Clothes Horse, a New York fashion technology firm that is launching a Web site today, uses algorithms to help solve the consumer conundrum of finding the right fit when purchasing apparel online.
This story first appeared in the February 23, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Several men’s wear companies have signed on to use the technology, including Bonobos, Frankandoak.com, Duke & Winston, Modus Man and Five Four Jeans.
The algorithms are matched with both human and apparel brand measurements. According to Vik Venkatraman, co-founder of Clothes Horse, consumers who buy from sites that partner with his firm are asked: “What size am I?” near the size option on the site. Once clicked, a drop-down menu pops up featuring a series of questions that will help the wearer choose the correct size.
The algorithmic results include data from both the partner brand as well as others that are similar and most likely to help provide the best fit.
“Men are asked questions about body type and pant waist size. Women are asked bra and waist sizes. The algorithms then crunch the numbers and give the result,” Venkatraman said.
At Bonobos, one of the first to use the technology, the suggested option for a dress shirt informs the consumer where the fit might be snug or if the sleeves are slightly longer or shorter than usual. In a Bonobos case study involving 2,000 users, where half used the fit technology and half did not, the site saw a 13 percent conversion rate increase from the half who were able to use the Clothes Horse product.