August 6, 2012, 2:31 PM

ShoeDazzle adds 1 million new members in July

And its average number of items per order rose 17% in Q2.

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Members-only retailer ShoeDazzle.com today said it added more than 1 million new members in July, bringing its member base to 13 million. The retailer claims it now has more than double the number of members than its competitors in the members-only space, which includes JustFabulous and BeachMint. JustFabulous says it has 6 million members; BeachMint did not immediately provide membership figures.

In March, ShoeDazzle.com moved away from a subscription model to try to broaden its customer base. In the four months since changing its business model, its new member sign-ups are up 25% compared to the previous four months, the retailer says. 

When members had to subscribe, ShoeDazzle sent each member one e-mail each month that contained a link to a personalized showroom on the retailer’s web site. The selections were based on a shopper’s order history, as well as her answers to the site’s “Style Survey,” which asked shoppers to answer such questions as “Which is the shoe that your closet most calls for?” and “Which cosmetics are most likely to grace your face?” The shopper was then required to respond to the e-mail—to place an order or to elect to skip that month—to avoid being charged. The retailer still sends those e-mails, but no longer charges consumers if they do not reply.

"While we built a sizable business in a very short amount of time serving customers through the subscription model, our research showed there was an enormous segment of women who really wanted to buy from us, but not necessarily on a monthly basis,” says Bill Strauss, CEO of ShoeDazzle. “By listening to our clients, seeing how they shop, and extending our unique styling service to the rest of her outfit, we've seen our biggest month yet.”

In the past few months ShoeDazzle has also added several new categories, such as apparel. The broader product mix likely helped its average items per order rise 17% in the second quarter, compared to the first quarter, the retailer says. ShoeDazzle declined to disclose the actual number of items per order.

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