How do you deal with 30 thousand product variations? Listen in to our conversation with Sylvia Stefanowicz and find out more on how you can apply this to your product listings.
A little bit of a background..
- Sylvia came from Poland but left her home country and has been living in the UK for the last twenty years.
- She used to be a corporate banker – but has changed careers and has worked with small sized companies to medium enterprises all the way to global companies in expansion for over 12 years.
- She is at the same time a CEO of a fashion lingerie:
The lingerie industry…
- Multiply the sizes x variations x skin tone and you have a lot of variations. This is the same way you get your total variations vis-a-vis whatever your products are.
- Not many people go into it because it is high risk.
- You need to understand your business.
- You learn from your customers. What helps is a brick and mortar store.
- It helps get an idea of the customer personae and what they are looking for.
- Think of your business in a global perspective.
- What works in one country may differ in another.
- If you don’t have that many things to show then your customers will not have many options to choose from and they will not stay.
Take aways from owning a physical store
- You need to go out there and do your research.
- Talk to the people out there – only 1% do it.
- Don’t just deep dive on your data – get close to your customers.
- Talk to them and not just base on your data because you are excluding potential customers.
- Brick and mortar stores can move outwards to e-commerce.
- It is now a science lab – where you get to see the real action.
Selling lingerie online
- In US: you can not sell returned panties.
- Shopify does not allow panty -returns. It protects the sellers.
- If you do retail – there are almost no returns at all.
- Be careful when selecting products you will be selling online – don;t take the whole range because you can lose a lot, customers will not buy all the variations.
- Retail: it is an R and D. It is a profitable business but the downside is it doesn’t have that much range of scalability.
- If you can have a retail base – do it with another company or another brand.
- Try a pop-out store – this can get you closer to your customers.
- If you have one or two products doing well – then you can look into the potential of creating a brand around this idea.
- Go into department stores and do collaboration with them, speak to distributors and these will open up doors and bring new ideas.
- These are things you can not do with Amazon alone.
- Create a stream lines private label so you don’t get exposed to all those risks: returns, cash flows, stock management.
- Know your industry
- Know the risks
- What can you bring differently with your line?
- What value can your customers get from your product?
- What is your differentiation? Do the test of what is opposite of your product right now.
5 Stand Outs on what is important
- If you are already selling in Amazon, take your business concept outside of Amazon and test if your product numbers make sense in terms of customer demand, price point.
- Do not restrict yourself – have a broader way of thinking about your brand. Think wider.
- In terms of retail – it is not dead. It is changing its phase. It is all about providing experience.
- Have an omni-concept: be multi-country and multi-channel. This is what customers expect in the next 50 years.
- If you have 30% from another channel. Diversify. Current trend is for small boutiques. People want to buy from small businesses, family owned.
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