Lingerie brand Adore Me just can’t stop fiddling with the fitting room.
The digital native — which integrated StoreAdvise technology to put an Internet of Things twist on changing rooms — is at it again, this time with body scanners.
For the e-commerce start-up’s latest store, opening on Saturday at the Hamilton Place Mall in Chattanooga, Tenn., the company partnered with Fit3D to install body scanners in the fitting rooms.
The gear will collect an array of data points on customers’ physiques — with their permission, of course — to size them correctly. The tech takes as many as 380 measurements.
“Fit3D holds the largest and fastest-growing 3-D body-scan library,” said Michael Constantini, head of Fit3D’s business development. The proprietary scanner has as many as 1.3 millions scans under its belt, at a rate of 55,000 scans monthly, and has been deployed across 55 countries. The tech has been used in places like Equinox gyms, so personal trainers can gauge their clients’ progress.
According to Adore Me, the scanner and data will be a major part of the brand’s consultation-driven business going forward.
“Sometimes you don’t need to reinvent the wheel,” Camille Kress, vice president of retail at Adore Me, told WWD. “We use Fit3D’s same body-scanning technology, but personalize and adapt the experience in other ways.”
She described the scanning area as “a beautiful, comfortable and private space” where the hardware captures the body data. The system then generates a report, “but instead of presenting our customers with an almost-scientific 3-D, visual rendering of every crevice and curve of their body, we start out presenting them with a simple with ‘these are your exact recommended sizes,’” she said. Then it pulls the body renderings, if the customer chooses.
The process may address the “uncanny valley” issue — in which digital mimicry of human features can come off as creepy — which is a genuine risk that could hamper adoption of such technology. Think of the previous public backlash when airport body scanners got just a little too real.
Primarily, the data will be used to fit shoppers, and the company recommends that patrons get re-scanned every six months, just like recommendations for new bra fittings. By doing that, customers can also see changes over time.
For the company, the more data, the better. Ultimately, it hopes to gain enough insight to inform its product and technical design teams, to ensure that they’re developing products that fit real-world figures.
The intention lines up with Fit3D’s goals, as well. According to Constantini, the tech maker is exclusively licensing anonymized 3-D data sets to sister business BodyBlock AI, which aims to help brands optimize size and fit data to optimize size runs for efficient inventory management and other features — including the creation of a virtual fitting room to be used in retail environments.
The Hamilton store isn’t the only one getting outfitted with scanners. Adore Me’s Willowbrook Mall location in Wayne, N.J. also gets the system this week. The lingerie brand is carefully eyeing both installations to see how consumers respond.
“Once that’s done and tested, we’re looking to roll out to all existing locations,” she said, of the company’s six brick-and-mortar shops, “and our next stores will definitely have them.”
It’s a high-stakes effort. Adore Me dedicated almost half of its 7,000-square-foot Hamilton location to nonselling space. Kress explained that the company is pursuing the notion that the fitting area should be a more advisory or consultative environment.
“Customers can book time with an expert, sit at a desk, get measured by the scanner, have a drink and discuss how to find the perfect lingerie,” Kress added. “We are doubling the typical number of fitting rooms to dedicate much more space to make women feel comfortable.”