X-Girl: an example to follow
From Japan, a new fashion website I like for the good mix of brand and ecommerce experience. X-girl is teenagers brand with a pretty wide and colorful collection which cannot afford to communicate in a boring way to its consumers and, at the same time, needs to think about ROI.
The Xgirl website first of all features a great interface, which really shows you the effort they put in making the experience entertaining, interesting and last but not least usable. Even if everything is in Flash you never feel lost in the navigation which is, weird but true, quite uncommon in ecommerce enabled Flash websites.
Looking a bit more into the online shopping experience there is an unusal thing to point out. Even if at first sight it, looking at their online catalogue, it looks like you can purchase the items directly on Xgirl website, this is not the case. If you click to buy you are taken to an online wholesaler to complete the purchase. Weird. I don’t think I have ever seen such a precise execution to then drive sales through an wholesaler. Smart. If you aren’t yet able to sell online directly, why should you lose sales?
Last but not least a detail that we start seeing more and more on fashion brands websites. The advertising/collection images with a precise explanation of the items in the picture. It doesn’t look nice in print, but online is both acceptable and desiderable.