eBags fills new executive roles in merchandising and content innovation
March 3, 2016 05:01 PM
EBags on Thursday filled two new executive positions in merchandising and content innovation and promoted two other executives as it works to get better known as a leading online retailer of travel accessories, says company CEO Mike Edwards.
Scott Erdman, formerly with fashion retailer Bluefly Inc., joins eBags as chief merchandising officer and Krista Paul, founder of travel loyalty site UsingMiles, becomes vice president of content innovation. Both are new positions, says Edwards, who was named president and CEO in July. Edwards also purchased enough shares to become one of the top two equity owners of eBags, No. 174 in the 2015 Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. Since assuming the CEO role he has taken steps to revise eBags’ pricing, grow private-label sales and expand internationally.
Edwards says Erdman will help eBags boost its standing as a marketplace that can offer thousands of brands without carrying inventory because Erdman has experience at similar companies that rely on suppliers to drop ship orders to consumers. Erdman previously worked as chief merchandising officer at Bluefly, where he spearheaded the e-retailer’s transformation into a marketplace featuring products from brands that hold their own inventory and ship orders from their own fulfillment centers, eBags says.
Paul founded UsingMiles in 2009 and managed the company’s digital and social strategy, including consumer public relations, influencer marketing, interactive marketing and customer engagement. Edwards says Paul will serve as eBags’ public relations voice and promote the company as an expert on travel-related products on social media, including YouTube, and with bloggers.
“Our capacity in digital media globally is under-developed,” Edwards says. He says social media represented less than 2% of eBags’ web traffic last year, and he wants to see it grow to 10-15% in the next year. While at ShopAtHome.com, Paul launched the company’s first blogger advocate network and grew it to 350 active bloggers in a 12-month period, Edwards says. Paul also grew the company’s then-new Facebook presence to over 1 million fans within 13 months, Edwards says.
A majority of eBags’ customers shop using mobile devices, so Paul will delve into those shoppers’ data to produce a more personal way to interact with them, he says.
EBags also made permanent Mike Frazzini’s title as chief technology officer, a position he was already filling in an acting capacity. The web-only retailer also promoted Chris Seahorn to vice president of marketing from his role as director to give eBags two vice presidents overseeing different functions of marketing, Edwards says. Paul fills the second role as vice president of content innovation, which includes overseeing public relations, social media, bloggers, digital content and mobile marketing.
The moves follow the retailer’s ownership change late last year, in which Edwards and co-founder Peter Cobb bought stock from the former majority shareholder, and the Jan. 6 hire of Dan Hogan as chief financial officer and chief operating officer.
EBags has recently started selling Birkenstock shoes, activewear from brands Scottevest, Icebreaker and Soybu and its new branded mobile device power charger Lifeboat, Edwards says. In addition, eBags late last year introduced a 110% price guarantee, matching by 110% any price a shopper finds that is lower than the price on eBags.com.