E-Commerce: Is The Fashion Industry Losing the Human Factor?

E-Commerce: is the Fashion Industry Losing the Human Factor?

Humans are social creatures. We thrive when we are in contact with others.


In so many of our daily rituals and routines, we are constantly surrounded by other people. 


But, the recent global pandemic has forced us to realize how dependent we really are on the interactions and relationships we have with the people around us.


Families, friends, and colleagues have been separated by lockdowns across the globe - forcing the world online at a rate never seen before.

Photo by Brooke Cagle from Unsplash

Fashion, as an industry, is reliant on human contact, connections and interactions at every level.

From the farmers that harvest the raw materials to the designers, the manufacturers, the buyers, and eventually in stores: every step of the fashion life-cycle involves some form of inevitable contact with multiple other people.


But, with so much of our lives going online, and physical human interactions being minimized, are we not removing an essential part of ourselves that makes us human? When it comes to e-commerce based retail - is it actually worthwhile losing that human factor?

Online shopping has grown exponentially in recent years

Online shopping has grown exponentially in recent years. In the year 2019 alone, 1.92 billion people worldwide made an online purchase. During the global lockdowns, online sales escalated by 49% in April in the United States alone. 


So, why is online retail growing at this rapid rate?  

And by losing touch with each other, what are we really losing out on?


From having your suit tailored to fit you just right, to leisurely Saturday morning shopping trips with close friends, to simply having the chance to touch and feel the luxurious fabrics that fill the rails. Moments like these are some of the many intimate and personal touches to fashion that require human contact and an in-store presence. 

From having your suit tailored to fit you just right, to leisurely Saturday morning shopping trips with close friends, to simply having the chance to touch and feel the luxurious fabrics that fill the rails. Moments like these are some of the many intimate and personal touches to fashion that require human contact and an in-store presence. 


Research has shown that most consumers prefer to shop online out of convenience and the ability to compare prices at ease. The offerings with the customer experience of e-commerce are a major drawcard. For instance, there are no restrictions based on trading hours or geography, one is able to make purchases from the comfort of ones’ own home and at the pace and time that one prefers. Online purchases also have the ability to be shipped across the world - meaning that the days of only being able to attain goods and services that lie within your physical reach are long gone. 

Photo by CottonBro from Pexels

From having your suit tailored to fit you just right, to leisurely Saturday morning shopping trips with close friends, to simply having the chance to touch and feel the luxurious fabrics that fill the rails. Moments like these are some of the many intimate and personal touches to fashion that require human contact and an in-store presence. 


Photo by CottonBro from Pexels

Research has shown that most consumers prefer to shop online out of convenience and the ability to compare prices at ease. The offerings with the customer experience of e-commerce are a major drawcard. For instance, there are no restrictions based on trading hours or geography, one is able to make purchases from the comfort of ones’ own home and at the pace and time that one prefers. Online purchases also have the ability to be shipped across the world - meaning that the days of only being able to attain goods and services that lie within your physical reach are long gone. 

Photo by CottonBro from Pexels

Photo by CottonBro from Pexels

From having your suit tailored to fit you just right, to leisurely Saturday morning shopping trips with close friends, to simply having the chance to touch and feel the luxurious fabrics that fill the rails. Moments like these are some of the many intimate and personal touches to fashion that require human contact and an in-store presence. 


Research has shown that most consumers prefer to shop online out of convenience and the ability to compare prices at ease. The offerings with the customer experience of e-commerce are a major drawcard. For instance, there are no restrictions based on trading hours or geography, one is able to make purchases from the comfort of ones’ own home and at the pace and time that one prefers. Online purchases also have the ability to be shipped across the world - meaning that the days of only being able to attain goods and services that lie within your physical reach are long gone. 

Researchhas shown that most consumers prefer to shop online out of convenience and the ability to compare prices at ease. The offerings with the customer experience of e-commerce are a major drawcard. For instance, there are no restrictions based on trading hours or geography, one is able to make purchases from the comfort of ones’ own home and at the pace and time that one prefers. Online purchases also have the ability to be shipped across the world - meaning that the days of only being able to attain goods and services that lie within your physical reach are long gone. 

Often the greatest hindrance to making a purchase online can be the fact that the user experience entails the input of one’s credit card details. Physically, this could involve a person needing to fetch said card from another room, and sometimes in this process, one could change their mind. 


Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

Often the greatest hindrance to making a purchase online can be the fact that the user experience entails the input of one’s credit card details. Physically, this could involve a person needing to fetch said card from another room, and sometimes in this process, one could change their mind. 


That said, the privacy of not having to be within a physical store also makes receiving a purchased item that much more enticing. Brands often put an exceptional amount of thought and effort into packaging items before delivering them to clients, so that there can still be some amount of personalization from a “human touch” - so to speak. This is still exceptionally limited and does not compare to an in-person experience. 

That said, the privacy of not having to be within a physical store also makes receiving a purchased item that much more enticing. Brands often put an exceptional amount of thought and effort into packaging items before delivering them to clients, so that there can still be some amount of personalization from a “human touch” - so to speak. This is still exceptionally limited and does not compare to an in-person experience. 

THERE IS ALMOST AN INHERENT, IMPLICIT ADDED VALUE

Some interesting findings have come about through studies that have shown how people attach value, both good and bad, to items if they have had contact with other people. This accounts for discrepancies between the perceived value of items that have been labeled as “hand-made,” compared to those that are presumed to have been made by a machine or within a factory production line. There is almost an inherent, implicit added value that goes unmentioned in such items - due to the level of effort that has been imbibed into the item when made by hand.

Some interesting findings have come about through studies that have shown how people attach value, both good and bad, to items if they have had contact with other people. This accounts for discrepancies between the perceived value of items that have been labeled as “hand-made,” compared to those that are presumed to have been made by a machine or within a factory production line. There is almost an inherent, implicit added value that goes unmentioned in such items - due to the level of effort that has been imbibed into the item when made by hand.

Photo by Tetiana Shadrina from Unsplash

Photo by Tetiana Shadrina from Unsplash

Purchasing from a large, impersonal, corporation is far less rewarding.

Often “handmade” items lead one to believe that they contain a level of affection within them, a certain level of skill that the artisan has reached prior to putting their skills into the handicraft. This goes hand-in-hand with an increased value due to an often longer period of time taken to make it. A similar notion can be applied to products that take some time to arrive or be made. Value is placed on an item that appears to have required more effort, and time, in its construction. An item becomes more valuable when it is created by someone who is known for their expertise too. Not only that, but when one purchases a handmade product, often, there is a sense of contribution to a smaller business and it’s success. Purchasing from a large, impersonal, corporation is far less rewarding. 

THERE IS SO MUCH TO OFFER THROUGH THE ONLINE PLATFORM 

Online purchases also put the relationship between buyer and seller in a completely different sphere where there can be little to no interactions whatsoever. In the case of many online retailers that follow the impersonal exchange of an online purchase and the hand-off of a masked parcel, these steps have the potential of reducing the perceived effort, worth, and inherent value of the final item.

Online purchases also put the relationship between buyer and seller in a completely different sphere where there can be little to no interactions whatsoever. In the case of many online retailers that follow the impersonal exchange of an online purchase and the hand-off of a masked parcel, these steps have the potential of reducing the perceived effort, worth, and inherent value of the final item.

However, there is so much to offer through the online platform of e-commerce that is not possible through in-store experiences. THE GUESTLIST has tailored our own platform to make your experience as personal as possible.

Nynne Schrøder from Unsplash

However, there is so much to offer through the online platform of e-commerce that is not possible through in-store experiences. THE GUESTLIST has tailored our own platform to make your experience as personal as possible.

Each piece available from THE GUESTLIST collections is created on a made-to-order basis. Our manufactory in Mühlhausen is made up of a small, highly skilled team that handcraft each item, paying special attention to ensure the highest quality is produced. This is part of our promise to our customers, to produce the standards that have come to be expected from THE GUESTLIST collections. Because of the nature of our manufacturing practices, orders take between 4-6 weeks to be completed. This ensures that each garment passes its individual quality control checks, before being safely delivered.

We offer personalization for your items, ranging from tailoring it to fit, to the addition of your very own monogram - ensuring that your garment becomes your own in every way possible. Our promise to you is also defined by the longevity of your purchase, making it an investment piece that can be worn and rejuvenated at the Cashmere Spa service offered by THE GUESTLIST. Being made from the highest quality materials ensures this. When purchasing from THE GUESTLIST, you can rest easy, knowing that the utmost care has gone into the design and construction of your piece.

have an intimate interaction with the pieces on show

To make your experience at THE GUESTLIST even more personal, we have forgone fashion shows as a means of presenting collections. Instead, we host intimate launch events, showcasing our new designers and their work. At these events, interaction with THE GUESTLIST designers is encouraged, while having an intimate interaction with the pieces on show. These events forge your connection with both the pieces we have on offer, and with the people behind the designs. Listening to Armano Milano share about the childhood inspiration behind his designs, taken from his grandmother’s knitted pieces for him when he was a young boy, is an unparalleled experience.

This is what gives pieces from THE GUESTLIST collections such an alluring je ne sais quoi. You feel as if you are wearing part of the story itself. 


We at THE GUESTLIST want your experience to mean something. Every customer is a part of our platform. Ensuring that you are comfortable, styled, and satisfied is what THE GUESTLIST prioritizes at every step. Having tailored our own platform to make your experience as personal as possible, we look forward to again hosting our exclusive events when allowances are made to hold gatherings of this sort, legally, in the future.



Please note, comments must be approved before they are published