How Men’s Fashion brands are cracking the quirks of male shoppers for Growth?
Men are universally considered to be the dominating gender but when it comes to fashion, women outshine men by a fair margin. Women have been bigger consumer segment for retailers, and brands invest a lot of money and resources to understand their needs and aspirations. On the other hand, menswear has been on a backseat for a very long time and always came second. But over the years, men have become more metrosexual and inclined towards looking attractive. The number of men who want to be in sync with latest trends has increased. Designers and brands are also ready to explore and modify this neglected market segment. Men not only want to be stylish, but they also want good quality products, frequently updated collections, and unique designs.
As a result, men’s fashion is outpacing women’s fashion. According to sources, the UK menswear market will grow by 12.3% between 2016 and 2021 and will be worth £16.3 billion by 2021. According to Euromonitor International, men’s wear will outperform women’s clothing by 2020 globally. The trend is driven by men aged between 25 to 35 years, which constitutes 94 percent of shoppers in the UK.
Furthermore, men’s wear is not just about a classic suit anymore. Because of gender fluidity, not all men are not dressing up in a classic or socially acceptable way anymore. They are ready to experiment with their style, without being conscious of their choice. They are no longer worried about being judged by people.
The new age men are starting to make personal grooming and fashion a priority. It was once considered to be feminine to an extent that was unacceptable. For example, this year at the Oscars, Billy Porter wore a full-length gown with a bespoke tux-style top by Christian Siriano and instantly became one of the best dressed at the awards show. According to him, he wanted to be a ‘man in a dress’. Billy Porter is known for advocating gender-fluid style and breaking barriers.
According to market research, men are big spenders and this trend will continue. Men’s spending on luxury grew to 14%, almost twice as fast as women’s (8%) in 2011. Today the menswear market has a variety of different categories like outerwear, formalwear, activewear, casual wear, and basics. The rise of new age work environment is leading to men breaking free from the formal Monday to Friday norms and indulging in vanity unapologetically.
On the other hand, brands have acknowledged the potential in men’s wear and many brands are expanding their men’s wear line. In the last year, brands like Madewell and Chanel have launched their men’s wear collection. Stella McCartney and Isabel Marant, widely popular as women’s wear brands have also launched their men’s wear. Multi-designer online stores like MyTheresa and Moda Operandi now cater to men’s apparel on their websites. On the retail front, Nordstrom is all set to launch a men’s only flagship store in New York.
Why men can be better customers than women?
Men are believed to be loyal shoppers and they do not switch easily once they are used to a certain comfort. But they also look for functionality and usefulness of garments and are less impulsive buyers as compared to women. The strategy for men’s wear is to go deep on popular styles rather than extending product categories. Men tend to stick to a style that they like and then buy it in multiple colors or patterns.
As interest in menswear grows, so should the menswear e-commerce. Online shopping can contribute to more men purchasing products. Many brands that carry menswear are failing to feature men’s product on the website’s homepage. For example, Calvin Klein’s most-viewed product page was its men’s underwear page, but the brand was predominantly promoting womenswear on its homepage. Brands should proportionately allocate homepage content to both men’s and women’s category.
Men’s fashion influencers
Men’s wear brands need to take advantage of social media and influencers. They are still behind when it comes to actively posting content on their social media pages.
Many brands are also collaborating with influencers but they have a different approach. While women’s wear brands tend to collaborate with micro-influencers, men’s wear brands mainly collaborate with athletes, singers, actors because they have a stronger impact on the audience. Another problem faced by retailers is the lack of fashion YouTubers in the men’s category and that is why they have to resort to actors and athletes etc for promotions.
The growth in the menswear market has been boosted by the industry’s quick response to changing trends. As the menswear market is set to continue to grow and evolve, a huge number of male shoppers are taking an interest in fashion and making an attempt to stay fashionable. Men’s clothing is not only growing, but it is transforming. This is the reason for the boom in men’s wear industry and making this a profitable apparel segment.
Hi! Shagun here. I am an Accessory Designer from NIFT, New Delhi and working as Brand Manager at ILoveFashionRetail. I am an avid traveler and love to explore new places every now and then.