The women of the world just can't seem to get enough indulgence from their shoes. From shopping at malls, flash sales, curated sites and subscription services, there are never enough shoes. One subscription company, ShoeDazzle has seen its shoe and accessory service membership base grow by 1 million subscribers in a single month (July).
ShoeDazzle now boasts 13 million members for its e-commerce solution which raised $76 million last month.
The monthly subscription service that brings the latest in show and accessory fashion to women with various styles, also saw the number of items it offers rise 17% over the previous quarter.
ShoeDazzle has been growing steadily over the last 16 months as it dropped the "mandatory" mark on its subscription and started allowing people to pay a slightly more premium price for each item, similar to a competitor, JustFab.
“While we built a sizable business in a very short amount of time serving customers through the subscription model, our research showed there was an enormous segment of women who really wanted to buy from us, but not necessarily on a monthly basis. We’re looking to create a billion dollar company, and our recent results and acceleration validate that strategic choice,” said Bill Strauss, CEO of ShoeDazzle, in a statement. “By listening to our clients, seeing how they shop, and extending our unique styling service to the rest of her outfit, we’ve seen our biggest month yet. We’ve led the category in awareness, social metrics and customer service performance for some time, and our new member growth supports that leadership position.”
Originally launched in March 2009, ShowDazzle has raised roughly $60 million and is one of the growing Los Angeles-based fashion e-commerce sites that has tied its brand to a celebrity personality (in this case Kim Kardashian).
Even though the company has expanded beyond its namesake shoe-centric approach, its strongest sellers are still the fancy kicks that people can pick up for about $40 a pair.
More and more fashion
Just a few weeks ago, the subscription fashion site JustFab announced that it raised $76 million. The young startup, launched in 2010, has now raised roughly $139 million for a business with more than six million members.
Earlier this year, JustFab rolled out its service for a European audience, with a German office that co-CEO Adam Goldberg told me went “far better than expected and has encouraged us to expand to the UK after summer.”
“The styles translated incredibly well to the German market,” Goldberg told me. “And combined with the growth we have seen in the US, we are on track for $100 million in sales and expect $500 million by 2015.”
The El Segundo, Calif.-based company has received a lot of engagement and sign-ups through social sharing – roughly 25% of the new members came in through social channels like a friend sharing on Facebook or a link through Pinterest.
Pinterest is a great fashion tool for our company. We have our own Also as part of this announcement, Mark Leschly, managing partner at Rho Ventures, will join the board.
High fashion has usually been unattainable to the masses because of the price-point, the physical access and the knowledge. The Internet has changed that around completely. Now everyone can know (up to the minute) fashion trends. Everyone can also get anything delivered to their door in a matter of days. And most fashion houses can start cranking out affordable versions of couture in weeks rather than months.
So now fashion has become the hot commodity online as VC's scramble to back the best bets and online retailers try to expand their reach to include fashion items.
At the beginning of the year, the design retailer Fab.com announced that it acquired the community-selected marketplace of designers: FashionStake. In the past two years, Fab.com has done a lot of innovating and pivoting to find its niche and was handsomely rewarded with more than $50 million of funding from venture big boys such as Andreessen Horowitz, Menlo Ventures and First Round Capital.
Now that the company has the capital to start acquiring other design, fashion and daily deal sites, things are getting quite interesting.
Earlier this year, a new company, Style For Hire, set out to bring the curation and personalization of having a stylist to the masses. The young supportive fashion company, co-founded by celebrity stylist Stacy London and Cindy McLaughlin, launched with 135 stylists in 24 cities in the U.S. today. In cities including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and Boston; Style For Hire wants to match you up with a stylist that understands your aesthetic and can help you get all those needed elements into your wardrobe.
The company offers multiple services, including closet audits, closet shopping, and personal shopping. So whether you are about to enter the workforce, change professions, you've just lost the baby weight, you are shopping for the wedding, or just need a boost in you winter apparel, Style for Hire professionals could be the solution.
The rate per hour ranges from $65 to $300 and the average length of an appointment is 2.6 hours. The company started with a soft launched about a year ago, and is already seeing 46% of clients re-book two or more times and 22% came back three or more times within the year.
The company has raised $1.5 million in funding from Golden Seeds thus far.