Brandless is an online store that sells wholesome, organic and speciality food and other household goods. Each item is sold for $3 and some are even less.
The idea behind Brandless is that customers are paying just for the item and not for the markup that often comes along with brand names and certain household names and promises.
Often times when we are shopping, we pay more for certain brand name items to pay for marketing and advertising and perhaps not necessarily the best product.
Founders Tina Sharkey and Ido Leffler met when they were both were living in Mill Valley, California. Both have extensive experience in online communities and ecommerce and wanted to give this project a go.
Sharkey is the founder of iVillage and the former CEO of BabyCenter and Leffler founded several companies, including Yes To, Inc. and Yoobi. They founded Brandless in 2014 to set a new standard of quality for consumers. Specifically, they hope to appeal to people who seek quality and transparency and consumers who are sick of choice overload.
Brandless is now based in San Francisco, California and operates an additional facility in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
They distribute foods that are free from GMOs, organic products and fair trade coffees. They also sell health products like vitamins, cruelty-free beauty products and paper products that comply with sustainable forestry practices. There are products for many home needs including soap and cleaners and even kitchen tools like tongs and spatulas as well as plates and bowls with a simple and clean design.
Each product is in simple solid colored packaging with a few descriptors of simply what the product is and any other information like if it is kosher, organic or gluten-free.
Each product is $3 and some are two for $3 or some are as low as three for $3.
Many of the products cost significantly less than something you could find in a grocery store. For example, they sell maple syrup, peanut butter, almond butter and other nuts that you may not otherwise be able to get for such a low price. Typically, maple syrup and almond butter can cost well over $5 each.
The founders say that by offering only one or two types of each product, they are able to keep costs down even more. Instead of needing to spend money on both the product and marketing to make a product stand out so people buy it, Brandless cuts that piece out completely and sells the product to you. The product speaks for itself and the low cost and high quality combination will bring you back.
Since the start, Brandless has been able to expand into several new product offerings including pet and baby products. These offerings are another market that falls victim to heavy marketing and consumer choice fatigue and Brandless hopes to fix that.
The company has also started to offer a new subscription service so once you find your favorites, you can make sure they are coming to you as often as you need them.