As a personal shopper I always like to see what the latest developments are when it comes to fashion retail. I’ve also never hid my passion for technology, I guess I’m like a bow tie wearing tech nerd (after bow ties became trendy of course). That’s why I read this recent article with enthusiasm; fashion and ecommerce should be my idea of personal shopping porn. However, I was left with more than a few reservations.
To summarise the article; it talked about how the journey from inspiration to shopping basket is becoming shorter and shorter. In days gone by we would have been inspired by pieces we’d seen in the glossies. Fall in love with that Stella McCartney dress? Then you’d be faced with a trip to your nearest stockist to make the purchase.
Then came the world wide web and it all became that little bit easier. Now all you have to do is find an online stockist and place your order, without even having to take off that onesie or put down your cup of tea.
But for a lot of retailers that journey was too long, that shot of adrenaline could have run out by the time you load up your computer or you could be side tracked by the latest notification on Twitter or Facebook.
Recently Harpers Bazaar released shop bazaar an online magazine that allows you to purchase directly from the site. There is no redirecting to the brand’s website, it has the shopping facility built right into the magazine. Remember that Stella McCartney dress? Yep, you can buy it right there and then, spelling havoc for your bank balance.
There’s also the emergence of mobile apps like Pose and Go Try It On that allow you to get inspiration direct to your phone then make purchases on the spot. Pose allows users to upload their own content, gone are the fashion editors in replace it’s the bloggers and street style fashionista’s that are giving you that burst of inspiration.
Now I’ve always been a fan of physically going out and shopping and in my opinion that will always remain my number one preference when it comes to shopping for clothes. I actually want to see how the clothes fit and feel on my body rather than simply see what they look like. Too many times I’ve been duped by fashionable threads only to find they fail when it comes to the quality of the fabric. Ecommerce takes away some of the senses any savvy shopper should rely on.
However, just the other day I was browsing Pinterest and found a couple of awesome pieces that I just wished I could have bought there and then. They were some cool accessories that I knew I wouldn’t have found anywhere else and my frantic googling for them wasn’t very fruitful.
I’d love to see Pinterest add in an option to buy direct. I think having the technology there and having the choice to use it is a wonderful thing. Nowadays with the waves upon waves of new social media platforms that pop up, it can all get a bit stifling. Both these mobile apps slipped under my radar (one is iOS only at the moment), but the social aspect built into them actually puts me off.
I think if Pinterest added such a functionality it could kill off smaller up and coming platforms, would that be a good thing? Who knows…
I also love the idea of expanding on augmented reality, the technology is already here. Apps like Layar and Nokia’s City Lens allows users to view their surrounds through their phone and have real time locations pop up on their screen. If you don’t understand what I mean check out the photo.
Now Imagine if you could use it to find out where clothes were from that people were actually wearing and then buy them directly from your phone. See a girl tottering down the street in some cool heels but don’t know where they’re from? Load up the app and you can find out exactly who they’re by, how much they cost and what sizes are in stock.
Would you like to save a pair at your nearest store or buy now….?
Now where did I put my credit card….
I’d love to hear your thoughts on these apps and sites like shop bazaar. Have you used any of these platforms to buy clothes, what’s your opinion on them?
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