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Will 'showrooming' kill businesses? - Page 9

post #121 of 136
Pretty much completely agree with L.A Guy, who has spent far more time in the business side of this sub-culture then anyone else.

I think that the move into online has been awesome, atleast for me, the difference between now and pre-2008 is almost a world apart. Online stores were poorly run and administrated, didnt answer emails, didnt have good images / measurements. I think alot of this has been tackled well - its a world of difference to now from then.
post #122 of 136
I prefer buying shoes in a store than online shopping. Especially if I have no prior knowledge about sizing. Returns due to incorrect fit is such a hassle.
post #123 of 136
I prefer shoe shopping in B&M as well to deal with fit issues. But it is not always practical. For example, flying to NYC to try on shoes at Moulded because the Alden Modified last is so difficult to find (which I did). And ordering multiple pairs of shoes to check the fit (returning the rest or sometimes all of them) has gotten me in trouble.

I'd be more than happy to order shoes online if retailers offered a more flexible ordering and return policy. For example, I've had a very good experience ordering Allen Edmonds from Amazon. Free delivery and no fuss returns if they don't fit whether I order one pair or twelve.
post #124 of 136
Not sure whether this would translate to other retail, but this is where I think Warby Parker is killing it. They will send you 5 frames to try on for free and then you send them back and order the one you liked. They keep reusing the same pairs for people to try on (helping guarantee that you don't get a frame that someone else used/fuck up), and they make it much less likely that you will order something and then not like it.

Or any other retailers doing something similar?
post #125 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by gettoasty View Post

I actually agree with you up to the part of the coolness factor.
Shopping for clothes is not like traveling unless you are actually traveling and find yourself at a store during your trip similar to what Shah is doing. Then it becomes cool in the sense of experiencing something sentimental like finally meeting your idol.
I really enjoyed my marketing course but for the life of me cannot remember all the details like distributors, external and internal parties of influence (different spheres of consumers) etc.
LN-CC is located in a tourist country anyways right? I think traveling there is more of an attraction than saying "LN-CC is cool so I'm going to visit the country".
It's just a sentiment a minority of fashion conscious consumers care about IMO.

You're acting like luxury/high fashion consumers are these rational agents possessing perfect information, truth is many go to the stores they have had success in finding nice stuff and let the people there style them, a model that is not easily replicated online. I def agree that it is easier than ever to look for different Balenciaga retailers and price-shop but I don't see it as that common just because people her watch runway shows, know what pieces they're looking for, know their size and can envision how a piece will integrate with their wardrobe by looking it up online. Now the greater "risk" if you want to call it that is truly that large corporations will have both mass/large distributors and own smaller shops operating under a different/indie looking name and identity. Just like in music or whatever.

BTW I do not order from online stores very often, my online shopping is mainly about finding old pieces on the second-hand market (sufu/sz/ebay/here). Now when it comes to books I do a lot of amazon.fr/amazon.com orders.
post #126 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by js0930 View Post

Not sure whether this would translate to other retail, but this is where I think Warby Parker is killing it. They will send you 5 frames to try on for free and then you send them back and order the one you liked. They keep reusing the same pairs for people to try on (helping guarantee that you don't get a frame that someone else used/fuck up), and they make it much less likely that you will order something and then not like it.
Or any other retailers doing something similar?

I don't know if anyone else is doing this, but this business model rules, especially for a high price, low manufacturing and shipping cost item like a a pair of frames. The mark up on those things is tremendous (I just ordered 2 pairs of replacement temples for $180 - for 2 thin strips of metal.)

At the end of the day, you want to provide your customer with both convenience and confidence. Incidentally, a good B&M can and do stuff like this. For example, free alterations on full priced tailored clothing bought there until the customer is 100% happy with the results is pretty much a given. After all, a repeat customer is worth dozens, sometimes hundreds, of one-off customers. Capture and retain. It's not that hard in concept, but a lot of people just don't seem willing to make the effort and spend some money to make sure that this happens - fatal shortsightedness.
post #127 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by London View Post

Amazon is not going to put certain niche retailers out of business, just like Walmart didn't. Yeah Walmart wiped out many retailers, but other retailers learned how to compete against Walmart by targeting a higher end audience with a better offering and great service.

Walmart is targeting peri-urban centers and smaller cities not downtown NYC, totally different model, client types etc. Of course you can go more high-end than Walmart, they're the low end of everything they sell. This doesn't explain anything and def isn't transferable knowledge to the market we are talking about.
post #128 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by brad-t View Post

I think a fashion world ruled by big box retailers would be very unappealing. So I think it would be more appropriate to say I'm in denial.

Ever since fashion actually became a large and truly corporate market (so in the 90s) a lot of the brands/house have been part of large fashion conglomerates anyway.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of fashion stuff LVMH owns:
Christian Dior (forgot this one)
Fendi Fashion and Leather Goods
Donna Karan Fashion and Leather Goods
Emilio Pucci Fashion and Leather Goods
Givenchy Fashion and Leather Goods
Kenzo Fashion and Leather Goods
Berluti Fashion and Leather Goods
Louis Vuitton Fashion and Leather Goods
Marc Jacobs Fashion and Leather Goods
Loewe Fashion and Leather Goods
Céline Fashion and Leather Goods
Thomas Pink Fashion and Leather Goods
Acqua di Parma Perfumes and Cosmetics
Parfums Christian Dior Perfumes and Cosmetics
Guerlain Perfumes and Cosmetics
Bulgari Watches and Jewelry
TAG Heuer Watches and Jewelry
Zenith Watches and Jewelry
Hublot Watches and Jewelry
Chaumet Watches and Jewelry

Here's the one for PPR:

Luxury

Gucci
Bottega Veneta
Yves Saint Laurent
Alexander McQueen
Balenciaga
Brioni
Stella McCartney
Sergio Rossi
Boucheron
Girard-Perregaux
JeanRichard

Sport & Lifestyle

Puma
Volcom
Cobra Puma Golf
Electric
Tretorn
post #129 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post

You're acting like luxury/high fashion consumers are these rational agents possessing perfect information, truth is many go to the stores they have had success in finding nice stuff and let the people there style them, a model that is not easily replicated online. I def agree that it is easier than ever to look for different Balenciaga retailers and price-shop but I don't see it as that common just because people her watch runway shows, know what pieces they're looking for, know their size and can envision how a piece will integrate with their wardrobe by looking it up online. Now the greater "risk" if you want to call it that is truly that large corporations will have both mass/large distributors and own smaller shops operating under a different/indie looking name and identity. Just like in music or whatever.

You're late to the game, Fuuma. It's already happening. For example, Boyleston Trading Company, which sells brands like Kitsune, White Mountaineering, Mister Freedom, and any number of small boutique brands that would cringe at being on a bigger company, and has a very distinct feel (sort of haute streetwear) is owned by that online giant we hate called Karmal**p, which is a pretty big company, with $200M in revenues annually. There is no mention of the relationship on the site except in the legalese that no one ever reads.

Boyleston Trading Company could easily be Tres Bien Shop, or Norse Store, or any number of independent boutiques that cater to that crowd.
post #130 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by LA Guy View Post

\
You're late to the game, Fuuma. It's already happening. For example, Boyleston Trading Company, which sells brands like Kitsune, White Mountaineering, Mister Freedom, and any number of small boutique brands that would cringe at being on a bigger company, and has a very distinct feel (sort of haute streetwear) is owned by that online giant we hate called Karmal**p, which is a pretty big company, with $200M in revenues annually. There is no mention of the relationship on the site except in the legalese that no one ever reads.
Boyleston Trading Company could easily be Tres Bien Shop, or Norse Store, or any number of independent boutiques that cater to that crowd.

Oh I know, Margiela is a pretty good example, anyway this is only the tip of the iceberg as we're talking brands not production facilities, which are also consolidated. Now on the other hand even conglomerates like LVMH are small players compared to big companies in other industries.

See something like this:
http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/global500/2010/full_list/

In fact the biggest fashion brands are selling cosmetics (think L'Oréal who developed and manufactured the MMM perfume btw)
post #131 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by js0930 View Post

Not sure whether this would translate to other retail, but this is where I think Warby Parker is killing it. They will send you 5 frames to try on for free and then you send them back and order the one you liked. They keep reusing the same pairs for people to try on (helping guarantee that you don't get a frame that someone else used/fuck up), and they make it much less likely that you will order something and then not like it.

This is a great example of a business innovating/adapting to meet marketplace needs, rather than sitting on their hands and complaining about how "nobody wants to order glasses online".

I think Zappos pioneered this approach with their easy/free return shipping on shoes. (Not quite the same as just sending 5 free pairs of trial shoes, but innovative at the time nonetheless, tony hsieh was told over and over they were crazy to think people would ever buy shoes online).
post #132 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post

Oh I know, Margiela is a pretty good example, anyway this is only the tip of the iceberg as we're talking brands not production facilities, which are also consolidated. Now on the other hand even conglomerates like LVMH are small players compared to big companies in other industries.
See something like this:
http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/global500/2010/full_list/
In fact the biggest fashion brands are selling cosmetics (think L'Oréal who developed and manufactured the MMM perfume btw)

Luxury goods are glamorous, but really, the cash flowing through that industry is pretty miniscule compared to banking, pharma, oil, and retail in general. I think it will never be otherwise. After all, we can all live without Lanvin, but everyone except for the British need toothpaste. And the margins on toothpaste are pretty darn good too. I always love the "Now, 30% more per tube" branding.

I think that people would be surprised to see how and where their luxury goods are made.
post #133 of 136
Nice dig at my scraggly mouth friends overseas!biggrin.gif
post #134 of 136
This has been a good thread. Lots of interesting perspectives.
post #135 of 136
I just skimmed through the article but found bits and pieces interesting: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444873204577535352521092154.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_RIGHTTopNewsCollection The Customer as a God
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