BREAKING NEWS: Harvey Norman Moves Into Cosmetics

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The company who traditionally sell furniture, consumer electronics, and IT goods are now flogging children’s planes, garden beds and hammocks. Its Harvey’s as you’ve never seen them before, literally.


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The new site, which appears to have only one product page appears to have many of the products sold out.

Chairman Gerry Harvey has come a long way from his famous declaration “no one will ever make money selling online”  back in 1997 in the very early days of the internet.

This is also a very interesting change of heart by the retailing giant considering Harvey along with Myer, David Jones and 18 other mass market retailers, initiated an intense marketing campaign earlier this year aimed at pressuring the Federal Government to slap a 10% GST on Internet purchases made from overseas web sites, claiming they were losing business to foreign rivals.

Just days after pledging to go online with a trading site for its appliances and consumer electronics, the retailing giant has now opted for a slightly different tack.

The site, Harvey Norman Big Buys, offers a deal-a-day on cosmetics, garden plants and car seats and appears to be aimed at the female consumer.

And it’s not just the TV retailer that has gone through a transformation.

Harvey Norman will now give its customers a make over with today’s offer of a Revlon cosmetics pack for $53, which seems a bit steep, in my view, although it does include delivery. A similar deal was offered recently on dealme.com.au for $59.

Other deals to be had include a raised garden bed, at $88, which is already sold out, and a toy plane for $22. Tomorrow’s “big buy” is a Brother sewing machine. 

Just over a week ago, it emerged Harvey would be entering the dog eat dog world of online retailing.

“By this time next year you’ll see Harvey Norman with a pretty sizeable internet presence. My heart’s beating very strongly on whether we make any money out of it,” Chairman Gerry Harvey declared.

“I haven’t got any choice. I’ve got to cannibalise our stores.”

However, rival deal company ‘Catch of The Day’ has hit out against the electronics retailer’s move to group deals.

 
“(Gerry Harvey is) a late entrant into online retailing and his anti-online stance and lack of understanding as to how to run an e-commerce business does cast a shadow on the ongoing viability of the site, but good on him for having a go,” its founder Gabby Leibovich said in a statement.

Industry sources say it is a testing ground for a real Harvey Norman online site to come.

The website can be found at harveynormanbigbuys.com.au, and will come up against a slew of competitors who have joined this space in the past year or so, including Deals, Jump On It and Cudo.

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