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February 10, 2020


Keeping pace with “fast fashion”

Lee Patty

Did you know the top 3 words fashion executives use to describe the industry are digital, optimistic, and fast? This was just one of many findings from Mckinsey’s State of Fashion 2019 report, and it makes perfect sense. The metabolism of the fashion industry keeps getting faster: mega brands associated with fast fashion can restock stores with new collections as rapidly as twice a week; social media can change trends at the click of a button; competition is pushing the limits of distribution; and the habits of Gen Z’ers and millennials are pushing established brands and start-ups alike to consider other ways of doing business – from subscriptions to rentals.

While these emerging consumer trends have unlocked entirely new opportunities, they also present a slew of new challenges. As the pace of fashion continues to accelerate to lightspeed, today’s manufacturers and retailers face even greater pressure for efficiency and distribution.

Meeting the demand for an agile supply chain

An agile supply chain is absolutely critical for fast fashion, and the ticketing system is one of the most vital elements for apparel manufacturers and retailers. With  a small window of opportunity when a product is most desirable, manufacturers and retailers need to be able to pivot at a moment’s notice to match rapidly shifting market conditions. It’s essential to be able to swiftly adjust prices and get returned goods re-ticketed and on the sales floor as soon as possible – before the opportunity is lost.

Unfortunately, unagile legacy ticketing systems are all too common, and often delay retailers for weeks while they wait for printed tickets to arrive from distribution centers. This means inventory is sitting idly, rapidly depreciating in value after the item has been returned and an entirely missed opportunity if fashion trends and consumer preferences have already shifted.

These delays have a direct correlation to the ROI attained from merchandise and an organization’s overall bottom line. But this doesn’t have to be the case – a modern ticketing system presents the opportunity to efficiently remedy these issues.

Optimizing ROI with the right modern solution

Modern ticketing systems empower retailers with a plethora of advantages, including less reliance on IT departments, process improvements, less training, quicker label creation, and greater transparency across the entire supply chain.

Most importantly, the entire process is managed closer to the customer and rack, enabling goods to get back on the shop floor in only a matter of days.

But like Cinderella and her glass slippers, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Every manufacturer and retailer face their own unique challenges, so there are a few critical elements to look for when adopting a new system. The solution must be able to:

  • Perform ticket, tag and label printing for eCommerce and in-store channels
  • Eliminate errors and improve quality assurance while simultaneously streamlining costs
  • Integrate with existing warehouse management systems to make adoption easier and more successful
  • Automate printing workflows, support mobile systems, and be printer agnostic

It’s no longer enough to simply “keep up” with fast fashion. Manufacturers and retailers need the right supporting infrastructure. While it might seem small, a modern ticketing process is a crucial component, ensuring garments can fluidly move in and out of storefronts efficiently based on demand. And in doing so, operations improve, profits increase, customers get what they want quicker, and you may even start setting new trends at your own lightning pace.

Learn more about retail labeling to see how you can benefit from transforming your tagging process.

  • Supply Chain
  • Labeling