Linking British Designers to Chinese Manufacturers



We worked with a Chinese venture based in Chengdu that aimed to connect worldwide fashion designers with reliable Chinese manufacturers. After their online platform was launched, they quickly discovered that attracting European fashion designers was a challenging task, so they turned to First Step Consulting for assistance.



Our client had recently launched a two-sided online marketplace, enabling two distinct user groups to provide each other with network benefits. As an online fashion incubator, its dual purpose was to provide free online showrooms for designers and at the same time to help fashion designers connect with trustworthy Chinese manufacturers and suppliers. Despite the exciting opportunity that this platform offered designers, our client initially struggled to understand the specific expectations of British designers and incentivise them to use the platform.



We conducted in-depth industry orientated market research, interviewing over fifty British fashion designers. This research yielded valuable insights, allowing us to build an understanding of their expectations and concerns. The common themes revealed by our methodological analysis of the data were subsequently translated into practical recommendations which helped to improve the digital strategy of our client.

Working closely throughout the process, we helped our client to understand the specific expectations of British designers and make their online platform more appealing. In the first year, our client has experienced a sharp increase in the number of UK-based designers actively using their platform. Now, thanks to our client’s web platform, British designers and designers from around the world are able to create their products and tap into China’s 550 million online shoppers more easily.





"The quality of their report was wonderful and the findings helped us attract a substantial number of UK-based fashion designers. All of their suggestions were also pragmatic and helpful. We will continue to work with First Step Consulting."

— Founder, Chinese Internet Company

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