Online shopping reaches new heights with phone apps


Laura Faye / The Record

Lauren Cifra, Reporter

Students utilize social media for school organization updates, campus news, sports updates and more.

Now, students are using social media to tend to their fashion needs. With applications like The Hunt and Tumblr, fashion inspiration is in the palm of their hands. It is crucial to comprehend the direction of this fashion progression and grasp how the consumers are propelling the movement.

“I like to get inspiration from magazines and also what I see people wearing around me,” said Susan Freitas, a SUNY Buffalo State fashion merchandising sophomore from Elmira, New York.

This generation values communication and rapidly conducting it. The Hunt application allows users to search for specific items while other users help find where they can locate and purchase these items.  It acts as a search database for the trendy and fashion forward.

Tumblr is also an outlet that is designed for blogging. People post different fashion inspirations as well as visually pleasing images that influence their fashion choices. “We live in an era where teenagers and young adults value the use of technology for marketing,” said Emily Zajac, a business marketing sophomore from Rockville Centre.

Another application for fashion lovers is Wanelo, or “Want it, Need it, Love it.” Similar to The Hunt, this application is a search database for modish and trendy items ranging from sweaters to wall décor.

Arlesa Shephard, a fashion professor at Buffalo State, explained that technology is crucial for targeting young consumers. In order to create the ultimate consumer experience, retailers must get inside their heads. Getting inside their heads is basically just tracking their buying behavior. Retailers, brands and designers are finding better ways to track the consumption process in its entirety.

Retailers must evolve as consumers evolve.

Shephard said that in the last ten years alone, there has been a significant change in the fashion industry and that in the next ten years, consumers will see even more change.

Experiences are becoming hands-on and purchasing power is in a fingertip’s reach from the consumer, literally.

According to McKinsey & Co. Global Consulting Firm,  “Over the past decade, US e-commerce has grown at an impressive clip of almost 18 percent a year. It now accounts for 8 percent of total retail sales. With the accelerating adoption of mobile – US smartphone penetration exceeds 40 percent today and is projected to reach nearly 60 percent in three years – digital commerce is poised to explode.”

With this growing popularity of digital media, it has become quite evident that consumers care less about print media.

Retailers that are marketing savvy are omnichannel retailers. Innovation is in. Whether the consumers are intrigued, or designers and retailers are curious to try new things, innovation in the fashion industry is happening before consumers’ eyes.

In some cases, designers are being innovative with actual materials, fabrics and patterns. If it is not a tangible item being altered with new technology, it is a service or a social media application. Changes are being made globally and it is only a matter of time before nothing is what it used to be.

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