Sunday, December 17, 2006

William-Sonoma Suing Target

Frankly, I'm surprised this didn't happen sooner. (Don't you hate it when someone starts a sentence with "Frankly"? I mean, are you normally evasive and it's a rare thing when you're truthful?)

It seems to me that it will be a difficult fight especially since so many of Targets lines are made by specialty designers who create their own offerings.

If I'm a typical customer, William-Sonoma is in trouble. I saw a chandelier that I liked there, but didn't want to spend $300. So, on a lark, I went over to Target, found the exact same thing (minus one little detail) for $100 less. The design was so basic, however, that I don't know if they could sue over it. Probably every lighting store in the country carries the same chandelier.

William-Sonoma is falling into the Gap problem. They are neither high enough (Sur La Table) nor low enough (Target). They are getting mushed in the middle. Some of their things are just a wee bit over-priced, in my opinion. When I find something I love, I try to find the cheaper version of it, if I can. If not, I might break down and pay the price.

1 comment:

Chalmers said...

As the husband of a former WS employee, I can assure you of this, almost all of their products are sold somewhere else, for significantly less money. Check out Costco, Crate and Barrel, Linens N Things, Target, IKEA, etc. They all have the same stuff. We bought an electric grill from WS when A worked for them, paid about 70 bucks instead of 100 and some. Found out that Black and Decker had the IDENTICAL grill (seriously, only the label was different) for 24.99! WS is almost always a rip off. Nice stuff, sure, but about double what you should be spending.