If the new wave of online shopping and the world of Web3 has left your head spinning (for good reason), you’re not alone. 🌀
Although many large brands have already started to adapt their strategies to reflect digital experiences, DTC brands have the opportunity to bring new experiences to site visitors.
Shoppers are taking a peek into the digital world, and your brand should be considering it, too:
- 70% of U.S. general consumers acknowledge the importance of their digital identity.
- 50% are interested in purchasing digital assets (digital skins/gaming items, digital fashion, avatars, or NFTs) in the next 12 months.
The fashion industry is one of many to jump in head first, let’s dive in! 👇
👗What is digital fashion?
It’s not only NFT’s and the other buzzwords becoming prevalent online. Digital fashion is virtual 3D clothing designed to be worn by humans and digital avatars.
Instead of fabric and textiles, think pixels and animations.
Why would a DTC brand be interested in showcasing digital products?
- Low production costs (reflected in low retail prices)
- Less waste (the production of a digital garment emits 97% less CO2 than that of a physical garment)
- Fewer creative design limitations (if any)
One of the biggest online video games, Fortnite, has shown the future generation of digital shoppers just how digital purchases work. Their avatar skins (like virtual clothing) have generated billions of dollars in revenue. That’s a product-market fit if we’ve ever seen one.
Outside of gaming, the most practical use of digital fashion is digital dressing. Platforms like Adobe Photoshop, AR, and AI allows consumers to outfit themselves in digital garments.
How does this relate to the DTC world? Brands like Warby Parker and Farfetch offer AR-powered virtual try-on options, giving a whole new meaning to try before you buy.
Digital experiences give consumers a new way to interact with products while simultaneously lifting sales and decreasing returns.
While the digital fashion industry is small… key players DRESSX and The Dematerialised are killing the online game and have brands thinking about the possibilities of the Metaverse. 👀
DRESSX is the largest digital fashion retailer in the world. They carry a carefully curated mix of designer digital garments.
For now, the bulk of their business is built around digital dressing. Here’s how it works:
- Users ‘virtually shop’ on the platform for an item and are able to purchase it!
- Users upload a picture of themselves wearing fitted clothes and follow specific lighting requirements.
- About 24 hours later, users receive a custom image of themselves wearing their purchased garment.
The owner of the digital garment can share that image across all social channels (hello new instagram photos👋).
The best part for the brand? Users only purchase and receive an image of themselves wearing the garment, not the source file itself or an NFT of the product.
But, if NFT’s are your game, DRESSX has created an NFT marketplace and a MetaCloset app for owners to wear and showcase their garments.
The Dematerialised (DMAT) is a luxury digital fashion NFT retailer. Unlike DRESSX, all DMAT’s digital fashion NFTs live on the LUKSO blockchain and can be purchased with credit cards and cryptocurrency.
Targeted specifically toward luxury designers, DMAT has helped introduce heavy-hitters like Rebecca Minkoff and Karl Lagerfeld to the digital fashion world and has exclusive co-branded collections.
Since DMAT shoppers actually own their digital garments, there’s a bit more freedom in what they can do with them.
- Digital dressing through AR filters on Instagram and Snapchat
- Porting them into virtual worlds like Decentraland or Roblox
- Showcasing them in their digital closet
Having shoppers own your branded digital products is a great way to ensure shoppers show off their purchases (and your brand) to their friends online. Build that funnel!
🏬 Metaverse stores
Other brands have opted to invest directly in their own virtual metaverse stores.
Some fashion companies chose to launch virtual pop-up shops during Metaverse Fashion Week – which offered buyers a selection of digital fashion NFTs and physical items redeemable through NFT ownership.
The virtual stores also included IRL collections where shoppers could click through directly to the standard ecommerce sites.
Brands like Adidas have gobbled up millions of dollars of metaverse land for permanent storefronts and other experiences. 💸
The truth is, nobody really knows how consumers will shop in the metaverse. Heck, we’re still figuring out ecommerce. 💁♀️
But what’s clear is that these buzzwords represent key trends for DTC brand owners to consider. Do you have a product that can be virtually tried on? A product that users can experience before (or instead of) buying the physical product?
The digital world is paving the way for the next frontier of DTC consumption.