Zozo is getting physical. Japan’s online fashion shopping website operator will open its first pop-up physical store and start a new platform service to make it easier for merchants’ shop staff to sell and communicate with Zozo customers. Other big platforms are following suit. Zozo will also launch a new measuring service shortly, this time for hands, tying with Bulgari no less.
Zozo is planning a range of new marketing initiatives to help its merchants connect with customers, particularly those running their own physical stores. Zozo will leverage its growing database of fashion preferences and body sizes as part of the process.
On 17th November, Zozo opened a pop-up store at Hankyu Umeda in Osaka, Japan. Created to promote Zozo’s range of D2C brands, the physical store is Zozo’s first. 13 brands are on sale and the store includes a space to take photos in outfits. Some of the most famous influencers among the brand designers will visit the store to meet customers. Hankyu’s online store is also selling the brands.
This month also sees the launch of Zozo’s new OMO (online/offline fusion) platform called Zozomo to help physical retailers connect their stores to Zozotown. By connecting directly to the platform, Zozo can offer three services to merchants: inventory status across both Zozo and merchants’ online/offline stores, a sales support tool called FAANs, and Zozo’s fulfilment service. Inventory checks mean Zozo customers will also be able to reserve product at merchants’ physical stores via Zozotown, encouraging more online customers to visit stores.
FAANs is a digital customer service application that will assist shop staff selling digitally both to customers on Zozotown and those visiting merchants’ online stores. Messages can be sent via Zozotown to customers, including notifications about product reservations.
Zozo itself continues to benefit from cautious shoppers preferring to buy online. GTVs for first half of 2021 rose 23.6 percent to JP¥229.5 billion (US$15.6 billion) and sales rose 14.6 percent to JP¥66.4 billion (US$4.5 billion), helping push operating profit up 19.5 percent to JP¥23.7 billion (US$1.6 billion).
JapanConsuming is a research firm specialising in Japanese retail and consumer markets. Founded in 2000, JapanConsuming has become the leading provider of insights on Japanese retailers and consumer trends to retailers, brands, government agencies and investors. JapanConsuming produces a highly regarded monthly report to help subscribers keep up to date with the latest trends and data, and also provides in-depth reports on retail sectors, seminars on key trends and consulting on market entry, expansion strategies and future trends.