While labor laws in China are laxer than those in the US, Canada, and the EU, this does not make it any less dangerous to buy products from Chinese companies. Cheap labor is what makes the products cheaper, so companies often exploit their workers. While many companies do not pay enough attention to the health of their workers, Shein does. Their goal is to provide the best possible products at the lowest possible prices.
Shein’s Ethical Work Practices
While SHEIN makes some efforts to protect workers and the environment, they haven’t been as successful as they could be. While they do audit some percentage of their supply chains, they still don’t improve the working conditions of their workers. They don’t pay living wages, have safe working conditions, or comply with COVID-19. And, they’re often accused of stealing independent designers’ work. But can we trust the company’s ethical work practices?
The company’s claims to have “ethical” work practices are vague and hard to verify. It’s difficult to find third-party certifications and third-party audits of its factory partners, and they’re often run illegally. Furthermore, the company’s own workers aren’t able to verify its claims, and there is no third-party oversight of its practices. In addition, the company hires order pickers via dispatch agencies, preventing them from defending their rights.
To determine whether SHEIN is doing its part to reduce its environmental impact, the company has an official website. It also has rules and regulations. According to the company’s website, they’ve planted 600K trees and donated $100K to nonprofits, but these donations don’t support their environmental ethics. In addition, the company uses “green” materials like recycled polyester and nylon for their manufacturing process, but they don’t disclose the exact percentage.
Despite the company’s claim of ethical work practices, the fact that the majority of its suppliers design and manufacture their products independently makes it difficult to verify the authenticity of its suppliers. In addition, their working conditions are extremely precarious. The company adds more than 1,000 new items on its website every day, outpacing both Zara and H&M. Moreover, most of its suppliers use cheap labor and don’t even have proper safety procedures.
Its Return Policy
If you’re not satisfied with your purchase for any reason, you can always return it for a full refund. The return policy at Shein is pretty straightforward: if you’re not happy with your purchase, you can return it for a refund, and Shein will cover the cost of shipping. However, if you’re returning multiple items or only one, you must follow certain requirements. To get started, simply log into your Shein account, click the “Return an item” button, select the reason for the return, and print a prepaid label. Then, you can attach it to the package and drop it off at your local post office or mail it back to Shein.
Shein’s return policy page displays helpful info-graphics and instructions for customers, which makes it easy to navigate. For instance, the website has a size guide, recognizing that ordering online can result in purchasing the wrong size. They explain what size is “normally” and what sizes are “specific” to different body types. They also offer a 30-day return period. And if you buy a pair of shoes online, you can always return it if it doesn’t fit properly.
If you’re returning a Shein product, you can choose express shipping for the fastest delivery. This option can take as little as a week, although this could vary during significant sales and festivals. However, this method costs more, and is only recommended if you’re looking for a product with an immediate deadline. Depending on the size and weight of the item, express shipping may not be right for your order.
Shipping times are usually a few days, but SHEIN also offers free shipping to select countries around the world. If you want to have an item shipped to a remote location, you’ll likely need to wait longer. You can also contact SHEIN customer service if the package is delayed. The return time is dependent on the country of residence and the method of transport. If your order is too large for the shipping service, you can always return it.
Its Target Market
With over 200 million mobile users, Shein’s target market is increasingly younger. Millennials and Generation Z spend a growing amount of time on their mobile devices and are often the most likely to purchase goods from an online retailer. Moreover, over 50% of this generation never shops without their smartphones. This means that Shein can tap into this market with ease and improve customer retention. Moreover, Shein offers affiliate programs that help you earn from purchases made through the website.
Shein’s advertisements generally link to specific products, sales, and coupon codes rather than general lifestyle content. Social media posts by Shein have been aggregated by BrandTotal. In addition to the traditional demographics, Shein focuses on the young as well as the older generation. For example, their campaigns for the new XXL clothing line, “Pretty Little Things,” and “Princess Polly,” target teenagers and women aged 18 to 24.
Although Shein only sells its products online in the Western market, it is making big investments in its ecommerce strategy and plans to grow exponentially. It also offers free shipping for orders below $880. Furthermore, Shein’s target market has broad geographical reach and is not limited to the United States and the European Union. With a target market of millennials, it can leverage its existing brand name and differentiate itself from the rest.
The Gen Z population is a significant consumer group for Shein. They want to stand out from the crowd, and at the same time be socially accepted. For this reason, new marketing strategies are necessary. The company collaborates with young Western celebrities to reach this audience. As of now, Lil Nas X, Rita Ora, and Katy Perry will represent the brand in 2020. These celebrities are influential in the fashion world.
According to the latest financial report by BCG, SHEIN’s valuation has tripled from $60 million in 2013 to $15.7 billion in 2021, a more than four-fold increase. This investment came at a time when Chinese companies are struggling to expand in the West, and Xu Yangtian has been the driving force behind the turnaround. He has a net worth of more than 40 billion yuan, which puts him in the top tier of Chinese tech entrepreneurs.
However, the company has faced criticism for its meteoric rise, including accusations that it sold racist phone cases, ripped off designers and contributed to overconsumption. In addition to this, Shein has taken advantage of favorable tax policies in the Trump era that have enabled it to undercut competition. Although the company may not be going public in the near future, there are plans for an IPO in the U.S., which could bring Shein’s valuation up even higher.
Shein also faces many challenges, and is trying to do an IPO in the United States as soon as possible. The company is also facing environmental, social and governance issues, which may hamper its efforts to make its IPO a success. In the meantime, Shein has recently raised $6 billion in new funding from investors, including Sequoia Capital, Tiger Global Management, and General Atlantic. In August, the company will raise another $15 billion, which represents a more than threefold increase in valuation.
The company’s latest funding round reportedly nets $1 billion to $2 billion, making it one of the most valuable private companies in the world. The latest funding round also includes General Atlantic, Tiger Global Management, and Sequoia Capital China. However, the company is yet to announce plans to go public, despite recent media reports. In the meantime, investors are assessing Shein’s potential as a public company. And, as a result, their valuation has doubled in the past year.
The success of Shein is partly due to its tech-driven approach. The company’s AI-powered supply-chain information system, which integrates data from major internet platforms, feeds trending styles to factories and manufactures. It only takes 10 days to manufacture a new product compared to four to six weeks at British rivals. With these measures, Shein is well-positioned to stay ahead of its competitors. There is no better time than the present to invest in this fast-growing tech company.