Stitch Fix recently rolled out its newest add-on category for women called Stitch Fix Extras, a curated collection of everyday essentials, the company told Retail Dive in an email. The assortment includes camisoles, shapewear, underwear, tights, bralettes, bras and socks featuring brands like Wacoal, Free People and Hanky Panky as well as the company's private label, Everyday by Stitch Fix, the company said.
Subscribers have the option to add as many "Extras" to their "Fix" before their five items are styled, including as many bras, undies and socks as they think they need, according to a post on the company's website. After scheduling a Fix, clients are now prompted to view Extras selected for them based on their style preferences, a spokesperson told Retail Dive.
The company disappointed investors after its first quarterly report in December showed some limitations in its momentum, including soaring expenses for advertising and signs that its lower-cost options are selling better than the high end.
Stitch Fix founder/CEO Katrina Lake told analysts in December that the subscription service had begun to sharpen its focus on less pricey merchandise. "From a volume perspective, there is a greater opportunity in the $20 to $50 price range," she said, according to a conference call transcript from Seeking Alpha. "And that's the price range that we are seeing more and more demand for, it's a price point that we could serve very profitably and effectively. And so there is probably going to be greater investment in that lower price point than in the premium one."
If lingerie and other extras are part of that effort, it's a good place to start, experts told Retail Dive. The category will likely be a winner for Stitch Fix, despite a crowded market, according to Jim Fosina, CEO of Fosina Marketing Group, who called it "a great move."
"Loyal subscribers to a brand will buy incremental products from the brand they trust," he told Retail Dive in an email. "Stitch Fix already has a captivated audience and is an authority in direct-to-consumer subscription apparel. I do not see this as a challenge in a crowded intimate apparel market but rather an opportunity for Stitch Fix to sell more to their customers. Subscription experts know that selling ancillary products to your existing customer base increases profit per customer by 50% to 100% in lifetime value."
In fact, lingerie subscription is what the industry has needed, analysts at Jane Hali & Associates told Retail Dive in an email, noting that "women need intimates replaced on an on-going basis."
"'Sexy' is no longer a well-received message," Jane Hali said. "Consumers are looking for intimates that are comfortable and fit properly. Women are seeking comfort and to feel comfortable in their own bodies. StitchFix seems to be in the right direction by using Hanky Pany and Free People intimates, all pretty and comfortable."
There is, however, plenty of competition in that corner of the market, from the likes of True & Co, Lively and Thirdlove, Jane Hali analysts said.
In fact, Lively on Wednesday announced that it has raised another $3 million in seed funding from original investors including NF Ventures, GGV Capital and Harvey Sanders. The new funds will be used to expand into physical retail, the company told Retail Dive, using insights gathered from a recently completed U.S. pop-up tour.