Have you ever been shopping by yourself and been tempted to ask a perfect stranger if they think the top you’re thinking about buying is cute? Hey, sometimes you just need a second opinion when it comes to picking out clothes…someone to tell you if those jeans make your butt look big or that color looks a little too much like vomit. But what about online shopping? Well, for those times when you need a second opinion before buying that pair of peep toe pumps online, footwear leader Zappos.com has provided the solution: My Zappos.
How does it work? First you log-on with your regular Zappos username and password. Then, go shopping around the Zappos site for whatever it is you’re looking for. When you find something you like, add it to your virtual “closet.” When you’re done shopping around, you can post the contents of your “closet” to social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook. Then, your friends can weigh in on your picks and suggest other items they think would be good additions to your wardrobe.
If you get really into it, you can upload photos onto your personal page…maybe a picture of the shoes you’re thinking about wearing with those great jeans you spotted on Zappos.com. And you can even create a personal blog. Since the site has just recently launched, users can expect even more features to come as the concept becomes more popular.
I’m not surprised that more and more retailers are moving into the “social shopping” realm. As people are increasingly turning to the internet for purchases ranging from toilet paper to flat screen TV’s, companies are trying harder and harder to better connect with customers online. And it seems a natural fit for Zappos, a company that is based online and relies so heavily on social media, to dabble in virtual, social shopping. As a testament to their reliance on social media, CEO Tony Hseih even used his Twitter account to announce the launch of My Zappos rather than a traditional press release.
I can’t see myself using this. If I want an opinion, I’ll likely just send a link to a good friend, or better yet, just order the item and model it for one of my buddies. After all, if I decide I don’t like it, I can take advantage of Zappos’ free return shipping policy.
But maybe some people will love it. I can see My Zappos appealing to a teenage crowd. It’s like going on a virtual shopping trip with your friends, after all. But will it catch on?