Amazon has been the leader in e-commerce sales for years, and in the highly competitive women’s active-wear niche, they dominate the field. In fact, Amazon takes in 20 percent of all sales in that space, and has not had a close competitor in years. It appears that one competitor is not afraid of the Amazon empire, and has been making some serious pushes towards the top spot in the women’s apparel niche. Kate Hudson’s Fabletics has made over $250 million in sales in only three years, and has made up some serious ground on Amazon this year.
Hudson talks about how her company has really transformed the landscape, and it all comes down to her unique membership package combined with the process known as reverse showrooming. So how do these two components equal such explosive sales numbers? We start at the Fabletics retail store in the mall, where women are getting their free memberships, doing a little window-shopping, trying on all the clothing they like, and taking the Lifestyle Quiz that enhances their memberships. The company does not put any pressure on these women to buy at the retail store, so how does Fabletics make money?
The secret to the success of this company happens later when these women will eventually wind up at the Fabletics website. Hudson says her athleisure brand sells itself because of high-quality and convenience. When a customer goes to the website, all the active-wear and workout apparel they wore in the store is in the online profile, so they know how things already fit. Based on what already fits perfectly, these women will add more items, new styles, and the latest arrivals. Since they know it fits and flatters their body, they don’t have to worry when the clothing arrives how it will look.
When you eliminate the guesswork, the shopping part for these women is easy. Now add into the mix lower pricing and free shipping, and you can see why they spend so much. Part of the benefits of taking the Lifestyle Quiz is you get a Fabletics personal shopper who will select one item each month for the customer to consider. That added convenience makes shopping at Kate Hudson’s Fabletics even easier, and the numbers are certainly telling the real story here. Amazon may want to pay closer attention to this company if they want to stay on top of this niche.