Many high-end designers (Chanel, Louis Vuitton) make the “strategic choice” not to sell their goods online, usually because they believe the in-store experience is more qualitative, or on-brand than internet shopping. This is a lame excuse in our opinion; most people prefer shopping online to in-store, plus, designer bags usually end up on sites like eBay or Portero anyways. Even extremely rare Birkins.
One of the companies to shun eCommerce is Céline, another French brand with a lot of cache and a serious cult following (especially for their often knocked-off Trapeze bag). Céline bags are not available online, even at luxury retailers like Net-A-Porter or Saks… so why did we just find them on Overstock.com?! Did Céline lift their very strict ban on online shopping to authorize Overstock? Or – if they are not an authorized retailer – how does Overstock think they will get away with it? Michael Kors just made news by suing Costco for falsely advertising the sale of his handbags in a Mother’s Day eblast. We love ourselves a good high-low collaboration (Missoni for Target, anyone?) but in some cases, designer and mass market are not a good match. I wouldn’t feel comfortable buying a Michael Kors handbag at Costco (is it fake? is it damaged?), nor would I buy a Celine bag (despite it’s shockingly low ticket price) at Overstock. It just doesn’t feel right. What do you think?