Dear Sample Sale Organizers, Here's Some Advice You Didn't Ask For

23 October 2017

Dear Sample Sale Organizers, Here's Some Advice You Didn't Ask For

From the light traffic at Manhattan sample sales to the reduced interest in flash sales, it’s been  a lackluster year for this niche of retail. True, this news might not come as a surprise to the non-fashionista considering the other events of this year: a whopping nine retail bankruptcies were filed and scores of stores closed their doors forever. But… we are fashionistas, so to our trained eyes: we’re still surprised this retail niche was affected. Why? Because history has evidenced time and time again that retail misfortunes often translate into good news for sample sales. But this time around, sample sales seem to be losing their appeal. As we’ve been around the sample sale block more times (and for more years) than we care to admit, we know enough to have developed our own theory. (OK, we kind of borrowed it from the finance industry, but hey… )

We believe the sample sale market has become an efficient market. If you are a finance person you are not going to need an explanation for that term. If you are everyone else, then here’s a definition, courtesy of Investopedia:

The efficient market hypothesis is an investment theory that states it is impossible to ‘beat the market’ because stock market efficiency causes existing share prices to always incorporate and reflect all relevant information.”

In our case, flash sales websites provide the consumer with so much information that it is nearly impossible for any sample sale organizer to surprise shoppers and get them excited. Most sample sale shoppers are knowledgeable and pragmatic. They know the brands. They know if prices are a true bargain. Brands have access to the same information as the consumers—if not more—so they align their prices with other discount outlets.

So… if we may be so bold… here is some advice you didn’t ask for, sample sale organizers: sample sales are not just a chance for you to rid of excess inventory at the highest price the market can absorb. Rather, they are a unique opportunity to tap into a new market of aspirational shoppers. Use it wisely. Instead of focusing on how much money you will make with that sale, consider how many more new customers will become obsessed with your brand, brag about it, and serve as a walking advertisement for you.

And speaking of that opportunity… that opportunity is now. Without any further adieu: we are finally in sample sale season! Boys and girls, check your balances on your credit cards, mark your calendars, and head to these upcoming sample sales that are sure to kick off the season right:

Starting Monday: Rebecca Minkoff Sample Sale
Starting Tuesday: Halston Heritage Sample Sale
Oscar de la Renta Sample Sale
White + Warren Fall Sample Sale
Starting Wednesday: MCM Sample Sale
Elie Tahari Sample Sale

And that’s only the tip of the iceberg. Here is the complete list of sample sales for this week.

Happy shopping!

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Posted by Bindra at 12:30 AM
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