Pakistani Fashion industry is getting popularity in the whole world. Our designers have become a trend setter and their fans followers are across the globe. There are hundreds of designers working in Pakistani fashion industry . Everyone is making its own position and playing a positive role in the industry. They are not only innovative in dress designing but also in jewellery designing. Now our industry has come to the point where it is competing with other fashion industries in world. With this rapid development the trend of catering clients is also changing rapidly. Many designers have opened their outlets in other countries but the countries where they don’t have their outlets they cater their clients by taking online orders online and provide them their dream outfits for special occasions at their doorstep. For this purpose most of the designers have launched their portals and websites. Some of the prominent designers who have established their online business are Asifa & Nabeel, Bunto Kazmi, Deepak Perwani, Hassan Sheheryar Yasin (HSY), Maheen Khan, Maria B, Zara Shahjahan, SanaSafinaz and Ms.Erum of SoKamal Limited. In these designers Maheen Khan and Zara Shahjahan are the last one who joined the bandwagon of online business. Sunday Plus talks to some of these designers to about their experience of online business and how they come up with the expectation of a client who is sitting hundreds of miles away. Followings are the excerpts of their interviews.

Maria B

Q: When did you start online business?

We started our full scale online business (worldwide) in November 2013!

Q: The main idea behind launching a portal?

Online business is huge internationally and it started to show rapid growth in this part of the world (ASIA) as well. The main idea was to target our untapped customers not only nationwide but especially across the globe where we have huge fan following of our brand and high demand for our clothes. Hence, the idea couldn’t be any better to reach out to our customers across the globe at once by offering them ease and convenience of online shopping, and having our brand delivered at their doorsteps.

Q: How has been your experience with online business?

The experience has been greatly overwhelming, within a short span of one and a half years the online business has shown tremendous growth (specifically by having orders across the globe) and it has already been a challenge to fulfill the demand of our online customers.

Q: From where do you get most of the orders – national or international?

In the starting couple of months the ratio of local online orders were higher, after that the scenario changed completely and we started to get significant number of orders from our international clients and to this date we get almost 65-70% of our total online orders from our international clients.

Q: Do you get more business through online or through traditional way of shopping?

Currently, the traditional way of shopping, since we have a large retail network across the country (being in the business for the past fifteen plus years) and online business is started merely 1.5 years ago which is indeed showing a rapid growth and we wouldn’t be surprised if the scenario changes otherwise! But, if we are to compare the online sales with the average sales of one of our highest sales generating flagship outlet then yes, online business is going head to head!

  1. Would you like to share with our readers your cliental detail (details of which regions do your customers belong to)?

Our cliental is huge across the globe and the list won’t be any shorter. But the major chunk of online orders (apart from Pakistan) comes from these countries/Regions: UK, USA, Europe, UAE, Canada, India, Middle East and Australia.

Q: How do you take care of customer satisfaction through online business?

Customer service is the most important aspect for the success of online business, not only satisfying the customers is most important but doing that in quickest possible time frame. We have dedicated sources ensuring the highest level of customer service, at the backend. We have a process of strict quality checks for every product being sent to our customers at the time of dispatch. And at the front end, our online customer service team is dedicated 24x7 via email or phone etc. ensuring that every query is addressed in best possible manner within 24 hours of time frame.

_____________________________________________________________________________

Zara Shahjahan

Q: The main idea behind launching a portal?

It was an inevitable step of our retail expansion strategy, with the specific aim to reach a wider audience. With great demand from countries like UK, USA, Canada; an e-store meant capturing new markets. Although our brand makes has an established retail presence with two stand-alone flagship stores in Lahore and Karachi and through prominent stockists Labels and Ensemble in other cities, an e-portal will also help us cater to demand nationwide by reaching out to other smaller cities where currently lack a physical presence.

Q: What are your expectations with this new initiative? How it will expand your business?

With a more organized and centralized operations system, E-retail means greater business for our brand. We reach out to larger and wider audience and in return build brand equity.

Q: What is your target market?

Our branding strategy caters to specific segments. From young girls, to the average Pakistani woman wanting everyday designer apparel to formals and bridals. Our brand has specific lines catering to each segment and price point, fulfilling the design needs of each. For us it is about making clothes for women who want soft, feminine aesthetics, quality fabric and embellishment.

Q: Through portal will you get more business from within the country or outside the country?

We aim to capture a wider audience nationally as well as internationally.

Q: How will you take care of customer satisfaction through online business?

We have a team of customer service representatives who handle customer queries on a one-on-one basis. We have a feedback section where suggestions about the product as well as our services can be provided. We aim to provide our online customer a complete retail and brand experience through our E-portal.

_____________________________________________________________________________

SanaSafinaz

Q: When did you start online business?

We started our online business in March 2014. So it’s been hardly an year since we started.

Q: The main idea behind launching a portal?

The primary reasons being:

Overseas Clientele – A huge chunk of our target audience are expats, reaching out to them via ecommerce is not only the most viable strategy, but also very cost effective.

Exposure to International Markets – The best part about digital business is that there are no borders to it; creates opportunities for the brand to reach out to international markets.

Convenience – No worries what time it is, no matter where you are. You can just shop on the go!

Q: How has been your experience with online business?

Pretty good so far, digital business has very different dynamics altogether which is challenging and exciting at the same time.

Q: From where do you get most of the orders – national or international?

International orders. The ratio of national to international is 3:5.

Q: Do you get more business through online of through traditional way of shopping?

At the moment, traditional retail constitutes a larger share of the business. Having said that, we believe that our digital counterpart can potentially rival retail business in the next few years.

Q: Would you like to share with our readers your cliental detail?

Apologies, but our policy states not to share privileged client information.

Q: How do you take care of customer satisfaction through online business?

We take our customer service and satisfaction very seriously. For this purpose we have an in house digital team dedicated to make sure all operations go smoothly with flexible, easy to understand and convenient returns and exchange policies. Secondly, we have multiple mediums for open line communication with our customers both nationally and internationally where feedback is not just welcomed, it is considered as an insight center for improvement and quality optimization. Thirdly, we have a dedicated short code 9095 for all our customers in Pakistan where they can just text in and send queries/complaint related to anything concerning Sana Safinaz.

_____________________________________________________________________________

Erum Ahmed of SoKamal Limited

Q: When did you start online business?

Our online business started in December 2014.

Q: The main idea behind launching a portal?

To facilitate customers, in those cities where our shop is not open yet - to reach customers nationwide.

Q: How has been your experience with online business?

According to our expectation, we get orders from all cities of Pakistan.

Q: From where do you get most of the orders – national or international?

We have started nationwide at the moment- international shipping in is pipeline.

Q: Do you get more business through online of through traditional way of shopping?

We have just kicked off online business, and its growing.

Q: How do you take care of customer satisfaction through online business?

We give them a call to confirm their order, and take No delivery charges, so customers can feel free and comfortable while ordering.