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If you have an online shop that sells clothing and accessories, whether it’s a tiny, local store selling discount products or a retailer for big brands and designers, e-commerce fashion forecasting is something that you just can’t ignore. If you can keep up with the latest trends, and even anticipate them based on what influential brands and designers are releasing, and then draw on the data provided by a forecasting tool for small business, you will be able to maintain the right stock of products at the right time, creating a profitable and sustainable e-commerce business.

While no forecasting tool for small business can automatically predict the latest fashion trends, an accurate sales tool can help you understand the behavior of your customers as well as the demand for specific products. If, while using such a tool, you can also keep an eye on emerging fashion trends, the big ones that influence not only the fashion world, but also the actual behavior of customers, it can be a recipe for success, in terms not just of inventory management and control, but also of marketing, advertising, and social promotion.

Trends change all the time and, in the fashion industry, they have a big impact on businesses. Even small, local e-commerce sites can feel the impact. Disregarding the trends or simply neglecting them basically means going against your own audience’s wishes and needs. But how can you keep up with the latest trends? You don’t need a trend forecasting agency, especially not if you are interested in fashion yourself, if your e-commerce fashion business is an extension of your own passion. To keep up with the latest fashion trends, you can…

  1. Check out fashion shows, from the big Milan Fashion Week to your local fashion shows and see which designs and brands are generating buzz.
  1. Follow the latest creations of couture brands, Chanel, Gucci, Dior, and the like. The patterns and colors they are using can have a noticeable impact on seasonal fashion trends.
  1. Keep an eye on trade shows that feature fiber and fabric markets. Many of the color and textile trends originate here.
  1. Take note of local designers that get a lot of attention, whether it’s on TV or on the web. What are they up to?
  1. Talk to your manufacturers. Manufactures work with many brands and know what’s hot. They know which designs and fabrics are in demand.
  1. Observe the fashionable people around you. What are the people in restaurants, airports, malls, coffee shops, or clubs wearing?

Once you have a few ideas about the latest fashion trends that are relevant to your eCommerce business, take at look at you sales forecasting and inventory performance and determine what kind of products are likely to sell well in the near future. A forecasting tool for small business, preferably one that includes a purchase order software for small business like DataQlick can make the e-commerce fashion forecasting process a lot easier. Learn more about DataQlick here.