5 fashion consumer facts retailers need to know now

“Some people dream of having a big swimming pool. With me, it’s closets.” — Audrey Hepburn.audrey-242x300

The eternal style icon Audrey Hepburn would certainly personify the definition of a diva: ‘di –va’/ from lt. diva “goddess”, fem. of divus “divine (one).” A lady of distinction and good taste.

As timeless as this concept is, it is currently making a comeback in a globally emerging and most influential consumer segment – the “Digital Diva”.

The concept of the Digital Diva emerged from a large global piece of research with 7400 consumers, undertaken by researchers at the University of Arizona in 2013.

Here are five facts about this emerging consumer segment fashion retailers need to know:

1. The Digital Diva sums up a consumer type in apparel, which is highly connected, engaged with fashion and technology savvy.

2. This segment cannot be grasped or remotely understood by means of classic demographic characteristics – they make up a large age bracket of anything between 25 to 44-year-olds with nearly equal incidence among females and males, with and without children.

3. They are well-informed, hyper-connected and opinion leaders in their social circles and beyond (e.g. high klout scores, high social media usage and engagement, brand advocates).

4. Digital Divas comprise 22% of all fashion shoppers, yet represent 69% of purchasing power, a combination of their direct spend (29%) and influenced spend (40%).

5. Diva’s leverage an average of 3.7 different technologies along their path to purchase (compared to less than one for non-divas), to finally purchase primarily at physical retail stores (70%) and retailer websites (51%).” (Source: UA)

To read more of this article including information on why `Emotionally personalised experiences are key’, visit

About the author
KatharinaKKatharina Kuehn – Director RDG Insights
Understanding consumer insights is a vital prerequisite to the development and implementation of a truly differentiated business fitness strategy.

How we as humans interact with brands in a meaningful and loyal way underpins the growth and profitability of all retailers.

2 thoughts on “5 fashion consumer facts retailers need to know now

  1. Hi Katharina

    Firstly I have to agree with you 100% Audrey Hepburn to me is one of the most beautiful woman to ever live and definitely was a leader in setting fashion trends for women of her time. Her elegance of taste has transcended the decades and young woman today can certainly look to her style for ideas on how to influence.

    Thanks for explaining the term Digital Diva so clearly. I am relatively new to internet marketing and had heard the term but was surprised to find out about your statistics.

    The 2 things which stood out for me was 1) that these digital divas make up only 22% of fashion shoppers. In this technological age I would have thought that statistic would have been higher; and 2) That 70% of this digital diva group prefer to purchase from a brick and mortar store rather than on line or from the retailer website (51%)

    As a website owner myself offering some branded products is that a cause for concern? Do the digital divas use sites like mine to do research, get ideas and then not purchase. The stats for online purchasing are reported to be in the multi millions but are we doing all the hard work and then loosing sales to the bigger retailers and websites?

  2. Hi Mary,

    Great to hear from you and thank your for your thoughts and comments.

    To your first point: as you say, consumers are increasingly online savvy and we know that they research and interact a lot online, but the share of online sales on total Australian fashion sales is still only 11% according to the latest NAB online retail sales index. So pre-research is one thing – actual purchase is another!

    On top of that we have to remember that not all (online) fashion shoppers are “Digital Divas”. As in Audrey’s times, true opinion leaders and highly connected fashionistas are rather the exception, not the rule. So today, where they spread and multiply their influential views across multiple digital channels and impact on spending far beyond their own, they are of course a highly attractive target for any fashion retailer.

    And yes, they love the physical environment of the bricks and mortar stores. We find this in all our research; consumers still want to see, feel and touch many products before they buy. Why is this? It has to do with the multi-sensory indulgence, entertainment and social experience that consumers seek in physical stores.

    No matter the channel or size of the business – you will have to give Digital Divas a reason to shop with you. Whether it’s a unique and targeted in-store or website experience, a superior product or design, even a more beautiful, unique packaging for the home delivery of the online purchase –
    the key is to connect with them emotionally, to convert browsers into customers.

    For any further questions, I welcome you to get in touch with me under:

    Warm regards,

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