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E-Commerce Sites Hoping More Couples Say ‘I do’ to Online Wedding Planning

As we move forward in an increasingly technological age, there are a few things that seem to have stayed the same. Wedding planning happens to be one of those things, but not for lack of trying. More and more start-ups are desperately hoping that couples will invest in online wedding planning.

The wedding planning field is still largely made up of small businesses and independent contractors who get clients based on word of mouth. Unless you’re working in a boutique like Kleinfeld Bridal, the one featured in the hit TLC show, “Say Yes to the Dress,” odds are you’re relying on past experience and the recommendations of clients.

Despite the fact that so many wedding planners and bridal boutiques are small businesses, the industry itself is huge. In fact, revenue for the wedding industry is projected to reach $63 billion by 2021.

That’s because approximately 88% of Americans will marry at least once in their lifetime, and wedding planners across the nation are getting ready for the 2017 wedding season to begin. According to wedding planner Tamie Myers, most engagements take place during the holiday season. And after New Years, the calls start coming in.

Myers explained that it typically takes around 18 months for couples to plan a wedding. Any longer is “too long” for most people. Despite the growing trend towards vintage and rustic weddings, the business is more lucrative than ever.

The size of the industry is exactly what inspired Kellee Khalil to make her way into the business of weddings. Khalil said that being involved in her sister’s wedding as the maid of honor in 2012 is what prompted her to start her own wedding planning business.

After starting and stopping her wedding site a few separate times, Khalil found that couples weren’t interested in buying products, but in receiving advice about wedding planning. This led Khalil to restructure her business to provide two things: budget planning and connections to professionals in the wedding planning industry.

Despite Khalil’s online successes, many other wedding planners refuse to move their businesses online. According to Khalil, wedding planning is one of the very few industries that hasn’t fully gone digital.

Ultimately, online planning takes much of the searching out of the equation. Heather Marie and Aniekan Udo, who live in New York and are planning a destination wedding, said they were both impressed by Khalil’s site. So while these online boutiques haven’t quite taken over the wedding market yet, a number of entrepreneurs are betting that online wedding planning will be the key to the future of matrimony.