Purpose – This research critically investigates product development in the context of fast fashion online retailers who are developing “own label” fashion clothing. With a focus upon inputs, outputs, planning and management in order to comprehensively map the interplay of people, processes and the procedures of the product development process adopted.
Design/methodology/approach – Qualitative research method was employed. Face-to-face semi structured in depth interviews were conducted with key informants from market leading fast fashion online retailers in the UK.
Findings – The major findings of this research demonstrate the disruptions in the product development process in contemporary and challenging fashion retailing and a new “circular process” model more appropriate and specific to online fast fashion businesses is presented.
Research limitations/implications – The research has implications for the emerging body of theory relating to fashion product development. The research is limited to UK online fashion retailers, although their operations are global.
Practical implications – The findings from this study may be useful for apparel product development for retailers considering an online and fast fashion business model.
Originality/value – The emergent process model in this study may be used as a baseline for further studies to compare product development processes.