Amazon opens Prime Wardrobe to more shoppers (AMZN)

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Amazon is rolling out Prime Wardrobe, its try-before-you-buy (TBYB) apparel service, to more consumers, though it remains in testing months after its initial launch June 2017, according to TechCrunch.

The program is still only available to select Prime subscribers, but that base is growing and shoppers can also request an invitation themselves.

With an expanding user base and almost a year of testing under its belt, Prime Wardrobe will likely officially launch soon. An Amazon staffer that worked on Prime Wardrobe tweeted that the service had launched, though the tweet was later deleted, and a Twitter account for student brand ambassadors at University of California, Irvine tweetedabout Prime Wardrobe, encouraging students to try it.

Prime Wardrobe differs from other TBYB apparel services like Stitch Fix in three key ways that may boost its consumer appeal.

It’s on-demand. Prime Wardrobe is not a subscription service — consumers can order a box of three to eight items from it whenever they like. This allows consumers to use Prime Wardrobe more flexibly than subscription services. They can try a bunch of jackets if they’re looking to find one, or pick items with a singular event in mind, all without worrying that it’s their only box for the month or season.

Consumers pick their items. Unlike Stitch Fix and some other services, there is no stylist that sends consumers curated products. Instead, shoppers select their items themselves, and though the service still features categories and top picks, it gives shoppers more freedom to use the service as they choose.

It’s free to use with a Prime subscription. Rather than paying per box, consumers only pay for what they keep from Prime Wardrobe. Stitch Fix, for comparison, charges $20 per box but lets consumers put that $20 toward anything they keep. With Prime Wardrobe’s model, users may order more boxes, which could lead to them buying more items than they would otherwise.

Amazon is well positioned to handle returns, one of the biggest obstacles for TBYB services. US consumers said TBYB would inspire 4.9 extra purchases a month, but also almost 4 additional returns per month, and the cost of handling those returns can sink the value of the new sales. Amazon, however, has a well established logistics network that has been handling huge amounts of returns for years. This enables Prime Wardrobe to offer on-demand boxes without worrying about more returns, and could allow it to offer lower prices than competing TBYB services.

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Source:: Business Insider

      

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