Women's Triathlon Suits - Our internal discussion on cost and quality
Posted: Feb 19 2015
Women's Triathlon Suits
We had a terrifically interesting debate at Coeur prior to rolling out our 2015 Line of Triathlon Clothing. We set out to create the highest quality and cutest triathlon suits in the market period. To do that, we knew we’d have to go with what is called full sublimation printing so that we could move away from heat transfers (the logos that are sometimes pressed on to gear) and we’d have to use more flat lock stitching which is an expensive stitch that is stronger and smoother than what you see on other brands of triathlon gear.
The Flatlock stitch is smoother and stronger than other options
In addition, we wanted to make sure that the quality of the sewing was absolutely top notch. Initially, we didn’t even talk about cost because quality was our watch word. It was all about quality. We were lucky to be in Los Angeles because we were able to visit several different factories and have them sew sample tri kits for us to test. Eventually, we found an amazing factory in the fashion district who had years of experience sewing triathlon and cycling gear and we struck a deal.
We went through five test versions before dialing in the perfect amount of gripper
When it was all said and done, we knew we had created an extraordinary garment. The exceptional stitching, the super cute, on-trend designs, and the revolutionary seam-free chamois combined to create a triathlon kit that (according to the rep at the factory) could easily retail for over $110.
The seam-free chamois continues to be unique in the industry
Then came the debate. What should we charge? We saw that other women's triathlon kits that used cheaper and technically lower quality construction were priced higher and they even charged for shipping. Since we believed our quality to be higher, should we charge more too? Our tests suggested that the market would be ok with pricing well above $90. But just because we could charge a lot for the garment didn’t mean we should. Plus, we really wanted to do something disruptive in the industry. We can thank our team members who live in the Bay Area for that influence. It seems to be a mantra of San Francisco start-ups that you have to do something revolutionary to thrive.
After several late night meetings, we all aligned on the decision to keep our triathlon tops and shorts under $85. We briefly thought about charging for shipping but that idea was quickly abandoned. We wanted to be easy to deal with and free shipping and no-hassle returns were just the right thing to do. So in the end, we decided to keep prices down. We honestly, honestly believe that we have the hands down, highest quality triathlon suit in the market bar none.
So, if you’re looking for high quality triathlon kits, don’t be fooled by high prices. The two don’t always go hand in hand.