Shopping app Wanelo announced that users will now be able to make purchases directly within the app. The roll out of in-app buying, which the company began testing in August, will allow users to shop more than 500,000 products from 200 brands including Urban Outfitters, Nasty Gal, Nicole Miller and Rag & Bone.
Wanelo currently features 20 million products and hopes to increase the number of product and partner brands available for direct purchase over time, reported Re/code.
"The future of retail will have a single dominant platform for shopping, and that's what Wanelo is building and getting closer to with Buy on Wanelo. In the next year, we'll continue to bring on more brands and focus on the long tail of commerce that we believe will create more user value. It's about uniting shopping and enabling the discovery of more amazing products from anywhere in the world," said Deena Varshavskaya, founder and CEO, Wanelo.
Wanelo joins the growing trend of social shopping and technology platforms that are adding in-app buy capabilities. For example, in September Twitter launched a "buy" button so that consumers could purchase items directly through their feeds.
Wanelo has been focused on product discovery since its launch in 2012 as a social network. Plus, the app has the ability to reach millennials, a much sought after consumer group by retailers.
Over the summer, Wanelo partnered with Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN) to add video displays to the store's juniors' department in order to showcase merchandise from the social shopping site. It was a strategic move by the department store to court younger shoppers and implement mobile and social into physical stores.
"I've really been wanting to transition from just a social network that's full of images of products to a fully commercial platform," Varshavskaya told Women's Wear Daily. "From the retailers' perspective, we know that brands are concerned with two things: reaching millennials and mobile conversion. We have the millennial user, and we know how to convert them."
Wanelo users upload product images from their favorite e-commerce sites and can see products chosen by other consumers and stores they follow. On average, the platform attracts 1.5 million to 2 million visitors a month.
For Urban Outfitters, this is the first time the brand has allowed a third-party marketplace in the United States to sell its products.
During Wanelo's test of the feature, it found that users purchased a product three times as often when it could be ordered directly inside the app. Wanelo takes a 10 to 15 percent cut of each purchase. Currently customers can pay with credit or debit, but the company will soon add Apple Pay.
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