By Shani Silver

Published on August 4, 2015

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Photography by Zola

Certain apps come into our lives (phones?) and change everything. We don’t remember how we got around before Uber, and we certainly don’t remember how we split the dinner bill before Venmo. For anyone who is currently engaged and planning a wedding (or anyone who needs to buy a gift for that person!) Zola is going to wow you.

The app is essentially a wedding registry for 
everywhere
, not just one or two specific stores. Not into physical gifts? Gifts of cash can be sent through Zola too! There are fun, necessary tools like Group Gifting (where has this been all our lives?) and the company recently launched a new feature that allows you to virtually shop a store from your
phone
. We chatted with Laura Holliday, CMO of Zola, to find out what makes this app a
must
for the newly engaged. 

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Photography by Zola

What inspired Zola?

Zola co-founders Kevin Ryan, Shan-lyn Ma, and Nobu Nakaguchi have been to their share of weddings, and with each one, they were faced with the impersonal nature of registries and the lack of gift options that reflected their friends’ tastes.  They saw a growing need to address the gap between the existing registry experience, which hadn’t evolved since the registry was invented in the 1920s, and the unique needs of today’s always-connected and on-the-go couples.  Kevin, Shan, and Nobu set out to build a new kind of wedding registry designed for the modern couple, reinventing old systems, and voilà, Zola was born.  

What is one thing you wish EVERYONE knew about Zola?

Zola is not just a cash registry, it’s not just a product registry, and it’s not just an aggregator from other sites.  Zola is the only registry that offers ALL of those options, so couples can create one truly customized registry that meets all of their needs.

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How does your new app feature change the registry experience? 

The most exciting thing about our new app is the 360° virtual shopping feature, which merges physical and digital worlds to create the ultimate registry experience. Couples no longer need to choose between registering in-store or online; With 360°, they can now browse gifts in real-world settings (like an apartment or store) via 360-degree, immersive images with the swipe of a finger, from the comfort of their own couch. 

Watch the video
.

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What is this summer’s most popular registry item?

The Brooklyn Slate cheese board is one of our most popular items this summer. Most newlywed couples are thinking about entertaining, and this piece is perfect because it can be dressed up or down and blends in with any home decor style. It’s a favorite among guests as well, as it’s a great price point and they know the couple will use it all the time (and hopefully think of them when entertaining)!

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What’s the best part about working at Zola?

I love that we’re solving a problem that so many of us at Zola have faced ourselves.  Not only have we all been to weddings (and dealt with trying to navigate a couple’s registry to find a meaningful gift), but many of us are married and have experienced the frustrations associated with the other side of the process.  Because we’ve experienced many of the same headaches, we’re able to relate to our Zola couples first-hand and provide a truly personal experience.  It’s refreshing and invigorating to work with a group of passionate individuals who believe in what Zola is trying to accomplish. 

Download Zola here
!