Ted Baker unveils virtual ‘first’ as it digitises its Shoreditch store

High street fashion brand Ted Baker has created its first ever virtual store and could soon roll out the concept across its estate according to brand communications director Craig Smith.

The virtual store, which was designed by virtual reality pioneers Avenue Imperial using high resolution 360-degree panoramic photography, digitises the new Shoreditch, Commercial Street-based Ted Baker & Moore store.

The store already hosts shop window LCD screens, which use motion sensors to simultaneously interact with passers-by through interactive games while promoting products.

Online shoppers can walk through the online version of the store using their web browser with each item clickable and purchasable. The items will update regularly based on new stock and seasonal clothing.

Smith told Marketing Week: “This is just about adding another layer to our omni-channel experience but if it goes well we can then roll it out to key larger stores across the country.

“I hope this is a showcase for the future as we want to have the best digital and physical stores in the world.”

Ted Baker has previously added 24/7 communicating mannequins to its stores, which use beacon technology to give product information to passing shoppers.

Last week, Samsung’s head of European retail Vincent Slevin said conventional high street stores must start to embrace digital screens and virtual reality to survive.

However Smith believes the former technology still doesn’t feel “natural”.

He added: “I think as fashion retailers and marketers we need to be careful as the consumer doesn’t want the attention on them during a personal clothes shopping trip. If we ever consider VR it will have to feel natural and I’m not sure it does at the moment.”

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