Top 10 Fashion & Home Decor DNVBs Transforming Retail with Cutting-Edge Experiences

Top 10 Fashion & Home Decor DNVBs Transforming Retail with Cutting-Edge Experiences

Julie Cauville

Julie Cauville

February 3, 2023

With the rise of the CAC and the explosion of online brands, it becomes essential for DNVBs to become omnichannel brands in order to maintain their growth.

Among the various options, retail can be an excellent opportunity for your company:

  • In 2022, 30% of brands considered increasing their retail presence.
  • Only 48% of DNVBs are present in this sector (compared to 56% in wholesale).
  • Those who leaped generate up to 40% of their revenue from their physical sales.

Moreover, entering retail can help e-commerce brands increase visibility, improve customer experience, gather data and cross-promote, ultimately leading to growth and success.

If you are hesitating to enter the retail sector, here are 10 examples of brands that have succeeded in bringing their world to life in shops and have taken up the challenge of omnichannel.

1. Cabaïa

The French backpack and accessory brand Cabaïa launched in 2015 is a leading in the retail sector for a few years now. The brand has a presence in over 2,000 shops in Europe and the USA, both through its own stores and resellers. Cabaïa makes it easy for customers to find its products, thanks to an interactive map on its website that lists all its shops worldwide. This not only enhances the customer experience but also demonstrates the brand's commitment to providing convenient access to its products.

Known for its quirky universe, it has taken up the challenge of opening a shop in its image while maintaining its e-commerce roots. Several shop elements are strongly reminiscent of their website design and functionality. For example, their manifesto with their commitments is hung on the wall with bright yellow support so customers can't miss them.

Finally, there is a real wheel of happiness in the shop, similar to the one on their website, which allows customers to win a discount or an accessory.

Cabaïa's shop uses the brand's visual identity but also some of its website's functionalities to give customers an immersive experience

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Do you dream of a similar experience for your brand? Like Les Raffineurs, Sézane, or Bonne Gueule, Cabaïa hired the Label Experience agency to create their shop!

2. Sézane

Sézane is a French brand that has achieved great success in the retail sector. As the first French digitally native vertical brand, Sézane was founded in 2013 and has since then established itself as a leader in the fashion industry. The brand has a strong commitment to sustainability and social responsibility through its DEMAIN programme, which strives to create a more environmentally friendly business model.

Innovative by nature, Sézane has not just opened a traditional boutique but created the concept of the Sézane flat. These flats offer customers a unique and personalized shopping experience, where they can feel at home and in line with the brand's values. Today, Sézane has ten flats in France and two in the USA, with additional pop-up locations being created regularly. In 2022, the brand took its commitment to customer engagement even further by organizing the "Archives Tour," a tour of France showcasing its old collections and allowing customers to connect with the brand in a more personal way.

Through its unique approach to retail, Sézane successfully made the shift from a direct-to-consumer model to a retail presence.

The Sézane brand does not receive its customers in the shop but in its flat, to give them a unique experience and build loyalty

3. Balzac Paris

Founded in 2014, Balzac has established itself as a leader in responsible fashion with a strong emphasis on sustainability, made in France production, and the use of recycled materials.

Balzac Paris opened its first brick-and-mortar store, the Adresse de Balzac Paris, in the heart of the city at the end of 2022. Anticipation was high among fans, who eagerly awaited the opening of the store and followed the brand and its co-founder on social media with the hashtag #VousAvezlAdresse. The store perfectly captures Balzac's distinct brand identity, including its signature leopard print, which is incorporated into carpeting and furniture throughout the store.

The Balzac boutique also showcases the brand's commitment to its Toujours Plus Responsable (TPR) initiative. The brand has taken steps to minimize the carbon footprint of its shop, using materials from production offcuts in a zero-waste approach, eco-friendly furniture crafted by French artisans, and utilizing green energy and waste management methods. Additionally, the boutique features a dedicated space called the Kiosk, which offers customers the ability to sell their gently-used Balzac Paris pieces on the brand's Seconde Vie platform.

For its boutique, the Balzac Paris brand has only used eco-responsible furniture in line with its values

4. Jimmy Fairly

Jimmy Fairly is a French independent eyewear brand that offers top-notch products at an affordable price. With a social conscience, the brand has implemented a unique giving program where they donate a pair of glasses to someone in need for every pair they sell.

Over the years, Jimmy Fairly has made a significant impact by donating over 400,000 pairs of glasses to those in need. The brand has a strong retail presence, with stores across France and the UK and an online store, making it easy for customers to purchase their products.

Jimmy Fairly is a shining example of how to create an impressive customer experience in shops without going to extremes. The brand has implemented simple but effective loyalty methods that have helped to increase customer satisfaction and keep customers coming back for more. With every purchase, customers receive a tote bag and goodies such as candies and pins, which are small gestures that go a long way in building customer loyalty. The strategy has paid off, with Jimmy Fairly's 100 stores receiving an average rating of 4/5 stars on Google.

Although the design of Jimmy Fairly shops is sleek, the customer experience is memorable thanks to the gifts and small touches given to shoppers.

5. Gymshark

Founded in 2012 by Benjamin Francis, the fitness apparel and accessories Gymshark has experienced immense growth over the past decade and has seen its turnover grow to around £500 million in 2022.

Gymshark's close relationship with its customers has driven its hypergrowth over the years. The brand emphasizes community through events and influencer partnerships, and positions itself as a "family" for its customers, who feel connected through its marketing and loyalty programs.

Gymshark has also always resisted selling its products through retailers, even though he has passed up a lot of revenue in doing so. That was until Octobrer 2022, when the brand opened its Regent Street flagship store on 29 October 2022.

The place offers more than just a safe and inviting atmosphere to try out the latest gym wear. With mannequins showcasing a variety of body shapes, genders, and abilities, as well as adjustable changing room lighting, the shop creates an environment that caters to everyone's needs. Additionally, the store offers free fitness classes that can be booked through its app, allowing customers to engage in community experiences and exercise.

Gymshark's store/sports hall offers customers an immersive experience and helps build the brand's community

6. Bonsoirs Paris

Nicolas Morschl couldn't find affordable, high-quality and simple bedsheets for his home. Frustrated with his search, he took matters into his own hands and started Bonsoirs, a home linen company, on November 2017.

Bonsoirs has grown and broadened its offerings. The start-up introduced washed linen as a new fabric and has since expanded into household linens, offering bath towels and other bathroom linen.

In November 2022, the brand has opened for the first time a pop-up store in Paris. The shop offered visitors a chance to touch and experience the brand's comfort and luxury in person. To enhance the customer experience, the brand provided an in-store personalization service through on-site embroidery and a pick-up point for used sheets to be recycled. This added touch was well-received by visitors, solidifying the brand's commitment to delivering exceptional products and service.

Bonsoir makes its pop-up customers dream with an original scenography and offers them a memorable experience

7. Les Petits Raffineurs

Les Petits Raffineurs is a subsidiary of the gift specialist concept-store brand, Les Raffineurs, established in 2016. It offers a curated collection of products for children and their parents. After opening numerous pop-up stores during the holiday season to test demand, Les Raffineurs brand currently distributes its products via two e-commerce sites and a network of four physical shops in Paris and Lille.

Les Petits Raffineurs' retail store incorporates elements from their e-commerce site, making the shopping experience similar for customers whether they're shopping online or in-store. This creates a seamless transition for customers who are familiar with the website and increases their confidence in the brand. The clear signage and categorization of products according to age also make it easier for customers to find what they're looking for, improving the overall shopping experience.

Additionally, the option for click & collect within 2 hours offers customers greater convenience and flexibility, making it more likely they will choose to shop with Les Petits Raffineurs. Integrating physical and digital channels like Les Petits Raffineurs is likely to drive sales and boost the brand's success.

The Petits Raffineurs shop takes up the codes of e-commerce and brings the User Experience of its website to life in the shop

8. From Future

From Future, the cashmere brand established in 2018, is making waves in both the e-commerce and retail sectors, thanks in part to the background of its co-founder, Philippe de Hesdin, who previously co-founded the well-known retail brand Kookaï.

With a mission to provide high-end products at affordable prices, the brand offers a unique style, incorporating modern and eye-catching fluorescent colors, while sourcing raw materials sustainably and prioritizing animal welfare. Given de Hesdin's expertise in the retail industry, it's not surprising that From Future has adopted a brick-and-mortar strategy, opening an image shop to make its first steps in the ready-to-wear market, in addition to its e-commerce site.

From Future's retail strategy showcases the luxury codes with only one product on display in each store, presented in a minimalist, futuristic setting with a clean, silver ambiance. With 7 boutiques mainly located in Paris, the brand also strategically opens pop-up stores in cities known for attracting their target audience, such as Courchevel and Saint Tropez.

From Future's shops take on the codes of luxury to attract its customers and offer a high-end experience

9. Make my lemonade

Founded in 2015 by Lisa Gachet, Make My Lemonade is a sustainable and innovative fashion brand that pioneered the "Do It Yourself" concept in the industry.

The brand offers limited edition clothing that can be made at home with the help of patterns provided each month or purchased ready-made. The brand is also dedicated to sustainability, as they use fabrics from a second production circuit, such as unused fabrics or the ends of rolls from major fashion houses, to create new pieces. With sizes ranging from 34 to 48, and some models offering size 52, the brand is constantly working to increase the size range of their offerings to better serve their customers.

The brand Make my Lemonade successfully transition into retail with the opening of their flagship store, which perfectly embodies their brand values and offers customers a truly immersive and interactive experience.

The space features a workshop area where daily DIY workshops are held, a haberdashery section where customers can purchase the brand's patterns and fabrics, a cozy tea room, and of course a boutique showcasing the designer's clothing line. The Make My Lemonade boutique has become a hub for Parisian sewers, who can gather and share their creations over a cup of tea and leave with a free souvenir photo taken from their vintage photo booth.

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Having a photo booth in your shop can help gather email addresses for your marketing database. This provides a fun experience for customers, who can take photos and leave their email in exchange. This can encourage customers creating User Generated Content for your brand and help you increase the size of your marketing database, giving you more opportunities to reach potential customers and drive sales.

10. LePantalon

LePantalon is a dynamic e-commerce brand that has made a big impact in a short amount of time. The brand was launched around a single, yet innovative concept of a range of high-quality chinos at an affordable price. With three pillars at its core - fair pricing, durability, and customer engagement - LePantalon has quickly established itself as a customer-focused brand that prioritizes the needs and feedback of its customers.

Despite a limited budget for acquisition, the brand has achieved great success through social media, and in response to the high demand from customers, the brand has opened a Showroom in its offices, followed by a Pop-up store and finally, a physical store. This move has proven to be a huge success and further solidifies LePantalon's reputation as a brand that truly listens to its customers.

LePantalon's success in retail can be attributed to its innovative approach to marketing. By incorporating its brick-and-mortar shops into its marketing strategy, the brand is able to drive more traffic both online and in-store. The brand leverages the power of video marketing by creating short clips showcasing its employees, who introduce themselves and provide product recommendations and gift ideas.

This approach has proven to be highly effective, with these videos often generating up to 8 times more engagement than traditional marketing content. The simplicity of this approach has proven to be the key to its success, helping to increase the brand's visibility and drive sales.

LePantants uses their shop to create content that performs well on networks and attracts more customers to their shop.
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