Founder of curator.com, Eddie Vivas’s experience with LinkedIn taught him how crucial personal relationships can be, which he has applied to a new retail concept. Curated.com plays the role of a matchmaker with people interested in starting or taking a step in an outdoor sport equipped with carefully-vetted experts in that sport to mentor them on the journey. It is likely to be called by the name of concierge e-commerce. Just like a concierge, Curated.com’s experts know the lay of the land and match the consumer’s needs and personal preferences with what is available. moreover, they often get tipped for their expert advice as well.
The company’s version of concierge e-commerce is a mixture of social commerce and influencer marketing, both integrated together in the right proportions and with an important twist.
“Just because you have a ton of Instagram followers doesn’t mean you’re very good expertise. It means you’re good at posting photos.” Vivas says. “We provide true experts who give you good advice in a way that doesn’t exist on the internet today or in traditional retail. Curated.com is what social commerce and influencer marketing could be.
Currently, curated.com is focused on outdoor sports. However, Vivas has his eyes on other aspects where expert advice is needed. He further asserts the fact that his goal is to enter into every category where consumers can leverage advice. “My long-term vision is that for a lot of basic purchases that you don’t have to think a lot about, you can to Amazon. But when you are buying things that really matter, that you are going to spend time on and invest in, that’s where we will be” he mentions.
Before the company got any customers, Curated.com had to get experts like Jake Parker, who literally raised on skis in Montana.
Curated.com is a place as Vivas dreamed of, where he could give unprejudiced advice and guidance in equipment selection that fits the customer’s needs, goals, and budget. Whenever the customers come onto the site, they are asked a series of questions to develop a profile of their skill in the particular sport or what they are looking for, what they want to achieve, and also their budgetary constraints. By understanding what the customer wants, Curated.com can match them with the most suitable expert.
Today, curated.com has over a million customers with its cohort of experts with revenues increasing 300% in 2020 alone. When asked if this huge influx of business might be triggered by the pandemic and that business would return to a more moderate pace once it resolves, Vivas is convinced Curated.com is onto something big.