Shelf-space is dwindling. Due to the onslaught of shuttered bricks-and-mortar, retailers and brands are being charged with elevating digital commerce channels. This has resulted retailers expanding online presences to encompass marketplaces, in which third-party vendors are invited to sell product directly through a retailer’s platform.This is a quick fix. What may improve traffic and sales in the short-term will not translate to long-term consumer loyalty or preserved revenue gains. Shoppers will go where the best product — and deals — can be found.Instead, drop-shipping company, RevCascade cofounder and chief executive officer Josh Wexler and the company’s other cofounder, Andrea Tobin, illuminate the benefits that can be secured within the method. Under this approach, retailers only buy inventory from wholesalers once a consumer purchases a product. This heavily reduces overhead from warehouse costs to stocking brick-and-mortar shelves.Here, the executives discuss the pitfalls with marketplaces and how to enter a drop-shipping approach.WWD: Traditionally, mid to high-end brick-and-mortar retailers have struggled with limited shelf space and inventory issues, yet are trying to compete with Amazon, Wayfair, Farfetch and Rakuten. What are some of the opportunities for retailers and brands?Josh Wexler: Marketplaces are the dominating e-commerce business model. Amazon sells 400 million-plus products. Wayfair sells eight million-plus products. However, a true marketplace approach for mid to high-end retailers will erode your brand. The far better alternative is drop-ship, as it keeps the retailer in total control of the brands they work with and the products they sell. Curated drop-ship programs are a force multiplier for retailers and the brands they carry. A curated drop-ship program give retailers the ability to sell the right product to the right consumer at the right time, generating more revenue without carrying more inventory.WWD: What are some benefits of deploying a successful drop-ship program?Andrea Tobin: The biggest benefits start with more revenue and more profit for retailers and brands, as well as zero inventory risk for retailers. E-commerce growth is accelerating; stores are closing; there is less shelf space, and there is less open to buy. Drop-ship is low-risk innovation with major revenue and profit upside.Drop-ship also gives retailers the ability to test new brands and products, broaden product assortments in existing categories, and move seamlessly into adjacent categories and markets. For vendors, drop-ship deepens retailer relationships, is a great way to experiment with new retailers, and maximizes consumer reach by selling your products across a wider array of retailer e-commerce sites.WWD: What are the key differences between a drop-ship program and a marketplace?J.W.: In a drop-ship program, retailers stay in complete control of the brands they work with and the products they sell. World-class merchants curate the best drop-ship programs — just like the best brick-and-mortar stores. This is the key difference between a drop-ship program and a marketplace where retailers can enhance and extend what they offer to their consumers while staying true to what they have delivered to consumers via their traditional wholesale business.WWD: What are the benefits of a drop-ship program for retailers and vendors for holiday shopping seasons?A.T.: With many predicting that e-commerce holiday sales will eclipse brick-and-mortar sales for the first time this year, drop-shipping is a way for retailers to capture more revenue. There is a clear relationship between the number of products retailers have available to sell via e-commerce, the amount of traffic they generate to their e-commerce site, and their e-commerce revenue. A retailer who stocks 1,000 products based on their wholesale buying business model during the holidays can easily offer 10,000-plus products via their drop-ship program, which will result in doubling or tripling their e-commerce sales with zero inventory risk.WWD: How can retailers optimize their existing buying strategies, skill and expertise?J.W.: The best mid to high-end retailers are known for their point of view, and for their ability to find amazing products from great brands. Consumers show their appreciation of the inventory selection by purchasing from those retailers. Great merchants are great editors and merchants, which will drive success in drop-shipping — just like they have driven success via traditional retailers’ wholesale buying business model.WWD: What do you think will happen in 2018 as it relates to both drop-ship and marketplaces? Do you see widespread adoption? Why or why not?J.W.: In 2018 drop-shipping will continue to be the fastest-growing revenue stream for mid to high-end retailers. Retailers need to generate revenue and profits without increasing their inventory, and drop-shipping is the perfect solution to drive a brighter future for retailers big and small.More from WWD:2018 Retail Predictions: AI, Experiences, Pricing Transparency Set to IncreaseStrategy Overhauls Might Be Unnecessary to Draw MillennialsThe Social Media Channels That Deliver the Highest E-Commerce Conversions
Luxury handbag resale company @rebagofficial is planning to sell a rare collectible for $70,000: the @hermes White Crocodile Himalayan Birkin. The exclusive Birkin sold for about $100,000 in 2008, when @davidbeckham bought one for his wife @victoriabeckham to add to her collection. Read more about the rare Birkin on WWD.com #wwdaccessories
With her costume pearl necklace and what-you-see-is-what-you-get style, Barbara Bush, who died Tuesday at age 92, was a straight-shooter from start to finish.
Born Barbara Pierce in New York City, Bush served as the 37th first lady, as well as the country’s second lady from 1981 to 1989. In addition to being part of the longest presidential marriage — 73 years — Bush also had the unlikely distinction of having one son, George W., become the 43rd president and another son, Jeb, run unsuccessfully in 2016. Having served as second lady during the Reagan administration’s two terms and lived all over the world during her own husband’s ascending political career, Barbara Bush made it clear that literacy — not fashion — was her priority. Read more from Rosemary Feitelberg’s obituary on the late First Lady in WWD.com, link in bio. #barbarabush #wwdnews
Western and ’90s trends have influenced denim for fall 2018. Think raw, dark and coated jeans mixed with bold prints and tough leather. #trendtuesdays #wwdfashion (Styled by @thealexbadia;📷: @ryanplett)
@denimdaysfestival, which initially launched in Amsterdam in 2014 and has since expanded to New York, is heading to Nashville for the very first time. The two-day festival, which will take place in November, will feature brand activations, hands-on workshops by artisans and denim mills, a vintage market, live entertainment, and local food and drinks. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
Later this month, the popular “Diana: Her Fashion Story” exhibit will be reopening. @historicroyalpalaces, the charity that manages @kensingtonroyal, has been working towards adding new, never-before-seen garments to the exhibit, including this dress created by Gianni Versace for a fund-raising dinner at the Museum of Natural History in Chicago. The exhibit will reopen on April 26 at Kensington Palace @wwdfashion
“Our family has always been engaged and interested in the world around us. [My brothers and I] were always encouraged to have our own opinion at a young age, which is not always something a child is asked — especially to have an opinion with reasoning behind it,” said @yarashahidi on becoming an activist. We caught up with the 18 year old last week, where she talked about her road to acting, how “Black-ish” led her to start conversations about identity and more. Head to WWD.com to read what she had to say #wwdeye (📷: @chelsealaurenla)