WWD Digital Daily
How Personalization Helps Revolve Aid Customers
Jason Grunberg from Sailthru explains how the company leverages technology to win shoppers over.
Revolve works with more than 3,000 clothing brands and offers about 1,000 new items for sale every week. How, in such an overwhelming sea of inventory, is a shopper supposed to find the perfect party dress by Saturday? The answer lies in data.
Revolve is as much a tech company as it is a fashion company. As such, Revolve has embraced scale at every level of its business, confident that such size will lead to efficiencies. The company combines the inspirational gloss of thousands of social media influencers with the power of deep and sustained omnichannel personalization.
Michael Mente, Revolve’s cofounder and co- chief executive officer, has said personalization is driven by “data from analysis of thousands of styles, dozens of attributes per style,” combined with data gleaned from customer interactions. Revolve has been doing this since 2003, when most fashion brands were barely aware of the power of personalization.
Clearly, it’s working: Revolve’s June initial public offering finished its first day at 89 percent above its opening price, making it the third best-performing IPO of the year at the time it went public. And Revolve’s comprehensive multichannel personalization strategy has landed it at number 13 on Sailthru’s third annual Retail Personalization Index. The Index ranks 100 retail brands according to how well they use data to personalize and connect the customer experience across email, site, and mobile. of the tactics that Revolve uses to create a personalized customer experience can be used by any retail marketer. Revolve takes advantage of a carefully thoughtout recommendation strategy. Then it combines those recommendations with a cheery, breezy tone to make them friendlier and less robotic.
Revolve’s mobile app is one of the most impressive shopping apps out there, combining content, commerce and inspiration. And Revolve has integrated its various platforms so that customers never feel lost or lose track of items they find crave-worthy.
One of the unexpected ways Revolve uses recommendation algorithms is to create and stock curated shops for each individual customer. These shops are initially stocked using collaborative filtering, with items displayed under banners such as “complete the look” and “similar items” as well as “recommended for you.”
Once Revolve understands a customer’s taste, it makes sure each curated shop stays up to date. When a new item comes in that a particular customer might like, that item goes right to the shop. That way, the customer doesn’t need to browse the whole site to find the newest, most relevant items. Then Revolve goes a step further, integrating highlights from its social media feed — stocked with images from thousands of influencers — under the banner “I [heart] the ‘Gram.”