THE YES is an AI-powered shopping service for fashion product recommendations. Since 2018, THE YES has developed a personalized shopping feed that learns users' styles as they shop across hundreds of fashion e-commerce sites. Now a part of social platform Pinterest, The acquisition will help Pinterest with its growing efforts in the social shopping and ecommerce marketplace sphere, attracting creators to its platforms and encouraging users to shop products styled by creators. Thanks to THE YES, Pinterest’s users can discover more products that align with their style, and the algorithm gets smarter as they browse.
E-commerce growth has been explosive, however, marketplace expansion has already outpaced it. This unprecedented rise in marketplaces gives consumers a significantly wider choice of digital platforms to engage with and spend money on, driving greater competition across the online commerce landscape. Meanwhile, marketplace operators have been creating tools and resources for brands wishing to increase sales, test new markets, acquire new customers or leverage external logistics capabilities.
E-marketplaces have become consumers’ online destinations for convenient shopping, increasingly becoming shoppers' main online destination. Brands are actively exploring new ways to not only partner with leading marketplaces, but also create their own. Marketplaces provide sellers with data-powered solutions and reduce overhead costs and logistics risks. In volatile times, brands draw on their services to support and strengthen their own capabilities and resources. As marketplaces become more crowded, leading platforms are helping brands to optimize their storefronts and create cutting-edge experiences. With carefully crafted services, marketplaces are helping brands to stand out from the vast catalogs of products and maintain their brand image.
Recognizing the importance of influencer marketing, leading marketplaces and social media platforms are designing affiliate programs that allow influencers to curate their own shoppable storefronts. Marketplaces are positioning themselves as leading brand partners by building an ecosystem of services. While barriers to starting an online business or brand are lower than ever, many young creatives and entrepreneurs still find the process of getting off the ground and scaling their offering challenging. For established brands, marketplace resources and capabilities streamline all necessary procedures to meet the unprecedented demands of the modern consumer. From AI customization and data-informed management tools to warehousing and logistics solutions, marketplaces ensure that brands and sellers can thrive in the online space where customers expect seamless, personalized customer experiences. It seems to be a win for all, yet, before joining a marketplace, DTC companies should ask how much control they’ll have over their brand experience; how saturated the marketplace is; what consumers expect from the platform; and what kind of data they can access. Brands must understand the specific capabilities of each platform to leverage them in the right way.
With hundreds of brand merchants on its platform, THE YES has built an extensive fashion taxonomy that uses human expertise and AI-driven machine learning capabilities to power one of the most comprehensive algorithms in fashion and commerce. THE YES’s brand relationships and shopping expertise can potentially be applied to other categories on Pinterest’s industry leading social platform such as home, beauty and food.
This article originally appeared in the PSFK iQ report, Multi-Brand Marketplace Strategy.