Surely they knew it would be popular! Target's pop-up site in New York sold out in hours. Perhaps that should have been the first clue? Target spent megabucks on advertising the special line created by Missoni for Target: clothing, accessories, even a bicycle. When Missoni launched yesterday, Target failed.
It surprises me that lines formed outside the doors of Target stores before they opened. I didn't realize the general public knew the Italian brand that well. There they were, lined up at the doors, waiting to scoop armsfull of anything they could get their hands on in the first few minutes. From the photos, they didn't resemble the svelte Missoni customer.
Then potential customers crashed Target's site. Within seconds, the "grand opening" became not so grand as target.com went down - and stayed down. It was up and down all day. Did Target make a wise decision when it recently moved its e-commerce site away from Amazon onto its own platform?
I went over to the Target store nearest me at 11:00 am, after failing to get a look-see online. There wasn't a single piece of women's clothing left. Not one! I came home and tried again to see the line online. Some time in the early afternoon, I got a message that said something like, "Woof, stay here, don't refresh your page, and you'll stay in line to get in." Seriously? By that point, it had become a challenge, so I waited. About 15 minutes later, I was given my pass to view the limited-edition Missoni Collection. At that point, very few items were entirely sold out, so I ordered a few. It was my only way to see them: pay, wait to receive them, and then return what I can't wear, which might be everything, given Target's failure to put informative size details on the site.
Now, however, I know that those not-so-svelte customers were instead eBay sellers. All of the items from Target are available at eBay - some at many times their Target price. There are almost 30,000 of them! Current bid on a dress for which I paid $65? $210 at this second. Maybe it's time for Target to limit buyers to one SKU per customer when they launch a blockbuster. This is insane. I'm not sure I want to be seen in the clothing at this point. I'll decide when it arrives.
Did you participate in Missoni Madness?
Update: This phenomenon made the Today Show. I just saw a segment describing "Missoni Mahem" at the pop-up site, the crowds, the crash, and the madness. They didn't mention eBay.
Photo courtesy of Target