Lululemon Addict has just reported about the increase in CRB prices. Lululemon admitted to the price increases this morning on their facebook page when a fan had asked about new repricing stickers that were spotted in some stores marking the tanks up from $39 to $42. Initially lululemon declined a price increase and later came back to report that indeed the Cool Racerback Tanks will see increases to $42 for non special edition tanks. Re-stickering prices on the same tanks that were priced at $39 last week!
As I have reported on several occasions (over here, here and here just to name a few posts) since the price increases have been happening I have become increasingly annoyed at the way the price increases have rolled out. The decision to mark up scuba hoodies 30-40% on old stock inventory that has already been produced and have lingered on stores shelves is just atrocious and shows no good will towards the customers. The Scuba Hoodies in question where the Snorkel Micro Stripe, Citron Micro Stripe, Passion Micro Stripe and Casis Micro Stripe which were initially released in January 2011. These scubas where then re stickered in stores in April (Inventory that did not sell out in that time mind you) citing the reason that the prices of manufacturing has increased. Baloney!! Those scubas where already produced months and months prior to the increase price.
Another instance of corporate greed is the Vinyasa scarves that were initially $32 and of much better finished quality. Within 1 year those Vinyasa Scarves were increased to $34 and then finally the quality and finishing has decreased (edges are no longer finished with grossgrain ribbon, it is now a raw edge that rolls and unravels) and the price was further increased to $42. At $32 these scarves have flown off the shelves and now at the new price of $42 they are sitting on the shelves in all local stores for the past several weeks. The Scuba Hoodies that have been in We Made Too Much for a few days have not been sold and the reason for this is because the prices are now at what they where initially. We do not see $98 for a hoodie as a great deal, that is a high price for a hoodie to start with.
And I have said this before, If retailers would like to move old inventory using markdown tactics to entice me to purchase something I had not initially considered, then they need to make the markdown as well as the return policy more favourable and enticing to the customer. I WILL NOT buy something that is hardly marked down at all and forfeit my right to exchange it with All Sales Are Final. Sorry retailer, you can keep your item that you made too much of, and charged too much for and perhaps later you will bring your prices back down to earth so that we can all resume our shopping. In such an unsteady economic climate I really resent retailers that take advantage of consumers in this way, particularly a retailer that has seen profits increase by 75%.
I can tell you that if lululemon wants to truly put an end to counterfeit lululemon clothing then they can make it less of a temptation for already stretched consumers to purchase more reasonably priced Scuba Hoodies on ebay (or from other sources that may be selling counterfeit) instead of purchasing them on We Made Too Much. Or from purchasing copy lululemon items from other retailers like Jo Fresh, Costco, Target, Zellers etc. Lululemon is very mistaken in thinking that these other retailers are not creating high quality items made of high performance quality technical fabrics (and in some cases even made in Canada and the US!!). My Costco Cool Racerback Tanks are every bit as good as the Lululemon variety and just a fraction of the price.
How do you readers feel about these increasing prices on old inventory and on core items?