How DailyLook grew its international revenue from 0 to 25% in one month

By Michael Carney , written on July 11, 2013

From The News Desk

Less than three weeks into its international launch and Los Angeles women's fast fashion etailer DailyLook is already seeing 25 percent of its business come from overseas. This is no small feat given its early success domestically, which saw the company generating on the order of $1 million per month in revenue, according to those close to the company, from more than 400,000 highly engaged email subscribers. So what was the key to translating this success overseas so quickly?

According to CEO Brian Ree, it was a viral launch strategy. In late Spring, DailyLook posted a counter on its website tracking the progress toward 50,000 international signups, announcing that it would cut the ribbon on its international business if and when this milestone was met. The company further created an artificial deadline of June 23rd, saying that would abandon the plan if it couldn’t gather enough sign ups in time -- a threat which it came within days of having to make good on.

To incentivize its current and new members to help spread the word, DailyLook offered 1,000 “look points” for each friend that joins and makes a purchase, where each 2,000 look points converts into a $20 credit on the site. The company then turned to fashion bloggers to spread the word. Needless to say, the strategy appears to have worked.

DailyLook is finding the most traction in "the usual suspect countries," Ree says, including Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the UK, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. In these key countries, conversion rates have been surprisingly similar to those in the US, according to the CEO, although overall international conversion remains slightly lower than they company sees domestically.

There are certain limitations to operating internationally, not the least of which have to do with fulfillment and import duties. DailyLook offers worldwide shipping beginning at $14.95 and offers free shipping to many countries on orders over $150. Customers pay all import taxes and duties at time of checkout. International customers get the same friendly return policy as those in the US, but are responsible for covering their own shipping. If DailyLook expects its international business to rival that of is US operations, it will most likely need to create dedicated fulfillment infrastructure eventually.

As we’ve covered previously, DailyLook is unique in the ecommerce fast fashion category for its focus on selling complete looks, rather than individual pieces of apparel and accessories. The company has also built a personal styling engine similar to that offered by many footwear etailers, but which is far less common in the apparel world. The company has approximately 3,000 items in its ever-growing catalog, each which are mixed and matched into dozens of different looks and categorized -- and thus made searchable -- according to genre, style, season, and brand.

The company has yet to alter its merchandising in any way to cater to its international audience, but Ree notes that he has seen different merchandise selling well in particular markets. As additional data is gathered, it may lead to more effective merchandising and product marketing.

Daily look raised a $2.5 million Series A round in April of this year from UpFront Ventures (known at the time as GRP Partners), RRE Ventures, SV Angel, Novel TMT Ventures, Matt Coffin, Thomas Mclnerney, and Rachel Zoe. The two-year-old company appears to have found a niche helping style- and cost-conscious women navigate the noisy fast fashion category. Now, its demonstrating that the strategy translates outside the US.