Earlier this month we took part in the Retail Week Hackathon held at the Emirates Stadium in north London. The brief was to create the ‘ultimate customer experience’ in 24 hours and we were up against nine other teams. Our main competitors were predominantly developers, engineers and UX designers. Our team of five were aptly named the D&P Warriors, made up from members of graphics, interiors and digital.
We came up with our idea after discussing how a lot of people feel intimidated by fashion brands when seeing clothes they like on models and mannequins. We decided it could be much more inspiring to see real people in real-life scenarios wearing the clothes we are considering buying.
We decided to utilise our unique expertise and opted out of creating an app, instead we designed an in-store installation and named it Style Share. Our aim was to attract more people in-store and make shopping more personal and engaging, as well as making a brand more accessible.
We chose Topshop as an example store where Style Share could be featured (although it could work in many high street stores). Garments would carry a swing-tag with a unique hashtag, customers simply scan the item using NFC technology and can instantly see lots of images of other customers wearing the item on large in-store screens. Customers are also encouraged to participate, so there are rewards and discounts for the most likes. Customers can vote by touching the screens in-store. There is a seamless offline to online link: Style Share can also be integrated into the brand’s website and app so that people can vote online without needing to go into the store.
As well as offering customers reassurance, rewards and ideas for how to accessorise an outfit it also gives them more opportunity to be seen and to gain more fashion followers. The main benefits for a retailer are that it increases dwell time in-store, allows them to quickly track trends and cross-sell, and helps to promote brand loyalty.
We didn’t win but we were happy with our idea and are planning on selling it into one of our retail clients.