Gillette just made an unprecedented change to be more like its competitors

Gillette is facing stiff competition. Now, in an effort to win back customers, it’s taking a page straight out of its competitors’ playbooks.

After slashing prices across the board and launching a marketing campaign called “Welcome Back,” Gillette has now introduced a new way to buy blades directly from the company.

Called Gillette On Demand, the service mimics the direct-to-consumer models of competitors like Harry’s and Dollar Shave Club. It allows customers to either buy blades as needed or build a custom subscription.

Three of Gillette’s products are offered as part of the service, acting as three separate tiers: disposable Sensor 3 razors ($US11 for eight razors), the tri-bladed Mach3 turbo ($US13 for five refills), and the top-of-the-line Gillette Fusion Proshield ($US21.45 for four refills).

Subscribers are rewarded for their loyalty with their fourth order free, while others can text or email the company at any time to order for a one-time purchase.

Gillette is increasingly feeling the threat from startups like Harry’s and the now Unilever-owned Dollar Shave Club, which are eating away at its dominance in the global men’s-razor business.

Gillette claimed a US market share of 70% as recently as 2010, but it fell to 54% in 2016, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cited data-tracking firm Euromonitor.

Harry’s and Dollar Shave Club now combine for a 12.2% market share, up from 7.2% in 2015, according to Euromonitor.

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