Why All Wedding Dress Boutiques Should Stock Plus Size Wedding Dresses
Are you currently stocking Plus-Size Wedding Dresses at your boutique? Do you provide a wide selection or just the bare minimum? As the Plus-Size fashion market booms, so does the demand for Plus-Size Wedding Dresses. Horror-stories of Brides-to-be feeling ashamed and rejected at the boutiques they visit are not only a sad tale, but a damning look into our industries inability to cater to a significant market, hurting consumers and retailers alike.
This is an issue that spans industries. In 2016 Plus Sized Clothing was an above 20 billion market, yet the fashion industry has been slow to pick up on this, and Department stores have also suffered from neglecting the growing market. Ignoring or relegating this massive market to back-street quality, poor service and zero marketing will do nothing but harm a small wedding dress boutique.
This market increase can be seen as a product of post recession growth and an active movement to promote and normalize larger sizes in stores and fashion. 2016 saw many landmark achievements for this movement, including plus-size models on the catwalk at a number of fashion events for the first time. Plus Size Models have gained massive followings born through Instagram and other Social Media avenues. 2017 is going to be a bad time to ignore this phenomenon.
Reputation & Blowback
If the statistics are not enough to make you consider adding a Plus-Sized range to your boutique, whether due to your niche, personal taste or business constraints than it is worth considering the reputation hit your boutique could take for not catering to plus size brides. When a customer feels that they have been wronged it can leave a sour taste in their mouth. If you have no dresses for a plus-sized bride to sample, or make them feel exposed and embarrassed attempting to work with dresses 10 times too small, you could end up facing backlash. Today’s world of Social Media and Insta-Karma magnifies the issue of reputation management and bridal-appeasement tenfold. You no longer risk losing one customer, but can alienate an entire community (all over the world) and suffer a dramatic reputation hit with Yelp and Facebook scores plummeting.
Small businesses rely on referrals and reviews; While larger chains can absorb the hits, a negative social media campaign could ruin a small business for the months to come.
In short, a decent range or two of Plus-Size focused dresses to sample in store, kind hosts and a genuine attempt to include women of all shapes into your Wedding Dress Boutiques’ ethos can do wonders for your business (Not to mention to the community as a whole).