Here’s why J.Crew is lowering its prices

The iconic brand is trying to fix a "big mistake."

J. Crew
Flickr | JeepersMedia

Iconic clothing company J.Crew is making a change—and you’re going to like this one! It’s lowering prices to draw customers back into stores, a big move to stay competitive against affordable online retailers. Yes! That means more cardigans, shorts and tees in your closet.

J.Crew’s CEO says it’s time to reshape the brand’s reputation after a big “whoops” sent some shoppers packing. Last year, J.Crew sales dropped 6% company wide and it has $2 billion in debt—hence, the drastic turnaround.

The Big Mistake

J.Crew CEO Mickey Drexler admits his company missed the mark, underestimating the power of internet shopping. He also admits to increasing prices at a time when shoppers were more concerned about paying their bills, and less about the label on the back of their sweater.

He says the creation of the higher-priced J.Crew Collection in 2008 totally threw off some shoppers. The line included items that were way out of the average shopper’s budget.

Drexler told the Wall Street Journal, the brand came off as too elitist, “We gave a perception of being a higher-priced company than we were—in our catalog, online, and in our general presentation. Very big mistake,” he said.

Back To Basics

Be on the lookout for about 300 items with lower prices, plus newer affordable items. Starting this summer you’ll notice slashed prices on summer staples, including a scoopneck drapey tank top for $19.50, and new men’s polo shirts between $34 and $55. The company announced 223 new arrivals on Instagram on May 16th.

Changes at J.Crew are on trend with other popular brands. Experts predict thousands of store closures after the phasing out of some JCPenney, The Limited, Payless and Bebe locations.

Macy’s is trying to update its business model with self-service systems. Macy’s also announced dozens of its stores are going out of business this year. Now, Michael Kors is closing more than 100 locations because of tumbling sales.

To J.Crew, we say, good luck!

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