Ah the holiday season. A time of turkey, family, and the desperate search for cool stuff to give your loved ones.
Storenvy unveiled a redesigned website today with a new emphasis on product discovery and debuted 100 brand pages today that tell the stories of featured brands.
“More and more, people buy things because of their meaning and the story behind that thing, not just because of how it looks or what it costs,” CEO Jon Crawford said. “We’ve found that brands who are good at storytelling tend to be much more successful and that inspired this evolution.”
Storenvy started as a platform that makes it easy for anyone to open an online store. It provides tools for designing a digital storefront, displaying products, marketing, online checkout, inventory and order tracking, delivering deals, and sales tracking.
In a recent interview at Storenvy’s San Francisco offices, Crawford said that the store builder was the first step, but that it doesn’t solve the challenges merchants face with awareness and distribution.
The team decided to create a marketplace that aggregates all the items from the stores and turns it into a social shopping experience, with a mix of clothing, home decor, music, books, health and beauty products, food, and more.
The new Storenvy puts the brands and their stories at the forefront, so you can learn about an artisan’s inspiration, background, and creative process.
Shoppers have a personalized feed based on items that they “envy,” as well as the option to search for specific products, stores, collections, and people, or what is new and trending. There is also a “collections feature” for bookmarking and organizing products.
Crawford said that consumers are tired of the same cookie-cutter stuff that everyone else has and demand is high for unique items. At the same time, there are hundreds of small-scale craftspeople and artisans out there looking for a place to publicize and sell their wares.
Storenvy now works with 60,000 brands and features over two million products. Storenvy gets over 1.5 million “envies” a month. Its main competitor is Shopify, and there is also some overlap with Magento, Etsy, Bigcommerce, Big Cartel, Volusion, and others.
It is backed by $6.5 million from Intel Capital, Spark Capital, and First Round Capital.