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Tesco has launched a Facebook-based virtual fitting room, which has been created to help customers find the perfect size and fit when they shop for the brand's F&F clothes online.

Developed by Metail, the service claims to be the only one on the market to offer personalised styling and size recommendations – and will be available for three weeks as part of a trial. 

Via the Clothing at Tesco Facebook page, customers can create 3D digital versions of themselves by uploading a photo of their face and another of their body type (or by entering measurements).

Users will be able to test out 50 items from this season’s collection and a further 10 new garments each week. There’s also the opportunity to try out various hairstyles to create different looks, which can then be shared with selected friends on Facebook for feedback. 

Tesco director of online clothing Emily Shamma said that the brand was immediately interested in the potential of a virtual fitting room app.

There has been technology like this before, but nothing of this standard.”

We Are Social is supporting the launch with a social media campaign based on the way women discuss clothing online, in particular in how they share looks with their friends and ask for comment. 

This includes inviting bloggers to use the virtual fitting room to create a look from the Clothing at Tesco range – and then comparing their ‘Me_model’ wearing the clothes with how they look wearing the clothes in real life, before asking their readers' opinions on the outfit.

The agency is also running a photo contest within Facebook, where users can upload pictures of their looks. These images can then be voted on by their friends and the wider Clothing at Tesco fanbase, with one winner each day receiving a £50 voucher to spend towards creating their look.

Plus, there’s an ‘Ask my stylist’ feature, where people can ask a stylist from Clothing at Tesco how they could accessorise a look. Stylists will take the requested user’s submitted look and create a style board with it, showing what else could be added. 

Back in 2010, we profiled start-up Fits.me, which uses robotic mannequins to create virtual fitting rooms. Now, it claims to have increased its customers sales by 57% and reduced returns by 28%.

Earlier this month, Selfridges launched a new womenswear section instore to coincide with London Fashion Week, which includes a 'next-generation' fitting room.

When a customer stands in between three specially-placed mirrors, they can capture an image or short video of themselves - and try on different outfits without removing their clothes. These images could then be viewed immediately, and shared with friends via social networks. 

This is similar to Diesel Spain's Diesel Cam above, which allows users to share the moment of buying and trying garments on their Facebook profiles from within the store.

Whichever angle you look at it: a retailer looking to recommend a better fit when shopping online, or an offline store wanting to integrate better with digital, the two are getting ever closer together – and improving the experience all round in the process.

Vikki Chowney

Published 29 February, 2012 by Vikki Chowney

Vikki is head of community at TMW. You can follow her on Twitter or Google+

249 more posts from this author

Comments (5)

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Lewis Hamilton, Head of Ecommerce at Turnbull & Asser

Fab article, though if anyone has tried to use this software (Tesco example) it's really not quite ready for release. I'm surprised the issues faced in the app were not detected in the pre launch user testing - give it a go and see for yourself. I've seen 3 people try this and each of those people have told me that it wouldn't encourage them to purchase the products that they're seeing on them in the virtual dressing room - infact, quite the opposite.

I think this technology needs more refinement before it's released to the public, especially from a huge brand like Tesco's. They are one of the early adopters of this technology, perhaps the first major retailer, though I think they're sacrificed quality for this accolade.

over 4 years ago

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Ted

I like Tesco's approach because it is trying to solve an age old problem with buying clothes online. Also Facebook is a perfect platform for this technology as it brings the "social element" that is missing often when shopping online.

I think the Diesel CAM has less appeal because you are already in the store when you take the photo.

over 4 years ago

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Ana Udrea

Tesco are not the first big retailer to embrace this sort of technology- Westfield London launched a Tweet mirror last year in an attempt to bring this social element to the shopping experience (as Ted put it). The technology was brought by Nedap.

You can read more about it here http://www.digitalsignage.net/2011/03/31/tweeting-on-a-mirror/ (unfortunately, the video has been made private)

over 4 years ago

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Lewis Hamilton, Head of Ecommerce at Turnbull & Asser

I think, regardless of the fact it has been used before, using this feature actually doesn't enhance the user experience, purely because the technology just isn't working properly yet, at least not on Tesco's example.

It needs more work, and needs to be tested much more thoroughly, I'm surprised that the issues that were faced in our office whilst checking it out, were not picked up by Tesco during their test period.

I have to applaud them for being so innovate, though.

over 4 years ago

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Peter Houghton

This is such a waste of money.

Customers really don't like this kind of functionality and it's all gimmick.

The problem with multichannel is that there are too many old school marketers trying ro carve a living out of old ways and squeezing them into an online context.

Make the site quick, well ranged, easy to use and add in some aspiration.

about 4 years ago

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