If there’s something to be learnt from Snowden and horsemeat, it’s that we don’t really mind what you do as long as you let us in on it first. What Westfield’s new app does so well is that it tells you upfront what it needs from you to make your shopping experience more enjoyable without asking you where you live or your first school. Those of you who stalk me on Foursquare probably know Westfield Stratford City to be my second home especially whilst Tinderbox was open, so taking the app for a test drive wasn’t a really hard sell and I’m pretty impressed. When you first launch the app it prompts you to choose which Westfield you want, I chose Stratford (of course). It then asks you to choose from a conveyor belt of tiles which shops you like, dislike or are indifferent to. You do this by swiping up to the top row if you like, down if you dislike or leave the tile in the middle if you’re indifferent. The app takes this information and in the next step produces a list of things it believes you like.
You now have the opportunity to agree or disagree with the items listed and in the final step it generates your personalised landing page of tiles from retailers that match the profile you’ve created. Step two was the spooky part for me because I’d chosen brands like Ann Summers (don’t judge me), Mothercare and Victoria’s Secret as likes, alongside WHSmith and Carphone Warehouse fully expecting the app to think I was a Philippa Gregory reading, Twitter stalking dominatrix with young family, but it sussed me out as a gift buying, comic reader with a interest in fashion. Spooky huh? The fun really begins once you’ve personalised the app and your homepage is a smorgasbord of brands you actually like because behind each tile in the rabbit hole that sucks you into special offers, table bookings, directions and, well, anything you need to know about your chosen retailer.
If you’ve been to Westfield chances are you found it hard finding your way around. The My Westfield app can give you directions to where you want to go in the centre. So if you’re looking for Forever 21 and you’re sat in The Grind, just search for Forever 21, it will prompt you for your current location, then ask if you need a step-free route (accessibility, check) before giving you directions complete with waypoints. Looks like they’ve thought of everything, but I’ll leave it for you to judge.
Download the app from the App Store and take it for a test run, to sweeten things further you could win a Westfield gift card loaded with £500. Imagine the havoc you could create in Primark with that. The app is available for iOS, the BlackBerry and Android versions are coming soon but no word about Windows just yet.