Backcountry tests a new online closeout store

Outdoor and action sports gear retailer Backcountry.com has begun testing DepartmentofGoods.com, its fifth new online store this year. Access is by invitation only for now, but the retailer plans to open the new outlet site to all shoppers in January.

Zak Stambor


Outdoor gear merchant Backcountry.com has launched its fifth new online store this year, offering more than 400 brands of mountain equipment, outdoor products and action sports gear at DepartmentofGoods.com. But, for the time being, not everyone can access the deals on offer at the online closeout store.

Backcountry sent e-mail invitations to about 100,000 customers who placed an order on Backcountry’s family of sites within the last six months. Since the launch, the retailer has sent out another 40,000 e-mails to customers who have logged into the site, allowing each visitor to invite up to five friends to log-on to the site. Those who have not received an invitation can request a membership by entering an e-mail address on the outlet site’s home page, which proclaims “Full Price is Dead.”

Backcountry plans to open the new site to all shoppers by Jan. 15, at which time DepartmentofGoods.com will replace the retailer’s current overstock site, BackcountryOutlet.com. The retailer felt the need to create an outlet site with a look and feel distinct from Backcountry.com and one with a better selection of bike and action sports products than BackcountryOutlet.com, says a Backcountry spokesman.

To generate buzz, DepartmentofGoods.com plans to give away $150,000 in gear during the test phase. In addition, nearly 800 random shoppers have received a surprise gift just for joining, ranging from socks and T-shirts to kayaks and bikes. Also, the retailer waived payment for one in every 10 purchases made on the site up until last week.



Commerce, Finance, Mountain Equipment Co-op, Online shopping, Shoppers Drug Mart