Probably, in a few days in Milan, YOOX, the online fashion retailer from Bologna, will present its “data driven private label”. The YNAP Group, which closed with a + 16% in 2017 at 2.1 billion euros, is starting with one of the most relevant resources for a retailer, the knowledge of its (online) shoppers, used to create a #privatelabel designed on their behaviour.

A competitive advantage derived from the combination of analytical skills and #customerinsight processed to take retail #marketing decisions that most physical #retailers, apart from exceptions, are not yet able to do effectively due to lack of #retail #analytics skills and, perhaps, for myopia.

What will #fashionbrands think about private label in “their” YOOX #onlinechannel? They will respond with a nice “no problem”: unlike the #FMCG retail – where manufacturer brands have seen sales decline for years to the advantage of private labels and smaller companies, that perhaps offer their own brand/product exclusively to one retailer (almost private label) – the big fashion brands are vertically integrated up to the networks of their #stores.

Even if YOOX’s private label is not a problem for fashion brands, it can be an opportunity. A Fashion brand can propose itself as a #co-packer for some qualified fashion retailers, applying to co-manage one or more product categories/brands on the basis of the retailer’s objectives (retailer has the information of the #shoppers, very important also for the fashion brand).

In the FMCG there are some interesting school cases in which the industrial brand has grown thanks to the ability to be a balanced director of the category, growing the whole #category and private label,and playing this dual role, brand leader and copacker, which still some believe to be contradictory.

Private label is less and less a “product similar to … that costs less”, it is sometimes the brand leader and the #innovator of the category and among the categories (#packaging in food e.g. ICELAND or fabrics and #sustainable products in fashion e.g. YOOXYGEN).

These are “contaminations” between different sectors to generate innovative and competitive ideas and practices to test or at least to be discovered out of their “silos”. Will we see a “food & fashion capsùle” at the #supermarket or a “cross category collection” at the fashion store?

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