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Grant Stone - Official Affiliate Thread

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by GrantStone, Feb 17, 2016.

  1. AJ1

    AJ1 Senior Member

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    As a customer buying a more premium boot/shoe, I like the idea and feeling of having a brand new shoe. I know I may be an outlier but think it just adds to the experience of buying a shoe, let alone a premium boot/shoe. This really applies to A grade only, if I know I'm buying B grade, signs of wear would be acceptable to a certain extent.

    Since you are a relatively newer shoe company, you may have to be more accommodating but in the future may want to enforce the "no signs of wear" policy. I know when I buy shoes I make certain the shoes look brand new just in case I do need to return them.

    Could also charge a fee if there are any signs of wear to help offset the lost revenue from 'b' grade offerings. I think if everything is clearly outlined in T&Cs, customers should be understanding.


     

  2. EZB

    EZB Distinguished Member

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    I totally understand. I have a similar problem in a completely different paradigm that I have to manage. I don't think my suggestion would create too many pools though. Basically, right now you are discounting every returned A into a B. This potentially creates a lot of excess B inventory, and I doubt the $15 restocking free really makes up or much of it. By creating a single additional inventory category "A-," you avoid a lot of the problem. You also can expand your market by including those who may want to try a pair of GS shoes, without the risk of restocking fee. Instead, these customers can buy a grade-A shoe and keep it if it works, only receiving a grade-A- shoe for exchanges. For returned (i.e., not exchanged) grade-A shoes, you still get the restocking fee, but no longer have to discount the shoe to grade B. Customers who are sure they will like the size and model, but who don't mind an A- shoe can buy those for a smaller discount than you currently sell them. Furthermore, somebody can actually try a grade-A- shoe and return it for a refund minus the restocking fee. If a shoe is returned multiple times, you recouped the restocking fee EACH time.

    TL;DR:
    1. You can sell the returned/exchanged shoes for a smaller discount
    2. You can expand your market by reducing customer risk
    3. You can sell the same returned/exchanged shoe multiple times as an A-, either recouping the restocking fee for exchanging it for another shoe of same A- grade with each transaction.
    The only downsides here are that you have to manage a third inventory category and make sure that the shoes aren't further degraded to B shoes.
     

  3. Genericuser1

    Genericuser1 Senior Member

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    From your seconds page it looks like you are grading the shoes as prices vary from 50% off new to 20%. You could just alter your text (I'd put a short line of text right above where it says B grades) that details shoes could range from customer returns for fit to minor cosmetic defects and are priced accordingly. You could even add a page that has 5-10 sample photos of shoes, MSRP and Price they were listed at to give a buyer an idea of what they can expect.

    A 10%-20% discount for a shoe I know was just tried could be attractive for some. Not really sure where the line is.
     

  4. Ben B

    Ben B Active Member

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    One question would be if most of the returns are due to people trying to find their correct size, could you have a program these you could send out 2-3 sizes to be returned? There could be some cost to this which could be applied to an eventual purchase. One thing I love about the Leo last is if I buy a 9D, it will fit like all the rest of my GS. If I was interested in a new style and wanted to see it in hand to decide, I wouldn’t even need to try it on or at least bend the vamp. If I returned that pair, it could be sold as new.
     

  5. M635Guy

    M635Guy Distinguished Member

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    I started the day thinking I was going with the GS captoes with some nice trousers, but decided to go with denim and a blazer instead, which put me in the Dune longwings
    [​IMG]

    Love these a lot. :)
     

  6. pedromvu

    pedromvu Active Member

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    Really? I was under the impression that in regards to shoes, trying them on was not something that devalue them as long as it was not abused.

    I mean in stores no one limits you how many shoes you can try and that doesn't mean those shoes now worth less, same with most clothes.

    One should be extremely cautious of how much and where they wear their new shoes if it's still undecided about fit, but perhaps some people use them for hours before deciding I don't know.

    Grant stone policy already states that the condition should be without creases.
     

  7. ROCK123

    ROCK123 Member

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    What about try on shoes. If people are unsure about size send them try on shoes.
     

  8. M635Guy

    M635Guy Distinguished Member

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    I'm going to guess that (A) it might not diminish the problem as much as you might think (B) the cost of shipping is a bit onerous and (C) the logistics, investment in sets of shoes and sanitary concerns all make a set of try-on shoes a losing proposition.

    FWIW - I like the sound of what @EZB was suggesting. It's reasonable and fair IMHO.
     

  9. ReppTiePrepster

    ReppTiePrepster Distinguished Member

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    There have been some very interesting suggestions that seem incredibly impractical and confusing. With some of these suggestions I'd say screw it. I won't try this new brand.

    I think Grant Stone should continue your same policy, but add that if a particular customer sends back shoes that have been creased, that customer will no longer be able to purchase shoes with a free return. They've tried on their size, and most of your shoes are built on the Leo last. There shouldn't be a need to keep on ordering and returning anyways.

    I remember a couple of years ago, Adam from Alden of Carmel started to get a bit of a strict (I'm using a kind word here) reputation for this exact issue with the Shell Cordovan shoes he sold. He was so firm and very explicit with his standard for return up front that he actually sent back shoes and wouldn't grant returns (at least one anecdotal account I read). The expectation was set (and made very clear publicly on SF), and I don't believe he's had problems ever since (or maybe he has and he's just given up). I suppose the demand for Alden shell shoes could make that standard acceptable for that constituency. For Grant Stone, you may be at that place where you can afford to set a firm standard. Your product is out there. This community knows about your shoes/boots. And this thread does a great deal to support you through a de facto advertising campaign. Maybe it's time to stand firm.
     

  10. BackInTheJox

    BackInTheJox Distinguished Member

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    I tend to agree with a “firm” stance, but I realized it may be difficult as a newer company. I’m my world, new Dermatologists sometimes have to tolerate some pretty flaky patient behavior (no shows, repeated last minute cancellations, showing up way too late unapologetically, etc) in order to successfully build up a patient base for a new practice. One might argue that ridding yourself of those people early is best for long term sanity, but it’s not always cut and dried.

    I do see “abuse” of the system in other brands. People mention how they will buy a shoe, walk around in it on carpet for like 6 months at home, then decide it’s not for them and send back for a full refund. That kind of behavior, IMO, is pretty absurd (but there are certainly others who disagree).
     

  11. M635Guy

    M635Guy Distinguished Member

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    Good perspective

    I've seen the same thing, and had the same thoughts you do. These are the first people who scream when those highly customer-friendly policies get changed (due to the abuses) too...
     

  12. audog

    audog Distinguished Member

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    In thinking more about this, I am inclined to agree with the firm stance (ala AoC). I can only speak for myself, but when I got my first pair of GS, I was VERY careful when trying on and walked only on carpet. I can't speak for everyone, but I can try on shoes/boots without creasing and know if they fit or not. Fortunately, and partially due to the online sizing thing, I got it right, so didn't have to return anything. I have heard the wear 'em around 6 months then return stories also, and think a firm stance CLEARLY spelled out not only here and other social media GS is part of, but on the shoe description page, on the order page, and then have to check a box to agree to terms prior to finalizing order would be good. It may turn off a few prospective buyers, but those who purchase high end shoes online, have already been exposed to a return policy that is "firm".
     

  13. GrantStone

    GrantStone Senior Member Affiliate Vendor

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    Thank you for the feedback. The idea of combining a B grade or Pre-owned and creased shoes page is a good idea. We are doing something similar now and in many cases, once we tree the shoes and polish them, the customer doesn't even know why they were in the pre owned collection/B collection. We are just using the price to find a middle ground.

    @ReppTiePrepster - We should be a little tougher. This is becoming easier to manage as we gain experience.

    We actually do have a full size run of D widths that we have used for fitting. What we have found is it actually costs less for the customer to just buy two pair and ship back the one that doesn't fit. We don't promote this but it does cost less and is simpler than separately placing and shipping two orders.
     

  14. M635Guy

    M635Guy Distinguished Member

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    6th day in a row in Grant Stone, and it's my first/OG pair of Crimson Ottawas. Despite a couple pair of grail/rare-shell Aldens and some other fantastic boots, these are easily my favorite pair. They might be my favorite pair of footwear overall...
    [​IMG]
     

  15. audog

    audog Distinguished Member

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    Good choice @M635Guy, got my favorite pair of Ottawa's on today myself. IMG_4506.jpeg
     

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