Bold Metrics announced its Smart Size Chart, a machine learning-based solution that shows e-commerce shoppers how clothing items will fit based on their answers to measurement questions and body model data, according to a company press release emailed to Retail Dive.
Shoppers provide four to six measurement inputs by answering questions, without having to use a measuring tape. Bold Metrics stated that the technology has been proven to reduce returns by 50% or more, per the press release.
That information is integrated with garment data from retailers and brands to personalize shopper apparel discovery based on individual preferences and fit, the company said.
The Smart Size Chart shows how clothing fits, thus providing online shoppers with a more personalized experience. Bold Metrics gave an example of how it would work, explaining that a shopper might understand that a size six dress fits them best, even though some dresses that size might be a little tight, say, around the stomach. The technology shows where a garment is tight or loose, thus empowering the shopper to make decisions based on personal preference.
In other words, the technology does for the online buyer what in-store buyers quite easily see for themselves when they try on different sizes in a store's fitting room. The Smart Size Chart solution can help the online buyer decide if they want to order a size up or down for a particular item — or maybe it will help them decide they want something else. The result is probably going to be a more satisfying experience for the customer, and less likelihood that an online purchase will need to be returned once a shopper tries it on for real at home.
It could also provide a marketing advantage. In recent years, there has been a lot of rebellion against traditional sizing, and the notion has emerged that mass market consumers shouldn't have to conform to industry-established sizes. The industry instead should be conforming to consumers' individual needs — without putting them into yet another size bucket, like "plus." Body scanning and body modeling technology enabled by 3D imaging is maturing to a stage where that is now possible, especially when it is integrated with and supported by machine learning.
Customized manufacturing capabilities or other methods of delivering products based on individual shopper data also can be helpful in providing shoppers with perfectly-sized products. But, with the Smart Sizing Chart, shoppers don't have to wait for something to be made just for them. They can find out what first best and looks best without spending an afternoon in store fitting rooms.