No more boutique bags at outlets?

AileenGP

Member
Aug 7, 2009
565
0
Sacramento, CA
I was at the Vacaville Outlets on Monday and an SA told me that they Coach was going to stop sending boutique bags out to the outlets. Apparently they're reworking their marketing strategy and limiting the # of bags they make of each style, just selling them at the boutique/dept stores until they sell out. That means Factory Stores will only be selling MFF.

I'm sure it's because of the Zoe overload and people getting pissed at paying FP for bags/accessories only to see them at the outlet a few weeks later. ($105 for a boutique coach purse used to be unheard of!) Plus, there's all the people buying hoards of the boutique items and selling them on ebay with high markups instead of the end user buying it directly.

I'm also sure they're also trying to preserve the value of "boutique" bags and maintain their exclusivity. How are boutiques going to sell a $400 bag when people are just waiting for them to come out in the outlets for 50% + 20% coupon off.

I know it's a smart move for the company - doesn't mean I have to like it.

Can anyone confirm??
 

toby11

O.G.
Feb 23, 2009
4,961
8
Dallas
There have been a few threads on this over the past few months, I think a lot of TPFers have heard the same thing from the outlet and boutique SAs, but we have yet to see it really happen. That said, it does seem like some of the newer bags have been selling out, so Coach may have really reduced their production numbers in order to limit outlet bags, but if they can't sell them FP I think they'll still send to the outlet - better to sell it at a low price than not at all. It just may not be in the same quantities as we've seen recently. If they stop altogether, I will seriously cut back on my Coach purchases, I'll still buy a FP bag occasionally, but I only have so much money to spend and if I can't get outlet prices I'll have to be much more selective in what I buy.

I'll see if I can find some other threads and post the links so you can read for yourself if you like.

If it's true, I won't like it either.
 

kathyrose

The Bargain Hunter
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Dec 12, 2005
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Norman, OK
www.flickr.com
It would be a good and bad thing for me. Good cause it will prevent me from spending money on bags that I like a lot but don't love cause they're decently priced and bad cause I've never paid full-price for one and if this happens and there's a bad I absolutely love I'd have to just bite the bullet.
 

Luv2Shop1

Gone shopping
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Aug 8, 2009
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They'll have a hard time implementing this type of strategy because:

1) It requires fewer lines to be introduced--Coach has new lines every month nowadays
2) It would result in lower outlet revenue--outlet revenue has been keeping them afloat for the past year
3) It would require reducing or slowing down the number of outlet openings...
 
May 22, 2007
3,522
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SoCal
I'll believe it when I see it. I was told the same thing end of July. So far nothing has changed. Coupons are still be sent out and prices of boutique transfers are ridiculously cheap!
 

AileenGP

Member
Aug 7, 2009
565
0
Sacramento, CA
I don't think it would be a hard strategy to implement if they do this change gradually, which it looks like they're already doing because it's getting more and more difficult to find the newer coach boutique lines at the outlet.

1) It requires fewer lines to be introduced--Coach has new lines every month nowadays
2) It would result in lower outlet revenue--outlet revenue has been keeping them afloat for the past year
3) It would require reducing or slowing down the number of outlet openings...
1. Not necessarily. Rather, I think it means they have to make smarter choices in designing lines which can streamline their production process. They have bags that range from $195 - $7,000++. They're trying to be Juicy Couture and Hermes at the same time which doesn't work. They need to find their "niche" market and make appropriate lines & styles that appeal to that consumer set, rather than everything under the rainbow. They also need to limit the number they make of each style to keep their target consumers (like us) oohing and ahhing. Now everyone and their mother has a Zoe - due to overproduction whereas people are "hunting" for some of their newer deleted styles/colors that were produced in smaller quantities.

2. I don't know that it would result in lost FS revenue. It may impact revenue, but could mean an increase in profit. We sometimes forget that we're not the target consumer in this case.

The target consumer usually doesn't know much about Coach other than being a luxury designer bag, like we do, they are not going to know the name, line or even if the bag was MFF or boutique. They are people caught up in the shopping for deals that they can get this brand for a steal. The target consumer just wants to get a Coach bag, just because of the brand. Any Coach bag will do as long as it's within the budget, and be extremely proud of the bag. It doesn't matter that it's not as "in-style" that the FP bags, it's still a Coach.

I was that person several years ago. I wanted people to know that I had a "coveted" Coach bag. It's good for Coach because they're still selling merchandise and getting it out into the public eye for cheaper production costs, while still keeping the higher end boutique items for people who want something a little more special.

3. For the reasons I mentioned above, changing their FP to FS policy doesn't mean that they're not going to open more Factory stores because more than ever there are bargain hunters looking for a great deal.


Again, I'm stating the above, not because I like it (I love buying FP items at FS prices), but because that's what my instincts from my Marketing background say.
 

lovecoachmore

Member
Aug 21, 2008
6,445
4
Eastern Iowa
This topic is the equivalent of :btdh:, no offense to the OP. This has been brought up again and again. Although I agree that they MAYBE smarter to slow down the flow of boutique bags to the outlets, let's just do some numbers!!!

I for one very rarely buy a bag at FP, I have no boutique near me, and mt closest outlet is 1 1/2 hour drive. I know ALOT of women on here are in the same boat as me about only buying 1 or 2 FP bags per year.

If COACH makes 1000 Sabrina's and they sell for $400 ea. and only 500 people buy...what are they going to do with the other??? Sit on them?? I think NOT. They have grossed $200,000, but they are still sitting on 1/2 their stock. Why not sell those bags at the outlets for $200 and pocket another $100,000 bucks?! They know they'll sell at the outlet at that price and they can still line their pockets nicely! We all have GOT to know that even with the quality they put into those bags when all is said and done it can't cost them AT MOST $20-$30 per bag, considering wages, supplies and materials.



They ARE better off to sell a higher quantity at a lower price, this serves 2 purposes as it still get's the product out there to be seen, and it put's the money back into their pockets at a quicker rate. I would most likely only own 2 or 3 bags if it was not for the outlet. In this case COACH would have got maybe $1200 MAX of my money. Instead I buy like a craZy person at the outlet, and spend maybe $600 a year on FP + another $1200 at the outlets. So COACH is really getting alot more of my $$$ by doing the boutique transfer thing.


I do think that boutique bags will not be so plentifull at the outlets in the future, but I do believe they will still be there!!!

I also don't look at COACH as trying to be Juicy Couture & Hermes at the same time. There are VERY FEW bags that are over $500-$800 and they are COACH's higher end items. Birkin bags can run anywhere from $3500-$35,000, so I don't see where the large range of price matters. Some people like to own the more exclusice COACH bags and can afford them, they are still out of my price range as are Gucci, LV & Heremes which does make those bags infact more exclusive to alot of us.

The SA's maybe told this, they may say it to make it more URGENT to the customer to BUY while you can. In either case, there is never going to be a day when there are NO boutique bags at the outlets IMHO. This is what OUTLETS are for, to clear out items that DID NOT sell at FP.
 

lovecoachmore

Member
Aug 21, 2008
6,445
4
Eastern Iowa
One more thing, in regards to them still opening more outlets for the "bargain hunters" to the TpF members a bargain means getting a boutique transfer bag at a great price. I TRULY believe that CoACH cannot survive alone on those random customers that won't buy and collect like we do. Those people just want a bag with the COACH C's on it, and they'll only buy another when the first get's dirty and wears out. If I didn't have an outlet, COACH bags would be purchased by me 1-2 times a year, instead I visit them 1-2times a MONTH!!!
 
May 13, 2007
583
1
One more thing, in regards to them still opening more outlets for the "bargain hunters" to the TpF members a bargain means getting a boutique transfer bag at a great price. I TRULY believe that CoACH cannot survive alone on those random customers that won't buy and collect like we do. Those people just want a bag with the COACH C's on it, and they'll only buy another when the first get's dirty and wears out. If I didn't have an outlet, COACH bags would be purchased by me 1-2 times a year, instead I visit them 1-2times a MONTH!!!
I must say I completely agree! If the outlets dont receive boutique transfer bags at a good price, they just wont be selling nearly as much. I myself have never bought a FP Coach bag, its just not worth it to me and if they ever decided to not send their bags to the outlets or if they weren't discounted as much in department stores. Well I would probably just stop buying Coach or maybe just one bag a year. I think the outlets are keeping them from really feeling this economic downturn and if they do hold back on things that go to the outlet well good luck to them. Everyone is looking for a bargain at this time not an overpriced bag.
 

cat lady

Member
Feb 22, 2009
350
0
It seems like many outlets are now just "made for factory stores", so I guess it is possible. I used to love to shop at the Ann Taylor outlet which was all fp store redlined items for soooo cheap. Then they introduced the mff line and slowly it took over. Now that is all they carry. I guess technically a store like that it not an outletm but is a factory store.
 

COACH ADDICT

"We're all born naked and the rest is drag" RUPAUL
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Apr 27, 2009
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An ever changing life with Steady Love...
I like to share information on tPF and some times some things should be repeated. Coach is not very consistant and things change often and depending on where you are.

Coach as stated that no FP bags will go to the Outlets and maybe that is true for mass release but this weekend they have Tattoo bags, mind you not many, and they said that they would not release the Tattoo bags to the Outlet. So it is real relative.

Also each outlet has varous things. Johniegirl Outlet has awesome bags that I never see down her.
 

Luv2Shop1

Gone shopping
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Aug 8, 2009
6,450
1,990
It seems like many outlets are now just "made for factory stores", so I guess it is possible. I used to love to shop at the Ann Taylor outlet which was all fp store redlined items for soooo cheap. Then they introduced the mff line and slowly it took over. Now that is all they carry. I guess technically a store like that it not an outletm but is a factory store.
And now the ATF line is just a much lower quality version of what you can buy at AT. I used to shop there all the time, but not anymore.

I am definitely a bargain hunter...but I am interested in buying good quality items...not *cheap* items.

I can say truthfully that if they stop having boutique transfers at the Coach Factory Store I would bother shopping there. I would focus on buying fewer good quality bags...but that's just me...