A free video tutorial from Ward & Fifth Consulting
Teaching the skills needed to launch a Fashion Brand
3.9 instructor rating • 14 courses • 8,991 students
Learn more from the full courseFashion Brand Launch: E-Commerce & Drop Ship
Year 1 and 2 of your fashion startup should focus in these areas of sales
01:01:52 of on-demand video • Updated June 2017
- How to get your brand carried with these drop-ship retailers
- How Flash Sales can be a marketing, financial and inventory gold-mine
- Why launch with E-commerce and not Wholesale
- How Higher Margins and Inventory are achieved online
- Key attributes necessary to have implemented into your website for sales and marketing
- The best web hosts for fashion ecommerce
- Keys to perfect brand imaging with your website
- Who to use for your e-marketing platform
- What is Drop-Ship?
English [Auto] Hello welcome back to the Shawn Ward again fresh and brand launch e-commerce and dropship. Hope you guys in the first lecture didn't hear my son Dash too much in the background. He's a 1 year old. Actually today he's around 14 months. I know some people say What do you mean. This jiffies 1 years old. He's 1 years old one year old and he's taken his first nap while I'm recording this lecture for you guys so hopefully that didn't get in there too much. It's cool being a dad and I stay and take care of him a couple of days a week so let's continue to rock and roll. We're going to talk about continue to talk about e-commerce in dropship few specific strategies to talk a little bit more about how we're going to move forward. So our e-commerce goals at the very beginning. Again these are the first two years. It's not to get on every large Web site out there for fashion companies. We're basically going to focus on driving traffic to your Web site and generate substantial sales online. Okay this is not most likely going to happen day one if you're not a celebrity or have a celebrity partner or you're not liked and seeing some large name most likely you're going to be a gradual growth. OK. It's going to be a slow burn. So but the key is to drive traffic to the website how do you do that. Obviously the cheapest way to do it is to do it through your immediate friends and family. All right there are a few strategies that we'll talk about when we go into the market and we'll talk a over marketing of course but newsletter right away. One thing I always have my clients do is take all of the context in every email account you've ever had where there's an old school AOL account Hotmail added to your e-mail your Yahoo. All of the business cards you've ever collected over the years and create a master e-mail list that you put into your MailChimp or whatever platform you're going to use the MailChimp is as of today. The very best sale send out newsletters get those people onto your Web site. Those will be your first adapters your friends and family. No other way how to drive traffic online advertising is very inexpensive to advertise on Facebook. Nowadays you can have campaign ads or five bucks a day which comes out two hundred fifty bucks a month which is again versus when I first started back in 2003. You have to pay for $5000 ad in some magazine just to get an advertising. So newsletters online at social media is very inexpensive. Right. It's FREE. Get all your friends to come there do some partnerships collaboration if you know someone who's influencer or even if they're D-list celebrity get your product on them ask them to post for you on social media. Do we do some PR with the local media and national media if you have the means to be able to get a publicist pay for them. P.R. firm can be expensive. If you can create some sort of partnership with a publicist or make them a shareholder to be able to bring down that cost or make get it for free do that. You want to make sure everything is to be able to drive people to your site. OK. Again get people to your site that's where you're going to make the most money. Now to expand your consumer base beyond your brand's fans this is when you want to make sure you do the dropship. So I mentioned that in their previous lecture that when you are working with dropship Rechelle are there going to be a lot more keen on working with you in these early stages because again they don't have to carry the inventory they just put your product on their Web site. Consumers buy it. They tell you they ship it to them and then they get their cut. Right. So it's less work for them. It's you know it's not that much work for you and you're able to get people who are going to see your product that aren't your friends and family and that aren't going to catch you on social media. Now if Mike who is this guy in Hollywood and he wears you know he wears Nike shoes he wears jeans he wears affliction tees and you know basically kind of color accessories whatever it is he may not have ever heard of your brand of launching in Chicago. However he goes on to men and he's looking for a lot of the brands he loves. And then your brand will pop up and he's like whoa what is this brand. And then you see if I can get this cool pair of jeans instead of paying 150 bucks for them I can get them at 45 bucks. Damn they look cool. The reviews. Check out their Web site. It's cool. I'm going to take a risk because obviously if it was 150 bucks normally I probably would not pay for those. Now that I can get the full 45 I never heard of it but I can live 45 it seems cool. I'm going to buy them. That's how you get that's how you expand your consumer base and allow yourself to start working with customer. That would have never heard about your brand through the dropship retailers and the flash sales. Now your next e-commerce goal is to achieve the highest margins. This is where I was saying in the last lecture about the benefits of being able to concentrate on your online sales at your Web site versus working with trying to go out and get your product into boutiques in department stores right away. So when you are selling your product at your they your standard retail prices what I just mentioned before 150 bucks. Normally your wholesale to a boutique or department store is going to be 75. Half of that 150 and then your cost of goods to maybe $30 to get them from the factory. So when you sell to your boutique you're selling it to them for 75 bucks. Well you have to get to sales to a retailer get the same amount to make the same amount of money you would if you just sell it to a consumer online. Right. So to sell 75 bucks is easy is just the same as selling one product at 150 and it's less work. OK. And you potentially have a fan. So you're going to have the highest margin and highest margins means you're going to have more money in your bank. You have more money to spend on marketing. You will have peace of mind as you start to develop the next season because you have more money in the bank and you can start to do some product development right. So that's the third goal your fourth goal is to avoid the hadit dreadful charge back. OK. This is something that even big brands continue to struggle with and retailers have it as a part of their business plan to get as much charge back as possible sort of the charge that a chargeback is a credit that retailers will demand from brands like yours because of certain things that they consider a headache in doing business with you. So say for instance you shipped them four boxes of your product and one of the labels is not where it should be. They're going to charge you back for that. Say they'll charge you back 25 bucks for that. Next thing you know they'll say one of the tag we're missing they're going to charge you back another $20. They're going to say that you didn't. It didn't arrive on the 15th if it arrives on the 17th we're going to charge you back. Our goals are to sell 10 percent per week. You only sold 5 percent per week. We're going to charge you back. We have to put your products on sale to move them. We're going to charge you back. So retailers not only make money on the difference between the wholesale price and the retail price but they actually have it in their business model to have a goal to get a certain amount of their revenues from chargeback. So you can avoid these chargebacks while your company is in its infancy and it is very very sensitive to these types of financial setbacks. You can avoid that by concentrating on direct to consumer sales. OK. Next goal is to build your consumer demand and your market buzz before you even start talking to the department stores and specialty stores. Why is this important. Because when customers walk into a boutique walk into Neiman Marcus or Bergdorf Goodman or Herr's of London a lot of times they'll immediately walk over to the brands that they know and love is just a normal way of consumers. That's why these big brands consumer has been so much in advertising because familiarity is comfort. And so when customers walk through these doors and they see Hurley if you serve brands they know route they don't owe them. If all you love is the brand I know about this is the brand that you know you know the cool surfers wear. And then they end up buying a lot more of those products. Whereas if product X which is brand new is right there next to them and it's pretty much similar product. What is there. You know what is their motivation and less is much cheaper or has a much higher quality whatever it is even if it is that a lot of times consumers will end up buying what they're familiar with because they've bought it. They want it. They love it. It's a cool thing. So what you want to do is make sure that customer goes to this surf shop that they've heard of your brand. And the only way to do that is to concentrate in the first couple of years on building the buzz in your brand and what happens is and when they do walk in they see a brand they've heard of it they probably bought it online at a friends have at it. They have a higher chance of converting that sale with you versus if it was two or three years earlier and you were just in there starting off. And so what this does it give you a higher sales through it give the retailer a comfort level working with you. And then a higher opportunity of being bought again. So build that buzz early so that you do have a higher chance of succeeding when you do get into the boutiques. That's just talking about the customer. And if you back up a little bit more the buyer who keeps their ear to the ground and searches the web goes through the coolest shops they travel if they have if they haven't heard of you and you contact them they're going to be again what are you about. What are you talking about or even may not even return an email or call versus two or three years later once you've established that name they maybe have seen someone repo's one of your social media posts they may have someone forwarded them a newsletter. They may have had a customer come and say hey have you heard of Sir bronzy am and Gnome. OK. You start to get this buzz. And by the time that you do approach them or that you want to approach and maybe they end up approaching you first because you've built that buzz. So that is the benefit of really concentrating on your personal branding and image in Baugh's in these early stages. You have a better seat at the table when it comes to working with these retailers. Last but not least you get to control your inventory levels. Now if you say I'm only going to concentrate on sales on my website I am only going to buy say 500 pieces for my first season. OK I'm just done a number out there. Some of you may be 50 some maybe 2000 whatever it is. You know that number because you know how many you project to sell. If you go in and say I want to I actually order enough for retailers or you go out and you say you're doing trade shows and you get orders from boutiques. You take them back. You Fennessy a factory you get all this product made and then pay for it if someone cancels the order a retailer cancel the order before you ship it which happens frequently. Now you have all that excess inventory that you didn't plan on having and now you're forced to either put it on sale or try to find somewhere else or another reach out and take it in a lot of times that takes more work more effort and sometimes you have to offer discounts. So you can control your inventory if you concentrate on just your e-commerce sales in those first two years. And when you control that again you have lower overhead. You have better cash flow and you have better opportunity to be able to market and develop your next season's product. So that's it for that for e-commerce goals going in this lecture. Find us on line. Thanks a lot. Take care.