June 28, 2019
In the Muslim retail market in Malaysia, there are only a few companies that are as prominent as Mouslema Ventures.
The group consists of Bokitta Hijabs, Hermanas and LAWRA – all popular names among Muslimah women in the country – focusing on modest wear and headscarf labels.
Hermanas’ branding image
However, to strive for higher success, the brand found that their existing ways were not fueling the goal. For Marketing Director of Mouslema Ventures, Syed Zulhimi, he discovered that missed opportunities were still present for the retailing group – especially when it comes to assortment building.
“When we do our internal research, we found that we have a 50% chance of getting it right,” says Syed. “That’s an expensive bet to take, especially when our interpretations are inconsistent.”
While it is crucial to use internal data, Syed and the team quickly realised that relying on it is like shouting into an echo chamber – the small worldview restricts their scope of vision.
The Journal of Business Forecasting reports that 85% of businesses are impacted by external factors – yet most only refer to internal historical data. Without an eye into the external world, market gaps will be missed, opportunities will be limited, and most importantly, their competitors will catch up.
To stay ahead of the curve, Mouslema Ventures turned to Omnilytics.
Streamlined Planning, Quicker Pace
Before Omnilytics, Syed and the team used age-old methods to do assortment building: referring back to historical data, conducting qualitative online and offline research, and sending out surveys to ask what customers liked. The manual process took more than five weeks for a single collection – and this was just the research aspect.
“As we had no single source to refer to, we had to do the on-ground work ourselves,” recounts Syed. “It was very laborious, as it included comp shopping store-by-store, clicking on different websites, as well as crunching past data and manually studying the numbers.”
Syed found himself delegating more people to get the job done. However, this posed another problem – inconsistent interpretation of the market.
“There can be up to seven people working on this, which means there would be seven interpretations of different sets of data as well. Since research is at the top of the funnel, it affects the rest of the supply chain – resulting in a collection that isn’t streamlined.”
With Omnilytics, the ability to get specific real-time insights by fashion marketplaces and brands allowed the retailing group to work better, faster and more efficiently.
“Instead of visiting our competitors’ websites individually, we now turn to the Omnilytics’ Dashboard to study the competitive landscape. We can see when our competition brought in new styles, with the capability to drill down into SKU counts, specific categories, sizes, and colours – everything in one place.”
All of the datasets in one place
“Omnilytics gave us a whole new worldview on how to do collection planning,” says Syed. “Now, instead of a long timeframe of five weeks and seven people to do the job, we now only need a few days and just one person.”
The previous string of guesswork is now actionable insights, where Syed and his team can understand the market movements clearly. This translates to greater confidence in knowing what to stock, what colours to produce, how much to buy, and which sizes to create – and successfully delivered a best-selling collection.
A Best-Selling Collection with Data-Backed Decisions
In today’s fashion landscape, ensuring the right products are in store, at the right timing, is crucial – and Syed looks to Omnilytics to execute confidently.
Before, a common occurrence is that by the time the team starts producing something, the trend is already losing prominence. By the time it hits the shelves? The trend would no longer be relevant.
“We no longer decide without first verifying on Omnilytics.”
Now, the team in Mouslema Ventures is building on real-time data; no longer with information gathered on a monthly or annually basis. It helps the team to understand current trends, giving them insights into the best-selling options. This allowed them to spot missing gaps quickly, capitalising on the opportunity before anyone else does.
Hermanas’ branding image
The result? Hermanas’ first-ever collection sold out, even though the brand was new to the market. Some of the pieces from the new collection went out-of-stock within the first few hours!
“The colour choice and assortment were purely from Omnilytics,” Syed explains. The team not only uncovered key categories, colours, styles, prints and silhouettes but was also able to accurately identify how much to buy by looking at the SKU count.
Omnilytics gives the retailing group an accurate idea for both the breadth and depth of a collection, two crucial aspects in assortment planning.
For Mouslema Ventures, using Omnilytics is akin to a secret weapon – one that helps them make the right decision every time.
“We no longer decide without first verifying on Omnilytics,” Syed exclaims. “We can confidently execute, knowing full well that Omnilytics will help to deliver real and tangible results.”
Perfect and Timely for Every Team Member
Having a seamless supply chain is crucial to any fashion retailer. In other words, everyone from design to merchandising must be on the same page.
This is why having the same source of information is not only ideal but necessary.
“My role is to monitor competitive landscapes, identify trends and create marketing campaigns,” says Syed. “Someone from design, on the other hand, will have a completely different job scope. However, even with different tasks, we both find Omnilytics valuable in our day-to-day operations.”
The merchandisers would use Omnilytics to create a merchandising brief, listing key competitors and their top product categories.
With that same information, the designers then refer to the competition’s bestsellers, as well as the market’s uptrending styles to produce the new collection.
Finally, the marketers create a marketing campaign that highlights the current trends while keeping a close eye on competitors’ activity at the same time.
Different teams within the business utilise the Omnilytics Dashboard to interpret the same data – creating a seamless flow in operations. It’s especially helpful when the various groups gather for meetings.
“The team uses Omnilytics every day, each analysing the same set of data. I use it to study our competitors, breaking down new-ins, trends, bestsellers, discounts and price changes. The designer would study different styles and colour breakdowns. When we meet the next day, everyone will bring up their findings according to the agenda of the meeting. The fact that everyone can have access to comprehensive data instantly, something that usually takes hours or days to compile is helpful for everyone.”
Accelerating with Data
Because of the success, Syed and the team are advocates for data-driven decisions in fashion and recommend Omnilytics to both the new and existing brands in the fashion landscape.
“With Omnilytics, you no longer make a decision based on intuition or limited resources from existing customers – but with deep insight into your competitors and market movements. The best part? Every decision you make with Omnilytics will 100% pay off.”