Consumers have always been hesitant to buy clothes online that they canâ€™t try on or see in person. But in recent months, online apparel sales have continued to grow at a rapid rate â€” outpacing even the online computer and software industries.
This isnâ€™t all that surprising. I certainly buy more things online than I did three years ago. But I canâ€™t say that I am any more comfortable with the idea of buying apparel online today â€” after all, I still have to take a leap of faith when deciding to purchase something that Iâ€™ve never actually seen. So whatâ€™s driving the trend? Rapidly evolving technology is making online shopping more and more appealing.
In the past, retailers had to focus on making secure shopping sites that worked, and the shopping experience remained limited to photos and simple product descriptions. These days, technology incorporates photos, videos, and even audio into interactive and flashy platforms â€” all of which look to reduce the information asymmetry between buyer and seller and better convey a companyâ€™s brand and culture. Virtual runways, online showrooms, and dynamic product pictures help make the shopping process fun, personal, and reliable.
And itâ€™s not just that the new technology and features have changed our lives for the better â€” but the customization of the shopping process has helped everyone in very different ways. For once, our own personal needs are addressed.
Iâ€™ll be honest, I have trouble buying shoes. If Iâ€™m lucky I can squeeze into a size thirteen, but I often am forced to upgrade to a fourteen â€” no, there is no such thing as a thirteen-and-a-half. I guess the shoe industry has decided that if your foot is already that big, moving a full size up wonâ€™t make that much of a difference (or even more likely that freaks like us just donâ€™t have feelings). And the kicker: I wear an AA width.
But as much as I dread having to buy a new pair of shoes, the internet has always been a great resource. After all, the chance of a store having my size increases dramatically when Iâ€™m ordering from a warehouse rather than the local shop. Plus with a few minutes of comparison shopping, Iâ€™ve been known to save up to thirty dollars on a new pair of running shoes. The one drawback â€” obviously, itâ€™s hard to know if the shoes I buy online will fit my bony feet.
This is what is so great about the rapid technological improvements of the online shopping industry. When I go to buy new shoes online, I can browse through pairs that have been proven to fit exactly the same way. Sites include dynamic pictures so that I can zoom in on different parts of the shoe to examine the heal, or toe box, or laces. For the average person, this probably sounds crazy. But for someone with weird-shaped feet, itâ€™s amazing.
In the end, itâ€™s not just about shoes. Online shopping is finally personal â€” customized to the needs of the shopper. At shoeboxed, weâ€™re committed to revolutionizing the online shopping process. Join shoeboxed today â€” we promise, itâ€™s just the beginning.