Mobile App
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“File this under “Things You Didn’t Know You Needed”: Christian Louboutin has put out a photo-filtering app. If VSCO or Instagram’s photo-editing capabilities weren’t hacking it for you, let us introduce you to “Louboutinize.””

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Christian Louboutin

“With both the Shopify and Etsy IPOs, the last year has been a big one for tech companies catering to independent online retailers. Now Tictail, a Swedish company that has migrated to the United States, is hoping to make its mark with a product that’s somewhere between those two platforms.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Tictail

“After a long day’s work, one evening, Navneet Sharma took an auto-rickshaw home. On the way, he saw a beautiful dress on a mannequin outside an expensive store. He couldn’t help but imagine how good that dress would look on his girlfriend. So he clicked a picture of the dress using his smartphone as the auto-rickshaw grunted through the buzzling streets of Bangalore. He went home hoping that he would find a similar dress online. He searched in vain. It was tough to verbally describe what he was looking for.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily -  Snapshopr Founders

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Miss Sixty
Image source: Miss Sixty

In a bid to boost their e-commerce sales, Italian fashion brands Miss Sixty and Energie (both owned by Italian fashion distributor Sixty Distribution) have partnered with UK-based mobile payments company Powa Technologies to make mobile payments instantaneous.

Consumers who download Powa Technologies’ free PowaTag app will be able to purchase products at the tap of a ‘buy now’ button directly from the brands’ e-commerce sites and email newsletters. Consumers pre-register their credit card details and shipping addresses, making the super-quick purchasing process possible. The service is now available in 24 countries worldwide, including Italy, the UK, France and Germany.

The move will soon be followed by the integration of the PowaTag system in physical stores. Users will be able to scan product labels embedded with electronic tag technology with their smartphone cameras for instant checkout.

PowaTag is also currently working with French supermarket chain Carrefour and UK supermarket chains Tesco and Waitrose, and has previously worked with men’s underwear label 2(x)ist on shoppable ads.

Speedy payment technologies are gaining traction among retailers, especially when it comes to e-commerce, as the average online shopping abandonment rate has reached more than 68%, according to a 2015 study by Dutch research firm Baymard Institute.

Guest post Stylus.com by  Marta PodeszwaKatie Baron

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Technology Brands

Image source: Essential Journal

With consumers spending 89% of their time on media through mobile apps (source: Nielsen), the potential of mobile commerce has not been lost on fashion brands. The move towards shoppable Instagram posts and Pinterest pins, as well as commerce-capable social networks like Net-A-Porter’s The Net Set, are all recent examples of brands getting on board with mobile. But is the incentive to gain profit being pursued at the expense of other ways of earning customer loyalty? In these fast-moving times, certain start-ups and retailers have realised that just saying “thank you” can be as valuable to fashion fans as giving them easier ways to shop.

One app leading the charge is Thanx, a mobile app for iOS and Android that allows you to automatically earn rewards from your favourite retailers. This might be your local bakery or gardening centre – or, interestingly, local fashion retailers that might not have a definitive online presence. If you have a favourite designer boutique in your neighbourhood, for instance, but can’t wait until sale season, the app will allow you to accrue rewards towards purchases and let you know when and what you’ve earned. It will even inform you when you’re near a certain merchant that is signed up to Thanx. As one user puts it: “Amazing that I don’t need to jump through a bunch of hoops or fumble through my wallet.” This comment says much about the value of frictionless sharing in all aspects of customer experiences: not only on social promotions or in the process of checking out, but also with regards to giving something back to the consumer.

The “thank you” effect is spreading across other m-commerce apps, too. The Urban Outfitters app allows customers to become an Urban On insider, unlocking exclusive rewards and getting first access to sales, new collections and events. Harvey Nichols launched a new app last month, Rewards by Harvey Nichols, which promises to reward customers for every pound they spend – an unusual move for a store where pounds spent could regularly number in the thousands. The ideas are simple – not much different to a physical loyalty card – but the digital environment gives far greater scope for the kind of customisation that could make a customer feel like you’re saying thanks to them personally.

Reported by Claire Healy

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Liberty London Department Store

Image source: LDN Fashion

People only buy expensive things once they’ve done their research online, right? Well according to new findings from research and advisory firm the Luxury Institute, wealthy shoppers still want their shopping experience to be firmly ensconced in the physical world.

As reported by Bloomberg Business, a survey of 1,600 men and women who earn at least $150,000 a year found that the majority prefer to go to shops first, browse items up-close and in person, and receive expert advice from the salesperson. The report goes against the ‘Compare the Market’ myth pervading attitudes in luxury retail – something that has led to retail brands placing less importance on the customer service shoppers receive in-store.

One place where the customer is (still) always right, however, is the traditional department store. Here’s our rundown of the department stores whose forays into new retail technologies are designed to straddle the offline and online worlds with ease – and are championing the kind of multichannel models that will keep affluent shoppers in their ideal comfort zone

Liberty, London

Department stores don’t get much more traditional than the Tudor-style enclaves of Liberty. The store was set up in 1875 with just three dedicated staff and a focus on Eastern furnishings. But fast forward to 2015, and the company has been laying the foundations for an omni-channel strategy that it says is both “functional and fun”. Always careful not to alienate its core customer – who appreciates the in-store experience and the brand’s pared-back marketing compared to its competitors – Liberty has nevertheless launched new technologies in line with how people are really shopping.

A traditional loyalty scheme has gone mobile via the Tapestry app, which adds Instagram into the equation of the usual points and perks – you can browse your favourite brands, and save an item when you see something you like into your “Tapestry.” Then, you can see where it’s located in-store. Moreover, when you want to redeem your points, in-store sales associates will scan phones as well as the usual cards. The scheme allows Liberty’s core customer base to choose whether to sync their existing loyalty card with the app, while attracting new customers through its fun take on utility and bespoke perks.

El Corte Inglés, Spain & Portugal

Founded in 1940, Spanish retail powerhouse El Corte Inglés is Europe’s biggest department store group. It is also one of the most traditional, selling luxury designer clothing alongside electronics, furniture, books, cars, real estate and food. Rather than targeting the entire business, the company is using new retail technologies to optimise particular aspects. This month, for example, it announced it will be launching a mobile shopping platform in its Portuguese market with technology company Grability, following the launch in its home market of Spain last December. Focusing on grocery shopping, the app offers El Corte Inglés customers an intuitive mobile shopping experience that, according to the company, has resulted in marked enthusiasm for the new platform and boosted sales.

Nordstrom, USA

As Lauren Sherman wrote in her report on the Great American Department Store for Fashionista in April, “the role of department stores is changing, and only those willing to recognise the need to transform will survive”. In an era of struggle, some stores are faring better at moving on from mid-20th century models than others.

Nordstrom, based in Seattle, is spending big on technology, warehouses and acquiring businesses like e-commerce site Trunk Club. At the same time, however, it is putting its reputation for great customer service to good use in the age of e-commerce. It takes risks with brands rather than veering towards the conservative, and ex-Opening Ceremony hire Olivia Kim creates monthly shop-in-shops, dubbed Pop-in @ Nordstrom. Schemes like this show how Nordstrom is capitalising on a younger customer’s desire for newness offline, as well as online.

Reported by Claire Healy

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“Fans of famed fashion designer Nicole Miller will be able to instantly buy her latest clothing line through their smartphones as she partners with innovative mobile app PowaTag. The solution will enable users to buy all items on show directly from the website when browsing on NicoleMiller.com.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Nicole Miller

Zara-App-

As e-commerce makes the shift to mobile, fashion retailers aren’t planning on getting left behind. Indeed, smartphone app use among retail consumers has far exceeded expectations, with app use in-store or on-the-go fast becoming the norm for the average shopper: according to Cisco’s fifth annual retail survey, 55% of shoppers said they will use a retailer’s app for or during a shop. Here’s our pick of the top apps combining convenience, hyper-relevance and a stylish look on the current mobile marketplace.

1~ Zara

The Spanish retailer recently came out at #1 in Push Technology’s review of high street retailers’ mobile apps for Drapers – scoring 70.5 out of 80 to beat H&M, Asos and a notably low-scoring Topshop. Why? The user experience is seriously easy-going, allowing you to add items to your basket without going through the bore of creating an account. What’s more, the app’s internal pathways are logical, simple and, best of all, fast. It seems that speed is key when it comes to high-street shopping on your mobile – nobody wants a clunky experience that gives you the kind of pause for thought that will take those shoes right out of your basket again. They don’t call it fast fashion for nothing, you know.

2~ Vestiaire Collective

We love Vestiaire Collective – the Parisian eBay for luxury pre-owned fashion, the website allows users to browse and buy designer items that will be authenticated and checked by in-house experts before arriving at your house. Even better than VC’s website, though, is their nifty app for iPhones, iPads and Android, which allows you to be alerted in real time by push notifications about items you’re following. What’s more, if you want to sell items on the platform instead of buying them, the in-app form for doing so is super intuitive and quick, allowing you to take photos of your item there and then.

3~ Nordstrom

Just this week across the pond, a consumer study by Market Force Information revealed that Nordstrom was consumers’ favourite fashion retailer for the third consecutive year. This could be down to their app, which boasts a high uptake rate and high ratings in the app store. Good-looking and easy to use, it lends itself to an omni-channel shopping experience: you can buy directly from the app to pick up in store, check item availability in a store close to you, or even scan pages of the printed catalogue to shop it directly from the app.

Reported by Claire Healy

4circle

“Instant delivery and other on-demand services have flooded the startup world in the last year, prompting some to question their sustainability and draw comparisons to the dot-com bubble. But the speculation isn’t discouraging to PRIV, an app that brings makeup and hair professionals, nail technicians, masseuses, and personal trainers to New Yorkers’ doors.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily -  PRIV App

The broadcast tower at Alexanderplatz, Berlin

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  2. Shopify Revamps its iOS App
    Shopify has introduced a redesigned version of its iOS mobile app, with a new core concept that focuses on helping merchants do more to manage and run their stores from their devices.
  3. Digital Enhances Beauty Product Experience Remotely and In-Store
    Luxury marketers who focus on beauty product lines have taken notice of how affluent consumers prefer to shop via mobile by continuing to incorporate digital touch points into campaigns and through in-store interactions.
  4. Wearable Tech at CES 2014
    With the Consumer Electronics Show upon us, we get to see whether some company, any company, can release an uncompromised, mainstream consumer hit in 2014.