E-tailers appoint style advisors to woo customers

With too many players competing to grab a piece of the growing e-commerce market, retailers are introducing several exclusive features to attract customers. One among them is personal stylists for the style-conscious but time-pressed consumer. Established players like Myntra have a Look Good Helpline, letting customers to talk to a stylist for personalised advice either by phone or email. The service has been witnessing a good response, which led to its rivals like Jabong to roll out a similar service.

While Myntra in March began offering style tips through text messages, Gurgaon-based Jabong, which has added stylists on call to help consumers, plans to introduce live chats. Jabong has also been uploading videos of models wearing its styles. It has so far uploaded about 12,000 videos and now churns out about 2,000 of them every week. Both Jabong and Myntra have lined up more than 20 stylists each in a bid to help consumers. Many of the people hired have worked with top models. Others are professionals who have worked as magazine stylists.

Startups like Voonik, Stylecracker, LimeRoad and 20dresses have launched a personalised product selection and style advice by building an expert curation algorithm into their platform. Chennai-based Voonik, set up by former Indian School of Business alumnus Ali and Navaneetha Krishnan, offers handpicked outfits for customers , based on their body type and style preferences from across the web. Even Mumbai-based StyleCracker, started by investment banker Dhimaan Shah and former vogue stylist Archana Walavalkar in May 2013, offers a personalised styling platform where people can get their fashion related queries answered with advice tailored for them. Unlike Voonik and StyleCracker, 20dresses.com styles customers with its own private label collection earning extra points in terms of margins of at least 55-60 percent per sale.

 

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