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Wanelo’s Shopify integration unites independent shops on one platform

Wanelo’s integration of Shopify’s retailers within its mobile application brings the social shopping network a step closer to its goal of building a shopping platform that unites all of the world’s merchants.

With the agreement, Shopify’s 100,000-plus store owners can now quickly and easily enable the “Buy on Wanelo” feature for their products by installing the Wanelo Shopify App in Shopify’s App Store.  The tie-up aims to give Wanelo customers the seamless connection between mobile and in-store service offered in travel and other fields at the biggest shopping time of the year.

“We realized that so many of our favorite stores on Wanelo are using Shopify’s platform, so we knew there was a big opportunity to launch a Shopify-specific integration,” said Deena Varshavskaya, Wanelo’s founder and CEO. “We already have eight thousand Shopify stores on Wanelo who have a combined total of 170 million saves from 7 million followers, so it just made sense.

“The problem is that these independent shops all sit on different ecommerce platforms, so they’re really hard to discover,” she said. “Aside from Wanelo, there is no platform that works to tie them all together and make it easier for us to discover and shop from them.”

Ambitious vision
Wanelo’s vision is to build the world’s largest discovery platform for shopping on a phone. It aims to unite all of the world’s shopping – from unique, independent brands to large retailers – and allow shoppers to discover and buy their products in one place.

Although Wanelo’s user base is 90 percent mobile, its shoppers who contemplate a purchase on mobile face a high barrier that slows down completion of a transaction.

“The longer the process, the less likely they are to complete the purchase,” Ms. Varshavskaya said. “Some of millennials’ biggest frustrations with mobile shopping include slow Web sites that aren’t optimized for mobile and slow checkout processes, so we knew there was an opportunity to make the mobile checkout experience really fast and seamless.

“We’re just scratching the surface with the 200-plus brands that launched with us, and this Shopify integration is giving consumers the ability to buy directly from even more amazing shops,” she said.

Urban Outfitters and Nicole Miller are among the brands in the Wanelo social shopping network.

Three weeks ago, Wanelo moved to streamline the customer journey by launching a “buy” button that enables purchases from within the network’s mobile application.

By using the “Buy on Wanelo” feature, consumers on the app can buy any of 500,000 items directly from brands’ product pages without having to be redirected to the retailers’ ecommerce sites to complete purchases or to enter credit card information.

Wanelo’s partnership with Shopify underscores the social shopping circle’s commitment to supporting small and medium sized businesses.

A global dream.

“Because Wanelo is driven by people, we see that small unknown brands can show up on the platform and gain visibility by acquiring saves and followers,” Ms. Varshavskaya said. “So many independent stores talk about the value of Wanelo in leveling the playing field for them with big brands, and we believe now is the time to invest our efforts in this market.

“Without Wanelo, these smaller stores wouldn’t be able to compete for the same attention that more established players can easily get,” she said. “Shopify stores participating in ‘Buy on Wanelo’ means they’re right there selling alongside brands like Urban Outfitters, BCBG and Rag & Bone.

“This becomes a new key revenue channel for them.”

Final Take
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York.