 20% of the sales in this competitive niche is serious business, and over the years Amazon has seen companies come and go without doing real damage to their bottom line. Kate Hudson’s Fabletics has been chipping away at the giant, and sales topping $250 million over the last three years is an indication her company may be putting Amazon to the test this year.
To hear it from Hudson, she will tell you that the secret to the ultimate success of Fabletics is all about the company membership process and reverse showrooming. Looking at it from the perspective of the consumer, here is why Hudson says her athleisure brand is beginning to command a bigger market share in this e-commerce fashion space. The consumer goes to one of the many Fabletics retail outlets in a mall, then signs up for the free membership and takes the Lifestyle Quiz. Now the consumer is free to browse or try on anything they like. Most women simply try on the workout apparel and active-wear without buying, so how can Hudson see this as beneficial?
That is the secret to the success of Kate Hudson’s Fabletics, buyers can window shop with zero pressure from sales associates.
Later that day, week, or month, when the women have time to go to the Fabletics website, they discover all the items they tried on are now in the account ready for consideration. Unlike shopping at Amazon, these women know which items flatter their body and which styles will look great because they have already tried most of the items on. Now they shop at their convenience, with no pressure, and browse a huge assortment of high-quality merchandise at deeply discounted prices with free shipping.
As a member of Kate Hudson‘s Fabletics, you enjoy all the benefits described and you get a personal shopper who uses your quiz answers and shopping preferences to select a new item each month for you to consider. As a shopper, you buy the item, cancel the selection, or simply shop for something else, the consumer has all the power and nothing ever shops without the full permission of the buyer. Amazon may be rethinking their stance on not worrying about the competition because it appears that Kate Hudson’s Fabletics is about to make a real name in this space for many years to come.