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How Hotter Shoes used True Fit to enhance D2C UX, yielding 30% basket size increase

Hotter shoes: improved UX increases conversions and sales

Comfort footwear brand, Hotter Shoes is improving customer experience and engagement through a partnership with True Fit, yielding a rise in average order value, basket size and revenues.

Hotter Shoes, owned by the Unbound Group, has been designing and delivering the most comfortable footwear to its customers for more than 60 years. Recognising that each pair of feet is as unique as the individual who owns them, the shoe brand has become synonymous with offering a wide range of curated styles, extensive sizing and technological advancements. Promoting superior comfort and fit across its collections, Hotter now offers some 40 fitting combinations to connect its customers to their perfect fit.

Serving more than 4.6 million customers globally, Hotter Shoes sells direct online via its D2C website, through its mail order channel and in-store in its own 17 UK Technology Centres as well as through retail partners, including John Lewis, and, most recently, M&S.

Hotter Shoes is a shopper-centric brand, investing in digital technology that increases confidence in shoppers that they will love the pair of shoes they purchase. It has invested in many paths to a personalised fit, such as augmented reality (AR) as well as True Fit’s digital sizing application, to allow its core demographic of women aged 55+ to size, try on and buy shoes virtually without hesitation.

This capability became even more important during the pandemic, as its traditional store-shoppers reverted to buying online when shops were closed, while entirely new customers discovered the brand digitally for the first time.

Hotter Shoes partnered with True Fit to better understand its shoppers and to further elevate and improve fit confidence in the online shopping journey, helping new and existing customers find footwear that would not only fit, but be a style they would love.

Central to True Fit’s solution is its Fashion Genome, the world’s largest connected data set for apparel and footwear, which brings together data from 88 million active members and 17,000+ brands across its global network of retailers. Leveraging its AI-powered algorithm, True Fit helps Hotter Shoes make sense of complex customer buying behaviours, allowing the brand to understand the preferences of its customers, both on and off its own website.

From this insight, True Fit enables Hotter Shoe’s fit personalisation at scale – helping the shoe brand use data to inform customer engagement while building trust through high-fidelity fit recommendations.

These high-fidelity fit recommendations have boosted order rate, up 30% for True Fit shoppers, while basket sizes have also increased with Average Order Value (AOV) 16% higher, translating to a 3.1% increase in incremental revenue lift in just 3 months. Hotter Shoes will also expand True Fit’s service to be available in their app in Q1 2022.

Will Rose, Technology Director at Hotter Shoes, explains: “Comfort and fit have always been paramount in Hotter Shoe’s retail offer and our customers come to – and stay with us – for that very reason. As such, we’re always looking to build confidence into their digital buying journeys, to help them have that ‘trying on’ experience virtually so they can be assured their shoes will fit like a glove. True Fit not only gives us this, but we can also use its data and dashboards to derive granular insights about our core shopper. This provides insights on shopper preferences, from their brand and price affinities across categories to fit consistency across our assortment, informing both product strategy and merchandising and marketing decisions, which is particularly powerful.”

Sarah Curran Usher MBE, MD EMEA at True Fit, adds: “Customers want to shop without fear when it comes to fit and size online. This is of particular importance as shoppers have become more digitally-native and more and more consumers are discovering new brands – or new categories from their known brands – online, as we have seen over the last 18 months. They need the confidence to convert, backed up with a product they will keep. This means retailers need to build trust into the buying journey for the shopper, through high-fidelity fit recommendations that are powered by data insights to serve them only what they will love.”

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