NEW YORK, United States — BoF can exclusively reveal that 72Lux — a service that lets readers purchase products featured on the websites of titles like Teen Vogue and The Wall Street Journal without being redirected to third-party sellers — is opening its platform to all content publishers, including bloggers and startups.
Until recently, 72Lux's "Shoppable" technology was available only to enterprise-level publishers like Condé Nast and Time Inc, as implementing the product required sophisticated in-house developers.
“If a consumer wants to purchase something, no matter where they are on the web, we should make it really, really easy,” Heather Marie, founder and chief executive of 72Lux, told BoF. "What we've done with this new launch is take the core technology that we had for these large publishers and improved upon that technology to make it more streamlined and simplified, so now the users don’t have to have developers.”
The company, which raised $1.4 million from angel investors in September of last year, works with over 150 retailers, including Neiman Marcus, French Connection and Luisa Via Roma. Its database contains just under 2 million products from over 25,000 brands. Publishers who are clients of the service can log into the application, search for specific products and customise how they appear on their websites. Changes to pricing or availability are automatically updated within the database.
Two months ago, the company also launched a self-service merchant platform, allowing a wider range of sellers to list their products in 72Lux's database. “So any publisher, even a small blogger — she might make homemade candles and she might want to sell her own products right next to a cashmere scarf from a fashion retailer. Now, she can actually leverage the technology to do that as well, so she can actually be both merchant and publisher,” Marie explained.
Retailers pay a cut for every item sold through the platform, usually around 10 percent. Smaller publishers keep 60 percent of that cut, while 72Lux takes the remaining 40 percent. Larger publishers are able to negotiate more favourable terms. The company declined to share sales data, but a statement on its websites claims that 72Lux drives $90 million in transactions each month.
“The future of retail is a uniform way to be everywhere the consumer is," said Marie. "We’re basically hoping to create a shoppable layer on top of content everywhere."