Taylor Stitch is an online men’s clothing company headquartered in San Francisco, CA. Founded in 2008, Taylor Stitch is dedicated to changing how the retail industry operates by improving the way they source, sew, and sell. Since day one, the brand has focused on creating consumer-led products that stand the test of time and have minimal environmental impact.
As a rapidly scaling brand, Taylor Stitch was struggling to determine the correct amount of merchandise it needed to meet growing consumer demands without overproducing. It was also critical to keep pace with evolving trends and minimize supply chain risks by incrementally releasing consumer-led styles, rather than betting on a few major seasonal drops. Despite being a direct-to-consumer brand that’s in touch with its customers, Taylor Stitch needed a better way to evaluate buyer preferences and purchase intent to guide key merchandising decisions. Taylor Stitch Co-founder and CEO Michael Maher and his team were in search of a solution to help collect objective, product-specific consumer feedback and make it accessible to everyone in the organization.
Taylor Stitch chose MakerSights’ platform to help them take an iterative, consumer-first, and sustainably responsible approach to developing products and assortments.
To build an engaged community of repeat customers, Taylor Stitch launched “The Workshop,” a weekly kickstarter where consumers crowdfund potential new products by purchasing them in advance for a discount. Prior to creating samples to showcase in the Workshop and pre-ordering fabrics to meet production timelines, the brand uses MakerSights’ Voice of Consumer testing to predict purchase intent for specific styles and materials.
Taylor Stitch also leverages MakerSights’ Voice of Consumer data to quickly gauge consumer preferences and identify top performers for in-line products. This helps eliminate unsold inventory that must either be discounted or disposed of. It also allows Taylor Stitch to quickly iterate on and finalize assortments for higher frequency, lower risk releases.
In addition to using MakerSights to minimize sample waste and eliminate underperforming styles prior to production, Taylor Stitch also uses the platform to right-size investments with confidence. A clear, data-driven understanding of consumer sentiment enables the brand to order the perfect quantity of each SKU to meet demand and avoid overproduction.
Today, Taylor Stitch’s Workshop community has more than 46,000 members and has launched nearly 900 SKUs. Using MakerSights to rapidly test products prior to crowdfunding and developing them has led to the success of the Workshop, which now accounts for 11% of annual revenue. What’s more, customers who engage with the brand through MakerSights are 2x as likely to make a repeat purchase and spend 1.3x more compared to those who don’t.
Finalizing inventory additions and assortments based on real-time consumer feedback and purchase intent has enabled Taylor Stitch to take a “seasonless” approach to product creation. New SKUs are released every week, with far fewer items listed on the “Last Call” section of the brand’s website.
“MakerSights has made data accessible at Taylor Stitch in a way that it wasn’t before,” says Maher. “This not only helps us protect the environment, but it also elevates our brand and price integrity, which ultimately leads to better customer retention, higher gross margins, and fewer returns.”
Each season, the brand proactively cuts 5-10% of products that would have underperformed based on MakerSights data, resulting in a 10% decrease in markdowns, a 7.5% reduction in overproduction, and a 2% profit margin increase.
When I get to leak the MakerSights fabric voting it’s like I leaked a new hit single or movie that hasn’t hit theatres yet. Customers reach out to me and get so excited about what those products are and what’s coming out. MakerSights is a fun and invaluable way for them to be a part of the Taylor Stitch brand.