Condé Nast recently announced that Style.com will be the home of its new e-commerce business, which will replace the site’s show reports, news and content. Condé Nast plans to pilot this experiment in the U.K. before launching in the U.S
Fashion publications appear to be the ripe spot to place e-commerce links to shoes, accessories and beauty items, as the articles and images often serve as gateways to purchases. Yet, e-commerce launches from content brands have bred mixed results. For example, Refinery29 shuttered R29 shops in 2013, just 18 months after its inception. And Lucky magazine launched Lucky Shops in 2015, without any word (yet) on the venture’s success.
L2 research shows that content can be an effective catalyst for purchases. This graph from L2’s Intelligence Report: Content and Commerce shows that branded and expert content can lift purchase intent by 125% and 113% respectively.
Brands are responding by integrating media on their pages: 27% of U.S. brands post look books and 22% post videos on their grid pages.
However, content and commerce must be integrated to achieve desired results. Too often, look books on e-commerce pages lead to dead ends and video tutorials fail to list featured products. Successful brands have created a seamless transition that promotes creative content alongside e-commerce, and ensures that each piece of creative content leads to one or several relevant product pages. Tory Burch, Benefit Cosmetics, and Barneys have successfully mastered that mix. Style.com’s success as an e-commerce site will depend on how well content/commerce integration is executed.
For more on Content and Commerce best practices, download a copy of L2’s Intelligence Report: Content & Commerce.