In the late 90s, when online and mobile shopping first started to build steam, consumers were skeptical, including me. Why would I shell out cash for duds that I couldn’t try on in person? If it was pricey, even worse— I needed to feel the material, and evaluate the fit before I could pull the trigger. And shoes? Crazy! You need to try those puppies on! All things I might have said while holding a Auntie Annie’s pretzel, then disappearing into a J. Crew.
Well, ecommerce has grown up, and with free shipping and returns, better views of the products (including videos so you can see how a dress lays, or 360 views of a suede pump), I am a devotée. The convenience of quick shipping, stored credit card information and wide selection are formidable, and the prices are easy to evaluate so you know you’re getting the best deal. Hard for a mall to top that with it’s cranky salespeople, limited inventory and crowded parking lots. Based on declining sales at brick and mortar stores and malls closing across the country, I know that I’m not the only one who has made the shift to shopping online.
It seems like the end of the mall is near, so small retailers need to be shrewd about their next move. The problem is , larger department stores and e-tailers make shopping with them so alluring. Smaller retailers have struggled to offer the same perks: The costs of free shipping and returns, and the hassle of all that customer service and fulfilment is too much for them to bear. Often, I’d like to support these small businesses, but I end up purchasing the same items from the bigger guys so I can save money and have the convenience of changing my mind.
Problems solved: The Spring app is like a Mall for the mobile generation. It aggregates 2,000 different fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands under one virtual roof, so you can shop from multiple retailers at once. At checkout, you can pay for everything at the same time, and every purchase has free shipping and free returns— a lifeline for smaller stores that now offer more competitive shopping perks and reach more people.
I’ve been using the app a lot lately (you know, for research): I recently just scored this oversize black denim jacket by AG which I have been wearing on repeat, and this Blue Lapis facial oil by Herbivore Botanicals is now a part of my evening self-care routine.
Would be wearing this like crazy right now if we weren’t in a HEATWAVE, but I know it’s going to be my go-to for fall when it’s, um, actually fall.
This oil has fixed a breakout or two, and is perfect for all skin types.
Master & Dynamic makes some of my favorite headphones— they’re as beautifully crafted as they are sonically awesome.
Oooooh I love me a frayed, cut-it-myself hem! Lusting after these.
Also these Loeffler Randall shearling and metallic slide sandals which are just so FLUFFY I could DIE!
Sooooo fuzzy. I do fall and winter in LA, so these will keep my feet as warm as they need to be in our temperate seasons.
Spring’s minimal design makes it easy to find outfit inspiration and search for specific items (my recent “belt bag” search lead to this splurge). Many brands collaborate with Spring to offer exclusive specials and products, which is awesome if you like to discover unique items and to be the first to know about promotions (yes, please!). It’s also a great way to find new brands that you love, since it’s constantly recommending brands that are complimentary to what you’ve purchased or brands you “follow” on the app. They’re constantly adding brands, so if they don’t have what you’re looking for, it’s likely to be added soon.
All good news for your closet… bank account damage notwithstanding.
How do you feel about the transition from brick and mortar stores to online? Are you an e-commerce convert? Any shopping apps or websites that make the selection process easier for you? Let me know in the comments.