Online shopping can be a tricky process. You find an outfit you want, but can’t imagine what it will look like on you or which size is right. And while a model demonstrating clothes is better than a mannequin, it is no comparison to the unique characteristics of your body shape and size.
This is where the MeModel comes in.
United Kingdom-based company, Metail, is changing the world of online shopping by providing a virtual fitting room for consumers all around the world.
Tom Adeyoola, co-founder and CEO of Metail, set on a mission to improve the online shopping experience after witnessing his girlfriend’s countless frustrations. Adeyoola teamed up with Duncan Robertson back in 2008, and used advanced computer vision technology to create Metail, the “best body shape and garment fit company in the world”, as stated on its website.
In order to make the online shopping experience more similar to an in-store experience, Tom hoped to mimic the idea of a store associate taking your basic measurements to find your size onto an online platform. By asking for these measurements, Metail creates a 3D, virtual model of yourself – your ‘MeModel’ – so that you can try on clothes before you purchase them, all while in the comfort of your home.
The company paired up House of Holland during London Fashion Week last month, allowing consumers to try on their clothes as they debut on the catwalk. Not only could consumers see how the Spring 2015 collection look on their ‘MeModel’, they could even pre-order the clothes in their size.
As stated on Metail’s website, the case study proved to be wildly successful, for both House of Holland and its fans. Henry Holland, Founder of House of Holland said, “The results from using Metail are impressive, plus the product is great fun. We all love playing with it and want to keep working together.”
Not only does Metail help the consumer find their ideal outfit, it also helps retailers lower return rates on items. Brick-and-mortar retail stores averaged a return rate of 8.6% in 2013, while online retail return rates reached one-third of sales, according to Marketing Land.
When consumers have a realistic idea of what the clothes look like on them, they can 1.) see if the item is flattering on them, and 2.) make a more concrete buying decision.
Adeyoola’s long-term vision is to become the “Google of sizing and shape”, according to Tech Crunch.
“We want everyone to have their own MeModel to use in any clothing related experience to improve and enhance it. If they do, then we will be custodian of the world’s size and shape dataset, like Facebook is of the world’s social graph, and become the Google of sizing and shape through being the access channel for users to quickly and easily find and get recommended clothes that they will like and which will look good on them.”
And now with an additional $12 million investment on top of its $8 million funding, Metail can continue to grow and improve shoppers’ online experiences all around the world.
The investment came from TAL Group, a garment manufacturer based in Hong Kong that is currently responsible for 1 in 12 dress shirts sold worldwide.
Thus far, Metail has only offered women’s clothes for consumers to virtually try on, and now with TAL on their side, Metail can tap into the menswear market.
TAL’s CTO Delman Lee said, “We are delighted by the opportunity to be part of the Metail story. Metail shares our values on data, R&D and sizing. We look forward to seeing the positive impact they will have on our industry and we look forward to helping them with the eventual move into men’s clothing.”
In an official statement, Metail says it will focus this investment on a mobile offering, and to expand the firm’s overseas presence, building on its existing operations in Singapore and partnerships across the globe including South America, Asia and Europe.
Although, there is one market Adeyoola hasn’t secured yet. He told the Daily Telegraph, “I can now get into any boardroom at all the major retailers around the world – except the US. I need to expand my network in that space.”
With over $20 million in funding, Metail has unlimited possibilities in the world of online shopping, and will only continue to grow from here. Stay up-to-date on Metail’s retailers to see which companies will be added to its current international client base, which includes Tesco, Warehouse, Shop Direct, Salando, Dafiti.