Fashion Connect 2021 Banner

Overview

COVID-19 has caused huge disruption to retail; while many categories online have seen a major sales boost, fashion found itself on the wrong side of the demand divide. At the same time, the economy is suffering and spending habits are changing, meaning that for some the luxury of buying fashion items is under greater pressure.

Overall growth was suppressed in 2020, with demand for formalwear falling away completely while lounge and sportswear boomed. Fashion Connect will look to unravel what 2021 holds for the industry and how retailers should restructure their propositions to emerge from the pandemic on solid foundations.

The agenda features data-led presentations from IMRG on the latest trends we are tracking, plus engaging retailer keynotes from some of the biggest brands.

Fashion Connect aims to rebuild the fashion industry with knowledge sharing, best practice, thought leadership and virtual networking.

Supported By:

Fashion Connect Spots

Agenda

Theatre Sponsor: ChannelAdvisor




09:00 - 09:10: What’s wrong with fashion pt I? Andy Mulcahy, Strategy and Insight Director, IMRG

Fashion was the most prominent category to be negatively impacted by COVID, but even before the outbreak problems were very evident. As we start to rebuild in 2021, what are these issues and how can they be overcome?




09:10 - 09:20: Innovation with the Shackles Off: Matt Henton, Head of Ecommerce at Moss Bros; Andrew Fowler, Remarkable Commerce

COVID-19 is the ultimate disruptor - permanently changing shopper behaviour – which gives the brands able to innovate at pace a significant advantage. Hear how Moss Bros was able to develop and launch its ‘Tailor Me’ 3D suit customiser in a matter of weeks - pairing it with a one-to-one virtual styling service delivered by store colleagues, to bring its trademark, bespoke tailoring to online and remote users.


   



09:20 - 09:40: Retail Q&A with Jennifer Stephens, Chief Customer Officer at Ted Baker

Find out how Ted Baker are approaching their growth strategy over an unpredictable period, and how they are evolving their customer proposition.




09:40 - 09:50: Adapting and evolving in a new world - Benjamin Faust, Tax Technology Solutions Manager at Avalara




09:50 - 10:00: What’s wrong with fashion pt II? Andy Mulcahy, Strategy and Insight Director, IMRG

Fashion was the most prominent category to be negatively impacted by COVID, but even before the outbreak problems were very evident. As we start to rebuild in 2021, what are these issues and how can they be overcome?




10:00 - 10:20: Panel Discussion - Where are the opportunities for growth? with Scott Lindsay, Head of Marketing, EMEA at eShopworld, Vini Ratnamaheson, Team Lead & Account Manager at ChannelAdvisor, Katharine Biggs, Marketing & Communications Manager - UK & Nordics at ParcelLab and Laurence Greenway, Lead Platform Strategy Consultant at Mirakl


  • How should retailers prioritise investment?
  • How should fashion retailers position their brands?
  • How can retailers meet customer expectations?

            



10:20 - 10:30: How fashion retailers can scale with BigCommerce and Open SaaS - Jim Herbert, GM EMEA at BigCommerce
Join to find out how BigCommerce and Open SaaS enables you to scale your brand with ease. Learn about how our marketplace enables innovation with our integrations with Facebook and Instagram, apps which helps to deal with Brexit and many more...


10:30 - 10:40: Deep-dive analysis of clothing performance over peak pt I – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG

This session will look in detail at the trading patterns during Black Friday and Christmas for the online clothing categories IMRG track. Revealing ‘what good looks like’ for 2020 Black Friday performance




10:40 - 10:55: Retail Keynote - Seb Villien, Head of Ecommerce, White Stuff

Find out how White Stuff are approaching their growth strategy over an unpredictable period, as well as the site optimisation opportunities they are experimenting with.




10:55 - 11:05: Transforming Online Experiences Through AI - Garrett Schwegler, Program Manager Global Digital Commerce at Lucidworks

As more shoppers put their faith in the search box we're learning that many are being let down and easily drifting to other sites. Whether they're new to the brand or transitioning from bricks and mortar, there are common themes plaguing these experiences and leading to dead ends. Listen in as Garrett Schwegler gives an overview of these trouble spots and how Lucidworks has assembled a solution that can transform the experience.



11:05 - 11:15: Deep-dive analysis of clothing performance over peak pt II – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG

This session will look in detail at the trading patterns during Black Friday and Christmas for the online clothing categories IMRG track. Revealing ‘what good looks like’ for 2020 Black Friday performance.




11:15 - 11:25: Retail still rocks: and we’re building a store in lockdown to prove it - Christopher Baird, Senior Manager, Capgemini

Capgemini, The Drum and SharpEnd have created CornerShop, a live store in London where we transform retail shopping and customer engagement to bring to life the store of tomorrow. Using the latest technologies, we have reimagined shopping experiences for food, drink & fashion, and offer an experiential space for retailers to test them out. Join our presentation to find out more about the journey we have been on, and what’s next.




11:25 - 11:50: Panel Discussion - How is customer behaviour evolving? with Camilla Tress, Connected Commerce Lead, Oliver Bonas, Monica Eaton, COO, Co-Founder at Chargebacks 911,  Andy Harding, MD at Openpay and Ben Scherpenbergs, Senior Manager, Business Management at PFS


  • What impact has COVID had on fashion shopper behaviour?
  • How are shoppers’ expectations of fashion brands evolving?
  • What constitutes a best-in-class service today?

           


14:00 - 15:00: Virtual roundtable: Evolving your strategy (fashion retailers) - Gabriel Fabreschi, Business Development Manager at Lengow - REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT HERE
2020 will go down as the year that retail changed. Many product categories found their sales growth rocketed online, but clothing was negatively impacted – demand was instead stripped away. Now that fashion retailers are having to rebuild from a low starting point – in a year where the economic fallout from COVID is really likely to hit – where should retailers put their focus to ensure they succeed?



15:30 - 17:30: Cocktail mixing masterclass - Graham McCarthy, Business Development and Adam Roche, Business Development Team Leader at Scurri - Invitation Only


Theatre Sponsor: ShipStation


09:00 - 09:10: Getting the smartphone experience right - The impact of smartphones on Fashion retailers pt I - Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG

What are the clothing industry benchmarks for shoppers using smartphones and where is the trend heading? This session will also look at the proposition techniques of fashion retailers with the highest smartphone conversion




09:10 - 09:20: 2021's new shop window, your customer's sofa. Why transactionally-targeted direct mail could be so valuable for eCommerce growth in fashion - Ben Collier, Business Development Director at Epsilon Abacus


09:20 - 09:40: Retail keynote - Recreating what’s special about the in-store shopping experience for digital customers - Kate Parkinson, Head of Digital Customer Experience, The White Company
Find out how White Company are approaching their strategy for connecting the online and physical experience



09:40 - 09:50: Loyalty with a small ‘l’ - Elliott Clayton, SVP Media UK, Epsilon 
Competition over customer attention has intensified during the pandemic, and the economic situation is likely to pose challenges later in the year. In 2021 retailers should focus on retention; not necessarily looking at big loyalty programmes, but ways to build long-lasting relationships with customers.



09:50 - 10:00: Getting the smartphone experience right - The impact of smartphones on Fashion retailers pt II - Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG
What are the clothing industry benchmarks for shoppers using smartphones and where is the trend heading? This session will also look at the proposition techniques of fashion retailers with the highest smartphone conversion



10:00 - 10:20: Panel Discussion - Attracting and converting fashion customers with James Barlow, UK Sales Director at Akeneo, Sam Woods, Lead Consultant at Maginus, Robyn Potter, Regional Channel Account Manager - EMEA at BigCommerce and Mark Batty, VP Business Development at Global-e

  • How should fashion retailers approach their marketing strategies?
  • How can fashion retailers convert visitors into customers?
  • What best practice in site optimisation exists?

           


10:20 - 10:30: The art of transparency and the impact it has on customer retention, new customers and reducing returns - Olivia Gates, Sales Manager at Avalara
In this session Avalara will explain what is required to optimise cross border trade.


10:30 - 10:40: Discounting patterns for fashion retailers Pt I - Andy Mulcahy, Strategy and Insight Director, IMRG
IMRG have been tracking the websites of 120 fashion retailers since the COVID outbreak. This session will look at how the discounting levels have fluctuated over that time.


10:40 - 10:50: The Human Touch – Delighting Digital Shoppers with One-to-One Service: Neil Sansom, founder, E-sation and Lead Consultant to George Pragnell Jewellers; Andrew Fowler, Remarkable Commerce
As the COVID-19 crisis accelerates the shift to digital, differentiated customer experience will be crucial to driving brand engagement and loyalty.  Learn from the experience of jeweller, George Pragnell, which has reimagined its digital channel as a means to deliver personal, one-to-one service with a human touch - creating an online showroom to connect customers with in-store consultants and deliver virtual consultations that bring the in-store experience online.

   

10:50 - 11:00: Discounting patterns for fashion retailers Pt II - Andy Mulcahy, Strategy and Insight Director, IMRG and London College of Fashion Students
IMRG have been working with the London College of Fashion (LCF) to track data on fashion retailers. In this session, we will hear from Izzy Clare, Nicole Hernandez Vazquez and Darcey Jupp from LCF on their key findings from that study.

   

11:00 - 11:05: The only omnichannel customer engagement platform built to accelerate business outcomes - Payal Hindocha, Vertical Product Marketing Manager at Emarsys


11:05 - 11:10: Master your marketing mix with Europe’s leading feed management platform - Gabriel Fabreschi, Business Development Manager UK at Lengow


11:10 - 11:35: Panel Discussion - Strategies for customer retention with Meghan Lewis, Head of Ecommerce, Skinnydip, Ben Collier, Business Development Director at Epsilon Abacus, Maria Giaccobe, VP Business Development at Epsilon and Kathryn Rockwell, Account Executive at Brightcove

  • How can fashion retailers retain newly acquired customers?
  • How should fashion retailers market to existing customers?
  • What loyalty programmes should retailers run?

          


15:00 - 17:30: Directors in Focus lunchLauren Herouard, Manager, Client Strategy at ChannelAdvisor and AvalaraInvitation Only

   


Theatre Sponsor: Scurri


09:00 - 09:10: Which customer behaviours have the biggest impact on return rates? Pt I – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG
This brand new IMRG study will look at the elements that make up returns propositions – such as whether delivery and returns are free and number of returns options – and cross-reference with behaviours (such as do multi-size purchases trigger higher return rates) to see which have the biggest impact on overall rates.


09:10 - 09:20: Shipping cross-border and HS codes - Sacha Wilson, EMEA Sales Director at Avalara
Shipping across borders requires transactions, compliance and customer delight – in this session Avarala will explain what is required to optimise cross-border trade.


09:20 - 09:30: Which customer behaviours have the biggest impact on return rates? Pt II – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG
This brand new IMRG study will look at the elements that make up returns propositions – such as whether delivery and returns are free and number of returns options – and cross-reference with behaviours (such as do multi-size purchases trigger higher return rates) to see which have the biggest impact on overall rates.


09:30 - 09:40: Consumer Home Delivery Report Insight with Katharine Biggs, Marketing & Communications Manager - UK & Nordics at parcellab
A first look at the results of the Consumer Home Delivery Report 20/21. Now in its 12th year, the report showcases data gathered from over 2,000 UK households about current levels of customer satisfaction and expectation in regards to online delivery.


09:40 - 09:50: A New Operations Model - Dynamic, Adaptable, Scalable: Ian Johnson, Head of eCommerce, Roman; Bradlie Houldsworth, Head of Product, Remarkable Commerce
With click & collect ‘off the table’ and online orders spiking, 2020 exposed many retailers to the limitations of static, inflexible stock and fulfilment systems – ultimately leading to lost sales and poor delivery experiences. Find out how Roman stood out, thanks to a dynamic, unified approach that enables it to offer the best delivery proposition in the market, adapt ‘in the moment' to drive efficiency, and effortlessly scale to cope with unpredictable demand.
   
 
09:50 - 10:00: In-depth analysis of clothing and sub-category performance over past 12 months pt I – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG
Now it has been almost 12 months since the UK went into lockdown, what trends did we note from that period and how well set up do the clothing categories look to rebuild? This session will also include the latest week’s sales performance update.


10:00 - 10:20: Panel Discussion - What does a best-in-class delivery experience look like? with Mike Hayers, UK Country Manager at ShipStation, Pete Blackburn, Commercial Director at InPost, Bobbie Ttooulis, Group Marketing Director at GFS and Ed Hodges, CEO at HelloDone

  • What do customers want from delivery and returns?
  • What examples are there of best practice?
  • Where are the areas that still need to improve?

         


10:20 - 10:30: Winning in a difficult landscape - Michael O'Regan, Sales Manager and Darren Lacey, Sales Manager at Scurri
A fireside chat with the Scurri team. Insights on how their team and customers have overcome the challenges presented by Brexit and the pandemic and looking forward into 2021 and the opportunities they are predicting. 


10:30 - 10:50: Retail keynote - what is the true cost of returns? - Gavin Mills, Profit Erosion and Data Mining, River Island and Dr Regina Frei, Operations and Supply Chain Management, University of Southampton
Analysis of how to understand all the hidden costs associated with processing returns – and what can be done about it.

   


10:50 - 11:00: In-depth analysis of clothing and sub-category performance over past 12 months pt II – Matthew Walsh, Director of Data and Retail, IMRG
Now it has been almost 12 months since the UK went into lockdown, what trends did we note from that period and how well set up do the clothing categories look to rebuild? This session will also include the latest week’s sales performance update.


11:00 - 11:10: What is the future for click and collect? - Niall Sullivan, Inbound Marketing Specialist at Consignor
Click & collect has established itself as a standard fulfilment channel in mainstream retail, but Covid-19 fast tracked the closure of thousands of shops and temporarily closed thousands more, disrupting the landscape in 2020. However, there were several noteworthy click & collect stories during the year. So how is click & collect evolving and what does the future hold?


11:10 - 11:35: Panel Discussion - What trends are going to define 2021 in fashion? with Emily Hakner, Associate Director of Product at Ask BOSCO, Brad Houldsworth, Head of Product at Remarkable Commerce and Gabriel Fabreschi, Business Development Manager UK at Lengow


  • Is it still all about navigating the pandemic?
  • What are the early trends emerging?
  • Where should retailers focus their attention?

      

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Keynote Speakers

  • Kate Parkinson

    Kate Parkinson

    Head of Digital Customer Experience | The White Company

  • Jennifer Stephens

    Jennifer Stephens

    Chief Customer Office | Ted Baker

  • Camilla Tress

    Camilla Tress

    Connected Commerce Lead | Oliver Bonas

    Camilla is Connected Commerce Lead at Oliver Bonas, an independent, British lifestyle retailer, designing their own take on fashion and homeware, with stores across the UK and a strong online presence. During her time at Oliver Bonas, Camilla has overseen a number of key initiatives that have contributed to the growth of the website. The next phase for growth is building a fully unified shopping experience with the customer at the centre.

  • Gavin Mills

    Gavin Mills

    Profit Erosion and Data Mining | River Island

    Gavin is the Profit Erosion and Data Mining Manager for River Island and has worked there for the last 4 years. Gavin has spent the last 20 plus years working in Retail Loss Prevention. Part of his role within River Island is looking at Profit Erosion and his main focus has been on returns.

  • Dr Regina Frei

    Dr Regina Frei

    Operations and Supply Chain Management | University of Southampton

    Dr Regina Frei is a researcher and educator in Operations and Supply Chain Management. She leads the Product Returns Research Group (https://www.southampton.ac.uk/product-returns) at Southampton Business School, which she joined as an Associate Professor of Operations and Supply Chain Management in September 2019. She is passionate about sustainable value chains and the Circular Economy.

  • Meghan Lewis

    Meghan Lewis

    Head of Ecommerce | Skinnydip

  • Seb Villien

    Seb Villien

    Head of Ecommerce | White Stuff

  • Matthew Walsh

    Matthew Walsh

    Director of Data and Retail | IMRG


    Matthew is responsible for all of the data and market reporting that IMRG publish. He produces the IMRG CapGemini Retail Index which is the largest and longest running eCommerce benchmark in the UK.

    Matthew also regularly provides data presentations to our retail members explaining the latest trends in ecommerce. Matthew is the first point of contact for our retail members.

    He has valuable retail experience having worked as an analyst for a top UK retailer and at one the largest online marketplaces in the world.

  • Andy Mulcahy

    Andy Mulcahy

    Strategy and Insight Director | IMRG


    Andy has worked at the heart of the online retail industry since 2010 – researching and producing reports on trends and developments affecting the sector.

    During that time, Andy has developed strong knowledge in multiple areas of online retail, with particular expertise in Black Friday. Andy will reveal the latest data and trends we have been tracking in our sales index.

Headline Sponsors:
  • Remarkable Commerce
Headline Sponsors:
  • Avalara
Event Sponsors:
  • ChannelAdvisor
  • Epsilon
  • Scurri

Register Below

Event Date 11th Feb 2021 to 11th Feb 2021
Event Time 09:00 - 12:00 daily
Location Online

Headline Sponsor

Headline Sponsor