Clothing & Apparel Market: Product customisation expected to shape consumer sentiment in 2020

Consumer preference in the clothing and apparel market will be shaped by personal desire to stay unique. Hence it is believed that the capacity of businesses engaged in the clothing and accessories market to tailor products to consumers diverse but unique preferences will serve as key influence on buying behaviour in 2020.

That is no news though for some businesses which have caught whiff of the trend and positioned strategically at the turning of the new decade.

Three examples among many include Dynasty clothing customisation stall at the Ikeja Shopping Mall in Alausa where for around N4, 000 anyone can have whatever inscriptions that suit their fancy printed instantly on newly purchased shirts. However, the second and third examples have taken that insight beyond the rudimentary, entry level. NIKEiD and Levi’s personalized embroidery Tailor Shop offer buyers the opportunity to customise products (i.e. sneakers, jeans, shirts) online and get them shipped at discount to their homes.

US Embroidery specialist, Brooke Johnson, shared insights about the trend. She said “Customisation connects people to the idea that they cannot only repair their clothing but that they can revamp the entire look of it”.

“People have been chasing trends and still continue to do so, however, this idea of customization has become attractive because it allows the wearer to stand out in a sea of duplicates. Other brands such as Atelier and Repairs and Lot Stock&Barrel have based their entire company around this concept and it has only continued to grow,” she added.

Nigeria’s fashion industry in growing fast. There are different fashion events popping up here and there in major cities yearly – from GTB Fashion Week to Zenith Style and a host of others. More, bespoke tailoring outfits are taking advantage of tailor-to-fit desires already. But those operating at the industrial level of the business must embrace the trend by creating online portals such as the one created by Levi and Nike to help customers place orders based on personal preferences for cut, size, colour and inscriptions.

While there is no precise data on the size of the Nigeria clothing and apparel market, the apparel and footwear market in Subsaharan Africa is said to be worth over $30 billion according to Style Vitae. This is a huge advantage for anyone interested in going into the apparel business.

In fact, GTB, Access Bank, UBA and the Bank of Industry (BOI) are giving out loans with preferential interest rates as low as 5-9% to players in the sector.

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