A year ago, Fab.com pivoted toward its present model as a design flash sales site, and it’s been a stunning success, with 2 million members since launching eight months ago and a Crunchie award for best shopping app. But CEO Jason Goldberg envisions a much bigger future beyond flash sales for Fab.com as an Amazon-sized destination for design goods. Today, the New York City-based company is taking a big step toward that goal with the introduction of five weekly specialty shops for categories like fashion, pets and food that will more than triple the number of products Fab offers at any given time.
The shops will run for a week at a time on specific days and will refresh every week with new products. The Kids shop will launch this Wednesday at 7 p.m. ET followed by Pets Thursdays, Foodie Fridays, Vintage Mondays and Fashion Tuesdays. The fashion vertical will be powered through Fab’s recent acquisition of FashionStake. Users will be able to configure their email settings to customize which shops they want to receive notifications for. With the addition of the new shops, Fab.com will go from having about 3,000 products on the site daily to more than 10,000 items at a time. Ultimately, Goldberg wants to host tens of thousands of products on Fab.com.
Originally, Fab ran 3-day flash sales for a variety of items in categories such as jewelry, art, rugs and home accessories. It added month-long pop-up shops in September for specific themes and designers. Now, Goldberg said the company is trying to address the needs of consumers, who want to go deeper in specific verticals. And in the process, it’s moving away from being a flash-sales site to a more full-fledged e-commerce destination.
“We want to be where people go for design-oriented things, and it doesn’t matter if it’s a flash sale,” said Goldberg. “We think the opportunity is to build an Amazon-scale business in design.”
Goldberg said Fab doesn’t want to necessarily emulate the Amazon style of providing a huge catalog of products. It’s still committed to curating a smart list of items that users can discover through browsing. He said the site can support a lot more products without overwhelming the user experience.
It’s been an amazing year for Fab, which started out as Fabulis, a gay social networking site. The company had just four employees a year ago when it made the move to design sales. Last month, it zoomed past 2 million members, doubling from November, after launching in May. And it expects to hit 4 million members by the end of the year. It opened up to the public without an invite last month and is now rolling out internationally. The staff has grown to 128 employees in New York with another 40 based in India.
Goldberg said it will take years to reach the Amazon-sized scale he’s gunning for, but after the year Fab has had, it seems entirely possible that Fab will realize Goldberg’s dream.