Unboxing retailing’s latest trend

With Your Mosaic Box, local online retailer Chioma Amegashie is bringing her own brand of specially curated lifestyle items into the ripe subscription box marketplace.

Chioma Amegashie has always been a little ahead of her time.

Amegashie, a UW–Madison Business School graduate and owner of internet-based retailer ShopMosaiconline.com, or MOSAIC for short, first launched her strictly e-commerce retailer business in 2007, but consumer acceptance wasn’t quite at the level it is now.

Since she re-launched MOSAIC in 2016, she’s grown the company considerably and, if projections are reached, that upward trend will continue. The retail landscape, however, has become increasingly competitive.

The current retail landscape continues to be extremely challenging for brick-and-mortar stores, Amegashie notes, but the sweet spot continues to be in the e-commerce space, which is still experiencing double digit growth, year over year.

“The ‘retail apocalypse’ has resulted in many shuttered doors and bankruptcies across large national retailers, and that will continue, further fueling e-commerce,” says Amegashie. “‘Speed is life’ is even more amplified in e-commerce, as customers expect a great brand experience, with great service, and even faster deliveries.”

The customer wants more personalization in e-commerce, explains Amegashie, which is driving explosive growth for subscription-based models that build relationships between a consumer and a brand, and facilitate repeat purchases.

That’s where Amegashie hopes to again be at the forefront of retail evolution, and why she’s launching Your MOSAIC Box, a new bi-monthly (every other month) subscription box service that will provide customers with “an opportunity to travel, in a sense, and discover primarily handcrafted artisanal products and emerging brands from around the world,” says Amegashie.

What’s in the box?

After some in-depth analysis of her business model, Amegashie says the most natural MOSAIC brand extension for growth was into the subscription box business model. Subscription boxes “provide automatic monthly recurring revenue, the holy grail to planning your business more effectively,” she explains. “It increases the lifetime value of a customer, creating a longer-term relationship. It also brings my brand to life in a more unique way.”

MOSAIC’s customer base is primarily women who are global enthusiasts and who are inspired by unique items for themselves or for gift giving, according to Amegashie. Her vision for www.yourmosaicbox.com is the connection to a much larger customer base and a more engaged/vested customer because they’re actively choosing to subscribe.

“Consumers are time crunched and inundated with too many choices,” says Amegashie. “They like the convenience of curation — pulling items together for them — which is pivotal to my brand. Personalization is key and this business model delivers on the surprise element, connecting subscribers with the discovery of great new product.”

Staying true to her MOSAIC brand, Amegashie will personally curate the primarily handcrafted artisanal picks from around the world, and those boxes will get delivered right to her subscriber’s doorstep. “I want them to anticipate getting the box every other month and to stir the senses.”

Your MOSAIC Box will typically feature lifestyle products like jewelry, accessories, and home accents and distinctive gifts, notes Amegashie. The boxes are valued up to $200 — though priced less — and they will vary between three to five items, depending on Amegashie’s finds.

While Your MOSAIC Box is similar to other subscription box services in that it serves the subscriber’s need for convenience and personalization, what sets it apart is Amegashie blends travel with her curation. “You never know where I may go to find that great, new item, and I plan to take my subscribers on a journey as I scout product and grow.”



Outside the box

Amegashie understands what it takes to find great products. She has more than 20 years of experience in retail, including as a buyer sourcing a variety of products from Hong Kong, India, Europe, and other international locales for top retailers like Marshall Field’s, Esprit, Mervyn’s, and Pier 1 Imports.

“I offer my distinctive point of view and bring the best of my travels to my subscribers, wanting them to travel, in a sense, through me,” Amegashie states.

From Stitch Fix and Birchbox to Target’s curated Cat & Jack monthly subscription box, retailers large and small are paying attention to this emerging revenue stream to essentially sell more products, which is always the end goal, notes Amegashie. As the consumer’s desire for customization increases, she expects the subscription model will become even more relevant. “Only 15% of online shoppers have adapted to this model so there is huge growth potential,” she says.

“I am not aware of any other businesses here in Madison adapting a subscription box model,” adds Amegashie. “The subscription economy is still an emerging trend so I think it is key for local business owners to learn more about the variations of the subscription concept that may fit their business model and how it could potentially grow their business. Consumers want a high-quality, premium brand experience, and I think this is a great way to further connect with your customers while thinking ‘outside of the box.’”

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