Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Raising the bar

I just received an e-mail, and idly glanced at the Banana Republic website.  I have been keeping my eye out for their  Trench Coat, especially because it received such high marks from AJC.
Banana Republic Sale Trench

 I always appreciated the review section on their website and on the Brooks Brother's website.  Even though I have access to many B&M stores, I always find the fit comparisons to be very useful.  (Sometimes it is nice to see that I was not the only one who could not zipper a skirt in my usual size!)
Brooks Brother's Sale trench

 I was DELIGHTED to see that Banana Republic has  a new feature- a "Find it from a local store" window. That is such a considerate time saving device.  And- the item that I was looking for was on sale and had an additional 30% off, so it was not a feature reserved just for full price items.  Absolutely wonderful.  I checked the site, and the GAP now has the same feature but, Old Navy does not. It does say BETA on the form, so it may just be a trial.  I give it very high marks!
J CREW Collection Icon trench

 J Crew- Why is there such a shroud of secrecy surrounding your inventory?  User friendly websites will enhance your business.  You have some great things to offer.  Now show us what you have.  From the comfort of our homes.
As it happens, the coat is not available anywhere particularly close.  If I were so motivated, I am certain I could call and put it on hold and drive a little out of my way to look at the size.  I am not going to do that, but I am so happy about the website addition, I can promise that I will visit their site more often.  And, isn't that what internet shopping(or window shopping!) is all about?
( I wear my trench more in the Fall than in the Spring, and mine is on its way out...)

Have you seen the new BR site?
What do you think? I'd love to hear!


  1. I am with you! Chapters, our national bookstore chain, has this feeature and they have sold me a LOT of books that way! All stores should use this - it is so convenient and customer oriented. I fear that JC relies solely on "buzz", but my experience is that buzz comes and goes...

  2. Barnes and Nobles( books) and Best Buy (electronics) do as well. It is such a convenience. I would have to think that anything that could convince a customer to go into a store would be a good thing.
    I have a great relationship with many of the sales associates at my local JC stores, and have asked many times for them to locate an item for me. But, I would love the luxury of being able to find things by myself.

  3. Yes, I've LOVED using that new feature. A week or two ago I went to a store looking for an item that they said was in stock. I didn't find it when I arrived, thinking the system info was inaccurate. I was the one that was wrong. I was looking at the slim stretch shirts, not tailored. They did indeed have my size/color in stock. I agree, high marks. I also agree w/AJC about their trench. I have been wanting to replace it, just wondering if I can do better. The way the model looks in JC's Icon made me finally try it. Bad. I still love my BR and will probably enjoy it for a long time. I've had it since 2010, I believe and wore it even during my pregnancy. Loosely belted, of course. lol

    1. It really is a time saver and a great marketing tool. I could certainly be lured into a store if I found something online that interested me. It is nice to hear that you like your trench. I am keeping my eyes out, although I may have decided that I don't have the right shape for a double breasted coat!

  4. I'll have to go check out the BR and Gap sites, I haven't been there in a few weeks. Customer reviews are awesome and it sounds like they run a tight ship with keeping track of their inventory - nice!

  5. I don't order online often, but I certainly go to check customer reviews, especially about fit or fabrication. It is nice that a customer can track down something with out calling a number of stores. That is a really helpful feature!

  6. You can't go wrong with a classic trench. The BR looks very nice.

    I love the find it in store feature, but I used it yesterday for Gap and it wasn't accurate. I was looking at a pair of new ankle boots online and it said that there were none available at my local store, yet when I went in there yesterday there was a shelf full of that very boot and in my size. I don't know what that was about but when the feature works properly, it's a life (and time) saver.

  7. I agree-- I hate the air of mystery J Crew insists on using. Hidden items, no idea of stock....frustrating! Do they want to sell us clothes or not?! Oh, and I just nominated you for a blog award