Fashion and how we shop online has rapidly changed over the last decade. As the competitive landscape intensifies, fashion retailers must grapple with the complexities of creating a frictionless wholesale e-commerce experience for buyers. Balancing user-friendly interfaces with real-time inventory management and personalised buyer journeys remains a paramount challenge that retailers like Esprit are too keen to take on. Here we talk to Laura Pelster, digital project manager for Esprit’s wholesale department, to learn how they are implementing Pixyle.ai solutions to overcome hurdles in managing online product categories while empowering their teams to make better choices by leveraging real-time data. “At Esprit, our dedication is to create the most enjoyable shopping experience for our customers whenever they engage with our brand,” explains Laura. “This commitment involves offering excellent products and easy-to-use tools and services for purchasing them.”
The challenges concerning consistent product data
Esprit is a globally operating fashion brand expanding its offline and online presence. A crucial part of Esprit’s customer-centric wholesale e-commerce strategy is to provide a seamless, unified and immersive shopping journey for buyers on their B2B online shop. “To achieve this, we rely on comprehensive product data to support users during their shopping journey and purchase decision-making,” says Laura. Before working with Pixyle.ai, the brand had manual processes for creating product data that accurately described their products. This task became increasingly time-consuming for the product department to manage as the brand grew and adapted to new market demands and customer tastes. This placed a dual challenge on the product team, who had to continually update product data and design new items for each collection. “Consequently, there was a high probability of encountering inaccurate, inconsistent, or even missing product data, which could have adverse effects on our overall operations and the user journey in our Esprit B2B online shop,” points out Laura.
To enhance buyers' experience on Esprit’s B2B online shop, the team also realised that it was vital to understand user search behaviour and what specific characteristics they are looking for. Through buyer surveys and keyword analysis, Laura and the team learned that buyers typically combine product categories, like "pullover" or "dress," with specific attributes, such as "turtleneck" or "floral”, when searching for products. “To deliver relevant search results, our B2B online shop must have a comprehensive set of accurate and consistent product data. The quality and relevance of search results heavily depend on the accuracy and consistency of this data. Inaccurate or inconsistent product data may lead to irrelevant search results or no results at all, potentially frustrating our users and driving them to seek alternatives elsewhere,” adds Laura. Consequently, Esprit's B2B Commerce team realised keeping a comprehensive and precise set of product data was pivotal to the product discovery journey and directly affected the buyer or user conversion rates. So the team began researching how to effectively automate the product data creation process, which is when she heard about Pixyle.ai and its AI product tagging technology.
The power of Pixyle's AI automatic tagging
How Pixyle.ai's automatic tagging solution works is relatively straightforward. Pixyle AI uses advanced image recognition technology to extract rich and detailed product attributes from images, translating them into a consumer-friendly language," explains Roland Simon, Co-Founder and Chief-Growth officer at Pixyle.ai. "Our auto-tagging solutions help retailers automate their product data entry processes and improve their on-site search, product discovery and recommendation engines." Successfully integrating Pixyle's AI tagging technology into its product data creation process in early 2023, Esprit has witnessed a "significant transformation" in its digital operations and product categories. "The manual effort to create product data has been greatly reduced, thanks to the full automation provided by Pixyle's visual AI tagging," says Laura. The manual tagging process, which took about 30 days, has been reduced to five days by AI tagging, reducing the time-to-market by 85%. "All images of the final product collection are now seamlessly interfaced with Pixyle, and we receive comprehensive product data for the entire collection within the same day. As a result, the tedious manual work previously required for product data creation has been eliminated entirely."
Improved user experiences and user interface across Esprit's B2B online shop
In addition to reducing the workload regarding product data creation, Esprit has noticed several other benefits from partnering with Pixyle.ai, including improved user experience and user interface, enhanced process efficiency, trend spotting and improved inventory management, which have helped drive sales conversions.
"By utilising AI tagging to tag each product accurately, we have improved product presentations with comprehensive and precise descriptions. In addition, we used the enriched product data set to feed our shop with a holistic pool of product data to search for, enhancing our product discovery and conversion after search," says Laura. Overall, the enhanced product data allowed Esprit to broaden its attribute filters, enabling users to swiftly navigate and sort through extensive catalogues using a visually intuitive interface, making product discovery more precise and effortless. Esprit found that after implementing AI automatic tagging, users remained longer on their B2B online shop and visited more pages. Users were also more likely 'to save their style' to their shopping list for later purchases.
Enhanced process efficiency, trend spotting and inventory management
At the same time, Pixyles' visual AI tagging technology rapidly generates vast amounts of product data, liberating Esprit's product team from manual tasks and letting them concentrate on core duties. This efficiency boosted product data flow to all platforms, especially the Esprit B2B online shop. Leveraging Pixyle AI's scalable solution, Esprit can swiftly respond to market shifts without manpower constraints. "Thanks to the enriched and detailed product data provided by Pixyle AI tagging, we can gain valuable insights into customer preferences. By analysing the product attributes associated with highly-viewed and purchased items, we now understand customer preferences for product characteristics on a detailed level," explains Laura. Through evaluating product attribute filters, Esprit has identified crucial characteristics for each category, such as the 'occasion' for dresses or 'neckline' for sweaters. This insight enables a data-driven approach in tailoring the brand's assortment to match customer preferences and optimising product presentations.
"Improved product discoverability leads to higher sales," adds Roland. "AI-powered tagging organises and categorises products with detailed attributes, making them easily discoverable by users, leading to higher website engagement and conversions."
Pixyle.ai: Delivering visible results
Since partnering with Pixyle.ai, Esprit has noticed significant benefits, from an enhanced range of product data to a higher likelihood to save products for a later purchase, to improved time spent on the B2B online shop and a high average order value. "Users engaging with Pixyle's AI product data had a 10.1% conversion rate in adding items to their shopping list, while those who didn't have only a 2.4% rate," says Laura. Users who also shopped Esprit's B2B online shop using the AI product data placed orders that were 35% higher than those who shopped using the manually entered product data. "The detailed AI product insights allow users to evaluate our products more closely, boosting their confidence and willingness to make larger purchases," says Laura. Esprit also was able to index its prior product assortment to better understand its historical product assortment ranges and use it as a basis for future collections.
Pixyle AI's automatic tagging solution has proven to be more than successful in helping Esprit overcome its challenges concerning product data by delivering brands and retailers with visible results. "When products are accurately tagged with relevant information, our AI recommendation system can leverage this enriched data to make more informed and precise suggestions to website users," says Roland. "Esprit's speed-to-market increased, and costs have also decreased. On top of that, because we could provide more attributes, the conversions have gone up."
Following the significant benefits of implementing Pixyle's AI automatic tagging solution, Esprit is researching the best way to integrate it across its B2C departments. "We are also currently exploring the potential of an additional service of Pixyle.ai: visual AI similar recommendations to use in our Esprit B2B online shop. By implementing this solution, we aim to offer our buyers' product recommendations that closely match their search criteria and desired product characteristics," says Laura.