The Economics Of The Victoria’s Secret Catalogue

August 4, 2016 in Daily Bulletin

Victoria’s Secret is going to end its catalogue. Casey Lewis wrote an obituary:

  • Before the internet, catalogues allowed those in the US who didn’t live near urban centers to purchase trendy goods.
  • By 1997 Victoria’s Secret catalogues were going to 450 million people a year, and on average each catalogue brought in $1.47 of revenue – for a total of $661 million in direct sales for the lingerie company.
  • The catalogues were originally aimed at men who wanted to buy their partners lingerie but felt awkward walking into a lingerie store.
  • But in the 1980s the tone of the catalogue changed to sound British – in the hopes of making women feel less trashy about browsing through and purchasing things from the catalogue.
  • By 2011 Victoria’s Secret was the largest catalogue business in the United States.
  • Today circulation has dropped to 300 million copies, and at $0.50 a pop, the $150 million it’s costing the company to make them just doesn’t seem worth it in the era of the internet.

The full article goes over a history of the magazine, how its changed over the eras, and some of the more notable controversies that have surrounded it. You can find it here.

Source: Racked