Lululemon offers a comprehensive line of performance apparel and accessories for women, men and female youth. Their apparel assortment includes items such as fitness pants, shorts, tops and jackets that are designed for healthy lifestyle activities such as yoga, running and general fitness. Although Lululemon benefits from the growing number of people that participate in yoga, they believe the percentage of their products sold for other activities will continue to increase as they broaden their product range to address other activities.
Lululemon’s fitness related accessories include an array of items such as bags, socks, underwear, yoga mats, instructional DVD’s, and water bottles. They believe the authenticity of their products is driven by a number of factors. These factors include their athlete-inspired design process, their use of technical materials, their sophisticated manufacturing methods and their innovative product features. Lululemon’s athletic apparel is designed and manufactured using cutting-edge fabrics designed to deliver maximum function and athletic fit. They collaborate with leading fabric suppliers to develop advanced fabrics that they sell under their trademarks.
Luluemon’s in-house design team works closely with their suppliers to formulate fabrics that meet their performance and functional specifications such as stretch ability, capability to wick moisture, color fastness and durability, among others. Advanced fabrics that they currently incorporate in their products include: •Luon – is included in more than half of the products, wicks away moisture, moves with the body, and is designed to eliminate irritation. •Luxtreme – their inherently wicking fabric is used in their running lines and is silky and lightweight •Silverscent – incorporates silver directly into the fabric to reduce odors as a result of the antibacterial properties of the silver in the fabric.
Lululemon’s products are constructed with advance sewing techniques, such as flat seaming, that increase comfort and functionality by reducing skin irritation and strengthening important seams. Their apparel products include innovative features to promote convenience, such as pockets designed to hold credit cards, keys, digital audio players, clips for heart monitors, and elastic bands attached to the zippers.
Packaging and Labeling
Lululemon Athletica distributes reusable shopping bags to their customers as one of their green initiatives in reducing waste. The reusable shopping bag features their company name and logo on one side and on the other side features their manifesto. Their manifesto has inspirational messages that play a vital role in Lululemon’s culture which employees and customers alike inspire to. Some of their messages include “Life is full of setbacks. Success is determined by how you handle setbacks”, “Do one thing a day that scares you” and “The conscious brain can only hold one thought at a time. Choose a positive thought”.
Brand Name and Image
Lululemon Athletica became famous for its yoga wear. The founder Chip Wilson, took his first yoga class and found the results exhilarating. However, he didn’t like the cotton clothing that was being used for sweaty, stretchy power yoga. His passion laid in technical athletic fabrics, and created an underground yoga clothing movement and wanted to sell his products. How do you know what good yoga wear is when it doesn’t exist yet? Lululemon would talk and let yoga instructors try their products and give back feedback. They design and iterate with the end user.
The reason behind why their brand became so popular was by talking and listening to their customers. Customers can give their feedback through Lululemon’s website, through the store, and on their Facebook Fan Page. Lululemon Athletica spends almost nothing on advertising except the occasional print ads in yoga and running magazines.
Also, they do not endorse celebrities with money to wear their merchandise to help them profit. Instead, they have Ambassador’s and Elite Ambassadors. Ambassadors are individuals in store communities (fitness instructors) who embody the Lululemon lifestyle and live their culture. These ambassadors are given $1000 of free apparel in return for modeling it to their clients. Elite Ambassadors are their international athletes of an elite level (Olympians) that choose to train and/or compete in their product. They are not paid to wear their clothing but are part of the Lululemon family and they support the athletes with product, yoga classes and training accommodation.
Warranty and Service
Lululemon does not have warranties for their products. They advise all customers how to wash and take care of their products so that they last long and which should refrain them from trying to return any damage product. Lululemon stands behind their return policy of 14 days.
Lululemon sales associates are called “Educators”, they are trained intensively on product knowledge and are to pass the knowledge of product features, benefits, usage and care to all customers looking to buy Lululemon product.
Strengths and Weakness:
Lululemon Athletica has many strengths with their product. They provide many features and benefits on their products which entices the customers to purchase. Their packaging is environmentally friendly so customers are able to reuse the shopping bag. They do not spend millions of dollars in advertising due to their ambassador program.
Warranty of their product is a major weakness for them. Many customers have complained and sent messages to the Complaints Board of Canada and United States regarding their horrible return/exchange policy on products that become damaged after one wash or one wear.
Lululemon Athletica’s features and benefits, packaging and labeling, and brand name and image should be maintained. Lululemon is always striving to bring out the best products that have the best features and benefits to their customers because they listen to what their customers want. They continue to give reusable shopping bags to customers as they are an environmentally friendly company.
A recommendation that should be developed for the upcoming year is on their product warranty. They should want to make their customers happy if they are unhappy with their purchase. If something was recently purchased and worn and washed within a month of purchasing and looks like it has been worn out, they should offer an exchange and look for the problem as to why the product turned out poorly in such a short time. Customers become turned off and bad mouth companies who do not stand behind their product.