If you are an aspiring fashion retailer, private label clothing production gives you a wonderful opportunity to build your own brand without having to design clothes from scratch. It gives your business the opportunity to grow while still having control over the look and style of your products, but not without risk.
Before you dabble into private label clothing manufacturing, take a look at this guide and see if it suits you.
Private label fashion
In private labelling, a company manufactures products that are then sold by another company under the latter’s brand name. The products are usually items with generic styles that are customizable with label tags and brand logos.
As the seller, your brand labels will be added to the products during the manufacturing process, making the items part of your brand. Big clothing businesses usually work this way, but most of them usually own and control the production factories. You do not own and control the production factory in private labelling. Instead, you hire another company to manufacture and deliver the clothes to you.
Amazon is a major player in the private labelling industry. In Prime Day in July 2018 alone, Amazon sold 5 million clothing items, making private label their biggest push on that day. Experts even predict that, by 2019, the e-commerce giant will become the largest apparel retailer.
Even if you are still starting out and your brand is yet to be widely-recognized, labelled garments tend to have higher value than generic, non-labelled pieces. It adds weight and establishes your brand. Your name will be associated with your products, and set apart from non-branded clothes.
Once you have paid for the manufacturing of private label products, you get to decide shelf prices, so you can have a better profit margin. And while you build your identity as a small business, you will have a better scope of growth in private labelling. You can expand your business by adding new garments to the range, or reinvent by hiring a new manufacturer.
You have little to no control over the manufacturing process, so one of the main risks you should consider in private labelling is the quality of the products. Putting your label on something substandard can tear your brand apart. You can avoid this by working with reputable manufacturers instead of merely going for the cheapest. Look for testimonials or ask their clients about the quality of their service.
Time could also be an issue. Before you commit to a manufacturer, you need a guarantee of timescale, and lead times, and assurance that they will deliver quality products on time. Make sure that the manufacturer has liability and will be responsible for their products.
Also consider the laws surrounding private labelling. Mind the trademarks, trading rules, and patents. Be careful of legal loopholes that can be used against your operations by any third party.
Private labelling is a smart way to start a fashion business. But as you go after its benefits, be mindful of the risks. Aside from managing your end well, the manufacturer you choose should be reliable, and have high-quality and cost-efficient services. Or else, you could be watching your business come apart at the seams.