Friday, August 31, 2007

Achtung US Retaliers, Ship Overseas = Increased Revenue

As many of you know I am living in Europe. Hand's down I am loving the experience, but my biggest complaint is that I can't find clothes that fit my style. Sure there is Benetton and Zara, but I didn't shop at these stores in NY, so I am not going to shop at them in Europe.

Months ago I thought the Internet was my savior and I figured that I would pay a little extra to have Banana Republic, J Crew and Lucky ship over whatever I find on the web. You would think in the age where I can buy a virtual computer in Second Life, buying a pair of jeans from a US retailer from Europe would be easy, quite the opposite. Disregarding Lucky for a moment, Banana Republic, which is owned by the GAP is the 49th largest retailer in the world, yet I can't get their latest moleskin 3/4 top coat shipped to Vienna, Austria. In the shipping section of the website it reads very simply "At this time, we are unable to accept or ship international orders." But WHY? Have they heard of logistics outsourcing? What is stopping them from setting up a warehouse in Rotterdam and having a 3rd party handle orders for Europe? Most of the clothes are made outside the US anyway, so it will save them a trip abroad. I know I am not the only American here in Europe. So they could easily market themselves on the dozens of ex-pat websites.

J Crew isn't much better. Okay, so they ship to Japan, but that doesn't do me much good. And if they can ship to Japan why not Europe? Lucky Jeans is a much smaller chain with maybe 50 stores in the US. But at least they ship to some countries in Europe including France, Germany, Netherlands and Switzerland, but again doesn't help me in Austria or Czech Republic.

My only option to have items shipped here is to get a third party involved, such as a friend or a mail forwarding provider. My friends can't be trusted, particularly with the latest cool shirts from Lucky, and a mail forwarding provider is certainly an option, but a $30 shirt quickly becomes a $70 shirt, which really is a lot.

Perhaps I could develop a petition. If you would buy from any of the retailers mentioned above if they shipped to your home country outside of the US please post below and maybe if I get a few hundred names I can convince them that a market exists outside the USA.


Jenny said...

I just spent almost an hour putting things in my virtual cart before I decided to check whether they shipped to Australia (Gap that is) and guess what they don't. You can't believe how disappointed I was, there a jacket there that I would do anything for...yes you heard. Shame.

Christopher Sciacca said...

I guess if enough potential clients call enough attention to it maybe they will do something.