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How Footasylum puts the native app at the heart of their retail brand. 

April 4, 2022 By: Elissa Quinby

Mike Wallwork, head of eCommerce for Footayslum, spoke with Mike Parfitt, Director of Account Management EMEA at Quantum Metric, at Quantum LEAP, our annual user conference. The two technology leaders spoke about how the urban youth retailer drives true brand loyalty and commitment through their unique in-store experience and active social media presence, garnering a following of millions.

Footasylum is an omnichannel retailer based in the Northwest of England. Since 2005, they have opened 66 stores across the United Kingdom, as well as launched multiple websites and a mobile app. 

At the heart of Footayslum’s omnichannel strategy is a mobile outwards native app. For Footasylum, the goal is to represent the brand both in-person and online, with the mobile app being the glue between the various channels. 

What is Footasylum’s mission?

Footasylum sees itself as more than just a retailer. According to Wallwork, Footayslum feel it’s their responsibility to entertain their target audience of 16-24 year olds. The entertainment-focused shoe and apparel retailer wants to be in every city so that they can be the local retailer for inner city youth across the country. 

So what does that look like? Integrating the community and the brand through viral social content, exclusive product offers, and hyper local marketing. In their stores, the brand takes a very localized approach. Each store stocks styles, apparel, and accessories that interest local customers, rather than generically across the whole UK. 

Maintaining authenticity with customers.

But to ensure that the company is best serving its customers, Footasylum needs to keep experimenting with their digital channels. For Footasylum, social media is not for “the hard sell,” but for providing additional entertainment. 

Sure, they have their website and mobile apps, but they’ve also embraced YouTube and TikTok. Footayslum focuses on creating tailored content that resonates not only with the customers, but the channel as well. Footasylum’s authenticity on social media has generated a huge organic following. 

Their strategy includes partnering with influencers who have various levels of following. In one example, Footasylum put their influencers in a house and locked them inside so they could compete with one another in all sorts of indoor and outdoor tasks. They even had a pool.  

By partnering with different types of influencers, Footasylum has grown a massive following and fostered real engagement with multiple customer segments, including both male and female consumers. 

Integrating the app with entertainment. 

Footasylum built a dedicated area on their app where shoppers could see what their favorite influencer was wearing. In addition to buying the item, shoppers can also vote for who wears an item best or who should compete in a task. This way, customers who are not interested in buying an item still have a way to engage with the brand. 

According to Wallwork, “It’s a privilege for us to have space on the device that they’re looking at multiple times every minute every hour every day and it’s a privilege to be there, so we’ve got to give them a reason.”

With more users on the app, Footasylum has been able to run a loyalty program across the business that they continuously update. 

Understanding your customer’s behavior with Quantum Metric.

Footasylum brought on Quantum Metric to gain greater insight into its native app performance, in particular how it could improve the mobile bridge between digital and physical.

Find and fix across channels. 

Solving problems means doing additional testing, not just looking at KPIs, such as sales and top level metrics. 

When a problem occurs, there might be several underlying causes, including hidden technical errors and design problems. 

Before partnering with Quantum Metric, it was easy to assume that the problem impacting the website also impacted the mobile app. However, with Quantum Metric’s visibility, Footasylum has been able to pinpoint and track channel specific problems. 

As soon as Footasylum integrated Quantum Metric with their app, the retailer “quickly realized that we had some problems that we’d never had known about and managed to fix all of them. That was massive.” 

Monitoring during the holiday season.

During the peak shopping season in Q4, Footasylum leveraged Quantum Metric to analyze all sorts of data, as well as generate pivotal insights. As the busiest quarter, Q4 allowed the Footasylum team to translate data and set priorities for the first half of the following year. This way, the team could hone in on the areas that they know are going to make a difference to the customer. 

Session replay recordings, for instance “play a vital part” in understanding how Footasylum customers engage with their digital products. 

With monitoring in the background, Footasylum can confidently prepare features for release. Now, they can actually determine what is working and driving value for the customer. 

A/B testing.

Quantum Metric has also helped Footasylum make the most of their A/B testing strategy. When building features such as navigation, headers, new checkout flows, and dynamic searching tools, it’s important to test out multiple versions. 

Once Footasylum settles on the first version, the shoe retailer constantly iterates on the initial design to keep meeting the needs of their customers and improving the customer experience. 

From making assumptions to data-driven decisions.

Before partnering with Quantum Metric, Footasylum struggled to gain visibility into both their website and mobile app. The digital team was delivering blindly, basing their product decision on top level stats, not user behavior. They spent most of their time making assumptions about what customers wanted, with no data to back up their decisions. 

Quantum Metric helped them connect the dots and develop a new depth of understanding. As a bonus, the Quantum Metric platform has been well adopted within and across teams at Footasylum, allowing a variety of stakeholders to better align on priorities

Curious to learn how retailers such as Footasylum and Lululemon use Quantum Metric to drive digital transformation across their organizations? 

Request a demo today. 



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