The 5th year, with Tacos ‘n Tequilas.
We celebrated REVOLVE family couple weeks ago with 1,000+ employees and their plus ones. Wrapping up the last 2 days of work, closing budget and spend, greeting Happy New Year across the teams, am feeling very humbled and proud of how REVOLVE / FWRD has grown in the international scale.
Some fun facts to share: we currently have shipped to 130+ countries / administrative regions outside of the United States, offering Free Returns in Hong Kong, Australia, and the European Union (more to come!) with competitive service experiences comparing to local retailers. What do these mean? It means, for example, our AU customers would choose to shop Australian brands with us, because of the accessibility and service we currently provide.
I am very humbled, because behind all of these, it is our product team making thousands of tests to launch new user experiences; it is our branding team saying, “where do you need us, we will be there”; it is our warehouse team juggling shipping schedule for every region to meet a local delivery TT; it is our legal team closing every negotiation and applying every trademark we could; it is our buying team on boarding new brands in demand and replenishing inventories based on our algorithms; it is our BI team digging every data at request, to support us making changes and decisions; it is the quick adaption and reactions, that 16 years forward, a business can still be going strong and to be undoubtedly known as “the launching pad of emerging brands”.
I am very proud, because after all of these, it is those e-commerce giants taking off their glasses saying “I’ve never seen a unique business like this, and am learning niche Beauty brands on your site”; it is social media agencies in Eastern Europe asking “please start marketing here,”; it is marketplaces in Latin America pitching “you should sell through us”; it is banks in Asia approaching “we would like to sponsor and partner with you”; it is discovering customers in the Middle East shipping us their returns (because they kept more!); it is endless opportunities waiting to be identified, they might look small, but they might grow fast.
Before this decade, cross-border e-commerce was not even a thing, “how would you trust to pay on a website and receive something legit from a country that you’ve never been to”, I recall being constantly asked. And within this decade, whether it’s After Pay or WeChat Pay, Amazon Global or Ali Express, they are already part of our daily lives.
At the beginning of this decade, 1 out of 7 girls wanted a Philip Lim Pashli Bag on a Black Friday sale in Asia. And at end of this decade, 7 out of 10 girls in Asia might want to find something niche, something unique, that they have the confidence level to dress in comfort without having to show off a logo, that they don’t want people to know where they shopped their cool statement finds.
It has been a tremendously transformative era in fashion retail, which emphasized so much on individuality, diversity, and equal opportunities, instead of the mentality to “getting what everyone else is eyeing on”, regardless if it’s for shoppers or designers. It has been so freaking challenging in fashion retail – our time is more fragmented, our audiences are more segmented – yet it’s been so so so interesting to discover the world through consumers’ eyes, and their perceptions on what “style” means to them today, and every other day.
Hardly share professional perspectives in this personal space, but I am dedicating this post to this new industry that I have worked around the clock this passing decade, called Cross-border Fashion E-commerce, that often times people like to ask me “what exactly do you do”. This decade has opened up my perceptions to the world in the career space, I am more than thankful to all those who worked with me and mentored me, I look forward to continue observing, absorbing, and contributing all the knowledges and learnings I have, in the years to come.
Disclaimer: views expressed above and experiences shared herein are my own.