Sephora has inked a deal with Zappos to sell beauty products through the Amazon-owned e-commerce site, The Business of Beauty has learned.
In a webinar with brand partners seen by The Business of Beauty, Sephora outlined how Zappos will add another major retailer to the company’s US distribution network while marking the footwear seller’s biggest move into beauty to date.
“Our mission at Sephora continues to centre around welcoming more people into the prestige beauty community; this includes finding innovative ways to expand access and discovery,” the webinar read in part.
In a statement, Sephora did not provide further details on the announcement, but said, “we look forward to sharing more about the partnership in the coming months.”
Zappos has expanded from its core footwear assortment since launching in 1999 to include fashion and accessories. It stocks a few beauty products, mostly from footwear retailers, including a moisturiser set from Birkenstock and Fearless, a perfume from Nine West.
The partnership isn’t necessarily a sign that a Sephora-Amazon deal is imminent; though the e-commerce giant acquired Zappos in 2009, it mostly operates independently from its parent. There is some overlap, with brands like Olaplex and First Aid Beauty carried at both Sephora and Amazon, while Lady Gaga’s Haus Labs, Amazon’s first exclusive beauty brand, entered Sephora in 2022.
Since the pandemic, Sephora has entered a series of partnerships designed to expand its reach. In 2021, Sephora opened shop-in-shops inside Kohl’s department stores, bringing beauty-worthy lighting and prominent signage to many locations (this replaced and in some ways expanded upon a similar arrangement with JC Penney). The play gave Sephora, which historically had a mall-centric, metro footprint, more of a presence in the suburbs. In 2020, the beauty company launched a digital storefront with Instagram Checkout and started its same-day delivery program with InstaCart. Internationally, Sephora purchased British beauty site Feelunique to fuel its expansion into the UK. Rival Ulta Beauty, meanwhile, has entered Target big-box stores.
According to the webinar, Sephora is offering the Zappo’s sales opportunity to all of its brands but distribution will be handled by Sephora. Zappos customers will have access to Sephora’s Beauty Insider Program and Sephora shoppers will be able to collect loyalty points at both retailers.
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