How to Design Products That Never Go Out of Style
Editor's Note: This article is part of a series that examines the lessons behind disruptive products through the lens of design.
On Friday, Dutch-based design collective Mijlo reached its Kickstarter goal of $25,000 (Canadian dollars) to launch a simple but innovative product: 10 watches for the price of one.
Well, almost. Mijlo's Everyday Watch comes with two faces and five unique straps, allowing customers to mix and match different variations, for $247. The crafty design concept is aimed at consumers seeking designer or quality watches without having to choose a single style.
As Mijlo states in its Kickstarter video, the Everyday Watch aspires to solve the problem of "fleeting trends and overpriced time pieces."
One of the interesting aspects about the Everyday Watch's "timeless" look is the way Mijlo crowdsourced the design. Prior to finalizing the product components, the company asked visitors to its design site to pick out their two favorite watch faces and five straps from a number of options. They even let voters pick the name "Everyday Watch" out of a list that included four other names for the product.
In addition to Mijlo's unique approach to offering variety within a single product, here are three design lessons from the Everyday Watch:
Make products that are easy to use.
Unlike most watches, the Everyday Watch uses a unique clasp system with a simple push-button technology that makes changing straps and faces quick and easy.
Appeal to a broad audience.
Despite the variety of options, all of Mijlo's face-and-strap combinations embrace a unisex design that the company says will appeal to both men and women.
Over-deliver on service.
On top of including two free batteries and a compact felt case for customers to keep their extra watch face and straps, Mijlo offers a five-year guarantee for each strap and a simple replacement process. Customers who need replacement straps can take a photo of their worn-out straps and email it to the company to receive a new one for free.
Of course, anyone who likes the style of the Everyday Watch but doesn't want more than one can pick out a single style. Mijlo sells single faces paired with one strap for $97.
One problem the Everyday Watch can't circumvent, however, is the fact that watches are increasingly falling out of favor thanks to the rise of mobile phones. Mijlo's watches also don't offer the sophisticated tools that smartwatches from companies like Samsung offer.
What do you think of Mijlo's strategy? Tell us in the comments below.