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Foundermade Recap: 6 Key Takeaways on D2C Retail Success in 2021

By dev-staging

Tips for Success in the Direct-to-Consumer Space

Zip (formerly Quadpay) revealed a roadmap to direct-to-consumer (D2C) success during a discussion with Zip VP of Enterprise Sales Franchesca Gayadan and two of our merchant partners: Alexandra Fine, CEO and co-founder of Dame Products, and Taran Ghatrora, CEO and co-founder of Blume.  


Here are the top takeaways and the full video below. 



1. Help customers make an informed purchase decision 


You must strike a balance between offering consumers options, while providing just the right amount of direction.


Blume has homed in on a successful upsell strategy based on user testing and customer data. Ghatrora describes it as a “nudge,” equipping the customer with important information – what’s most popular, what’s recommended and why, what products are often bought together, or what need is met by a specific product.


“The consumer marketplace is so noisy that even something as simple as a quiz helps to personalize the experience,” says Ghatrora.


2. Increase conversion rates with buy now, pay later (BNPL)


Shoppers want more payment options and both Dame and Blume have accommodated this demand by offering Zip’s BNPL service.


For Dame, the option to pay in four equal, interest-free installments fit perfectly with the brand’s offerings. “We sell a durable good that will last a few years, so being able to spread out those payments to align with the life of the product is really helpful,” says Fine. “We want to make the products more accessible without lowering our price point and sacrificing product quality.” 


It was also a perfect fit for Blume’s Gen Z customer base. With most products under $30, offering BNPL allowed customers to buy more in a single visit by spreading out the purchase over six weeks. 

“Retention for Blume is stronger when people try more than one product, and the products are also more effective that way,” says Ghatrora. “Our average order value and retention have both gone up since implementing buy now, pay later.”

According to Fine, launching Zip “was a no-brainer to us. The offering made so much sense as a way to make our products more accessible, and aligned perfectly with our values and what we were trying to do as a brand.


3. Get back to basics 


The COVID-19 pandemic shook people out of their well-worn routines. As a young brand, Blume saw this as a moment to slow down and shift its focus from top line growth to efficiency.


“On the business side, COVID allowed us to double down operationally,” says Ghatrora. “We shifted warehouses and some of our manufacturers to improve margins and the basic unit economics of our business. This period has really prepared Blume for the next level of scale.


4. Embrace uncertainty and take risks 


One of the surprise silver linings of the pandemic? The opportunity to learn in real time. “Focus on creating clarity and planning ahead while acknowledging that things can change,” says Fine.


And did things ever change. Economies grinded to a halt, millions were out of work overnight and yet online shopping exploded. This fundamental shift shined a light on newer concepts like BNPL which helped reduce financial stress without adding debt during these difficult times. 


“If I could go back in time, I’d say the instability we’re feeling is an opportunity to double down on what’s working,” says Fine. “Let the wind at your back guide you forward.”

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