The Scoop: Azazie is an online retailer that sells a variety of wedding apparel to suit modern brides, bridesmaids, and wedding guests. Whether you’re looking for a simple elopement dress or a vintage wedding gown, you can choose your style, customize the size, and save yourself a lot of time and money on this bride-friendly website. Since its launch in 2015, Azazie has supported the bridal community and provided resources to help individuals get the look they want at a price they can afford.
Charles Zhong is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur with advanced degrees in business and computer science. He has worked at Microsoft and built tech startups to solve problems in a variety of industries. His career has been shaped by finding creative solutions to everyday problems, so when he saw his bride-to-be struggling to find a quality wedding dress, he saw an opportunity to disrupt the wedding retail industry.
In 2015, Charles started an online company called Azazie to be a one-stop dress shop for brides, bridesmaids, and wedding guests of all ages, sizes, and budgets. He began this project in true California startup fashion by working out of his garage, and now he runs a company that employs 55 people in its headquarters in San Jose.
The Azazie platform has created a body-positive and fashion-forward space where women can discover new looks from the comfort of home.
Ranu Coleman, Chief Marketing Officer at Azazie, said the team takes pride in offering custom-fit dresses that come in a variety of colors and styles. The easy-to-navigate portal empowers brides, bridesmaids, and wedding guests to put together a unique look that brings out their beauty and confidence.
Azazie’s founding mission was to lower the cost and increase the accessibility of fabulous wedding day and special occasion apparel, and today the online retailer serves 1 in 10 U.S. brides.
The Virtual Showroom Helps Bridal Parties Get the Perfect Fit
When you land on the Azazie website, you have a variety of search filters and browsing tools at your command, so it’s pretty easy to start sifting through elopement dresses, junior bridesmaids dresses, flower girl dresses, maternity dresses, and other niche categories. The online platform features over 120 bridal gowns and more than 300 bridesmaid dresses in 70 colors.
Azazie has collections to suit outdoor weddings, ballroom receptions, and beachside celebrations. Whether you’re planning a small courthouse service, or going all-out for a lavish wedding day, Azazie has got you covered. You can even shop by price and find many beautiful gowns for under $200.
Azazie offers dress sizes from zero to 30, and it has free custom sizing tools for the bust, waist, and hip measurements. The length can also be adjusted before making a purchase. These custom sizing tools can be helpful for petite brides, plus-size brides, pregnant brides, and everyone in between.
The Azazie platform has more than enough sizing, color, and style options to help customers get exactly what they want and feel confident in their purchase.
Bridal parties collaborating on their wedding day look can use the virtual showroom feature to look at dresses and discuss options in real time. A bride or bridesmaid can create a showroom and invite people to join so they can share their opinions about different dress styles and color schemes.
“Brides love this feature because so many of them have bridesmaids living all over the U.S.,” Ranu said. “Thanks to the showroom, they don’t have to be physically together to choose a bridesmaid outfit.”
Young, Budget-Conscious Brides Trust This Online Retailer
Azazie frequently surveys its customers to find out who they are and what they value. Such market research has enabled the online retailer to meet the needs of a new generation of brides and grooms.
Over the last few years, Azazie has become particularly popular among millennials who are looking for a trustworthy and progressive place to shop for themselves and their bridal party. Ranu told us the retailer’s core demographic is women between 25 and 34 years old.
These young professionals decide to do their dress shopping online because they see it as more affordable and convenient. They appreciate that Azazie doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all approach to wedding apparel and provides enough options for them to personalize the final product.
The Azazie team is just as young and enthusiastic as its audience, and its customer service reps go to great lengths to answer questions, address issues, and make wedding planning that much easier on modern couples. From hosting Q&A sessions on social media to making personal dress recommendations through email, the customer service team is adept at helping brides decide what styles, colors, and themes will work best for their special day.
Azazie is in the business of creating memories and helping brides feel beautiful, and it has seen many heartfelt testimonials and positive reviews as a result. The Knot named Azazie as its 2019 Couple’s Choice Winner, and customers have given it an overall rating of 4.7 stars.
Emily Archambault used Azazie to find her wedding dress as well as her bridesmaids dresses, and she wrote on The Knot that she enjoyed having so many samples, styles, and budget options at her fingertips.
“Azazie is easily one of the best decisions I have made while wedding planning,” she gushed. “I am a plus-sized bride and my dress is beautiful, without compromising on fit or quality. I couldn’t believe my eyes at the dress or the price tag!”
The California Startup Gives Back to the Community
Azazie has gained international recognition for its high-quality products, user-friendly sizing tools, and affordable pricing model, but the Azazie team does a lot of good work behind the scenes as well.
For instance, Azazie runs an annual scholarship program to inspire the leaders of tomorrow. Students can apply for the scholarship by writing an essay about what leadership means to them. The company also partners with The Princess Project, a California nonprofit, to give underprivileged teenagers access to beautiful prom dresses.
In response to the 2020 pandemic, Azazie has made an effort to provide helpful resources and support as brides have to change, postpone, or cancel their wedding plans.
Azazie has adopted a more forgiving return policy in recent months, and the startup company has donated dozens of bridal gowns to healthcare workers, first responders, furloughed employees, and other brides-to-be impacted by the pandemic. Every Friday, the team gives away several dresses to ease the stress and financial strain of couples planning to tie the knot in such uncertain times.
In May 2020, Azazie donated over 30 dresses to brides across the country. “It’s been very rewarding,” Ranu told us. “It’s something we can do to help.”
On top of its give-back projects, the Azazie team constantly studies the market to see opportunities to bring great value to customers and disrupt online retail.
In the last year, the Azazie team has been working hard to launch a new platform to provide more affordable and fashionable options for everyday life. Blush Mark has a versatile line of tops, bottoms, rompers, and other casualwear that ranges in size from XS to 3X. The website’s flash sales and competitively priced loungewear have attracted the attention of young online shoppers on a budget.
“We wanted to provide our customers with the same values as Azazie, but for ready-to-wear, with convenience, speed, and affordability being top of mind,” said Charles Zhong. “We developed Blush Mark to provide consumers with casual fashionable looks that are high quality and very affordable, without sacrificing style.”
Shop at Azazie to Refine Your Look & Celebrate in Style
Over five years ago, Charles Zhong decided to launch a platform that would make finding a wedding dress or bridesmaid dress much less stressful. Azazie disrupted the market by offering sizing tools, a collaborative showroom, and affordably priced gowns in a convenient online interface.
Now brides don’t have to worry about showing up in person for fittings or corralling their friends and family members together in a store to choose a dress style. They can go online and find a variety of styles, colors, and sizes at their fingertips.
As an award-winning and fast-growing retailer, Azazie has distinguished itself as a leader in the market and a pioneer toward the future of wedding dress shopping.