Amazon is getting more fashionable, and it could be a key for future growth
Amazon is gaining ground in the battle over clothing, according to new research by Morgan Stanley, which found that 46% of surveyed consumers bought clothes on Amazon in the last year. The internet giant trailed only Walmart, at 60%.
A bright spot in the survey for Amazon: It's getting more fashionable. While casual brands like Nike, Adidas, Hanes, and Under Armour have driven much of Amazon's growth in apparel, the company could make major inroads into more stylish fare, according to Morgan Stanley.
That's because people are seeing Amazon as more fashionable these days, or at least less un-fashionable. Morgan Stanley asked people reasons why they wouldn't choose Amazon to buy clothes. Here's how their answers changed between 2016 and 2017:
The two categories that shifted in Amazon's favor were people's concerns about returning items — which could be a function of people getting personal experience with Amazon's customer-friendly policies — and people not seeing Amazon as a "destination for fashionable clothing."
"We think this speaks to how Amazon's fashion efforts are having an impact on consumer behavior and increasing their willingness to shop for fashion on the site which over time could lead to even faster apparel growth," Morgan Stanley wrote.
This could be especially true for Prime members, who are 1.5 times more likely than non-Prime shoppers to buy clothes on Amazon. In 2017, consumers surveyed listed Prime's free two-day shipping as a greater factor in their decision to buy clothes on Amazon than in 2016.
Also in the fashion realm, this week Amazon debuted the Echo Look, a $199.99 Alexa-enabled camera that can take full length photos or videos of you, help you build a "personal lookbook," and give a second opinion on your outfit. The Echo Look can work in conjunction with a feature called Style Check, which uses machine learning and a team of "fashion specialists" to help you compare two looks and decide which one is better.