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And brand trust seems to be generated more by human rather than AI support: an overwhelming 76 per cent of Millennials say they prefer human assistance online over a chatbot. New Look performs well, H&M sizing issues dominate The online fashion industry is predicted to reach £36.2 billion by 2030: 63 per cent of the market compared to today’s 21 per cent, but purely online retailers don’t fare as well in the Adoreboard Fashion Retail Barometer rankings. Asos is rated below beleaguered high street chain New Look and BooHoo comes in eighth out of the 10 fashion retail brands analysed. In fact, despite its recent reported £1 billion financial debt and impending store closures, high street chain New Look far and away outstrips the other brands, coming out top of the 10 fashion retail brands analysed in the Barometer with an overall emotional response – or, ‘Adorescore’ – of 42 despite sharp competition from second position ASOS with a score of 40. The Queen’s University analysts used Emotics, an AI platform which uses mathematical algorithms to calculate the overall Adorescore by assessing emotions such as joy, trust, rage and anger in respondents’ comments on individual brands. “There is stiff competition to win the hearts of the Millennial consumers who desire on trend fashion balanced with quality and value for money”, said Chris Johnston, chief executive of Adoreboard. “New Look’s efforts to appeal to younger shoppers is reflected in strong Trust in providing affordable fashion, whilst Joy has been driven by how Millennials rate the in-store customer experience. However, many would argue the allure of appealing to Millennials has come at a cost of alienating core customers and reflected in plummeting sales for New Look.“ Meanwhile, it seems H&M’s recent announcement about reviewing its sizing can’t come soon enough for Millennial shoppers: complaints about the brand’s sizing being too small was the most recurring theme driving anger and sadness amongst respondents. Sizing complaints seem to be at the heart of fashion favourite Topshop’s surprisingly low score, too: the brand ranked sixth in the 10 brands analysed, scoring particular highly on ‘Sadness’ due to small sizing. Personalisation, ethics and sustainability rule rankings Overall, personalised customer service, value, affordability and ethics are the most important clothes shopping motivators for Millennial consumers – and these guide the ultimate rankings and higher scores of New Look, ASOS, H&M and Primark.
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