It seems like forever since anyone has been able to give Amazon a real run for their money. In the last decade, Amazon has become the dominant force in the online apparel niche, crushing the competition and raking in 20 percent of all the online apparel sales. That may all be changing soon as Kate Hudson’s Fabletics has been gaining on the retail giant and making waves of their own. In the last three years, despite thousands in this market, Fabletics has sold $250 million in women’s yoga pants, active-wear, tank tops, and leggings.
Kate Hudson’s Fabletics is making Amazon nervous because they are doing things Amazon can not. Hudson says that the two keys to the ultimate success of her athleisure brand are reverse showrooming and a rewarding membership package. In order to really understand how these two work in tandem, you need to head over to the local mall and walk inside one of the Kate Hudson’s Fabletics retail shops. Here you see women taking the Lifestyle Quiz, window-shopping, trying on anything they can get their hands on, and many times leaving the shop without making a purchase.
Leaving the store empty-handed? That is just fine with Hudson, and perhaps the key to the real success of the brand.
Perhaps the reason the company is seeing sales in record numbers has to do what happens after these women leave the stores and return online at their convenience. Since they had been trying on everything in the store from yoga pants to leggings, all those selections were moved to their online cart automatically. Now they can relax and continue shopping exactly where they had stopped inside the mall shops. They tend to not only grab what they were trying on, they stuff the cart with impulse buys which only help increase the sales and bottom-line of Fabletics.
These two sales components are a welcome change from the buying experience at Amazon where women buy a piece and hope it fits, then return it and wait weeks until they finally get the right size. Kate Hudson’s Fabletics customers are not only enjoying the convenience of shopping when they have time, they are also rewarded with free shipping, help from their own personal shopping assistant, discounts on all the workout apparel, and a no questions asked return policy. This is how shopping for women’s active-wear should be, and the sales numbers are an indication of that.