Thursday, January 16, 2014

Wow, Lululemon Really Doesn't Want Non-Canadians to See The Warehouse Sale

Wow, so the workaround I gave you guys last night - using a Canadian proxy site - no longer works for us to see what is in the Warehouse sale. In fact, many free proxy sites are blocked from what I understand. I just don't get what the big deal is. I saw what is for sale and wasn't bummed out at all since it's so old and the prices are only ok (well, from my point of view, once I add in Canada's double digit taxes plus the cost of mailing to me and paypal fees if I had asked a friend to angel items for me). I wish the lulu IT crew put this much effort into making sure the upload nights went smoothly. Get your priorities straight, lulu - making the sale of new, FULL PRICE merchandise as easy as possible for your customers.

Anyway, for those of you who didn't use the proxy site in time, I have screen captures for you (thanks to Mr. E. for some of these):

Update - most of this stuff is gone and/or only in size two and went very early after being uploaded. I'd say the on-line warehouse sale went well, though I am hearing of the now-standard payment processing problems (I guess the IT team was too busy banning proxy sites to make sure payment went through on the first try.)

Update II - Reader Rebecca thinks non-Canadian IPs were blocked because we would take up server response time and clog the system. This makes sense to me, even if I was frustrated by it.


















61 comments:

Michelle Frank said...

Wow, they are seriously seriously cleaning house!

Anonymous said...

Saw all of them old stuff and nothing I wished I could buy.

Anonymous said...

LLA - thanks so much for posting the screen shots!! there are actually some good things (i have most of them) like the what the fluff pullover and vest, the eb and flow crop and a few other items are really great from last year - i would def have gotten another pr of eb and flows also i know the inkblot WUs are sought after on ebay - i have them (got them along with quiet stripes on first release from lll - also, i couldn't agree more - IT invest time and energy to "block" but can't seem to manage a regular upload... it's like they are being spiteful for some reason, why not let people look if they want to look? so strange...

Anonymous said...

Do you think the US will get one too?

Anonymous said...

Wow some of the stuff is a bit older. I hate how they act as if they are sold out of something then a year later here it is on sale! Hopefully there will be a sale in the USA soon. Thanks for the screen shots!

Anonymous said...

No worries, most of the good stuff is all gone. If you click on the majority of items they are sold out.

Anonymous said...

Eh, it's about creating an illusion of exclusivity. Like the allure of the Mean Girls in high school.

I'm thankful to LLL for beautifying (and adding function to) the athletic apparel market. And I treasure some of my older LLL pieces. But if they don't want my money, REI and Athleta will gladly take it. And I'm happy either way!

Melinda said...

I really need some winter run tights - any comments on what is best?

Toasty tech
bold in the cold
Ice queen


If any of these are even left for US buyers (If they open up the site... dammit)

Anonymous said...

WOW so BIG BROTHER of LLL! What, are they going to shut down you're amazing blog too??
I agree with the few that say Boycott this damn company already. LLA you're so right about them!!!

Anonymous said...

don't be too upset if you see something you would have wanted to buy - the sizes were EXTREMELY limited and many things were sold out almost immediately (it was pretty cranky-making, actually, I used the 'size sorter' at the top but probably 90% of the stuff it said was available in my size wasn't really available after all. And most of those things are still sitting on the site, even though they are sold out. Frustrating!).

Anonymous said...

I am in canada and I looked at the sale at 3am. Already at that time almost all, or all of the sizes of the good stuff was gone. I did grab a black daily yoga jacket for $69. No worries US, you really didn't miss out on much

Anonymous said...

That is ok. Athleta really likes my business lately, great stuff, and fabulous customer service and return policy!!

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 7:09 am - I know - very controlling. I was worried that would happen when I posted the link. Lesson learned for next time.

Anonymous said...

Some cute stuff but prob wasn't in my size anyways- ink blot WUs, Bordeaux boogies?, Alberta lake speeds? Oh well, kinda Hope we don't get a sale in the US so I don't get tempted to spend more, especially with a few good previews of new items to come...

Anonymous said...

I'm American, but I think it's great LLL had a Canada-only sale. I don't find it much different then the US not being able to buy from other markets.

But the blocking of the site was weird. And I LOVE that it took this community only a few minutes to hack it!

That means we have power, ladies! Let's use it for good (sneaking peeks at goodies and helping others, not wasting time boycotting) and not be jealous of our neighbors in Canada.

Anonymous said...

Meh. You guys have Athleta and many other options that we don't have access to online - items I'd love to try but can't. Sheesh, we have Victoria's Secret stores up here, but if I want to order a sports bra online, they want to charge me double for duty and shipping. I wouldn't get too worked up about a Canada-only sale. I can't imagine there won't be a US-only one in the near future, and you will have more stuff.

Regardless - I was up at 530 EST this morning, and there was nothing in an 8 that was worth thinking about, and now there are truly about 3 items in one or two sizes left. So much for a 3-day sale! So really -LLL sales are a crapshoot no matter what side of the border you're on!

Gia Newman said...

Took a look this morning and there really isn't any good stuff left. Not nearly as much as what is in these screen caps :(

I think the physical warehouse sales are better for shoppers.

I did scoop up some heat it up shorts ($9!) because they are my fave and I already had the matching bras.

Anonymous said...

I'm growing so tired of this company. They just can't seem to get out of their own way & continue to do things that alienate customers. They're arrogance and incompetence baffles me.

LuluAddict said...

Someone speculated that perhaps to do a sale in both countries might crash their servers, and god knows, we've seen that enough. I can deal with Canada getting a warehouse sale for now but I don't get why we can't even view it and then once we found a way it was blocked - so silly.

Anonymous said...

@ 7:12 AM, you'd be wrong. I was on at 2 a.m. just after it started and there was A LOT to choose from. True, some of it in smaller sizes (I'm a 4 so it worked for me, got the inkblot WU's! They were available in ALL sizes when I purchased), but for many of the items, there was actually a fair bit in ALL sizes. I probably spent about 10 minutes browsing what to buy and not be too impulsive. I could have bought a lot more. LOL I realised browsing for 10 minutes was too long and that my items could disappear from my cart so I booked it! My confirmation order (for 3 items) happened instantaneously as well.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much LLA for always keeping everyone so well informed :) I agree wholeheartedly with your post about LLL's handling of this. I'm also disappointed in the reactions of some on here that seem quite adversarial and anti-American. LLL is a yoga based company, so they are somehow failing, if this type of attitude is pervasive among their Canadian customer base. It's disappointing, but enlightening I guess. Nothing on the warehouse sale for me anyway. Most of the merchandise is either too old or products that had problems with bleeding, sheerness, fit, etc. Canadian or American, this sale would have been a pass for me.

Anonymous said...

We're not upset that Canadian's got a sale.it's the whole idea of LLL's attitude and arrogance that's ticking us Americans off.

Houndlvr67 said...

Gee, if I would have know about this, I would have invited Edward Snowden over for a sleep-over!

Anonymous said...

Very strange that they blocked viewing. There are some good items from last year, like the splash guard, ice queen pants bold in the cold and a few others.
It would be interesting to find out why they blocked the US. were other countries blocked from viewing?


M

Anonymous said...

Hm that sucks. Usually I'm up at that hour checking WMTM, but I had a migraine and a shot of meds in the bum so I was out like a light. I would have definitley ordered a lot. Bummer :(

Anonymous said...

If anyone is interested in getting back in download the Hola extension for your browser. Change your country to Canada. Go to the Lulu home page, change your country to Canada, then go to the WMTM section and there is a like to the warehouse sale there.

Anonymous said...

I don't see how it's arrogant of Lulu's part. Their server handling capacity (or lack thereof) is well known. Maybe they were trying out the "smaller Canadian market" to see how well the website could handle an online warehouse sale and then make adjustments for a US only one. I think Lulu can't win here. When the warehouse sales are in select cities everyone freaks out asking why there and not elsewhere. When it's online, East Coasters were complaining the sale was catered to West Coasters. I've also seen comments of international buyers who are pissed too so how does Lulu appease everyone?

I was up when the sale started last night and honestly there really wasn't anything there that I just had to have. I passed on it full price and when it went to WMTM so why would I get it at "warehouse sale price". And like others have mentioned a lot of the stuff was either during sheergate or didn't sell during last year's warehouse sale.. So ladies, you're really not missing out on much when you think about it. Anyway just my 2 cents on things...

Anonymous said...

Wow, I didn't realize Canadians couldn't purchase from Athleta and such... I always assumed the medium-sized retailers and up had distribution centers in various countries. I can understand higher pricing when there are bodies of water in the way, but you'd think the US and Canada could work out a shipping treaty or something (ok, that's tongue in cheek bc the world has bigger problems...but it really WOULD help spread some joy!).

Rebecca said...

They likely had to block Americans from viewing access because you were taking up server response. Why would you stay up after midnight and clog the system if you weren't able to purchase anything? Waste of time, if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

i agree with lla, i'm really fine with a canada only sale, it's their company they can do whatever they think makes sense for them strategically, and we can all decide whether we still want to shop there, but blocking the site from view is a little strange, petty and really out of line with what i think of as a yoga company...

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 8:40 am - The Canadian market is "smaller" but I believe by sale $ the countries are pretty equal but I'll need to dig around to verify that.

I think it was the blocking of viewing of the items for sale that has people more annoyed.

One group of people who kind of got left in the lurch were Canadians not located in Canada at the time of the sale, who had both a Canadian credit card and shipping address but not the required IP to see the sale. Granted, that group is probably pretty small, but still.

Tanner said...

I have a theory as to why the US was blocked from accessing the sale: this seems like a basic sales strategy to me. Just like with their weekly releases rather than releasing a large collection at once, Lulu is trying to create a sense of URGENCY so we will purchase more at the time.

The Boxing Day Sale is the perfect example of this - when over a hundred items are set to markdown at once, it makes us panicked that we have to BUY BUY BUY NOW before everything is snatched up and we end up spending a crapload more money on things that we might not otherwise even buy because it's OMGSUCHAGOODDEAL.

It just creates this whole shopping frenzy where we all lose our dang minds. If we are afraid something is going to sell out fast, we will pounce on it without giving much thought to whether it will look good on our body or if it's a good color or not. (um helllooo Gratitude Wraps!)

I think they didn't want the USA to see WHAT was on sale so that we wouldn't have time to really think about it all and whittle our purchases down to just a few things. I think that's why they are going to such great lengths to not let us see the items. And the whole "25 item limit per day" thing is yet another tactic. Really? Who would actually buy 25 items of that stuff at once? It's all from two years ago or totally FUG. Making us THINK that people are buying that much at the time is also another way to get us to snatch up more at once without thinking.

It all blew up in their faces, though. Thanks again, LLA for your info! Several hours ago when I had access to the link, I was considering a few purchases for if/when the USA gets their own sale...now that I've had time to revisit the screenshots, there isn't a single thing that I plan to spend my money on. Bring on the Spring line!

LuluAddict said...

Thank you, Rebecca, that sounds like a very likely explanation to me. Many of us hardcore fans have Canadian friends who would angel for us - buy something on our behalf and then mail to us - so that is why we'd like to see what was for sale. Kind of violates the spirit of the Canadian-only warehouse sale but happens a lot where lululemon is concerned. The 25 item limit mitigates that somewhat.

Anonymous said...

I am surprised how many USA people are getting so worked up about that sale?? There are many times items are uploaded to the US side and Canada never even gets the item. Not sure why all the drama??

Luli Designs said...

Do you think they maybe blocked people not in Canada because they wanted to limited the amount of traffic viewing the site as that would slow it down for Canadians who the sale was for? This is just a guess as I am not a tech person.

Anonymous said...

Luli Designs... that is a simple and logical explanation. Makes sense.

Anonymous said...

Way more than size 2 was available for many items.

Obviously there was an IT aspect to this whole thing. Even on a Monday night you all know you're traffic from everywhere has crashed the site.

As for someone on vacation/travelling/out of country for whatever reason (hopefully not a family emergency)...uh no, I don't feel sorry for them at all.

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 10:16am - I meant that size 2s are all that is left now.

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 10:16am - I meant that size 2s are all that is left now.

LuluAddict said...

@ anon 10:16am - I meant that size 2s are all that is left now.

stylista diva said...

I agree with Anon 7:42am - US will likely have a bigger, better warehouse sale in the near future. (And I also am irritated with companies like VS and BCBG that although we have the stores in Canada they either don't ship here or charge astronomical duty/shipping fees). So angry that I missed out on the sale(older) items that I would have loved since I also missed out on them the FIRST time they were around in stores!(Bundle Up jacket, What the fluff, some of the cold run pants...). How this is advertised as a weekend sale is LAUGHABLE as most of the items have sold out in the first 12hours of the sale being posted. My size 4-6 sells out pretty fast on a normal upload as it is. I'm sure half the purchases will end up on ebay at double the price in the next month too. ANNOYED.

Anonymous said...

@ anon 7:58 AM, I am surprised that you feel that some comments here are anti-American. I have not seen that, instead I have instead seen comments here and in the other thread that are anti-Canadian or anti-Lulu just because they are having an online Canadian sale.

Is it really that big a deal to start a boycott? Not all sizes were available and most things were gone by 6am EST. I am happy they had the sale, but at the same time it was pretty limited. I do not have anything against Americans (I'm dating one) and I'm sure the majority of Canadians here as well as Lululemon don't either. The comments about discrimination and arrogance etc. are way out of hand.

While having a Canadian sale may seem unfair (sorry Americans didn't get it too =( ), it's possible that this is just a sample test because of Canada's smaller population. For example, software companies that make apps use Canada as a test base all the time to make sure their final roll out into the U.S. is smooth.

Anonymous said...

I want more of the Ebb and Flow Crops! I don't like In the Flows. Too short. How come they don't offer the leftovers in the US?

Anonymous said...

Ugh. I have been sitting on a gift card for a striped CRB that was already marked down in store (and sold out before I realized I 'need' it to go with a scuba I got during the one day sale). I keep hoping it will show up in WMTM.

Anonymous said...

I had no issues with the server and/or checkout last night, I also made my purchase pretty late - 2:40am. I recieved email confirmation at a EXACTLY 2:42am, and a shipping confirmation this morning at 11:21am.

I commented on the other post, but I managed to get 2 defines, a stride, in stride, in the flow crops, and a daily tank.

Bizzare that others had issues

Anonymous said...

Perhaps blocking users from viewing the site was done to control bandwith. If 100s of US and international users were viewing the site it would only slow it down for those that were actually purchasing. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

8:56 AM, speak for yourself. I don't give into hype, whether it's a Gratitude wrap (dumpy!) or parallel stripe WU's, or some such.

I didn't go out of control this a.m. and I got the good stuff :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you Anon 8:27

MB. said...

The blocking US viewers was definitely frustrating, but it's definitely an IT and bandwidth issue.

LLL's crappy servers can barely handle all the canadian users on the online warehouse, clearly, much less a bunch of international viewers.

Anonymous said...

Wow there is really nothing left on the warehouse sale by now. Even that ugly old poncho sold out LOL
After this success, I doubt LLL will have the Warehouse sale in a brick and mortar location ever again.

I spent so much time and energy today working on bypassing the LLL Canadian online block (was so determined to succeed) that I forgot to check the WMTM in the US site where I can freely browse and order from. Silly me. Now it's mostly the same stuff that have been there for weeks :-/

intothevoid said...

I'm Canadian with both a credit card, Lulu account and address all in Canada. But, I was unable to access the site because I am in Mexico. C'est la vie. It would have been great to have had a look, but life is too short to get bent out of shape about it.

For many Canadians, Lulu is the only game in town. Athleta etc offer wonderful alternatives but with taxes, duty and shipping end up costing us nearly double the amount Americans pay. In addition, here are often items on the Lulu US site that never seem to make it to Canada. I thought this warehouse sale was a nice thank you to the Canadian market which has been supporting the company since it was a small Vancouver start-up.

intothevoid said...

I'm Canadian with both a credit card, Lulu account and address all in Canada. But, I was unable to access the site because I am in Mexico. C'est la vie. It would have been great to have had a look, but life is too short to get bent out of shape about it.

For many Canadians, Lulu is the only game in town. Athleta etc offer wonderful alternatives but with taxes, duty and shipping end up costing us nearly double the amount Americans pay. In addition, here are often items on the Lulu US site that never seem to make it to Canada. I thought this warehouse sale was a nice thank you to the Canadian market which has been supporting the company since it was a small Vancouver start-up.

Anonymous said...

Hahahaha @Anon 10:16 AM. I also do not feel sorry for you in Canada, when Lulu releases new items in my country and you are in Canada making the same old drama and coming with the same non-sense rant about "lululemon is a Canadian company, so we should get all the items in here first, blah blah blah"

Get over that. LLL was born in Canada and might still have the headquarters there, but it's now an int'l company and it will launch new products where it is strategically more profitable for company. Just look at the CEO: It's a French not a Canadian. that should tell you in what direction your Canadian company wants to go.

intothevoid said...

@ 8:56 - your suspicion about the Lulu's strategy does have some merit. When Lulu first started it had a core selection of classic items which would be augmented with new designs. At that time, Canadian customers were intuited to submit their design ideas and if chosen would receive a free product once it came to market. New colours were brought in every 45 days and you had to pop into the store to see what was new.

When Lulu went public in the US and hired Christine Day that's when the scarcity marketing model was introduced. And the intention is to create enough frenzy over a limited production product that it sells out. This philosophy unfortunately stands in complete opposition to yogic philosophy. Lulu has been struggling ever since.

Anonymous said...

Small "thank you" at those prices and limited selection/quantities, not to mention OLD leftovers? Laughable way to give back love to its supporters, if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

@intothevoid - Totally agree with your comment. Our lovely neighbours south of the border get amazing deals so often it's nice to have a special treat for us this one time. I am sure that LLL will be doing this for the US market as well after the success of this sale. As a Vancouverite who has supported LLL since it was founded I appreciated this thank-you! Happy to also see that American customers had extra in WMTM. It sounds like everyone won.

Anonymous said...

This American vs Canadian thing is getting real old. We all have a love for Lululemon and a common thread venue via these amazing lulu blogs to share our opinions, successes and disappointments. Time to forget about competing and who got what and when. Let's look forward to Lululemon re-creating their quality, craftsmanship & innovation - so we can all shine in our lives.

Anonymous said...

No problems for my order. Received the confirmation of order right away (2:30 a.m. ET) and 3 p.m. ET received confirmation the order has shipped.

intothevoid said...

@3:14pm. Perhaps it was not intended, but your comment seems churlish. I think what Canadians are reacting to is feeling like they have been loyal supporters of a small, and expensive Canadian company since it was inception. As a result of Canadian support, it was able to grow sufficiently to attract international attention. Now that it is operating on an international stage it seems like it has turned it's back on the very people who supported it in the first place. Rather like a man trading the first wife who paid his way through medical school in for a trophy wife after he has made it.
Canadians do not begrudge what lulu offers in other markets, but at times they do feel overlooked.

Anonymous said...

@ 2:53 PM, agreed, Athleta is not worth my while once you add all the fees and I've never tried them on. A $60 pair of crops is nearly double. Makes no sense that they have Gap, BR, ON brands and we can order with no extra fees, but they haven't done it with their Athleta brand. I get it, they've set up warehouses where just like LLL, but why not do it with Athleta too? Canadians have e-mailed them on this; we'd be happy to shop and give them a try.

Anonymous said...

@3:06 PM, Canada is officially a bilingual country so having a Frenchman at LLL's helm is actually a strength. Obviously they hired him for his many skills. Any individual that speaks more than one language has a leg up.