Photo: Lululemon on Flickr
Lululemon can’t be knocked down. In the past year, the retailer has endured falling share prices, accusations that it’s a cult, an employee murder trial, and mounting competition from Gap’s Athleta brand.
Yet Lululemon proved it was resilient at earnings today, reporting sales that were up 15 per cent from a year earlier.
So how did they do it?
Lululemon goes to great lengths to make sure their clothing actually fits, Carolyn Beauchesne — known online as the Lululemon Addict — tells us. Her blog reviews new products from the brand and gets 50,000 unique visitors per month.
Beauchesne has measured Lululemon’s clothing and says it’s more forgiving in the waist and hips than its competitors. This means that women actually feel great wearing the pants.
In addition to the fit, Lululemon has a tricky strategy for merchandise, Beauchesne says. The brand frequently releases new colours and patterns, then retires them for years when they sell out.
“It drives people crazy because they want that colour and don’t want to miss out on the new release,” explains Beauchesne. “It’s a big incentive for people to get to the stores.”
Finally, Lululemon offers free repairs on merchandise, so women aren’t as afraid to spend big on workout clothes.
Regardless of how you feel about Lululemon, their strategy is clearly a smart one.
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