Dwell Media, the San Francisco-based publisher of modern design bible Dwell, has hired Brandon Huff as evp of digital media to lead a new e-commerce push. Huff, who most recently was Yahoo's vp of commerce, will be in charge of overseeing all aspects of Dwell's digital agenda, from content distribution to design to the holy grail of magazine media—e-commerce.
Until now, Dwell has taken the well-traveled route of working with third-party retail platforms like Gilt and OpenSky, and currently, AHAlife to create commerce experiences. Dwell’s new commerce effort, launching in early 2014, will be fully integrated into the magazine’s site (even if that means Dwell will be holding some of its own inventory—a rare move for a media company). “If there’s something we’ve decided to make available, consumers will be able to transact right on the site,” Huff said.
“I was very direct with Michela [O'Connor Abrams, Dwell’s president and publisher] and [Dwell founder Laura Deam] that the idea to come in and bolt on a shopping-like experience wasn’t something I was remotely interested in,” Huff said. “When people come to Dwell, they’re engaged and inspired. … Why have them click out to another site?”
In addition to the e-commerce push, Huff also wants to enable Dwell readers to connect to local suppliers and designers through the magazine’s site. Eventually, he’s also hoping to launch a new native mobile app to replace Dwell’s current replica tablet edition.