Shopping is getting gamified, and style is going mobile thanks to apps finding new ways to give users fashion inspiration and more reasons to click “buy.”
In our February monthly survey, 27% of 13-32-year-olds say they shop on their phones at least once a week, and 26% say they shop on their phones at least once a month. Only 16% say they never shop on their phones. But as we’ve mentioned before, the mobile shopping experience has not necessarily kept up with their behavior. But shopping apps—which are far preferred to mobile web shopping— are evolving, borrowing from social networking design, tapping into active mobile communities, and catering to young consumers shopping preferences to rethink the mobile shopping experience and take it to a new level.
But accessing retailers is not the only fashion-oriented behavior that young consumers are partaking in. Instagram feeds are used as style inspiration, and apps exist to organize closets, help put together outfits, and share looks. Games, like Kim Kardashian’s massively successful app, make fashion a central part of their stories. Now we’re seeing fashion having a new mobile moment, and these kinds of style activities are being merged with the ability to buy. Here are three recent apps that give young consumers a reason to click “buy” by gamifying fashion, and providing new tools to create the perfect outfit:
There are plenty of mobile fashion games out there that let users create virtual outfits from digital closets and share them with others, but Covet Fashion sets itself apart by providing real clothes as options and integrating actual retail capabilities. Their target users are women 22 and above, and the average age of their 600,000 active users is 29-years-old. This audience reportedly spends an average of 30-60 minutes playing the game each day. They’ve got these women hooked with a game that combines online shopping with a competitive edge. Users can create new looks with virtual versions of products that are currently for sale, and those looks are voted on by other Covet Fashion members. High votes mean in-game prizes, and after creating a certain look the user can be taken straight to the brand’s page to buy the whole kaboodle. The app has partnered with 150 brands, and Covet Fashion has reportedly increased some brands’ mobile traffic by 50%.
While it’s true that young consumers are increasingly making shopping mobile and apps are ruling the mobile shopping marketplace, most are missing one real life element: putting outfits together. New app Lovelooks lets users create outfits on mannequins displayed by real photographs, giving shoppers an accurate idea of how the items would go together—like playing with a paper doll, but on a tablet. Users can dress the mannequins while browsing and then save the styles or buy items through the app. Lovelooks keeps up with styles and seasons, adding new items each week, and is considering a subscription-based personal styling service.
Nearly everyone has opened their closet and had the disheartening feeling that they have no idea what to wear. Remix, an app from the popular image collaging/style community site and app Polyvore, is here to fix that problem. Polyvore has long been tapped into a community of young female users who are passionate about fashion, but knew that the majority of their members were just their to browse outfits made by others and get some much-needed outfit inspiration. Remix is a place where those fashion “lurkers” can see what’s trending on Polyvore, and easily create outfits that are instantly shoppable. The ”Trending” tab on the app shows them the most popular items on the site at that moment. The “Find” section lets them take those items and mix them into outfits, which can be “remixed” at the touch of a button to create a whole new look. It’s instant, visual styling inspiration that can be purchased in the moment.