Business is booming online, with designers and firms launching digital shops to target a new kind of consumer. While Zak + Fox’s fabrics can be discovered in person throughout brick-and-mortar showrooms in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, London and Australia, the New York-based design and textile company founded by Zak Profera in 2012 launched its trade-only online shop just last week. Founder Profera shared with EAL the latest updates from the digital frontlines.
Zak + Fox's trade-only digital storefront
Tell us about your new online shop. What do you sell?
We launched last Tuesday to the trade exclusively, and currently offer over 40 pillows from our collection. We are introducing our vintage rug assortment within the next few weeks as well, since so many people keep asking to see the full collection we have on offer.
What particular features do you offer? Why did you decide to add an online shop?
We receive so many requests for pillows, which we stock plenty of already in our NYC showroom. Designers often need pillows in a pinch, or just hate making them in general. It can take as much work to coordinate one yard of fabric for a pillow going to a workroom as it does to coordinate 20 yards for a sofa, so we wanted to make it easier for our clients. It also gives us more of a forum to show finished goods and helps for visualization. The idea is that they’re stocked, and ready to ship within one to two days.
Zak Profera and dog, Shinji
Describe customer response so far.
We’ve had an overwhelmingly positive response off the bat — sales starting coming in the day we launched, and as designers realize we have an online shop now that they can browse for projects as they do with any other sort of ecommerce, we’ve received a giant spike in our trade registration accounts (which is needed for access to the shop).
Three of the brand's 40 pillow designs available in the new online shop
How do you decide what products to sell online? Do certain items or categories sell better on the web?
We’re testing the waters now by keeping the assortment tight and curated. The intention is not to water down what we do, which is sell fabric and vintage finds. But the shop offers designers a forum to view what we have, and it allows us to present our full collection to those not based in NYC. I don’t foresee us selling coasters or patterned knick knacks — but it certainly gives us the opportunity to be a bit more creative with the products we’re going to offer as the company grows.