And today I’m bringing you another chapter in fresh, delicious retail learnings and inspiration from the Westfield Retail Study Tour, with the spotlight on customisation and personalisation.

Globalisation and the internet have removed the boundaries to retail exploration. Wherever we are, we can see the latest international products and trends in real time and bring them seamlessly to our shores. The result is shoppers who are selective, polarised and, at times, facing too many options. Herein lies an opportunity for retailers to drive growth through customisation, to understand shoppers better and add emotionally engaging value.

 

Tapping into this opportunity with imitable style is Selfridges.  The Fragrance Lab is an immersive experience to develop your own “signature scent”, representing “the essence of who you are.” Invited to “Imagine your character, distilled into a scent”, I under took the Express Lab experience, completing a series of profiling questions on a tablet about my preferences and personality.

A personal prescription is issued, which is used to sample your scent and ideally fall in love with it. Love was apparently in the air with a 90% conversion rate from sniff to spend.  Alternatively, with more time, you could take a journey with a fragrancologist into the outer reaches of your scent. A thoroughly enjoyable 65 pounds journey of fun which allowed you to walk away with your signature scent.

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Window – Selfridges London demonstrating the theatre of the Fragrance Lab

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Customisation happens via digital interaction (Express) or a fully immersive experience

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More glamour and theatre

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Excitement awaits

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Personalised prescription

In an increasingly competitive luxury goods market, Anya Hindmarch has made it personal. Through her bespoke service she connects with shoppers desires for “it’s all about me”. By personalising pieces not only does the designer stamp her brand as one of craftsmanship but gifts the shopper a way to make their own mark; an heirloom, that can be passed on to future generations. A delightful, individual twist.

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The ultimate in heirlooms

Both Nike and Levi’s have embraced personalisation in their Regent Street, London flagship stores, although bespoke or made to measure/made for you is their terminology of choice. 

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Nike’s custom football stripes

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Nike customised shirt range

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Nike always helps with a “starting point”

Using their standard ranges as a starting point to customisation makes it easy for people who desire one-of-a-kind but lack the vision.  Judging by the queue waiting for customised football strips in Nike these services appeal strongly to certain shoppers, and they are willing to pay a premium. 

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Levi’s Regent Street, London

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Quick and easy personalisation

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Or full on customisation

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Oozes authenticity

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Capturing your imagination

Founded in 2003, Tesla designs, manufactures and sells electric cars and has shunned, or leapfrogged, traditional car dealerships, opting instead for galleries in shopping malls. Incorporating deep sales associate knowledge, technology and touch and feel they sell the dream by letting you sit in the car and customise it on the interactive touch screens to your personal requirements. 

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Tesla, Westfield London

You can’t buy from the gallery. For that you go to the Tesla Motors website. Variations galore are on offer including customised paint, roof, wheels and interior options.  

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Seeing is believing before you make the final customisation online

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Digital customisation

There are lessons to be learned from the smallest of retailers to the largest. Customisation is a real game changer in defensible differentiation. Being creative in the way you apply customisation and personalisation to your products and experience will provide a clear edge. But be very clear that you need to know how and why you make a difference to a shopper’s life to be able to deliver a truly authentic personal experience.

Source and Image Credits

Selfridge’s London, Blog Stylesight, ftape

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