Founded in 2014, Italian direct-to-consumer shoe brand M.Gemi takes its approach one step further.

Rather than competing for visibility in consumers’ crowded email inboxes, M.Gemi prioritized text messaging, experimenting with fit consultations via text message according to Gartner L2’s report on the topic. While M.Gemi incentivizes email sign-up with a $25 discount, the brand entices text message sign-up with a more generous $50 offer. After purchasing from the brand, the experience becomes even more compelling. M.Gemi sends personalized invitations to styling sessions by the brand’s Creative Director at its New York flagship, complete with Italian cocktails.

Unencumbered by large store footprints, disruptors can dramatically raise the physical retail standard. Subscription fashion service Rent the Runway, for example, offers self-check-out, a beauty bar, free coffee and a communal workspace through its San Francisco location, only available to members.

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