Apparel retailer Express is wading into social commerce with the pilot of a platform geared toward fashion influencers.
The Express Community Commerce platform enables consumers to sell and earn 10-20% commission on a selection of products, including an exclusive product line to be sold only through this program.
The retailer will provide coaching and education to the sellers, known as Express Style Editors, and will host dedicated meetups and a Facebook group. Sellers will also have access to networking tools to engage and connect with social followers — including an online storefront app known as Express Style Editor Central — and can receive discounts on Express clothing.
For example, those who join Express’ loyalty program can receive a 50% discount code for personal use on purchases for a period of time after creating a Style Editor account. (Express says the length of the discount period will be disclosed upon account creation.)
[See also: Evolution of How Consumers Shop]
Express has additionally pledged to provide brand and product training. According to an FAQ on the retailer’s website, sellers aren’t required to recruit other sellers, nor will they receive a commission from others’ sales.
The program is currently being piloted and is slated to roll out nationwide in the fall. The company, which operates more than 500 retail and factory outlet stores, expects to help it reach its goal of $1 billion e-commerce sales by 2024.
Social commerce is a burgeoning interest for retailers — eMarketer expects U.S. sales to reach $36.62 billion this year — as is leveraging the benefits of user-generated content. In addition to making sales, consumers who participate in the Express Community Platform will create a wealth of social content that Express will be free to use to amplify its marketing and merchandise.