"In the physical world, when you go to a showroom, you're not really seeing a personalized showroom to you … What we allow digitally is that it's tied to your login experience. If you log in, whether you’re from Neiman Marcus or a small business, the showroom that you're seeing and presented by that brand is exactly the pricing and experience that they want you to have. When people see how easy that is, it's hard to go back to physical only." — Kristin Savilia, CEO of JOOR
Digital technology has transformed nearly every facet of the retail experience. But it’s not just on the consumer side. Technology is also reshaping the wholesale buying and selling experience.
Kristin Savilia, CEO at JOOR, a leading wholesale management platform, is at the forefront of transforming how wholesale buyers and sellers interact. JOOR brings more efficiency, transparency, and visibility to the B2B ecommerce process, allowing buyers and sellers to remain nimble amid ever-shifting consumer expectations.
Savilia joined a recent episode of the "Unpacking the Digital Shelf" podcast, "Transforming the Wholesale Buying Process in Fashion," to share how JOOR is innovating B2B and helping buyers and sellers thrive in today’s competitive retail environment.
Driving Next-Gen B2B Ecommerce: Reinventing Wholesale Buying and Selling
Savilia, who spent nearly a decade as a buyer for Macy’s, innately understands how fashion makes its way to market — and she’s seen the inefficiencies in the wholesale buying and selling process up close.
For far too long, the wholesale experience has been overly manual. Paper sheets, Excel spreadsheets, and limited personalization were hallmarks of the process.
But JOOR is changing this.
The company, founded in 2010, serves more than 12,500 brands and 325,000 retailers in 144 countries. The platform processes $1.5 billion in wholesale transaction volume every month.
Though JOOR has been in business for over a decade, the pandemic accelerated its growth.
"Originally, JOOR launched as a mobile-first tool where you took an iPad with you to market, and you digitized that experience of walking a showroom or walking a trade show and actually taking orders," Savilia says. "But it really took the pandemic for folks to realize that there's a better way to do wholesale buying and selling. The pandemic forced everybody onto their couches and they had to find a way to do business that did not involve [being] in person."
Delivering a Personalized Showroom Experience
JOOR is innovating wholesale retail by driving personalization and optimized B2B ecommerce.
"In the physical world, when you go to a showroom, you're not really seeing a personalized showroom to you … What we allow digitally is that it's tied to your login experience. If you log in, whether you’re from Neiman Marcus or a small business, the showroom that you're seeing and presented by that brand is exactly the pricing and experience that they want you to have. When people see how easy that is, it's hard to go back to physical only," Savilia says.
How the platform works is pretty straightforward: A retailer logs in, and JOOR displays a showroom that is customized just for them. Brands also can set up digital appointments with larger, high-end retailers, like Bergdorf Goodman or Harrods, to view the showroom together in real-time.
They then can determine what’s known as a "style-out." In a traditional, physical showroom, this would involve a seller putting items on a rack that they think a wholesale buyer might like. JOOR has recreated this interaction in a digital environment.
The platform also serves small businesses, giving them a self-service ecommerce experience where they can create their own rack and purchase items on their own. The platform allows buyers to easily check out, replacing the traditionally slow invoicing process that has characterized wholesale buying for years.
Bringing Enhanced Content to Wholesale
JOOR also has invested in product content, especially 3D imagery, Savilia says.
"When you’re in an environment that's not physical anymore and you can't touch [a product], you need to show as much as you can." — Kristin Savilia, CEO of JOOR
Similar to how it’s become a mainstay on the consumer side, 3D imagery is becoming more prevalent on the B2B side of retail. JOOR has been leaning into this for years. It actually forged a partnership with a company in February 2020 — fortuitously right before the pandemic — to integrate 3D image capabilities into its platform. The imagery brings JOOR’s virtual showroom experience to life for wholesale buyers and sellers.
"I remember thinking to myself: 'This is going to take a really long time to catch on, but I want to be ahead of the curve.' By April, [3D imagery] was our most popular product," Savilia says.
JOOR is also integrating social to improve its virtual showroom experience. Sellers can embed their TikTok and Instagram content. These features allow buyers to gauge product availability more easily and determine their assortment.
They also significantly reduce showroom time, as buyers and sellers no longer have to wait for trade shows, Market Week, or other big events to interact.
"What we're seeing is over 50% of our buyers are actually buying outside those windows [of big events or trade shows] now," Savilia says. "When they used to always buy in those windows, they've now chosen to buy closer to the season, closer to the delivery times. That is something you can't do if you don't have a digital experience."
Driving Results for Brands and Retailers
JOOR provides a wealth of data for brands and retailers that allow them to better forecast trends, carry the right assortment, and increase their operational efficiency.
Rather than relying on Excel spreadsheets, buyers have real-time access to data to inform their decision-making. However, Savilia says data alone isn’t the be-all, end-all for buyers, but it can help them significantly.
"As a former buyer, I'll stand here and tell you that you can't do your entire buy on data, or you'll have a very boring assortment," she says. "There is an art to being a buyer, and I lived it at Macy's. But why wouldn't you want as much information as possible to guide that decision? That's the role that JOOR plays."
Between the data it provides and the digital experience it delivers, JOOR is driving meaningful results for wholesale buyers and sellers:
- In its first year, the average brand on JOOR that goes from a non-digital to a digital wholesale selling process increases its sales by 42%.
- Buyers also reduce their showroom time by 30%, allowing them to see more brands in much less time.
- Buyers can avoid duplication and not waste time or money accidentally purchasing the same or very similar products from different brands.
- The platform reduces time-to-site because teams don’t have to spend an inordinate amount of time trying to wrangle product content and copy from brands.
“It increases your selling window, and it enables you to be first-to-market,” Savilia says.
Helping Wholesale Buyers and Sellers Navigate Disruption
JOOR isn’t done innovating yet. The company recently announced a new feature to help buyers and sellers navigate ongoing supply chain disruptions more effectively.
The feature, called JOOR Pay, accepts all currencies and payment types, which gives buyers more payment flexibility. JOOR also has introduced net 60 terms at no risk to brands or retailers.
In this capacity, JOOR effectively serves as the mediator between the two parties, allowing brands to get paid faster and retailers to stretch out their payments. Along with foreign exchange conversion, JOOR also offers fraud protection.
"It really is speaking to the times and really allowing people to have business continuity in these tough times," Savilia says.
JOOR is powerfully harnessing technology to deliver a best-in-class B2B ecommerce experience and address the most pressing business challenges for wholesale buyers and sellers. As a result, it’s unlocking new business opportunities for them, too — something that will drive more effective B2B interactions and lead to a much better experience for shoppers.
And that’s a win for everyone.
To learn more about the innovation happening in wholesale, listen to the full podcast episode of "Unpacking the Digital Shelf."