Models are flaunting the newest and brightest of garments in this week’s Australian fashion week with multi-colours and prints in high demand.

With the help of social media sites such as Facebook, Fashion week and clothing stores nation-wide have received more attention than ever before.

Wollongong chain stores including Ally, Tightrope and VooDoo are among many that have taken advantage of popular social media to promote in-store sales.

Tightrope employee Amanda Kelley says that a company that does well is constantly developing, moving forward with technology and improving to increase sales.

“If you can’t make it out to town, you can just jump online,” Ms Kelley said.

“I think it’s good. Although, our company doesn’t have anything like that, and we always get people asking.”

As of April 2012, Facebook recorded over 900 million active users. More retail stores are producing store websites and accept online ordering through social media sites, as a user can simply like or comment on any link or item visible to them.

Ally employee Dee Meyers says that having a website and Facebook page available to customers allows them to access products anytime that is convenient for them as well as view in-store promotions advertised on Facebook.

“We do have an online ordering system, though not all of our stuff that comes into stores is online,” Miss Meyers said.

“I still think people prefer to come into the shop, try on, look at fabrics, see if it looks right, feels right.”

However Miss Meyers says although ordering online is easy, the amount of people who return items after online ordering is more than in-store returns.

“The waiting time is an issue too, like you come in store, you can walk out with your garment, whereas online, you have that 3-8 days waiting for delivery or postage.”

VooDoo employee Lauren Whitmee says that customer response via Facebook and Twitter is massive, as it drives people into the store after they’ve seen something online and wish to try on a particular garment.

“Absolutely, the Internet has dramatically boosted sales. We now sell the majority of our stuff online than instore,” Miss Whitmee said.

Words: Jess Feeney
Photography: Sam Gates
Video: Lorraine Hudson


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