American Apparel, the sweatshop-free clothing store based in downtown Los Angeles, is announcing their exclusive partnership with eBay to create the auction site’s first full online shop.
American Apparel, a store known for its basic t-shirts, hoodies, knee high socks and chiffon maxi skirts, has become the biggest retailer in the young and trendy fashion scene for their classic garments. In response to a large demand on eBay for American Apparel, the two companies agreed to a “multiyear partnership” so that eBay customers will be buying directly from American Apparel.
“There are more than 30,000 searches for American Apparel on eBay each month and right now those customers are not buying from us directly. I’m excited to connect that demand with our vertically integrated production and distribution platform to create a new revenue channel for American Apparel,” said American Apparel CEO and founder Dov Charney.
That doesn’t go to say that American Apparel items from independent eBay sellers won’t be up for auction. There also hasn’t been any news on whether there will be discount prices at the American Apparel eBay store in comparison to the retail prices over at the company’s official online store americanapparel.net. As of now the discussion is that the prices will be MSRP—same as the prices in their stores and on their official online shop.
American Apparel is already online at americanapparel.net, so why partner with eBay?
The two companies share the same demographic: young and tech-savy. According to American Apparel representatives, “eBay’s unparalleled market share and marketing abilities, such as targeted email communication, affiliate programs and personalization, will help promote American Apparel to a new audience of devoted eBay shoppers.”
In other words, by joining up with eBay, American Apparel will boost its Internet sales and spread its reach to even more Internet-savy customers. eBay customers love a good deal, and American Apparel’s target is likely the fashion blogger types with sincere interests in fashion, thrifting, and perusing their PayPal accounts. It’s not new to see big companies target the fashion blogger community, which extends to all those who have a blog or subscribe to RSS feeds. American Apparel currently uses a number of fashion bloggers as models for their ad campaigns and features bloggers in streetstyle and “Blogger Spotlight” sections of their site.
American Apparel has been in multiple fashion headline this year, peaking during the time of the John Galliano scandal. Dov Charney was recently under fire over sexual harrassment lawsuits filed by four ex-American Apparel employees. More controversy about the company’s investments have been issues this year as well. This business plan could be what saves American Apparel from falling into a black hole of irrelevancy as 24/7 Wall St. claims that the company will be one of the ten brands to disappear in 2012.
The American Apparel partnership with eBay is “part of a continued effort by the company to aggressively expand into new markets and open new distribution channels, particularly online.” The American Apparel eBay store will debut in September and will carry around 15% of the styles from americanapparel.net, with over 200 styles in every size and color. It is expected to become a multi-million dollar business within the first year.
What are your thoughts on American Apparel’s partnership with eBay?
Image via American Apparel