Are Size Charts really a solution to reduce wrong sizing?
Even though the fashion industry claims to try to standardise sizes, the variation in size charts appears even when we look at the items of the same brand. There is no universal size chart, and it is unlikely that this will ever happen because, as we know, we are all different. Diversity makes us unique, so placing everyone in the same pattern will be a huge mistake. Our measurements do have some similarities, indeed. Still, we believe that stores that do not take size into consideration usually take advantage of that so they can work faster and sell more.
However, some brands value their diversity above anything else. The shapes of clothes, the sizes, and the fit are a form of intellectual property that makes the brands exclusive. So, of course, they will keep the particularities of the size charts to retain their loyal customers. There is a common practice to make clothes that only fit the brand’s most typical client perfectly. So what happens to the other people who will try those items? Nothing, as they are not a target for the shop in the cause! Don’t they want additional clients? Of course, they do, but they have to put time and hours of work into this.
Your average client cannot convert from inches to centimetres, trying to figure out what measurement he should choose. This is only one way of losing a client due to size chart errors. But we haven’t started speaking about them!
Besides, every single one of us ordered something online, expecting it to be a perfect match – spoiler alert, it wasn’t! – we’ve also seen many errors in the online size charts available in many stores. Some are just randomly matching a size chart for wrong items (and trust us, we’ve seen t-shirt tables matched with pants!), while some are just uploading the wrong or old ones on every single product. And, of course, many other stores don’t even bother uploading their size tables.
Right Tech Solution for Wrong Sizing
At ESENCA, we know that we are all different, and this has always been something that cannot be neglected anymore. Our apps address any shape, size, measurement, and fit.
Esenca Easy Fit is a fit predictor that can help users find their measurements in less than 30 seconds! The client has to go through this process only once and all his sizes will be already selected on any item in the shop. The 92x Return on Investment that we recently succeeded with our client speaks for itself. With even a free plan available, our app is now available on Shopify.
Esenca Perfect Fit is the solution that is addressed to made-to-measure stores. Imagine this: 1 minute to scan, 2 pictures to make and, as a result: over 100 measurements. The accuracy is a combination of a specialised virtual assistant, AI and ML technology and the best expertise of our team. Have we piqued your interest yet?
Let’s book a call and transform your website into a safe space for everybody – and every single body!
P.S. If you book a call with us at email@example.com, you will get 50% off for the first two months!
A Virtual Room for a Palpable Future
It’s been a year full of innovations, and the main words on everyone’s mouths have been Artificial Intelligence. An abstract concept for many, but an excellent resource for most technical companies on the market, AI has changed our lives ever since Alan Turing asked the fundamental question: “Can machines think?”. The impact is so significant that it is now referred to as the AI effect when a phenomenon reaches mainstream use.
We are unaware that we are using some sort of AI every day, from search engines to facial recognition on our phones, the advertisements we receive on any website, and the recommendation systems on the most popular streaming apps. These are basic examples, but we can add to this list more complex applications, such as medical diagnosis, metaverse, or – you guessed it – the esenca solutions!
The fields in which this can be applied are endless, but the main idea is that AI is developing minute after minute, a branch of computer science that has flourished along with Machine Learning and Deep Learning. Augmented reality could make use of this meaningful progress, as the virtual reality we are all aspiring for is not a dream anymore. We can buy houses or other various items in a virtual world, which is built based on our own rules, and it’s undoubtedly expected that we will spend a lot of time (and money) in this ideal environment.
Exploring these possibilities leads to one of the most expected additions that could be a game-changer for the whole experience of VR: the personalized 3D avatar of each person you interact with, including yourself. It’s no longer that difficult to imagine playing a game with a character that is your identical twin or going shopping in a virtual mall to buy clothes that fit you perfectly, even in the real world.
97% of customers abandoned a purchase because it wasn’t convenient, as the acquisition process was not easy enough for them, from choosing items to checkout. Wouldn’t it be great to spare the time and struggle of going to a store, trying on everything, getting frustrated that nothing fits well, and ending up buying nothing? Soon, you might find yourself with the perfect clothes delivered at your door, combined into perfect outfits, made for your stature and chosen by experts – that may or not be a virtual assistant as well…
As the global fitting room market is expected to reach 8501 million in 2028, we are bringing a critical advantage to the table: the most accurate sizes in the best 3D shape you can receive. esenca has reached significant results in this matter, as our apps have the power to gather all the measurements needed for this to happen – and more. Let’s step together into this future and make our lives easier with every inch!
Virtual Assistants – A Tool Designed For Future, Today
Virtual Assistants are becoming indispensable in today’s society, as they are no longer a science fiction thing. You can come across one in various scenarios in the online space, as they are used for many tasks to help users maximize their experience with multiple applications.
The number of available assistants on the market is only increasing, and they will become an even more integrated part of our online (and offline) lives. According to Statista, there will be over 8 billion digital voice assistants in use worldwide by 2024, almost equal to the world’s population.
An Artificial Intelligence (AI) assistant, also called virtual or digital assistant, can be defined as an application program that relies on technologies to carry out different tasks specific to humans based on commands or questions. It is the best tool for giving feedback and indications and helping users with the flow of any program.
Digital experiences alongside virtual assistants are considered one of the best technological advances and most promising consumer trends. Real life will be closer to the users, constantly seeking this proximity while browsing.
At esenca, we’ve always been concerned with making the body scanning process more accessible and faster and stopping frustrating the clients with useless information or commands that can’t be understood quickly. To do that, the Virtual Assistant was the best option available.
Our Virtual Assistant uses cutting edge technology in Artificial Intelligence, such as Machine Learning to infer body key-points, Computer Vision to tackle the image segmentation issues and Deep Learning to keep the learning loop on with each user that scans through esenca.
Voice communication can sometimes represent optimal man-machine communication. There are certain situations where this is the only possible way of interaction. Moreover, there is no need to use hands or vision, so the user is free to undertake another activity – such as, in this case, getting measured with the help of one of our tools!
Feedback is the main reason a virtual assistant is needed. People need reassurance that they are staying in the correct position. If the instructions are unclear, the process will take longer until you are in the proper place. In the end, anyone can measure in less than 30 seconds.
This is the perfect back-and-forth between our services and clients. esenca’s Virtual Assistant is very structured, offering the best customer support in the market and the most seamless scanning experience.
Furthermore, digital assistants are evolving to provide more value to their users. As technology improves, they will move even deeper into business workflows. AI virtual assistants adapt to the needs of each user, providing a high level of personalization.
Computer Vision allows esenca’s system to recognize body language and give feedback anytime the user is not placed in the correct position. Soon, many options will be available for the clients to make the experience even more valuable.
In the future, esenca’s Virtual Assistant will be able to provide outfit recommendations, give reminders to measure again after a particular time, and give analytics while comparing various data. And this is a future that can already be foreseen!
Workwear – an investment that keeps paying off
Nowadays, workwear reflects a company’s professionalism at the workplace, particularly in the manufacturing and corporate sectors. In addition, it is expected to remain a concern, as the increasing occurrence of accidents at the workplace is expected to promote wearing appropriate apparel. The International Labor Organization (ILO) reports that around 2.3 million people worldwide die annually from work-related accidents.
Noticing a growing demand for innovative workwear worldwide, prominent market players have been innovating their technologies over the years. The main request is to achieve comfortable, lightweight, and durable apparel, as many fields are confronting the scenario where they have to often change the clothes of their workers, even more than three times per year.
Let’s take as an example the workwear for food companies. It has to provide safety, but also hygiene and comfort. The requirements for the wearer, which has to support his activities, are correlated with risk levels in food production. Performance and efficiency in doing simple tasks are also a priority.
Moreover, during the pandemic, the increase in workflow in the medical field has resulted in large requests for surgical and biological workwear, and major Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) manufacturers intensified production capacity to try to meet the market demand.
Managing and assigning the correct size to hundreds of employees to produce their uniforms is very complicated. Customized clothes are expensive, the production is prone to take more time than in the usual fashion sector, and the waste resulting in unusable items would be unprecedented.
Fitting wearers take time. There are many working fields where you don’t need just a medical gown; you may require up to 5 items. It is not just a minor inconvenience, as it is not just a minor inconvenience. Imagine the impact of having staff out of uniforms while waiting for the correct measurements to be taken. So we are spent taking measures, making adjustments, and trying things.
We are used to the e-commerce market, where consumers expect free returns or cheap ones, as we have previously discussed in another blog post. This is typically not the case with corporate uniforms, as it is the responsibility of the individual ordering the uniform to ensure the correct sizes for each garment. Indeed, uniform suppliers tend to have lower return rates but face lower differences between dimensions, which can quickly transform into mistakes. Take also into consideration the fact that the majority of workwear items are branded, so the returns cannot be resold.
The environmental issue is also to be taken into discussion. You may be sustainable across the supply chain, from materials to logistics. Even if the fiber is recyclable and your goods might be shipped sustainably, it is equal to zero if the items are all unusable and thrown away because the wrong sizes have been ordered. There is a constant discussion about the textiles industry and its impact on the environment. Still, we believe that not so many people are aware of this issue’s dimension. Fabrics are the fourth highest-pressure category in raw materials and water quantity usage. The global impact is severe, contributing to about 1.2 billion tons of CO2. With the current trajectory, the sector is expected to represent a quarter of the total carbon budget by 2050.
How can the workwear industry benefit from Esenca Solutions?
The best thing about sizing solutions is that they will automatically reduce operational costs, improve the processes of obtaining the right size for each employee, and give the best results.
You can have the measurements of 60 people in only one hour (or even less), from head to toe, accurate and ready to be used in producing any item that you might need for the equipment. The wearer is not stressed or frustrated by the process and can be confident that the clothes will fit the best they can. It is a known fact that an employee who feels good in their attire will perform better at his tasks.
And, as the saying goes, a poor workman blames his tools, but you can’t blame the workman for his skimpy outfit!
Returns vs. Revenue – A Battle of Perspective
During the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve learned a great deal about doing business remotely, managing staff working from home, or adapting the workflow to the client’s needs. It was a challenging period for everyone, but you might think that the owners of e-commerce shops were the lucky ones. Online sales got a boost, and the prediction of revenue for the stores was as good as it could be. But there was a missing piece in this puzzle, one that not many have thought of, which was prone to change this apparent balance: the returns.
Research on return policies is scarce and inconclusive. Many papers focus on customers’ behavior in cyberspace and how the owners can profit from this to maximize their gains. The general thought regarding the indulgent policies applied by the stores is that it’s another bonus for the business, as it should reduce the consumer’s risk and increase demand. In addition, acceptable returns create a marketing incentive to attract loyal customers and promote a safe space for acquisitions, where you can change your mind at any time.
Unfortunately, this is not necessarily true, as a problem arises instantly in one’s mind: yes, free returns will mean multiple orders, but it will also mean that clients will take advantage of it and buy carelessly.
Despite the cost and prevalence of returns, most merchants offer a return policy hoping that the positive effect on demand will offset the negative impact on returns. Free return policies will never benefit retailers in terms of long-term profitability. There is also the option of an indulgent return policy with a reduced cost. Loyal customers will generate a higher contribution per order in this case, as they will think twice before acquiring any item and will be more likely to keep it.
The decision to buy clothes is closely related to the feelings of individuals about themselves, their body image, and the image they want to project to others when they are wearing them. There is a new trend among customers: buying multiple sizes of the same item to keep only one. Combined with lenient return policies, this will have a significant impact, whether we are talking about a small store or a larger one. We can also understand the customer side, as shopping online gives them the luxury of time but not the luxury of trying things out. However, some research cited in The Economist suggests that the company’s profit would increase by 50% if it were not for the costs associated with returns.
We’ve seen the issues and the impact, both on clients and owners, but which would be the best way to conciliate them? Applications that guide the buyers to choose the right size for them are the innovation in the industry, which can make a difference for both parties.
Esenca EASY FIT is the best sizing tool available on the market. Easy to use – as the name suggests – and to manage using our innovative dashboard, it is the fastest instrument to find the right size in seconds. You only need to add your data once (meaning only the height and weight) and will sync it with all the items in the shop. This is a massive breakthrough for the apparel world and an excellent opportunity for shop owners to access a technology that was only a sweet dream just a few years ago.
Welcome to esenca
Welcome to Esenca Spotlight. We are researching and developing great State of Art Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Computer Vision techniques that we use in measuring the human body from images. These technologies have many other use cases in health, fitness, sports, and security.
Since this is our first post, we will briefly describe what we have achieved until now, and in other posts, we will keep you updated with our progress, products, and future developments.
In early March 2020, we gathered for the Innovation Labs Hackathon, held at Politehnica University of Bucharest. We had access to guidance from the organizers. We were selected to advance to the final round, where we won the Best Scale Up award. Since then, we have developed an exact solution for measuring the human body, having a margin of error of 0.5 cm and a processing time of a few seconds.
The whole process is as simple as possible for the end-user; a short tutorial describes the measuring process. Using our user-friendly design, it inputs some data (age, weight, height, gender). An advanced AI virtual assistant will guide the user to the optimal position in the camera frame with visual and audio cues (“move further away from the camera,” “slightly raise your hands,” etc.). Thus, it will take two photos of the user, one with him front facing the phone, the other on the side. Together with the data offered by the user, the two photos will be processed on our servers, and in a matter of a few seconds the result is given to the user.
It is essential to mention that we have three products, for different needs at the moment.
ESENCA EASY BODYFIT – our essential product, which completely bypasses the photos and relies solely on the metadata inputted by the user. This product is for primary use, where taking images is not desired or required.
ESENCA PERFECT BODYFIT is our advanced product, which relies on metadata and images to measure with improved performance. Once the measuring process is done, the user gets the size for each piece of clothing from a particular shop.
ESENCA TAILOR BODYFIT – our most advanced product, which relies on metadata and images, where the user receives detailed values for more than 100 measurements of the body. This product is dedicated to tailors, rendering them capable of measuring people remotely.
And bam, you can get the exact size for any piece of clothing in any shop just like that; either you want to take photos or just want a simple but highly accurate fit predictor. And if you have a favorite tailor or want to try a famous tailor far from you, you can benefit from their services without having to leave your home.
After measuring your body, we can recreate a 3D model with your measurements so that you can see your virtual body. Furthermore, we are developing a virtual try-on, where you can see how clothes of different sizes and materials will fit you. Stay tuned for our progress in our next blog post. Also, follow us on LinkedIn, where you can find visual sneak peeks.