Sales Done the Right Way

Today I had the delight to do a little “Early Access” Anniversary Sale shopping at Nordstrom.  As a fashion savvy individual, I would have to say that from a marketing perspective, Nordstrom does it right.  Let me tell you why.

Let’s begin by discussing Nordstrom when there aren’t in sale mode.  Be default, they are known for their outstanding customer service and quality products.  How do you know it’s quality?  Well, many of us are familiar with their very liberal return policy, so if they don’t want all their merchandise coming back, it better be the best.  From a consumer’s prospective this is assurance and establishes a level of trust between the company and the consumer.

Next, they have a nice loyalty program.  With the “Nordstrom Fashion Rewards” program you accrue points, however not in the same manner from a typical credit card. Once you have attained a certain amount of points they send you “Nordstrom Notes” in the mail.  These “Notes” work just like money in the store.  I must admit, they had some good timing.  My “Note” arrived a week or so before I had the opportunity to shop the Anniversary Sale.  Sending people “money” in the mail is a much better way to get them back in the store wouldn’t you say?

Lastly, they really do know how to have a sale.  For them, a sale isn’t just putting up “20% Off” signs.  At Nordstrom the sales are a tradition.  They have 2 men’s and women’s half-yearly sales and the Anniversary Sale which occurs every July.  The fact that the sales are limited, not only increases the hype for the sales, but it also prevents designer brands from being devalued.  As a consumer, if I know certain things are always on sale, there is no way that I would ever pay full price for any of it.

Overall, I think few organizations can pull off a sale the way Nordstrom can, however, there is always a little room for improvement right?  There was one thing that I had a slight problem with.  What I noticed is that during the sale there were a few brands or styles that were brought in specifically for the sale, and weren’t available at any other time.  I can see many reasons why they would do this from a business perspective, but for those who notice, they may begin to question the quality of these “new” items and the quality of the Nordstrom brand.  I would therefore suggest that these newly introduced styles or brands stick around for a longer time period and not just shipped over to the Rack.

In the end, I think the Anniversary Sale is by far one of the best marketed and hyped-up sales for an upper-end retail store.  While there is always some slight room for improvement, there was nothing that was going to hold me back from shopping this year!

Just my perspective,

Steve

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