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Levis.Com

site online web strauss

Levis.com was launched by fashion retailer Levi Strauss & Co. in 1996 as an informative company Web site that included pages on the firm's history and current operations, culture, and fashion. Two years later, the Web site became a sales outlet for more than 120 clothing items in 3,000 different styles. However, in 1999 Levi Strauss pulled the plug on its online sales efforts, using the Levis.com site instead to promote the firm's brand image.

Apparel retailer Levi Strauss was established in the 1850s and became known throughout the fashion industry for its name brand clothing including jeans, casual and dress pants, shirts, jackets, and accessories. Seeing the Internet as a potential marketing channel, the firm developed an Internet strategy in the mid-1990s. Launched to cater to both U.S. and European customers, the site included pages on the company's history, as well as product and marketing information. Levis.com also featured pages, dedicated to its target audience of 15-to-24-year-olds, that covered fashion and cultural issues. Shortly after the Web site's debut, Levi Strauss introduced a new marketing scheme entitled I-candy. The interactive advertising was available on various Web sites, including music sites MTV and Addicted to Noise, in the form of a blinking eye. When Web surfers clicked on the eye, an interactive commercial appeared, touting the Levi's brand.

While Levi Strauss continued to utilize the Levis.com Web site for marketing purposes, company management eventually set plans in motion to turn the popular site into a shopping destination. The firm's market share had slipped from 30 percent in 1990 to 17 percent in 1998, and Levi Strauss planned to use its online efforts to regain a hold on the apparel market. The company also was prompted to begin e-tailing when customers began complaining about not begin able to order Levi's brand products online or by telephone. As a result, an e-commerce plan was developed and in November of 1998 Levis.com began selling 120 items from the Levi's branded apparel line. The site featured a tool entitled Style Finder, which asked online shoppers a series of questions related to fashion, music, and entertainment, and then made apparel suggestions based on the shoppers responses. According to Digital Marketing Director Jay Thomas, as cited in a 1998 Digital Age article, the move into e-commerce reflected Levis.com's "single-minded goal. . .to make it easier to shop and buy our products."

While customers applauded the firm's entrance into the online selling arena, its retailers were less than thrilled. When Levis.com began selling branded products, Levi Strauss retained exclusive online rights to both the Levi's and Dockers brands. This move prevented retailers—including Sears, Roebuck & Co. and J.C. Penney—from selling Levi's branded products online. At the time, retailers accounted for a large portion of company sales, and some analysts believed the online site might undercut these sales and undermine the firm's relationship with retailers.

Levis.com faced many problems and did not fare well in its first year as an online shopping destination. The transition from selling large quantities to retail outlets versus shipping to individual consumers proved to be costly. The site did not sell the famous Levi's 501 Blues line until March 1999, worried that Asian and European customers, who could not buy the jeans online and were paying more than U.S.-based customers, would boycott the firm. Many customers continued to shop at retail outlets to avoid online shipping charges. In addition, the online return policy also was discouraging to customers because merchandise bought on Levis.com could not be returned at retail stores.

At the same time, Levi Strauss was in turmoil. Long-time company president Peter Jacobi retired in January 1999. Having cut its workforce by 40 percent over the previous three years, the firm was struggling with distribution issues, often unable to keep supplies of its products in stores. Sales during 1998 fell by 13 percent, which forced Levi's to cut costs, including those related to e-commerce efforts. Consequently, Levis.com's advertising budget was slashed. With little support from Levi Strauss, the site did not attract the Web traffic necessary to make it a successful venture, and without a substantial Web audience Levis.com did not garner enough attention to effectively compete with major competitors. Many of the Web site's technology staff members began seeking employment with other Internet-based firms.

Continued losses at Levi Strauss forced the company to take further action. In November of 1999, it announced that Levis.com would no longer sell Levi's branded apparel online after the holiday season. The company stated in a 1999 E-Commerce Times article that "during the past year, it became clear to us that the cost of running a truly world-class e-commerce business is unaffordable right now as we look at other competing priorities." Levis.com remained online, however, and was once again primarily used for marketing and communications efforts. Levis.com's exit from e-tailing also strengthened the firm's relationship with retailers. After the announcement, retailers J.C. Penney and Macy's were given the go-ahead to start selling Levi's branded apparel on their Web sites. The move proved effective, as the J.C. Penney Web site sold 50 percent more Levi's branded apparel in six weeks than Levis.com had sold in 12 weeks.

Philip Marineau, the new CEO of Levi Strauss, also was confident that Levis.com's exit from e-tailing was a good move. In a February 2000 Daily News Record article, he commented, "I view the Internet as a key asset. But we're not fulfilling goods on a mass level, let alone one at a time. I'm trying to improve retail partnerships, not drive a stake through them." After shuttering the e-tailing operations, Marineau put plans in motion to improve the use of Levis.com as a marketing tool. The firm shifted control of its Web operations in-house from an outside agency in early 2000. The site's new focus was to promote the Levi's brand image and to encourage Web surfers to purchase Levi's apparel from its retailers' Web sites.

By 2001, users across Europe, South America, Asia Pacific, and Latin America were able to access Levis.com. Along with information on Levi's apparel for men, women, and children, the site also featured company commercials and fashion information, as well as the firm's Original Spin program, which allowed consumers to order customized jeans at certain Levi Strauss stores. As Levi Strauss focused on improving its bottom line, the company continued to use Levis.com as a strategic communication and marketing tool.

FURTHER READING:

Cuneo, Alice Z. "Levi Strauss Begins 1st Online Sales Effort." Advertising Age. November 23, 1998.

DeSalvo, Kathy. "501 Reasons to Check Out Levi's Online." Shoot. February 9, 1996.

Dugan, Sean M. "Net Prophet: Levi Strauss & Co. Site Doesn't Pan Out, but the Rush Isn't Over Yet." InfoWorld. November 22, 1999.

Forseter, Murray. "Levi's Weaves a Tangled Web." Chain Store Age Executive with Shopping Center Age. January 1999.

Greenberg, Paul A. "Levi's to Bow Out of E-Commerce." E-Commerce Times. October 29, 1999. Available from www.ecommercetimes.com.

——. "Manufacturers Beset by E-Commerce 'Channel Conflict.'" E-Commerce Times. January 7, 2000. Available from www.ecommercetimes.com.

Hye, Jeanette. "Levi's Good Fit: In-House Control." WWD. January 5, 2000.

Knight, Molly. "Levi's Closes Year With 13 Percent Decline in Sales." Daily News Record. February 23, 2001.

Kroll, Lisa. "Denim Disaster." Forbes. November 29, 1999.

——. "Digital Denim." Forbes. December 28, 1998.

"Levi's Launches I-Candy, New Ad for Internet." WWD. July 10, 1996.

Malone, Scott. "Levi's Comeback Above Plan." WWD. January 11, 2001.

Summerfield, Gideon. "Levis Invests in Getting Onto the Net with a Surf-Friendly, Worldwide Site." Campaign. February 23, 1996.

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almost 4 years ago

RECENTLY I PURCHASED A PAIR OF LEVI'S IN THE SAME SIZE AND STYLE 505, I HAVE WORN FOR MANY YEARS. ABOUT 3 WEEKS LATER I PUT THEM ON AND THEY WERE MUCH SHORTER IN THE CROUCH AND REAR END THAN IN THE PAST. I WEAR LEVI'S ALL THE TIME, NOT MUCH ELSE, SO I PUT ANOTHER OLD PAIR OF 505'S ON, THEY FIT FINE. I FIGURED THAT THEY WERE CUT INCORRECTLY SO I TOOK THEM BACK TO 'JC PENNY'S' FOR AN EXCHANGE. THIS TIME, HOWERVER I THOUGHT I BETTER TRY THEM ON BEFORE HAND. SAME PROBLEM SO I TRIED ANOTHER PAIR, SAME PROBLEM. SO I BOUGHT THE STORE BRAND IN THE SAME SIZE AND THEY FIT JUST FINE. I ASKED THE SALES PERSON IF LEVI HAD CHANGED ANYTHING, SHE SAID SHE THOUGHT SHE HAD HEARD SOMETHING ABOUT A CHANGE BUT WASN'T SURE.

WELL I HAVE TOLD ALL MY FRIENDS ABOUT THIS AND IF THEY ENCOUNTER THE SAME PROBLEM THEY WILL BE JOINING ME IN NOT BUYING YOUR PRODUCTS IN THE FUTURE. I AM VERY DISSAPPOINTED THAT IT HAS COME TO THIS, AS I ALWAY LOVED MY LEVI'S. TO BE VERY CLEAR THE 505'S ARE NOW MORE LIKE HIP-HUGGERS, WITH NO BUTT. THIS STYLE MIGHT BE ALRIGHT FOR A KID THAT WEARS HIS PANTS EXTREAMLY LOW BUT THE SALES PERSON TOLD ME 505'S ARE MAINLY BOUGHT BY ADULTS LIKE ME.

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about 4 years ago

I just found out that your company users sweatshops in other countries to manufacture your product. And put Americans out of work. As a victom of NAFTA, I have to say I will never buy anything from your Co. ever again. You are traitors to this country. And part of the problem with this country.

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almost 5 years ago


I bought an original american 501(nominally!) in US but it says "Made in Egypt"
If I could like to buy an Egyptian jean, I should go to Egypt...lol
Also the other (nominally!) american trade marks like this..for example Old Navy ..I know that is an american firm %100. but it says "Made in Indonesia"
lol

than don't call they are american productions or don't buy them in america under the name of "american productions"

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about 5 years ago

I just watched two of your supposed American commercials. They appeared to me not to be American. It appeared they were trying to insight and uprising. I feel they should be pulled from television

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over 6 years ago

Since when did Levis,the all American jeans,start being made in Mexico,Egypt,Indonesia,Haiti,Costa Rica etc.? There is actually a big difference between each country,where some material is stiff and some is paper thin.
Also,how come J.C.Penny and Sears swear that 560s don't exist?
I went there for Levis on sale for $28 and they had no 560s.Bob's store on the other hand had tons of 560s but for $36.
Why such discrepancy between stores?

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almost 7 years ago

I am now 43 years old...I've been wearing levis 501 jeans since my high school days in the early 80's... My problem is why did you change the POCKET and FITTING of the 501 jeans nowadays? I tried to look for the old 501 jeans that distinguished them from the other cheapy brand of denim jeans but to no avail... 501 jeans is a bit pricey but its OK for us as long as We are buying the original one that We used to wear... You can still make it in South America with the old pattern that makes 501 fitting diff. from the others...
Thanx,
Ariel

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over 1 year ago

I would lile for your company to bring back the odd number length jeans. I wear 33x33 and can't find the 33 length any more, for quit some time now. 32 is to short and 34 are to long. I don't like walking on my jeans, they look hideous after you walk on them and not to mention they get holes and rip due to walking on them because there to long. The 32 length look like high water pants when you sit down and not to mention when I ride my horse the 32 length come up even shorter like capris. Who the hell wants to walk around looking hideous because your company refuses to make the correct sizes for us. I don't want to walk around with jeans that are to long that look like parachutes or to short that looks like high waters or capris. Make some damn jeans before youget sued for hendering the way people want to dress. People are used to dressing a ccertain way and when you take away the clothes we are use to wearing, it is forcing us to dress with your hideous jeans that don't fit properly. We shouldnt have to be forced to wear clothes that don't fit just because you think you have to keep up with the young teenie boppers fashion. Not every woman likes stretchy jeans. We want american made cotton jeans back in all kinds of sizes so everyone has a chance to dress the way they want not because were forced to dress hideous due to the negligents of clothing manufactures like YOU!!! Your not the only company that's doing this. If I can get enough people to sign my petition on this matter it will FORCE you to change or I will just end up sueing you and other companys for hendering the way I like to dress.

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about 3 years ago

Some time before, I really needed to buy a car for my organization but I did not earn enough cash and couldn't order something. Thank goodness my friend proposed to take the business loans at creditors. Thence, I did so and used to be satisfied with my sba loan.

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over 3 years ago

required the distributer-ship in ghaziabad

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over 3 years ago

required the distributer-ship in ghaziabad

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over 3 years ago

required the distributer-ship in ghaziabad

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over 4 years ago

I am a U.S. citizen from Kansas who has lived in Costa Rica for a couple of years now. I have news for all of you "greedy" American consumers, when you are ready to lower your salary expectations, corporations will be happy to move back to the U.S. and prices of products produced in the U.S. will fall. Until you are ready to live with your grandparents, parents, and children under one roof, own one car between all of you, ride the bus daily, and survive happily on $1000 a month, corporations will not be able to afford you and thus, will move to where people are willing to live on less and still be extremely happy. Welcome to world competition America!

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over 4 years ago

Add me to the list of those wishing for odd sizes.



I've always been a perfect 33" length but have stopped buying Levi's because neither 32 or 34 fit.

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almost 5 years ago

there is no reason you as an American born company, can't produce your products in the U.S.A. And, don't give us, the people who built your company that line of bullshit, that in order to stay competitive, we have to produce products in some third world country. You say that people, wont be able to afford American made jeans. You, the greedy corporate assholes, are the reason this country has fallen apart. You want to be heroes, open up some American factories, stop thinking about yourself. Put Americans back to work, its wrong that unemployment is at an all time low. Im telling you, Made in America goes a long way, and you be astonished how many people would flock to buy, wear and support your Levis legacy. An idea, start with 501's, and proudly advertise, MADE IN USA, they will sell, and I would pay $100.00 a pair, that is if there made with domestic cotton, materials.

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about 5 years ago

Please come back with the the odd size waist and length. My husband needs 35 W, 31 L. While dieting or gaining a few pounds to fit into jeans could work, it is not a very good option... his size has been the same for many years... but the jeans have changed. Do we need to get our own tailor when we love Levi jeans?

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about 5 years ago

Please add my name to the list of folks requesting odd size jean lengths. I also require a 31" length, but for some unknown reason, they're no longer available. I've always liked Levi's jeans, but will switch to get the right size.

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almost 6 years ago

please come back with the odd waist sizes size 34 is to tight and 36s are to big we also used to be able to purchase them in odd waist sizes
thank you

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about 6 years ago

I would like to purchase Levis style 544 in size 32-32 but can t source them. Can you let me know if they are still available. I am living in Ireland

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about 6 years ago

Hi, I just say a commercial for 501's during the Giants and Washington game. A girl starts out by saying that if you openor loosen the budins... I'm just wondering what the "budins" are. Please let me know. Thank you!

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over 6 years ago

my husband mentioned pants/jeans you made some time ago 'on the move'

is it possible to find these somewhere?

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over 6 years ago

My thing is, my husband has always wore wranglers, till i got him the perfect pair of levis. Now he only wants to wear levis BUT they dont come in 33-38 he is tall and does not like his legs to show when he sits in church!

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almost 7 years ago

I too have been searching for 31" length. My husband wore this length for years. Need 38" x 31", in Levi's, please. Any suggestions from Levi? JC Penney had this length (on line only) in the past, but no longer apparently. HELP, please! Thanks. MM

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almost 7 years ago

What happened to the all cotton jeans??

Me & many other women HATE the streach jeans. I wore Levis all my life. Now I cant find all cotton. Come back to the cotton -there is a big need for them.

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

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about 7 years ago

I happen to have a pair of levi strauss size 0 needing to know how much they would be worth one of a kind 40 years old just about perfect condition.I would like to have a responce from anybody interested thanks for your time

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over 7 years ago

I have a real problem with my levis having a big dark blue spot, or 2 or 3, at the zipper as the rest of the coler fades. I have washed this pair 3 times and the dark blue spots are already very noticeable. What can I do? thanks

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over 7 years ago

Please come back with odd # length sizes. my husband & son need 31 length. 30 is to short and 32 is to long.i hear a lot of customers with this same complaint. how hard can it be to come back with odd size lengths???? We love the fit of Levis so please make some changes. We use to be able to purchase the 34 X 31 size. It was perfect. thank you.