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Birchbox shared details outlining the growth of its e-commerce business, revealing e-commerce now represents more than one-quarter of Birchbox's business as full-size product sales quadrupled in 2012, and are on track to more than triple in 2013.
The company’s business model is centered around creating new consumer demand through personalized monthly product sampling and editorial, and then fulfilling that demand via the e-commerce shop. With more than 5 million boxes shipped to more than 400,000 subscribers, Birchbox’s monthly box deliveries are driving demand for products and sales from the Birchbox Shop.
“We’re excited to see the positive response to expanding our presence as a comprehensive retail destination,” said Katia Beauchamp, co-founder and co-CEO, Birchbox. “Discovery is our core competency, and we believe the opportunity to generate new demand for products in beauty, grooming and lifestyle is massive.”
The Birchbox Shop has proven to be a significant driver in the company’s growth, and demonstrates the success of its 360-degree retail experience: try, learn and buy. Birchbox works with more than 500 brands and sells more than 4,000 products in the ecommerce shop to customers in four countries.
Currently, more than one-half of monthly subscribers go on to purchase full-sized products from the Birchbox Shop, and subscribers aren’t the only ones making purchases—155 of all e-commerce orders come from nonsubscribers, driven in part by the company’s exclusive products only available online via the Birchbox Shop, and robust editorial content across the web.
Stila is one of the many brands that have experienced overwhelming demand and sales through the Birchbox Shop in direct correlation to its sampling in the monthly subscription boxes. The company began working with Birchbox in late 2010. After being sent to 7% of Birchbox’s subscribers based on their personalized beauty profiles, the Stila eye shadow palette saw an 11.2% conversion—more than 10 times the industry standard—from sample to full-size purchase.
“Working with Birchbox has given us the opportunity to receive tangible feedback on our products and increase brand awareness by reaching new customers,” said Megan Mildrew, business development director, Stila. “Retailing our full-size products on their e-commerce site has provided us with insight on customers' purchasing habits and intent to buy after sampling.”