Online shopping is wildly convenient if you’re tight on time or live out in the boonies, miles from a mall. But often with convenience, comes compromise – on both quality and fit because it’s hard to tell from a picture, especially of a supermodel, what the clothes really look like and how they will fit you.
Clothes Horse, a New York City startup, is a data-driven platform that helps shoppers find brands that fit them best. The technology enables customers to shop for clothing across retailers with a single user profile, which is why it’s being called the “Facebook Connect for fashion.”
Let’s say you arrive at a retail site and want to buy a piece of clothing. You’re wondering what size you should get and you’re thinking about the size you normally wear in most brands and how this brand compares. If the site is using Clothes Horse, you’re all set.
Simply fill out your Clothes Horse profile with information like your gender, height, weight, body type, bra size and favorite brands. It will then recommend sizes and fit ratings for specific fashion items based on its data set of over 70 brands. As it collects more data, Clothes Horse says it’s building “The Fashion Graph.”
In August 2011, the company launched with men’s clothing store Bonobos as its premiere partner. 5 months later, Clothes Horse released a case study citing that its technology brought a 13% increase in conversion for Bonobos and that customers who interacted with its technology on the site were 4-5 times more likely to make a purchase. Boom.
This study opened a lot of doors for the guys at Clothes Horse, and the startup quickly partnered with a brand new menswear line called Frank and Oak in February. In the future, Clothes Horse will appear on top of numerous retailers’ websites, and recommendations will be generated for the user based first on fit, then price, followed by style and input from the user’s social graph. Next up for Clothes Horse’s algorithms is to tackle women’s polos, blazers…and most importantly, dresses.
Watch this one. There wasn’t a startup I interviewed for our Fashion iPad Magazine that hadn’t heard of them.