Argos has officially launched its 2014 Christmas Gift Finder - the world’s first swipe-to-like shopping web app, which has already been nominated for an industry award.
The Gift Finder was developed by Convert, a new London-based digital agency set up by Cheltenham-based agency Nerv to specialise in innovation for retail and fashion brands. During development, Convert took a mobile-first approach, allowing all interactions to be achieved one handed and on the move, using any smart phone, tablet or desktop browser.
The app uses swipe-to-like interaction which has reinvented online dating to suggest gifts to customers. Each like and dislike contributes to and improves an intelligent collaborative filtering system. Simply put, this means each customer who uses the Gift Finder makes it smarter, which is behind the strategy of soft-launching the app.
Argos reports that during its initial soft-launch stage, the Gift Finder saw viral growth of over 300,000 visits, with three quarters of those from mobile devices. The average visitor spent over three minutes looking at gift suggestions and swiping through over 60 of the 6000 available gifts per visit.
Mark Steel, head of digital trading, marketing and operations at Argos, says: “With almost a quarter of our total sales now coming from mobile devices, we know shoppers are increasingly purchasing products on the go. We’ve developed a rewarding mobile experience that is visually rich, thumb-friendly and intuitive to make Argos stand out from the crowd in the mobile battleground this year.”
James Dye, co-founder of Convert, adds: “Within the Argos Gift Finder the customer only discovers relevant, intelligently recommended products, one at a time, which makes for quick and easy decisions. It lets the customer drill down to a 'maybe' list very quickly, then save, email the list or go straight on to purchase the items.”
Argos has also added a different twist to gift inspiration this year with the social Facebook game ‘Friend or Fraud’, where users log in with their profile to build their own wish list and invite their friends to test how well they know them by guessing their selection by swiping left or right.
Just like the Argos Gift Finder, the game was designed by Convert, and uses an optional filtering system so that each user’s profile information, friend list, email address and birthday are used to recommend relevant, accurate products when building wish lists.
On opening the game users swipe through 20 items they like or dislike to set up their profile before inviting their friends to play. From here, users can invite their friends to play, and a leaderboard is created ranking how well each friend has done when guessing the wish list.
The game has an additional set of quirky features such as ‘Share or Shop’ which allows users to give gift inspiration by emailing a particular product to a friend or click directly through to argos.co.uk to make a purchase, while the ‘Manage Your Game’ feature enables people to swipe left or right through more product suggestions to make it harder for friends to guess correctly.