Case Study

 

LOANHOOD

Dec 2021

Case Study

LOANHOOD

www.loanhood.com

Dec 2021

Case Study

LOANHOOD

Website Link

Dec 2021

www.loanhood.com
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LOANHOOD

A multifaceted project to help launch
a new fashion rental app for a startup
within the circular economy

LOANHOOD is a fashion rental app that launched in November 2021. Their mission is to build a community of conscious fashion enthusiasts who lend out items of clothing, and rent from like-minded others. Their ethos is to inspire a sustainable fashion revolution, with an approach they are calling “fast fashion done right”.

Customers are broadly Gen Z’ers with an ever-evolving style, but who don't want to contribute to the waste that fast fashion perpetuates. Unlike other fashion rental companies such as “Rent the Runway”, their community model means there is no centralised store.

The first goal was to launch a fully functional minimum viable product in October, which a small user base could test. The iOS and Android app then launched in November to coincide with the Christmas period.

The circular economy &
fashion rental

A survey by Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) found that retail consumers are becoming more aware and concerned about the environmental impact of clothing. 61% of UK respondents reported being interested in new clothing business models such as rental, branded preloved ranges, repair services and voucher takebacks.

Overall the UK retail industry stagnated during Covid-19, with clothing retail sales volumes falling by 21.5% in 2020, compared with 2019; the most significant annual fall on record.

However, the rental market is seeing growth and is expected to reach £1.5 billion by 2025, up 65% from 2019. According to WRAP, the conscious consumer wants more sustainable alternatives to buying clothing, with about £140 million worth of used clothing sent to landfills in the UK every year. Even iconic stores like London’s Harrods and Selfridges are now offering fashion rental services.

Why they needed our help

Digital Experience

LOANHOOD initially worked with an offshore software development agency until Summer 2021. The founders were dissatisfied with the digital experience and how the original designs had been translated into the native application.

Among clients who have used freelance developers or offshore teams, we've found a common pain point is that UX and UI elements can be neglected, with a focus on function rather than form.

Our first step was to complete a heuristic evaluation of the existing experience to ensure that the MVP could meet the needs of early users. At this initial stage we take a pragmatic approach that not all issues can be solved, and start to create a product roadmap for future releases.

Unique challenges of
the peer-to-peer market

Peer-to-peer brings unique operational challenges. The need to market to two different types of audience (borrowers and lenders) means that the messaging is central to the app and has to work fluidly. And the community management platform has to be watertight, ensuring that issues are resolved the first time to keep users engaged with the platform.

Shipping the MVP

During early discovery sessions, it became clear the LOANHOOD team already had a well-evolved product and marketing strategy. The real challenge was to formulate a plan to develop an application that met the MVP scope within very tight time frames, whilst ensuring that the underlying platform could scale quickly and be used as a foundation for future releases.

Collaboration

Our partnership with LOANHOOD is both close and ongoing. We were able to leverage our expertise in strategic planning to offer the client continuous assistance, from initial help with business strategy to ongoing support with product development.


We believe in continuous iteration and improvement of our products. We also want to make sure the experience is as intuitive and enjoyable as possible and will be working with early users of the app, responding to feedback and making improvements.


The nature of LOANHOOD and the broader movement for environmental social governance (ESG) is that it is all about community, which means that the focus on engagement has to be on in-person events. This led to various collaborations within the circular economy ecosystem such as their two-year partnership with Hackney Council.

Our long-term partnership with LOANHOOD is about making a fundamental change to consumption patterns and offering viable alternatives to consumers via a seamless digital experience:

“ON are genuinely aligned to our vision and have guided us through the journey of developing our application; they care about delivering the best for the user, business and the wider community.”

Lucy Hall,
Founder at