Online shopping has become common as common as a trip to the mall. A whopping 80% of customers now shop via the web.

Michael Aldrich invented the concept of online shopping in 1979. And in the United States alone, we are currently at $279 billion annually, up from $157 billion in 2009. With smartphone technology, we have seen a spike of 23.8 billion in 2015, up from 1.2 billion in just 16 years.

Nordstrom Was Ahead of the Game

Nordstrom was one of the companies who saw the writing on the wall back in the 90’s and set up their website. They realized early on that having an online presence was going to be key if they wished to compete.

“We’ve made significant investments to enable customers to shop seamlessly across stores and online as well as to grow our business through new markets,” said Dan Evans, PR Director for Nordstrom. “Our ecommerce business including Nordstrom.com, Nordstromrack.com and HauteLook has grown from approximately 5% in 2006 to nearly 23% of total company sales.”

Online Shopping is Easier for You but has Negative Impacts on Actual Stores

In fact, online is proving to be more sustainable than brick and mortar. Marked by disappointing sales, Macy's closed 68 of its stores nationwide. The closings resulted in the loss of 10,000 jobs. JC Penny's had it worse, resulting in 138 store closings.

“It’s tough out there in our sector of retail. We are holding up pretty well, but the pace of change is incredible,” said Pete Nordstrom, the retail giant’s co-president and current director. “We will be a survivor for sure and likely we will thrive. Can’t say the same for some of our traditional mall based brick and mortar dominant peers.”

Dressli is Revolutionalizing the World of Online Shopping

Another company who are hoping to join these elite set of retailers and make their digital footprint is Dressli. Co-founded by Joseph Nejman, a global entrepreneur and former Googler, his track record speaks for itself.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, Nejman moved to California after graduating from Harvard to launch his first business venture in Venice Beach and then moved to Silicon Valley in 2005. As an Entrepreneur In Residence for Eric Schmidt’s TomorrowVentures, Joseph led seed investments and co-founded the Tomorrow Media incubator to focus on social commerce.

He worked in Berlin for a year serving as Managing Director of StudiVZ, once the largest social network in Europe. Joseph was founder and CEO of Brandcasting Unlimited, the company responsible for Britney Spears’s digital business and strategy. Prior to TomorrowVentures, Nejman worked at Google developing strategic media partnerships.

Dressli's Unique Concept

The concept behind Dressli is not unlike other retail sites, but it has no overhead and creates a social experience by way of live chat giving the customer a guided tour through the shopping experience.

"Social commerce has been a holy grail in the startup world without many clear winners. We’ve been doing extensive R&D in the space for the past 4 years," said Nejman. "Dressli provides a seamless social-shopping experience where others have failed. Our live shopping-chat is a market-first innovation. Our mission is to be a platform helping digital content creators be monetarily rewarded which is a different approach to most other fashion communities like Polyvore."

How Dressli Came to be

The idea came about when Nejman had the fortunate and very unique opportunity to manage digital and online strategy for Britney Spears during her Circus comeback.

"My biggest learning was the potential for influencers to drive online commerce and the importance of stylists in driving fashion trends," said Nejman. "At TomorrowVentures I connected with Dressli cofounder Dmitry Chourpo who had just built and sold a fashion social network to ASOS, the world’s largest online fashion retailer. We both believe by connecting shoppers to stylists and other influencers for personal recommendations we provide a better e-commerce solution -- more like the experience of a high-end department store. Our Dressli platform was built to enable real-time interactive social shopping across any device."

Joseph Nejman is most interested in fashion platforms like Dressli that can help democratize and positively disrupt a traditionally very exclusive market dominated by insiders.

"I’m inspired by the growing number of young, independent original fashion voices using blogs, Youtube, Instagram and other creative media channels to become increasingly influential," said Nejman. "We built Dressli to better support and empower aspiring and professional fashion creatives to grow their business online."

With a global reach, a great concept and virtually no competition, it seems Dressli is destined to succeed. For more information on Dressli, visit Dress.li.

Image credit: Dressli

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