DODGEVILLE, Wis., Feb. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The dilemma for online apparel shoppers has been, "It looks great, but will it fit me?" With the launch of an even more realistic and helpful virtual model, Lands' End, Inc., and My Virtual Model(TM), Inc., have introduced an online shopping tool that now addresses the industry and customer challenge that a size 10 isn't always a size 10, and a medium isn't always a medium -- it varies by brand. To view the Multimedia News Release, go to: http://www.prnewswire.com/mnr/landsend/11847 "Our customers tell us one of their biggest concerns with shopping for apparel on the Web is, 'What size do I need and how will it fit?'" said Sam Taylor, vice president of e-commerce for Lands' End, the nation's largest online seller of apparel. "Shopping with our new version of My Virtual Model is a lot like having your most honest friend telling you whether you picked the right size and whether it fits right all over your body." That's good news for many, since apparel is among the fastest growing online shopping categories in the U.S., according to shop.org, the online group of the National Retail Federation. "We're listening to our customers, taking the guesswork out of shopping online for clothes that fit," Taylor added. "Better fit means even more satisfied customers and fewer returns: a win for customers and Lands' End." Finding the "Fit" Sweet Spot The updated My Virtual Model makes shopping for Lands' End apparel online even easier and more accurate by providing size recommendations, fit counseling -- and a more life-like model that more closely resembles the customer. The new My Virtual Model helps both women and men take the guesswork out of shopping online. A shopper creating a personal model is asked to take and register body measurements. The model shows where a measurement should be taken, and offers advice on how to get the most accurate measurement. Once the sizes are registered, the new "My Fit" tool on landsend.com compares the cut of each garment with the shopper's unique measurements, which helps reduce concerns a person may have regarding what size is needed. This is where the model becomes a shopper's most honest friend by providing fit counseling and a fit "sweet spot." Once the shopper's size is determined and recommended, a click on the "My Fit" link, shows, in graph form, whether a garment fits snug, loose, or just right over certain parts of his/her body. The new technology provides an overall fit rating for a selected item. In terms of pants, a person will see how they fit in the waist, thigh, hip and inseam, in ranges from "snug" to "loose," with the optimum fit being between the two, at "your best fit." The new model offers a number of features not present on the original 1998 version of the model, including: -- Size recommendations -- Asking for measurements to assure more accurate size and fit -- "Real-time" changes to the model; immediately a shopper can change hair, eyes, figure shape, etc. -- "Great Go-Togethers" - recommendations for garments that coordinate with apparel already on the model. More than 1,000 Lands' End garments will be "fit-enabled" to be used on the new My Virtual Model, including, shirts, pants, and activewear. Still other items will be available to try on the model to see how they look, such as swimwear, intimates, footwear. In 1998, landsend.com was the first Web site ever to make My Virtual Model available to online shoppers. Since then, My Virtual Model has become landsend.com's second most popular shopping tool (second only to the "search" function), seeing more than 1.2 million new personal models created during the past 18 months. My Virtual Model is more than just a fad or technology for technology's sake. "We're continuing our history of pioneering meaningful online technology," said Taylor. "Customers who use My Virtual Model have a 34 percent higher conversion rate," said Taylor. "That tells us our customers like this tool and find it very useful. We expect customers to find the new version of My Virtual Model even more helpful, and fun." My Virtual Model, Inc., based in Montreal, Canada, has set the standard for trying, sizing and buying apparel online. The company's patented technologies combine the accuracy and creativity of in-store clothes shopping with the speed and convenience of the Internet. Lands' End, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sears, Roebuck and Co., is a direct merchant of traditionally styled, classic clothing offered to customers around the world through regular mailings of its catalogs and online at www.landsend.com . A selection of Lands' End best sellers also is available at selected Sears stores. Lands' End offers a complete line of clothing for women, men, children and infants, as well as a collection of fine-quality goods for the home. Landsend.com was launched in 1995 and has grown to become the nation's largest seller of apparel online. Considered a pioneer in online retailing, landsend.com is credited as a being the first to implement several innovations that ease and personalize online shopping. Some of those innovations include: My Virtual Model (1998), Lands' End Live (1999) and Lands' End Custom clothing (2001).
SOURCE Lands' End