Localized eCommerce App in China for Brandy Melville's Fashion Lovers

IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville logo 1

Brandy Melville

The Magento application development for Brandy Melville yielded thousands of orders per day and hundreds of millions of RMB in sales from Chinese fashion lovers since its launch.

IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 1
IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 2
IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 3
IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 1
IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 2
IT Consultis Project Brandy Melville mockup 3
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In this case study, we’ll uncover how Brandy Melville built its first and only online sales channel in China to streamline thousands of daily orders for local fashion lovers.

About the client: Brandy Melville

Brandy Melville is an Italian clothing and fashion accessories brand that has captivated the hearts of teenage girls and young women globally with its trendy, youthful, and contemporary aesthetic.

In September 2019, Brandy Melville took its first step into the Chinese market, establishing its inaugural brick-and-mortar store in Shanghai. Despite zero investments in marketing efforts, the brand quickly resonated with Chinese consumers as a whole style trend “BM style” was born after it, sparking large-scale user-generated content and discussions on local social media platforms, especially Xiaohongshu.

Brandy Melville or BM style

Objectives

During the first year, although the brand's online sales channel at the time, a website not fully optimized for the Chinese market, was generating considerable sales, the new e-Commerce solution helped skyrocket its performance remarkably!

Brandy Melville partnered up with IT Consultis (ITC) to develop a comprehensive solution: a fully localized eCommerce channel tailor-made for the Chinese market in the form of both iOS and Android applications that would:

- Streamline its online sales operations to smoothly handle up to 15,000+ orders a day 
- Elevate the online shopping experience for fashion lovers in China while meeting the brand guideline 

Solutions for Brandy Melville

On-Brand & Localized UX/UI Design

In the journey to create an effective eCommerce solution tailored to Brandy Melville and China, ITC’s design team embarked on a meticulous process of crafting a consistent yet localized user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design.

The goal was to maintain the brand's globally recognized aesthetic while addressing the distinct preferences and habits of Chinese users.

Initial Design Adaptation: A Seamless Bridge Between Global and Local

Brandy Melville homepage displayed the latest product listing

At the onset, the eCommerce application for China embraced the established global app design, characterized by its clean, simple, and minimalist design elements.

The neutral color palette, mainly whites and muted tones of pink, grey, and brown, matched the hues used in Brandy Melville's clothing line. Vintage-style typography with clean and legible serif fonts further complemented this visual identity.

The homepage displayed the latest product listing, and the same layout was adapted for different categorized product listing pages as well. This consistency helped keep users in a browsing loop that maximizes the on-app time.

Beyond the visual aspects, the functionality of the iOS/Android app for China was also seamlessly adapted from the global version to deliver a user experience that works universally.

Refining the Experience: Design Localization for Chinese Users

Recognizing the nuances of the Chinese market and the preferences of local users, the China app later underwent strategic adjustments to enhance localization without deviating from Brandy Melville’s core brand guidelines.

1. Enhance the Homepage

Brandy Melville Homepage after Enhancements
  • Improved navigation: The previously concealed navigation bar inside the burger menu is now directly accessible at the bottom of the app. The sticky header provides notifications to users, ensuring key information on their orders, including shipping updates, is visible across the app.
  • Brand Promotion/Highlights: An area dedicated to brand promotions and featured products was introduced to add more flare to the app browsing experience.
  • Enhanced Favorites: While retaining the ‘add to favorites’ feature, the mechanism is now more subtle and simplified to a double-click.

2. Revamp the Product Detail Page

Brandy Melville Product Detail Page revamp
  • Transition to Page mode: Rather than showing the product details in popup mode, there are now independent Product Detail pages.
  • Streamlined actions: Move other important actions (i.e. ‘sharing’ and ‘adding to favorites’) to the bottom navigation to make them easier to find and drive more sharing and engagement.
  • Product Information separation: Establish a clear separation between the product descriptions and specifications to eliminate ambiguity, offering a more coherent understanding of each product. 
Product Information separation in Brandy Melville

3. Elevate the My Account page

  • Orders’ visibility: When users go to the My Account page, the first thing they usually want to do is check on their latest orders. Therefore, the order listing is now visible directly on the 1st page of the My Account section.
  • Enhanced user interface: The My Account page was also restructured to maximize layout with icon-based menus and numerical item counts.
Elevate the Brandy Melville's My Account page 

Mobile Payment Integrations

In 2022, over 85% of mobile internet users in China adopted mobile payment methods. In urban areas, the penetration rate reached nearly 90%.

Recognizing the significance of mobile payments in China, Brandy Melville enabled the integration of the Magento-powered app with the most popular local vendors – Alipay and WeChat Pay – to streamline customer transactions in their preferred methods.

Enhanced Checkout Experience

To further localize the e-Commerce app experience for Chinese fashion lovers, the shopping cart was also designed to be reminiscent of the function on Tmall – the country’s largest B2C e-Commerce platform, to offer a familiar experience for local consumers.

In addition, we implemented a one-step checkout process to minimize friction in their journey to conversion.

Enhanced Brandy Melville's Checkout Experience 

Powerful eCommerce Technology Stack & System Integrations

The backend relied on Magento – a technology solution that actually works in China to provide a robust foundation for Brandy Melville’s eCommerce system. The front end leveraged React Native for both the iOS and Android app development.

The headless infrastructure enabled seamless integrations with local mobile payment methods, as previously mentioned, and the live chat tool ClienK.

After publishing the China Brandy Melville eCommerce app onto the Apple App Store, Google Play Store, Huawei App Store..., we also conducted regular maintenance and server updates to ensure optimal performance for these China eCommerce apps even during peak traffic periods.

Technologies for Brandy Melville app in China

Results

The Magento application development for Brandy Melville yielded remarkable results with impressive revenue milestones for the brand in the dynamic Chinese market:

  • Order Management: The dedicated eCommerce app development for China enabled the brand to efficiently manage thousands of orders per day.
  • Sales Impact: Since its launch in May 2020, the Magento app has facilitated hundreds of millions of RMB in sales, underscoring the effectiveness of the localized digital approach.
  • Engagement & Visibility: The e-Commerce application also contributes to elevating the brand visibility among Chinese users, even during the COVID-19 lockdown periods.

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