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-   -   Is LL Bean trying to keep up with LRO? (http://littleriveroutfitters.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15631)

danp413 10-15-2011 01:29 AM

Is LL Bean trying to keep up with LRO?
 
I have been laughing at the ad campaign that LL Bean has been running showing that they now have free shipping. I just keep thinking that they have felt the pressure from Little River. They still can't beat the staff though.

Don't worry, LL Bean will not be a bookmark on my browser, but LRO always will be.

Thanks,
Dan

Knothead 10-15-2011 03:30 PM

I'm with Dan. I doubt if you could call LLB and get a report on the Middle Prong.:biggrin:

MadisonBoats 10-16-2011 08:38 AM

I always try to support local and small business. LRO has been a great ambassador for our sport and it is owned and operated by some very honorable people. Plus; they do have great products and dang good customer service. And they pay for all the bandwidth, hosting, and administer this forum for us to share, learn, meet & greet, and act like fools at times...:biggrin:

Byron Begley 10-17-2011 09:21 AM

Thank you all so much for the kind words. Without your loyalty, we would have been gone a long time ago. And, the most rewarding part of being in this business is working with you.

Thanks so much,

Byron

Birdman 10-19-2011 07:16 PM

I have never dealt with a company with the level of customer service exhibited by LRO. They are absolutely THE best out there. I mean, who sends a hand-written letter along with the online order thanking you for your purchase?!?! Also, once I got a hand-written letter along with an email stating the status of my order. Top notch company with down to earth people who have a sincere gift of passing along the love of the sport. I tip my hat.

Birdman

The Principal 10-19-2011 08:09 PM

I would like to add a amen to these posts.

PeteCz 10-20-2011 04:33 PM

I agree, but...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by danp413 (Post 96611)
I have been laughing at the ad campaign that LL Bean has been running showing that they now have free shipping. I just keep thinking that they have felt the pressure from Little River.

Let me say this first: LRO is my favorite fly shop, but LL Bean is my favorite store.

Honestly, LL Bean and LRO really aren't competitors. LL Bean carries 20,000 products in its inventories and has annual sales of approximately $2B. They are a large retail company that just happens to sell a few flyrods on the side. LL Bean competes directly with Cabelas, REI, Eddie Bauer, Bass Pro Shops, Gander Mtn and to some degree Orvis.

If you ever get up to Freeport Maine, I would encourage you to stop into their flagship store. They are having their 100th anniversary this year. However, I would suggest shopping sometime between 1am and 5am, because it can be a zoo during the day (its the 2nd largest tourist attraction in the state of Maine - with 3 million visitors a year). It has an awesome selection of clothing, camping gear, hunting gear, housewares, biking, kayaking and more. I think the store is over 200,000 SF.

And yes they have a fairly decent flyfishing section in the Fishing and Hunting store, but they carry mostly their own gear which is somewhat positioned as entry-level equipment. The Freeport store carries a good selection of fly tying accessories and materials as well as lots of other things they don't have on their website (they may carry them in their catalog), but its really geared toward local (Maine) fishermen (after all, its a local shop to them, since so many "Mainers" are employed by LL Bean...).

As far as their move (back) to free shipping, this comes from their website:
Quote:

As L.L.Bean nears its 100th anniversary, it re-introduced everyday free shipping in March 2011 for all US and Canadian orders with no minimum purchase and no end date. This continues the tradition that Leon Leonwood started in 1912 by offering all L.L.Bean products in his catalog "post paid."
In case you think I work for LL Bean, here's the bottom line: My family and I go to Maine at least once a year and stop at LL Bean every time. We buy a ton of clothing and home stuff, but I still prefer buying ALL of my fly gear from LRO. Personal service does win out over a cool store, great selection and great (free) shipping (LRO and LL Bean have all of those). I'm fortunate in that I'm only 22 minutes from LRO. In fact, I was at LRO on Tuesday, dropping off a flyrod to be repaired and buying a few more tying knick-knacks...

Keep up the good work!

My $.02

kentuckytroutbum 10-20-2011 06:20 PM

PeteCZ-

I agree with your assessment of LLBean, and that they are competing against other "big box" retailers. My wife & I go to Maine every couple of years to fish the Kennebec River for trout. And we stop in at Freeport to shop for clothing & home stuff at LLB's. But we buy our fly flinging gear from dedicated shops such as LRO and others, because their selection is better and more inclusive of items that we need. Plus they are good sources for up-to-date information on the streams & rivers and what is working.

And we would rather support the "local" stores & shops. The last couple of years have been very difficult for fly shops, and as Byron has lamented on his "Fishing Report", a number of fly shops have been forced to close. Don't want to see that happen!

Bill


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