The Spark of Genius Series highlights a unique feature of startups and is made possible by Microsoft BizSpark. If you would like to have your startup considered for inclusion, please see the details here.
Quick Pitch: Tap into a community of knowledgeable shoppers to identify the clothing or accessories you’re looking for.
Genius Idea: Using crowdsourcing to find the perfect outfit.
All too often, I will come across a beautiful garment — on the street, in a newspaper photograph (yes, I still read those) — immediately feel I must have it, and then despair because I haven’t the least idea where it’s from, or if it’s even still in stores.
Enter Wheretoget.it, which co-founder and CEO Nicolas Metzke described simply as the “Quora for shopping” in a #fashion140 panel we did together this spring. Its premise is simple: Log in, upload a photo of a garment you’re curious about and tag the image with a few basic details.
With any luck, Wheretoget.it’s community — which, from what I gathered from looking around the site, are extremely savvy shoppers — will help you identify the piece in question, or at least something similar. During pre-launch pilot tests, Metzke says the community was able to identify items correctly, or at least one similar enough to satisfy the searcher 84% of the time.
Users are incentivized to answer questions with points, badges and status recognition. Metzke says the company is also working with merchants to trade in points for shopping vouchers or gift cards.
The site also functions as a discovery engine, drawing visitors to items they weren’t necessarily looking for before arriving. Users can opt to follow other users as well as queries, just as they can with Quora.
The Paris-based startup, which launched in May 2011, was founded by three seasoned entrepreneurs: Metzke, co-founder of Ciao.com (acquired by Greenfield Online for $154 million in 2005); Gilles Babinet, founder of Musiwave (sold to Openwave for $121 million in 2005) and now president of France’s National Council of Digital Business and Society; and CTO Romain Moyne, a 23-year-old who started is first business at age 16.
Series Supported by Microsoft BizSpark
The Spark of Genius Series highlights a unique feature of startups and is made possible by Microsoft BizSpark, a startup program that gives you three-year access to the latest Microsoft development tools, as well as connecting you to a nationwide network of investors and incubators. There are no upfront costs, so if your business is privately owned, less than three years old, and generates less than U.S.$1 million in annual revenue, you can sign up today.
For more Startups coverage:
- Follow Mashable Startups on Twitter
- Become a Fan on Facebook
- Subscribe to the Startups channel
- Download our free apps for Android, Mac, iPhone and iPad