Vice President of Product Peter Tanapat gave me a quick tour of the new site (the first full redesign since March 2012) last week, and many of the changes are well-executed variants of what you’d expect — the design is now responsive, meaning that it works on tablets and smartphones by adjusting to the size of the screen, and the top articles are highlighted with big pictures at the top of the page, in an area that Tanapat referred to as the “Jubmotron.”
From a business perspective, the biggest change is probably the addition of e-commerce features. Users will now be able to buy products after trying them on virtually using StyleCaster’s Try On! Studio (based on technology from StyleCaster’s acquisition of Daily makeover last year), browse and purchase editors’ picks, and purchase the other fashion that’s written about on the site.
While incorporating e-commerce into fashion sites is hardly a new idea, founder and CEO Ari Goldberg argued in the redesign press release that StyleCaster is “the first publisher to provide advertisers and brands with both the technology and premium editorial content that will effectively help readers find their products through the buying decision process.” The company says this is the launch of its third big revenue source, in addition to advertising and Try On partnerships.
One otherthing that Tanapat emphasized is the fact that the redesign was also built with existing StyleCaster content in mind — many redesigns leave older articles looking weirdly formatted or downright unreadable, but he said, “A lot of the content is evergreen. We have a lot of traffic to pages … that were published six months ago.”
Founded in 2009, StyleCaster Media says that across StyleCaster and other sites like Beauty High, The Vivant, and Daily Makeover, it reaches 7 million unique visitors every month globally, across desktop, mobile, and tablet. (Update: Just for a point of comparison – and not an apples-to-apples comparison – comScore says Stylecaster.com had 616,000 desktop unique visitors from the United States in November.) The company also says that 35 percent of its traffic comes from mobile devices.