People say money can’t buy you happiness, but trust us when we say that it can—you just have to know what and where to shop. Finding them is not difficult anymore, what with the advent of technology that opened infinite opportunities, and then the emergence of online boutiques that followed. Everyday we find more and more of them, which just makes us more confident that there will be no shortage of places, online or otherwise, where we can have some of the happiness brought by retail therapy. Today, we bring to focus one of the companies which took advantage of this change and became among most successful online markets that cater to refined tastes: Farfetch.
Farfetch Sales and Deals
See Luxury at Your Convenience
The name should need no introduction, but we’ll indulge the uninitiated. If you’re out of the loop, here’s what you need to know:
Farfetch is an e-commerce platform which offers multi-brand luxe fashion selections that ranges from clothing, shoes, bags, and accessories in all sizes and shapes for men, women, and kids worldwide. Catering to the shifting market and fast-paced business environment of today, Farfetch is dedicated to providing the world’s best luxury boutiques and brands accessible through just a few taps on your device. The experience of browsing a store is reinvented, because you can do it right there at the palm of your hands, whenever you feel like it, wherever you are, and however you want it.
It was not founded, however, with the intention of replacing actual shops. In fact, if you are near a store, founder José Neves encourages to check out the merchandise for yourself. But what Farfetch does is to allow stores to tap clientele that are not within their reach geographically, and to give potential customers a chance to examine a product at their convenience. Browsing through the site can give the impression of thorough inspection without actually feeling the product against your skin.
A difficult beginning
It was Portuguese entrepreneur José Neves who brought to the world the expansive and convenient, not to mention plush, site of Farfetch. Farfetch was an idea that came to Neves after a fashion show, when he considered the world’s changing approach on the Internet as well as took notice of the potential in bringing high fashion to a wider audience. Neves was a man of style himself, and while he claims not to be the best in either fashion or technology, he knew enough to combine two and two. Hearing stories of fine boutiques failing to seal sales, he used his knowledge to introduce to the world amazing tastes that both established luxury brands and independent boutiques have to offer.
The experience was not all peaches and cream, however—mind you, the idea came to mind on such an unfavorable time, and Farfetch was launched just a few weeks early before the Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy, which we now know was among the key events that led to a full blown global financial crisis in the late 2000s. Funding was out of the window that he had to source it from his own shoe company, Swear, and see through his idea’s fruition meticulously. As there was quite nothing like it at the time, he and his team of engineers had little to no basis, and had to make up solutions along the way. He’s also had his share of doubting Thomases.
But soon enough, the England-based entrepreneur registered the company in London in 2008. And labels from the very obscure to the familiar but unattainable came knocking at his door. An estimate of almost a thousand companies are now under its wing. Neves went into the idea despite the risks all in, and as we know it, the effort and discipline paid off.
As it stands today
With the intent of reaching far and wide, Farfetch has been slowly but steadily expanding its foot internationally since it was founded. The company now has headquarters in five continents, from London to New York, Paris to Milan, and Dubai to Sydney, but still united in one online luxury retail platform. Having an extensive global reach of over 190 countries worldwide, it further connects to the globe’s elite shoppers by operating local-language version of its website and mobile apps for international markets in English, French, German, Russian, Spanish, Mandarin, Japanese, Korean and Spanish.
The business venture also earned accolades that are well-deserved. Few of the honors the company has received since it was founded include Best New E-tailer, Best E-store, Best Fashion Start-up, Best Use of Tech in the Digital Economy, and CEO of the Year for José Neves.
The company has partnerships with global brand names such as Saint Laurent, Givenchy, Valentino, Alexander McQueen, and Dolce & Gabbana – just a few of its nearly 900 partner brands. It has also come up with its very own digital solutions to online retailers through its agency Black & White.
Farfetch envisions to be the “global technology platform for the luxury fashion industry, with our customer at its heart,” hence, it provides a venue for luxury fashion brands and boutiques to market their products globally while ensuring customer satisfaction with their competitive pricing, convenience, and a wide array of product selection. Everything is fast with Farfetch: fast shipping, fast response, fast support and fast returns. And if you’re quick to click the “Add to bag” button, there’s no need to worry for your online safety. Farfetch promises safe and secure shopping.
Farfetch also promises to bring you the best of the best, items you just won’t find anywhere. It makes sure to distinguish itself from other online platforms by prioritizing sense and style over easy purchases brought about by cheap pricing. While it is still looking to expand its partnerships with fashion boutiques, invitations for collaboration are not handed out easily. Every label that it taps is carefully picked out to maintain the site’s brand of exquisite style and fine choices.
What sets it apart from other rising digital fashion marketplace is that Farfetch holds no stock itself. It allows individual brands to sell directly to customers by managing the logistics of online selling while it gives independent fashion houses the online presence they need, and when a sale happens, it gets commission. But that may change soon. At the time of this writing, the company is said to be taking the next step by readying itself for an Initial Public Offering (IPO), which anticipators said would value the company at US$6 billion.
In the meantime, the tech leader continues to curate independent but visionary brands and boutiques across various markets into a single international fashion website dedicated to support the cultural diversity that comes from uniting customers, each with a unique style, across the globe. With former rival Dame Natalie Massenet, founder of Net-A-Porter and chair of the British Fashion Council, joining the team, the company is also eyeing improving its customer engagement and becoming more of a voice of authority, fashion-wise.
It is no surprise that the rise of e-commerce has positively impacted the fashion industry. With almost everyone constantly connected to their devices, and switching apps about 30 times per hour on the average, the Internet is drastically changing commerce’s competitive landscape, with fashion and lifestyle being no exceptions. The active online presence of people today and its influence in e-commerce businesses are things retailers have to reckon with, with them bringing to the World Wide Web their items. And retailers with truly modish items have found a haven in Farfetch.