When FabFitFun launched its flagship product, the seasonal subscription box, in 2013, it had around 2,000 members. The boxes offered little variation and were curated with products based on co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of its media arm Katie Echevarria Rosen Kitchens' personal preferences. But as the company grew — now to over one and a half million members — it naturally had to tweak its product.
Now, the e-commerce and digital media company is launching the "next evolution of the FabFitFun membership," according to Echevarria Rosen Kitchens. FabFitFun, on Tuesday, announced that beginning with its summer box, members will have the most customizable shopping experience from the company to date.
"The reality is that we are just a much more diverse group of women," she said. "So what a 16-year-old in San Diego wants may not be the same thing as a 65-year-old in Kansas City, and we have both of those women within our membership."
This is what drove the FabFitFun team over the past several years to lean further into providing a more customized experience to its members.
The company initially began testing the waters of customization by offering slight variations of the products included in the box, giving customers a choice between colors, for example.
"If we were going to put a scarf in the box, we might do it in three different colorways," Echevarria Rosen Kitchens said. "Because you may hate blue, but you really love pink, and you want that pink scarf."
FabFitFun eventually gave even more control to customers regarding what specific products go in their boxes. Before Tuesday's launch, annual members were allowed to choose up to five out of the eight products included in their boxes and seasonal members could choose up to three products in each box. Now, annual members can customize every item in their box if they choose, while seasonal members can select one additional item in their assortment for a total of four customizations.
The additional products, Echevarria Rosen Kitchens said, have allowed the company to feature more "niche, up-and-coming brands, brands founded by people of color [and] products that specifically target different skin tones and skin types," which is something the company has placed a greater emphasis on over the past year and expects to grow more in the years to come.
"People's personalities and tastes just vary dramatically from person to person, and we are no longer living in a one size fits all kind of world," Echevarria Rosen Kitchens said.
But customers aren't coming to FabFitFun to be presented with endless options, she added. Consumers are looking to make choices among a highly curated selection of products, something Echevarria Rosen Kitchens likens to a prix fixe menu at a restaurant.
"You don't want to be bothered with an endless Amazon scroll of products," she said. "There's not a lot of joy or fun had in that experience. We don't want to give you anything and everything. We want to bring you the best of the best."
FabFitFun on Tuesday also launched a "swap for credit" feature where members can forgo their seasonal box in exchange for credit to use toward purchasing products on its site during the company's seasonal sales. Both annual and seasonal members will have unlimited swaps.
The new features come as the coronavirus pandemic continues to disrupt retail. FabFitFun has had to adjust its assortment as certain categories, like home goods, became more popular over the past year, Echevarria Rosen Kitchens said.
"We're very grateful to be an e-comm-based brand during this insane and crazy time," she said. "I think there's a whole slew of new e-comm shoppers who just never went online before. Now, having experienced the sort of ease and breadth and value that e-commerce can offer, I don't think they're ever going back."
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Clarification: This story was revised to include information made available by the company after press time.