The Many Models of E-Commerce: While the End Goal Is the Same for Everyone-A Purchase-Editorial Integrations Remain Critical

By Mickey, Bill | Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management, November 2013 | Go to article overview

The Many Models of E-Commerce: While the End Goal Is the Same for Everyone-A Purchase-Editorial Integrations Remain Critical


Mickey, Bill, Folio: the Magazine for Magazine Management


After what could be described broadly as a rocky start for e-commerce as an alternative revenue stream for publishers just a couple years ago, it has managed to evolve into a legitimate model for many. Some got the hang of it early, while others ricocheted between platforms and functionality. What has remained a constant, however, is the role content plays in the mix.

Conde Nast's Allure, which launched a site-wide commerce model two years go and has grown to more than 5,100 "buy buttons" across Allure.com, embeds the shopping experience in the content. The point was to allow commerce to be editorially driven as well as to keep visitors engaged on-site. "Buy buttons were added to product review pages, and later to content and slide shows, enabling readers to conduct their entire transactional journey on the site," says Marie Jones, Allure's managing director of digital media and director of communications. "Using buy buttons allows our content to lead commerce. Every product on the site is selected by editorial regardless of whether it will be available for purchase."

Allure partnered with commerce platform Quidsi, which already sells products on BeautyBar.com and Soap. com. The former has features luxury brands while the latter sells brands at more mass price points. That range of pricing, which matched up with the Allure reader's shopping patterns, and the platform's strong customer service were two critical factors influencing the partnership.

Revenues from sales are split between Allure and Quidsi, says Jones. Allure.com attracts about 2.6 million monthly uniques, per Omniture.

THE ADVERTISER CONNECTION

Another editorially-driven concept spun out of the Allure Best of Beauty Awards--a print franchise, and a seal of approval, since 1996 that recognizes standout beauty products--which became the Pop-Up Shop. …

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