Today we’re exploring the concept of mass customization through Wiivv (I’m still unsure if it’s pronounced “Wive” or “Weave.” Wiivv is a shoe and insole business that promises “footwear made for your body from your phone.” The company takes advantage of the widespread availability of smartphone cameras and pairs this with digital mapping technology to create a product that’s just for you.
Beyond being a cool concept, Wiivv is a great example of a new business model that combines fashion with technology to deliver a more unique shopping experience and a more personalized end product. It’s also an example of mass customization, a trend that’s changing the way we shop and evolving consumer demands.
According to Investatopia, mass customization is the process of delivering wide-market goods and services that are modified to satisfy a specific customer need. Mass customization is a marketing and manufacturing technique that combines the flexibility and personalization of custom-made products with the low unit costs associated with mass production. Mass customization products may also be referred to as made to order or built to order.
What I think is so smart about Wiivv is how they’re turning the traditional manufacturing model on its head. When customers order insoles, sneakers, and sandals from the website, they pay for items before they’re produced. This minimizes the risk of excess inventory. The company is also hitting a sweet spot in the market between the disposable Dr. Scholls insoles you buy at the drugstore and the expensive orthotics you get from a foot specialist.
Further reading: Will Mass Customization Work for Fashion? from the Business of Fashion
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