A few decades ago, there was a clothing market that was divided into three segments: cheap, mid-range and premium. It was unaffordable for the average person to buy designer clothes. These were usually made here in Europe and the quality differences between the segments were huge. Today it is different. Designer clothing is available at much lower prices. And with the help of shopping clubs, consumers can save so much that it is hardly worth buying cheap clothes. Although the price difference is small, there are still big differences in quality.
Why is designer clothing so cheap today?
Gucci, Prada, Yves Saint Laurent, Tommy Hilfiger and all the others… In the past, they were known for producing at home. All high-quality handicraft, of course. But with the rise of China as the workbench of the Western world, that has changed. Today, almost every company produces there, no matter what brand.
The low wages ensured that manufacturing costs dropped massively. Furthermore, the machines were developed so that they ran automatically and delivered ever better quality. This, too, contributed to a further drop in prices. Because premium is all well and good, customers only see “Made in China” on the label and then at some point they refuse to pay astronomical prices.
Subsequently, the market changed. There is now only discount or brand. Middle class has almost disappeared. But one thing can still be said. Premium goods are still cut from better materials. In addition, high-quality colours are used that last much better. In other words, good quality has become much cheaper.
How can you get designer clothes even cheaper?
Shortly after the turn of the millennium, the phenomenon of shopping clubs developed. Such sites were founded with the aim of bringing designer goods to the people at even lower prices. For this purpose, a principle was introduced whereby only members could shop there. In addition, usually only they are allowed to recruit new customers. In this way, a certain clientele was selected, of whom one could be sure that they came from a certain income bracket and had enough money.
Shopping clubs have specialised in making the special offers of premium brands accessible. In addition, they also offer remnants, returns and surplus stock. Furthermore, the goods from the last season. These products are of absolutely high quality, but come with a gigantic discount. Good contacts to the manufacturers make it possible for members to pay even less for excellent products.
Sometimes this goes so far that there are only a few euros between the discount and the premium product. When it comes to the question of whether to buy a T-shirt for 12 euros or prefer one from a designer for 15 euros, the answer should be clear. Better the better, because it will look much nicer and last much longer.
Overview of the best shopping clubs
There are now a number of well-known providers in Germany. See our shopping club overview here:
- Best Secret
Here in the video you can see a few more:
Shopping clubs – What do the critics say?
If you want to become a member of a shopping club, you should look very carefully at where you leave your data. With lesser-known sites, fraudsters could be behind it, stealing credit card data or selling fake goods.
Investigations by the consumer centres have shown that it is not that much cheaper to buy there than in other online shops. However, the time saved was great, because as a customer you have all the particularly cheap offers right in front of you at a glance.
Questions and answers
Here are the most important questions about the shopping club:
Why is brand-name clothing so cheap in the shopping club?
Usually, the goods are specially produced for this segment, or they are remnants from a previous season. Nevertheless, the goods are usually much better than those from discounters.
Can clothes Made in China be good?
The premium designers produce in Asia with the same regulations and standards as they have here. The goods are therefore of good quality.
How does a shopping club work?
A shopping club is only accessible to members. By offering special discounts and benefits, they are motivated to recruit new members and thus increase the number of customers. The more members, the more negotiating power is built up vis-à-vis the producers.