Thursday, August 19, 2010

Gilt Groupe and Target?!

So I assume everyone has either heard of or bought from Gilt Groupe. It's a super successful online retail website that has flash sales every day. I've personally shopped at Gilt many many times and the best thing about the company is not the pricing (although it does make a huge difference) but so far their customer service was also quite outstanding.

I once emailed them about returning a bag that I bought from them because I saw it even cheaper at the brand's website itself. They normally don't allow you to return bags but they understood why I wanted to and they let me so I thought that was a nice gesture.

Gilt had been under alot of pressure from copycat websites since it first launched (e.g. Ruelala, Hautelook, Beyondtherack etc). I do think there is enough market for everyone if they're not too greedy. However, I do have to say, the positioning that Gilt is going for works for them, more high fashion, more exclusive, more valuable. They're also expanding into other categories too, whether it'd be Home of Children wear. I'm not sure how successful these are but it generally makes sense to be a multi-brand, multi-category online retailer (look at Amazon!) The key here is volume.

So I found out yesterday that Gilt Groupe would have an advanced 'Exclusive' sales event for Target's high fashion line / collaboration (e.g. Mulberry). So would a collaboration with Target work for Gilt? Well, Gilt cannot sustain its business just on the premium customers, they really need to expand the customer base rather than lose it to the other online retailers out there. Target, as a mass market retailer, works out perfectly for Gilt to expand their customer base. At the same time, Target would generate buzz for their collaboration. The question I have is, I know is expanding at a significant pace, why not sell directly through Do Target really need Gilt? I assume it's a positioning play, Target also wants to be more high-fashion, more dynamic but also targeting the so-called bargain hunters. I assume Gilt Groupe customers are more avid shoppers than those that buy through so they can really leverage each others' skillset.

Will this be a once-ff thing? Doubt it - depends on how it goes but I think Gilt needs something 'exclusive' that other online retailers don't have. Will it work? Possibly - it's a great marketing campaign. For the customers, it's a great win too, you know I'm a sucker for multi-channel shopping. Either way, I think it's a win-win. Gilt needs the brand awareness and Target needs the customer base. I think it'll work. What do you think? Yay or Nay?

Oh - I LOVE the Target x Mulberry bag. Although I personally think it cheapens the Mulberry brand :(

But my Mulberry.....what have you done.

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