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2024 Global Ecommerce Report: Fashion and Apparel

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2023 was quite a year when it came to fashion and apparel. The ‘90s were back (whether we wanted them to be or not). Swifties single-handedly revived the friendship bracelet. And Barbiecore was all the rage. 

But for all the hot trends, many markets saw a cool-down from the ecommerce explosion of the early 2020s. Financial uncertainty, inflation, and a challenging job market — all things which usually lead to industry slowdowns — were at the top of everyone’s mind in 2023. 

How, if at all, did these factors impact fashion and apparel brands selling on BigCommerce? We looked at the numbers to find out. 


BigCommerce’s fashion and apparel data are sourced directly from our customers. All data is global and pertains to all countries where BigCommerce customers do business, unless otherwise noted. 

All comparisons are congruent comparisons between the same number of existing stores dating back to the earliest period used in the comparison. For example, a year-over-year (YoY) comparison between 2023 and 2022 would use data only from BigCommerce stores that existed in 2022, unless otherwise noted. The data referenced below compares Q1 (January – March) 2023 with data from Q1 2024. 

How fashion and apparel performed from 2023 to 2024

Fashion and apparel brands using BigCommerce saw sizable increases across the board from Q1 2023 to Q1 2024. Globally, fashion and apparel brands saw a 10.7% increase in gross merchandise value (GMV). This increase in GMV was no doubt impacted by the 7.2% increase in orders in the same timeframe. 

Also contributing to the rise in GMV is a 3.1% increase in average order value (AOV). Brands saw their AOV rise from $160 in Q1 of 2023 to $165 in Q1 of 2024, signaling that shoppers may be feeling less financial strain in 2024 than they were in 2023, and therefore more willing to open their (digital) wallets. 

EMEA and APAC saw staggering growth, but AMER may still be feeling the effects of inflation. 

Parsing out the data by region tells a slightly different story. Brands in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East (EMEA) saw similar growth to those in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. GMV in EMEA was up by 25.3%, while APAC GMV rose 24.6%. The total number of orders also saw drastic increases, rising by 41.3% in EMEA and a still-impressive 24.3% in APAC. 

The outlier for these regions is AOV. AOV in EMEA actually fell by 11.1%, while it only rose by .7% in APAC. While this could be seen as an overall negative trend for businesses, the low AOV numbers were surely offset by massive gains in orders, therefore positively impacting GMV.

The numbers from Latin America, the U.S., and Canada (AMER), however, look quite different. Brands in this region saw single-digit growth in both GMV (5.7%) and AOV (6.5%). The total number of orders actually fell when comparing Q1 2023 to Q1 2024 by .3%. Comparing that data with AOV numbers indicates that sellers may have raised their prices in anticipation of supply chain or consumer stress. 

Apparel and accessories is the leading ecommerce vertical in the U.S., making up 19%+ of total retail ecommerce sales in 2024 according to EMARKETER. While BigCommerce data shows an upward trend for fashion and apparel brands globally, it is still important for brands to keep a few things in mind if they want to see continued growth.

Customer centricity is key.

As fashion and apparel verticals look for new ways to grow, perhaps the most important area to focus on is customer experience, both online and offline. By optimizing your brand’s customer experience, you can ensure that shoppers will continue coming back to make purchases again and again. 


Checkout is a make or break step in the ecommerce customer journey. One slip up or inconvenience can quickly turn a would-be sale into a bounce. By eliminating friction, brands can create a customer-centric checkout experience that converts quickly and efficiently. 

One-click checkout is an effective way to remove friction, and will prove to be a valuable addition to your checkout process in 2024. Research from Cornell University showed that after signing up for an online retailer’s “one-click” checkout service, customers over time increased their spending by an average of 28.5% from previous buying levels. 

Another effective way to remove barriers to conversion is by adding more payment options to your site. Alternative payment methods like digital wallets, cryptocurrencies, and buy now, pay later (BNPL) are on the rise. In fact, Capital One found that nearly one in five American consumers used BNPL in 2023. 

Improving the post-purchase experience

Your focus on the customer can’t stop at checkout, however. Customers are expecting more from the post purchase experience, and that will only grow in 2024. Shoppers expect fast shipping, detailed delivery updates, and a simple return policy with strong customer service. 

By implementing buy online, pickup in-store (BOPIS) and buy online, return in-store (BORIS), brands can drastically improve customer experience, and also open up opportunities to upsell or cross-sell when customers arrive at a physical store. 


AI and machine learning grew by leaps and bounds in 2023, and this year, brands should begin using AI and machine learning to better leverage customer data to serve up the right message in the right place at the right time.

Brands can also use this customer data to offer personalized product recommendations, in addition to personalized pricing based on shopping journeys. By offering personalized pricing, brands can often entice customers into a purchase faster than with discount codes or coupons. 

Create a unified omnichannel experience.

This year, omnichannel will become more than just a nice-to-have. A customer-centric approach to ecommerce now means giving shoppers the ability to make a purchase anytime, anywhere, whether that’s on marketplaces, search, social media, or even offline. Research compiled by Statista found that in 2023, apparel was the most-purchased product category across social media channels, making up 26% of social sales, a statistic that surely will only increase in 2024.

Brands that focus on connecting the dots between their various channels (in-store, online, social media, marketplaces, affiliates, etc.), will undoubtedly see major benefits. In fact, Capital One found that retailers using three or more channels increase consumer engagement 251% more than single-channel retailers. 

If managing these various channels seems daunting, feed management tools like Feedonomics can help brands and retailers sync product and catalog data across hundreds of channels in order to save time and boost discoverability. 

The final word

While there was some uncertainty in 2023, fashion and apparel ecommerce sales showed no signs of slowing down, and are sure to continue their upward trend globally. Certain regions may experience more vigorous growth than others, but as economic indicators continue to look up, so too does the prospect of growth in the vibrant fashion and apparel verticals. 

Want more ecommerce industry insights? Check out our 2024 Home and Garden Report where we analyzed customer data from home and garden customers on BigCommerce, and keep an eye out for more ecommerce news from our fashion and apparel blog series, coming soon. 

Reed Hartman avatar

Reed Hartman is a Content Marketing Manager at BigCommerce, where he uses his years of research, writing and marketing experience to help inform and educate business owners on all things ecommerce.