Blog post

Merchandising for the Metaverse

By Robert Hetu | November 19, 2021 | 1 Comment

Digital MarketingAIRetail Digital Transformation and Innovation

Yes, its a coming thing, consumers will want to buy branded apparel and other items to represent themselves in the metaverse. Therefore, companies will begin merchandising for the metaverse. In a recent article from WSJ titled I Spent 24 Hours in the Metaverse. I Made Friends, Did Work and Panicked About the Future. the author makes a statement at the beginning “Here’s a lesson from the metaverse: Avatar attractiveness is a thing.” and goes on to describe getting attention from the stage in a virtual comedy club.

People will pay money for branded products merchandised for the metaverse

Nike recently revealed that it has filed 7 trademark applications and plans to make and sell virtual apparel and athletic shoes. According to CNBC Nike is hiring for virtual design roles. Many brands have been building virtual worlds, and lots of industry articles are discussing the role of virtual.

This is a new version of dress for success, where the individual consumer can be physically sitting in ripped sweat pants on a dirty old sofa, while attending a star studded event in virtual couture. We may be approaching a time when people will be willing to spend more on their virtual wardrobe than they do on real, physical clothing.

Retailers and brands must prepare to merchandise for the metaverse

Will there be a virtual Macy’s or Nike store in the metaverse? Too soon to say, but expect the metaverse to become a digital channel. Since all products are virtual, merchandising and marketing will be a great challenge for traditional organizations. Merchandising for the metaverse will require new views of consumer specificity, design and pricing. The metaverse gives the opportunity to depart from limitations of reality.  Materials will have little to now cost. If you want a solid gold Versace dress, you are paying for the designer name and the design itself. If you want shoes that really fly, no problem, Nike can provide them, in any color you can envision. How much are consumers willing to pay? Well that remains to be seen, but failing to plan to participate is a sure way to fail to succeed.

Looking for ideas

In planning and preparing for this, I am looking for your ideas. This is the start of what I hope to make a robust conversation about the future. Please feel free to share your thoughts on merchandising for the metaverse.

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1 Comment

  • Hi Bob,

    We are already seeing big spending in the metaverse from fashion to sports D&G, Gucci, Fendi, Ralph Lauren, Christian Dior, Nike, UnderAmour, Puma, Adidas, and more, the list is growing by the day. From launching new collections in Roblox, D-Commerce, UNXD to having virtual fashion shows and more.

    We are witnessing the emergence of the Matrix – merging the virtual and digital worlds. Requiring a metaverse first mindset and skills from product development to sourcing, marketing, selling, fulfillment returns, customer success, and more.

    Skills, knowledge, and understanding in areas including – 3D designing, product development, buying, sourcing, AR, VR, video, photography, animation, e-commerce, NFT, blockchain, crypto, marketing, sales, customer success, fulfillment, returns, and more.

    I noticed a lot of people are talking about virtual-only collections and end of brick & mortar retailing. However, I feel that nothing can replace an actual physical world experience and real merchandise, metaverse can act be a catalyst or form factor in addition to the real world however can never be an either/or a situation, even Dolce & Gabbana “Collezione Genes” collection had five physical pieces with virtual iterations. Metaverse fashion has huge potential, especially when linked to physical merchandise.