Apparel sales on the web in the first six weeks of the year were up 26% over last year, comScore Networks Inc. reports, reaching $760 million. The growth follows full-year growth in 2002 of 15% over 2001. Apparel sales reached $6.1 billion in 2002. “Apparel will continue to be one of the category leaders,” says Michelle David Adams, comScore vice president.
The category continues to attract catalog customers because of the additional shopping tools that the web makes available, she says. In addition to such features as virtual fitting technology, consumers are attracted by the ease of comparison shopping, she says. “You can comparison shop without having all that paper in front of you,” she says. Further, the ease of shopping is attracting new online buyers to the web sites of well known chains such as The Gap.
Apparel sites have attracted customers by promoting the ease of returns, she notes. “That’s so critical to the success of apparel retailers online,” Adams says.