Amazon.com wants to get consumers in the habit of shopping its private sales.
So the online retail giant has launched a new members-only fashion site dubbed MYHABIT.com, offering up to 60% off what it calls "hand-picked selections" from "sought-after brands." With this move, Amazon.com is throwing its hat into the private or flash sale ring.
The hot, private sale websites -- the modern day, online version of the sample sale –- such as Gilt Groupe and Rue La La, aim to deliver the hottest designer looks at up to 80% off retail prices. The discounts are usually offered for just 36 to 48 hours on upscale, designer merchandise in limited quantities.Amazon's MYHABIT.com will feature daily sales that last 72 hours starting at 12 p.m. EST each day on women's, men's and children's clothing from tony brands like Doo.Ri, Halston and Vera Wang.
So what makes MYHABIT.com different than the growing number of flash sale websites? The free membership site "combines the features customers love most about Amazon," Sally Fouts, a spokeswoman for Amazon.com, told WalletPop. These include "fast, free shipping; free, easy returns on returnable items; and world-class customer service." (Customers who wish to make returns on nonreturnable items are issued store credit they can redeem on MYHABIT, Amazon or Endless.com, the retailer's fashion accessories site, Fouts says.)
Also setting MYHABIT.com apart, Founts says, "are new features, like 360-degree video footage and lavish custom photos of the merchandise."
Shoppers can browse by both department and sale event, perusing product pages that include comprehensive item descriptions, videos and images with a zoom-in feature.
Amazon.com currently has more than 137 million active customers. According to Fouts, the company will get in touch with those shoppers "who we think will be interested in MYHABIT via email and other communication. We would also encourage customers to follow us on Twitter and Facebook."
While MYHABIT.com is an Amazon offspring, the site offers a completely different customer experience than its parent site, with a glossy, polished look befitting its high-end merchandise. It remains to be seen how this upscale site will resonate with Amazon's core base of bargain-hunting shoppers.
Amazon's MYHABIT.com Joins the Private Sale Website Club