By Nohar Nath
In the early months of 2020, the world has witnessed a major turn of events, as the Covid-19 pandemic, is responsible for some serious shifts in the global economy. In the last few months, it has caught brands across the world by surprise as the decision-makers of companies were completely unaware of the sudden dilemma. With the unforeseen decline in demand, retail companies have stopped the production of their newer lines. Globally all areas of the fashion world have been affected negatively by the current situation.
It is no surprise, that the pandemic will change the world as we know it. But what will be most noticeable is the way consumer behaviour will transform as the world’s population finds itself at the centre of a bad economy and unemployment and it struggles to recuperate and save what it can from the losses. The shift in consumer buying patterns and the way they will interact with their brands will be interesting for all to see.
With the average consumer spending more time indoors, they will be largely available online for big and small communications. The brands that have an established web-base will benefit now more than ever before. The ones that do not enjoy a web-base, will have to get some footing online, to get the traction going.
With the consumers prioritizing survival needs over lifestyle needs in this time of a cash crunch, they will be mindful of what kind of purchases they make. Fashion and other luxury products may face pressures in this duration as consumers cut costs. Consumers are now looking for clothing items that offer quality, longevity along with being light on the pocket.
This need will also see a rise in circular fashion. In the last few years, circular fashion has inched its way to mainstream fashion. With the decline in demand for fast fashion clothing, circular fashion may get to the mainstream fashion sooner than previously expected. Circular fashion has caught on consumers’ interests over the world; with the concept of “reduce and reuse” being prevalent in recent years. Speaking of a scenario closer to home, the idea of reusing one’s own clothes too is not alien. Indians have always been using clothes that have been used before. Hence, the concept of sustainable and circular fashion will be more acceptable to the Indian consumers’ mindset.
Circular fashion has a good chance of benefiting both; the brands and the consumers. With an aim to reduce expenditure the consumers will seek out sources where they will get low cost, yet branded and good quality clothes and the brands will look for making the most out of their existing products.
As the world deals with the uncertainty of Covid-19, there is one thing that’s certain, that consumer mindsets will evolve hugely. Not only will there be more room for circular fashion in the minds of consumers, but they will also be mindful of making choices about what will hang in their closets.
(Nohar Nath is the Founder & CEO of Kiabza – a unique ReCommerce website for people to buy and sell branded pre-owned fashion. Views expressed in the article are of the author.)