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E-com penetration of fashion to reach 30% in 5 years: Rishad Chindamada of Meta

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Representatives from Meta that runs Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp shared social commerce-related insights, advice and success stories at the 22nd edition of India Fashion Forum

Bengaluru: Metaverse is fashion’s next major investment. As the metaverse continues to evolve, it opens up a world of possibilities for brands looking to boost their customer engagement and data analysis efforts, says industry experts from Meta during a masterclass titled ‘Shaping the Future of Fashion’ on Wednesday at the India Fashion Forum 2023.

The masterclass was led by Meghna Apparao, director of Meta, India and Rishad Chindamada, head of industry for commerce, Meta.

“Consumers come to Meta for engaging and immersive content,” says Apparao. “Over 140 billion reels are played a day which proves that in India a person watches approximately 90 reels per day. People spend more than 50% of their social media time (Facebook and Instagram) watching videos. 700 million people use AR (augmented reality) effects across Meta every month.”

According to data from the third quarter of 2022, in India, over 450 million users access Facebook every month and 65% of monthly active users access Facebook daily. Instagram has 393 million monthly active users and 590 million people use WhatsApp every month. Moreover, 1 billion people manage businesses with these applications each week.

“Fashion space is probably one of the most exciting platforms because that’s where a vast number of consumers is. The percentage of people who use each platform for fashion-related activity is calculated as 56%, 70%, 50%, and 45% for Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp respectively,” she added.

While citing examples of people who have succeeded in business with the help of Meta, Chindamada mentions The Indian Ethnic Co, an online store of Indian handmade clothing.

“The Indian Ethnic Co. is a start-up launched by a mother and two daughters. Way before the launch of the company Hetal Desai was basically a designer with great taste in apparel and aesthetic sense. With an investment of Rs.50,000, the company launched online by putting designs on its Instagram profile and Facebook page. The company gained followers in a short span and also started getting orders from all over India and even abroad. Today, The Indian Ethnic Co. is a Rs.50 crore brand,” she said.

While speaking about the global e-commerce market  Chindamada presented highlights from a report, “The fashion industry accounts for the largest segment in the global e-commerce market with $990 billion revenue in 2022 and the online apparel industry is expected to reach $1.2 trillion by market value in 2025. In India e-commerce penetration of fashion is expected to increase from 10-12% currently to 30% in five years.”

“Gen Z shoppers enjoy the journey of discovering new brands, products, and retailers,” said Chindamada. “It is the first generation that grew up with the broad availability of online shopping channels. 48% of Gen Z consumers consider themselves experts in online shopping. 79% say that they find inspiration for fashion on mobile specifically. Even though online shopping is becoming a primary channel, they are also being comfortable with omnichannel shopping. Thus being digital first Gen Z shoppers want the in-store experience to meet their digital experience.”

Speaking about international fashion brands within the meta eco-system Apparao presented examples such as Musinsa. Musinsaverse is a virtual reality showroom introduced by the marketing director general Seo Eun-hee of Musinsa. Recently, the online shopping platform unveiled a virtual AI brand ambassador named ‘Mu Ah In’ modelled after the South Korean actor Yoo Ah In.

The speakers concluded the session with some metrics on the use of AR. Around 750 million people use AR effects across Meta technologies every month and the AR market is expected to reach $330 billion in 2028 up from just $16 billion in 2020.

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