This is the era of flash sales, daily deals, and sample sales. Every week a new website is popping up promising great deals on everything. Last week, Amazon launched its MyHabit.com, joining 50 other websites in the same category. Groupon is preparing for its 10 billion dollar IPO. Whether you are looking for sample sale on designer shoes or dress, flash sale is the way to go.
Many large stores are running daily deal. Amazon's lighetning deals are very popular. Coupons of yesterday are being replaced by the flash sales on every thing under the sun. Recently One King's Lane, which focusses on flash sales for home decor closed 30 million round of funding,
Do flash sales are good only for selling eclective designer items or will they work for name brand items too? So far the focus of these sales has been sample sales for new styles from little known designers. The question is whether this format of ecommerce will work for selling name brand shoes or apparel. After talking to many Internet retailers, we believe this format is appealing for two types of sales. New styles for designer items with high margins, and end of season inventory cleanup.
When a new style is introduced by little known designers as well as popular designers, flash sale is a great way to introduce it in the market. Flash sale privide a marketing channel to test whether the product will take off or not before manugfacturer scales it for masses.
Most Internet retailers get rid of out of season merchandise in the clearance sale. Clearance sale dilute the brand of merchant as well manufacturer. Flash sale is better way to sell and has the potential to bring viral traffic and improve the loyalty among customers. Flash sales mimic the "Sale in the Mall" behavior and encourage impulsive purchases.
What should the average Internet retailer do? If every retailer starts holding their on flash sales, how will consumer will deal with flood of emails from each retailer. It makes sense for top retailers to hold their sales, but smaller retailers will have to resort to market place for flash sales. We expect many category specific market places popping up that enable flash sales for designer shoes, apparel, and other items as well as end of season inventory cleanup.
One could argue, Ebay or Amazon are already successful marketplaces for this purpose. We believe the experience of shopping on Ebay and Amazon does not work for many soft goods categories such as shoes, apparel, jewerly, and health & beauty items. Specalized market places are needed which make it easy for people to shop as well as the market place, which take advantage of latest trend and technologies in social media space to make it fun and engaging for people to buy these items. The marketplace which will connect experts and shoppers to make it fun and engaging to shop.