The London-headquartered virtual fitting room provider Fits.me continues to catch the eye of ecommerce directors at many UK fashion retailers – and, increasingly, in multiple countries.
Proving that both the online fit problem and the solution to it are international, the company has signed new deals with an array of leading brands in recent months: Austin Reed, Baukjen (both UK), Bilka (Denmark), CC Fashion, Crew Clothing, Isabella Oliver, M&Co, Musto, Savile Row, QVC (all UK), Top Vintage (Netherlands), Viyella (UK) and Wahcoma (USA).
“There is no doubt that virtual fitting rooms have rocketed during 2013,” says Heikki Haldre, co-founder and chief executive of Fits.me. “As the proportion of online sales increases, so do retailers’ overall garment returns rate. That attracts attention – and pressure to deal with it – from across the business.”
While reducing garment returns continues to be high on the priorities list of ecommerce directors, Fits.me has seen growing expectations that personalisation solutions like virtual fitting rooms will improve stubbornly low online conversion rates.
Peter Rankin, VP Sales, Fits.me, says that Fits.me’s potential to reduce garment returns is still the most visible benefit to ecommerce directors, but its ability to improve online conversion rates is becoming more widely understood.
He adds, “Our analytics results show that, across the board, shoppers who use the virtual fitting room are twice as likely to convert into a sale as those that don’t,” he said. “Concluding a sale, in the size that the shopper wants, there and then, reduces the likelihood of the shopper looking and purchasing elsewhere, and ecommerce directors in competitive clothing sectors are very aware of that.”
The majority of deals signed and announced by Fits.me earlier this year are now live, bringing the total number of Fits.me Virtual Fitting Rooms to 23 in 9 countries.
In the UK, potential changes to the Consumer Rights Bill may be another reason for continued interest in virtual fitting rooms. Changes under discussion include a 30-day right-to-reject clause for “faulty” items, with the definition of “faulty” extending to whether the item looked and fit as it did on the website.
“It would be a very good incentive to adopt the only virtual fitting room that provides a photographic visualisation of fit,” admits Haldre. “In customer terms, a Fits.me Virtual Fitting Room helps shoppers overcome their hesitation and doubts over sizing, and helps them to buy more accurately. In retailer terms, it may – if the legislation passes unchanged – help them to fulfil their obligation to give consumers correct guidance and information regarding size and fit.”
At the start of September, Fits.me opened a second North American sales office, in California – it already has an office in New York – and another in Auckland, NZ to serve Australasia. These join existing sales offices in Paris and Munich.