The apparel retailer lets shoppers browse its physical store online with a feature similar to using Google’s Street View.

Apparel retailer Fred Segal this week launched an online 3D shopping experience on its e-commerce site that allows shoppers to browse and shop in its West Hollywood, California store.

With a web browser, a shopper can virtually enter the Fred Segal physical store and browse products. The experience is akin to Google Street View, in which a shopper uses her mouse to navigate to different parts of the store, zooms closer to where she points and then clicks on merchandise to see the product details.

Circles on the floor within the image indicate spots shoppers can navigate closer to, such as a display near the wall or a mannequin. Once she is closer to the object, she can tap on products to see more details, and sometimes, a product spins so shoppers can see all angles.

“Having an online presence is, of course, an essential part of business; however, at Fred Segal, we rarely do things the traditional way,” says John Frierson, Fred Segal’s president. “We’re thrilled to be the first major retailer to create a truly experiential online shopping destination.”

The experiential piece is key, instead of traditional e-commerce shopping that can be more transactional, Frierson tells Internet Retailer.

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“It’s not about searching and price comparison,” Frierson says. “It’s about enjoying the shopping experience of a curated space and ultimately it’s about discovery, of new brands and new style you didn’t even know you had.”

Retail technology firm Next Retail Concepts and financial services firm Mastercard Inc. developed and launched the technology, which took less than two months to develop, says  Neil Cole, CEO and founder of Next Retail Concepts. Mastercard and Fred Segal have worked together for about a year on “immersive online retail ideas,” Frierson says. He declined to reveal costs. Digital Media and entertainment company Refinery29 premiered the technology at its pop-up commerce center 29Rooms in Los Angeles. If shoppers purchase more than $200 of goods with a Mastercard credit card in the virtual shop, they can receive a $30 credit.

Fred Segal is promoting the experience on its e-commerce site homepage, FredSegal.com, and shoppers are redirected to the virtual store hosted by Next Retail Concepts.

Cole says the companies will measure the technology’s success using “metrics similar to traditional e-commerce but through the filter of deeper engagement and time spent within the experience.”

“This experience engages the user on a deeper level and tells a better brand story,” Cole says. “It’s like a virtual pop-up that you get to navigate yourself through to create a unique, personalized journey.”

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