Lyst is a global international company based in London. The project is notable for several aspects. It is an aggregator that brings together many online retailers (830 online stores worldwide) and allows you to find the product you need at the best price. The platform works as a search engine, connected not only with multi-brand sites, but also directly with online stores of fashion labels. Commission is charged only in case of purchase.
This service is really useful when it comes to the things of premium and luxury brands, and Lyst specializes in these categories. Instead of manually searching for the most profitable option, comparing the prices of different stores, and even dealing with delivery to Russia, you can see the best options within one site.
In the West, such services, which can be called fashionable search engines, have long been in demand. “Since we started in the UK and the USA, these markets remain the most popular to this day,” said Chris Morton, CEO of Lyst, in a comment to. - Nevertheless, we have already noticed how rapidly growing interest in the platform in new countries and new markets. So after a couple of years, the answer to the question in which country Lyst is most in demand can be very unexpected."
The LVMH concern is the key investor in the platform. In 2018, the Fashion Law portal, referring to Reuters, reported that the total amount of attracted investments amounted to £ 50-100 million ($ 66-132 million). In 2018, external sales grew 45% to $ 325 million, Lyst said it said it would use funding to expand into new markets and translate the platform into new languages, and invest in technology, including for improvement of search algorithms.
“Each country in which we launch Lyst is completely unique, but the meaning of our business is the same everywhere,” says Chris Morton. “We offer a platform where you can find the best fashion products with a minimum of effort. The key differences between different countries are the local stores we work with. At the same time, it is fundamentally important for us to attract not only local stores, but also global retailers. In this situation, we really can offer the best prices and products. Looking forward, we intend to develop technical capabilities and resources to truly localize product offerings while introducing functions for local markets.”
Twin platforms can also speak of the success of the project in the world. For example, in 2016, Lyst sued the California-based project Lystable, which offers identical services and chose a suspiciously similar name. After a short trial, Lyst won in court.
Another new project for the Russian market is the Glami platform, launched in 2013 in the Czech Republic. It is also an aggregator for online retailers, but the navigation here is different from Lyst. Since the site works not only with luxury goods, brands are delimited in a very convenient way: there are categories of mass market, sports, premium, luxury, even eco-friendly brands are separately taken out. The platform also offers to find a product at the best price.
Glami CEO Tomasz Holdbod notes that “according to research, shoppers do not have one virtual place they use to shop. Entry points can be both search engines (28%) and branded sites (22%). Most people don't even think about any particular brand when they start shopping. 35% of them see the product for the first time just before paying for it."
International analogues and key differences
Another popular platform in the world is an online store aggregator - Shopstyle. It does not work in Russia. What is the key difference between these services. For example, Chris Morton, CEO of Lyst, believes that it is primarily a matter of choosing the things themselves: in his opinion (and in the opinion of the editors), they are much more interesting on Lyst.
Using artificial intelligence, Lyst offers a personalized service and acts as a stylist of its kind. “Lyst's algorithms track thousands of changing data every minute from over 70 million customers a year and over 12,000 brands. This breadth of understanding gives us the ability to determine, based on user behavior and information, the specific items or designers that are most appropriate for customers and find the most relevant resources,”says Morton.
Using these same algorithms, Lyst provides interesting analytics every year: a selection of the most popular brands, fashion queries, logos, sneakers, influencers, etc. The company's quarterly and annual fashion market results are used by the most authoritative publications in the world - from The Business of Fashion to The Guardian.
It is too early to make forecasts and talk about the success of fashionable search engines in Russia. On the same Lyst, for example, all categories of goods, due to various circumstances, are represented only by the Farfetch platform - also an aggregator, but, as Chris Morton noted, this is due to the fact that the project has just started. In the near future, the list of online stores will grow: “Every time we launch a platform in a new country, we want to make sure that the selection of products is ideal for local customers,” emphasizes Morton. “This means that the retailers we work with can not only provide convenient delivery, but are also able to translate sites into the language of the country in which we are launching Lyst. Due to these limitations, the choice of partners is not very large at the moment. First, it is important for us to make sure that the client will be comfortable working with the site. We have already planned to increase the number of our partners in the Russian market in order to provide more options to buyers."
In Russia, fashionable search engines really have every chance of success. According to a recent survey conducted by Glami in seven countries, including Russia, the majority of respondents spend more than an hour shopping online, which is not so little, and specialized services will definitely help save time.
In addition, if Lyst manages to negotiate with local retailers, it will significantly simplify the life of all those who are used to buying luxury goods on foreign sites. As a reminder, on January 1, the threshold for duty-free import of goods decreased to € 500 (36,500 rubles), and if the purchase price exceeds this amount, the client must pay a duty of 30% of the value of the goods. In this situation, aggregators, selecting the most budgetary and profitable options in Russian online stores, will save not only time, but also buyers' money.>