ShopWithYourFriends, is a new online social shopping tool for ecommerce that enables users to shop together in real-time with multiple friends from popular social networks. Think of it as a way to shop with your Facebook pals (for instance), as if they were there in the shop with you.
Coming out of The Netherlands, it’s been in development for a couple of years of pilot testing, and recently teamed up with large ecommerce player OTTO, which has a large pan-European footprint. However, although an actual ShopWithYourFriends site is planned next year you can only access it in online shops from OTTO in The Netherlands right now. It’s currently available to online apparel websites only, but there are plans to launch a co-shopping portal in early 2011.
Essentialy it’s like a TweetThis for shopping. You select the friends you want to shop with and can drag and drop products you like and want to share. The widget integrates with Facebook, Twitter, Windows Live Messenger and Hyves.
Integrated chat and Skype functionality sites around the creation of co-created ‘lookbooks’ and lists of favorite products. The business model is almost exactly like Skimbit from two years ago, but before they relaunched as Skimlinks, aiming at content publishers rather than ecommerce shops.
Founded in 2008, ShopWithYourFriends is woned by Chatventure, a privately held company based in Utrecht, The Netherlands. Laurens Bushoff is CEO and founder of ShopWithYourFriends.
I have to say I’m a little unimpressed by this. To not have an actual portal site for consumers after two years in development is lame. I continue to be amazed at the way some European startups behave in this manner. Like, how hard is it these days to integrate these social networks?
Although it would appear they are targeting ecommerce businesses first in order to gain inventory for people to shop around, it seems they are missing the opportunity to get people used to the idea of using their platform first.