Social shopping from back-to-school retailers


To lure more young customers, retailers are trying to make online shopping a more social experience. They're creating "elaborate online worlds that may have little to do with their products [and] employing video-sharing, social networking and even virtual reality to target the teenagers who drove sites like YouTube and Facebook to popularity," the Washington Post reports. Examples: At you can create your own avatar, or virtual self, and virtually try on Sears clothes; "Wal-Mart started a Facebook group about dorm-room style"; and J.C. Penney and American Eagle Outfitters will have new short films in their sites every week.

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