This is the Future of The Gap
(Getty Images) A Gap store in San Francisco
When I was 14—way back in the early 1990s—the Gap was having a real moment. It was the hottest store to get T-shirts from (they did a swift trade in Gap logo-emblazoned T-shirts and sweats) and everyone who was anyone had a drawer full of the brand's hooded long-sleeve tees and V-neck rugby-inspired sweaters.
Fast forward 20 years and it's 2013. The Gap has evolved into an all-American mainstay of inexpensive basics and, um, underwear (lots of editors I know swear by Gap Body underwear). After a tumultuous first 21st-century decade, what's next for the ubiquitous brand?
Glenn Murphy, Gap Inc.'s chairman and CEO, talked to WWD this week. Here are some of the most interesting key points he revealed about the company's future. It includes plans for not only the Gap, but also brands it owns—like Piperlime, Athleta, and more.
- "Piperlime has one store and needs stores," he said. So, get ready for Piperlime stores to come to a city or a mall near you!
- Fewer sales and less discounting: "There will be more regular-price selling, shallower promotions, and shallower markdowns," he told WWD.
- A new way to shop online: It sounds like Gap is about to launch a "reserve in store" program, where you can buy stuff online and pick it up in the store. The timeline for this launch is going to be either late May or June.
- Gap Inc. is aiming to launch a more personalized e-commerce experience, including "personalizing promotions and product information." Not sure what that means except that they're going to install a bunch of cookies on my browsing experience?
- Opening stores in Brazil, opening stores in India.
- Universalizing its sizing: This has been something that editors have consistently talked about re: Gap—the sizing is inconsistent and broad. This year the company plans to shift their sizing paradigm to become more universal—"focusing more on size differences rather than fit variances." Japan will continue to have its own fit system, though, and the company is working on creating a fit paradigm for China.
What do you think about these imminent changes at the Gap and at Gap Inc.? Do you shop at the Gap? What is your user experience like?