GETTING A MASS ADVANTAGE ON THE WEB

Byline: Kerry Diamond

NEW YORK — Mass market retailers now have a new tool for managing their beauty business. Called Beautywall.com, it is a Web site that gives them access to information and products from a wide range of mass manufacturers.
The site was created by Beautyjungle.com, the Internet company that has business-to-consumer and business-to-business divisions, following conversations with executives from the Chain Drug Marketing Association.
“They had suggested to us that their members do not get enough category information and that many of them were looking for alternative sources for ordering products,” explained John Devine, senior vice president of sales for Beautyjungle. “Beautywall brings it all together for today’s beauty category manager and buyer. It links the manufacturer and the retailer electronically, offering brand information, products and services.”
Retailers can join the site free of charge by submitting a credit application. Upon approval, they receive a password that gives them access to all portions of the site. Manufacturers are restricted to their own pages.
So far, the brands featured include Almay, Black Opal, CornSilk, Cover Girl, L’Oreal, Max Factor, Maybelline, Neutrogena, Oil of Olay, Orly Salon Nails, Physicians Formula, Prestige Cosmetics, Revlon, Rubiglo, Sally Hansen, Sinful Colors, Ultima II and Wet ‘n’ Wild.
All of these brands are found on the Beautyjungle consumer site, although Devine noted that participation in Beautyjungle isn’t a requirement for inclusion on Beautywall. The brand Jane is coming soon and Devine expects to add mass fragrance brands and accessories next.
Retailers can order products from all 19 brands and the site offers free UPS ground shipping and live customer service 24 hours a day. There is no minimum order size, minimum shelf pack requirements or minimum stockkeeping unit quantity requirements. And there are no handling charges for orders greater than $200.
The manufacturers currently do not pay to participate on the site. “In the future, we’ll expand the site so that orders can be directed to the manufacturers. In that case, they would be charged a transaction fee,” said Devine. “Right now, we’re making money by distributing the product to retailers.”
Devine said content on products and promotions will be updated monthly and additional functions will be added to the site. He expects that manufacturers will take a more active role in determining the content and design of their pages.
Eventually, manufacturer-approved digitized photos will appear on the site for retailers to use in their circulars. “In the old economy model, the manufacturer sends a CD to the retailer and the retailer sends it to the ad agency,” said Devine. “Now the ad agency can grab the image right from the site.”
Planograms will be added once certain software issues are worked out, and information on fixtures will be included as well. “All the manufacturers have different ways of communicating how their fixtures work,” said Devine. “There is no reason why they can’t have that information on Beautywall.”
Beautyjungle.com was launched in November 1999 as a business-to-consumer site specializing in both prestige and mass products to better mimic the way women really shop. After its launch, Beautyjungle added a b-to-b division to increase its chances of survival in the competitive online beauty space.

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