Nothing ‘little’ about this brand: Zara case study

zara case study

When we hear the word ‘fast fashion,’ it is impossible to ignore one of the biggest retail brands in the world-  ZARA. 

Zara introduced the concept of fast fashion to the world back in 1975. Fast fashion means getting the newest styles on the market as fast as possible, so your customers can have them in their closets while they are still trending and get rid of them after a few wears. That is sad, right? But, not for Zara and its customers. 

This brief Zara case study will help you fast track the history of the fast fashion giants. 

Opening the doors of Zara history 

Amancio Ortega and Rosalía Mera started Zara as a family-owned business in the northern part of Spain, Galicia, in 1975. The first store attracted a lot of customers due to its low-priced lookalike products of popular, high-end clothing and fashion. 

Amancio Ortega first wanted to name this company Zorba, but that was already taken. He then settled to call it Zara. 

In the next decade, the name ‘Zara’ came to be on everyone’s lips in Spain. To make the best use of this newly gained popularity, they opened nine new stores in the biggest cities of Spain. 

Amancio had a goal to reduce lead times and react to new trends in the quickest way, which would enable customers to get access to new trends in no time, and at a lower price, which he called ‘instant fashion.’ As trends in fashion kept changing from time to time, this concept became a hit with his audience. 

After conquering the streets of Spain, Zara wanted to aim at the global markets. They had their sights on Portugal, Mexico, Greece, Sweden, Belgium, Norway, Cyprus, Malta, Israel, New York, and Paris. The widespread popularity of Zara has now touched every major country.

Due to their capitalisation of the fast fashion industry, Zara took their journey from a single store in Spain to one of the world’s biggest fashion retailers. 

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Customer is king 

Zara always puts its customers first. In 2015, a lady named Miko walked into a Zara store in Tokyo and asked the store assistant for a pink scarf, but the store did not have any pink scarves. The same happened for a lady named Michelle in Toronto, Elaine in San Francisco, and Giselle in Frankfurt, who came into Zara stores and asked for pink scarves. They all left the stores without any scarves because the stores did not have them.  Seven days later, more than 2,000 Zara stores globally started selling pink scarves. 500,000 pink scarves were dispatched – to be exact. 

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This is an example as to how highly Zara places their customers’ feedback and insights. The mantra is simple: if your customers are happy, your profits will be happier. 


This brief Zara case study aimed to shed light on how Zara started out and the heights they have achieved due to their strategies and philosophies.

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