Is Google Launching A Fashion E-Commerce Site?

UPDATE: Google’s new fashion venture has been confirmed and will launch this week. Details here.


Last week, we received an invitation to a party Google is hosting. The invite quite proudly proclaims that on Nov. 17, high tech will fuse with high fashion, and when we first saw the invite we couldn’t help but think that Google is trying to get in on some of that eBay Fashion money.

That seems to have been confirmed by intrepid Tweeter @NoBtotheS, a handle managed anonymously by someone who says he or she is a fashion public relations insider, who wrote this tweet yesterday:

Breaking news: google is launching an ecommerce site with shop in shops by major designers #google #theyrgonnabepissed #geturshopon

While we can’t verify this information, we can say that the idea makes sense. Google’s online retail services, like Google Shopping and Google Checkout, are quite useful when you’re browsing the web at large trying to find a trench coat in a weirdly specific shade of green. But they’re not everything the ubiquitous technology company could be doing with its vast resources and eye for improving upon what other technology companies have already created.

eBay Fashion recently introduced the concept of a crowd-curated clothing collection, and they’ll introduce the first such venture with Derek Lam in the spring. The site is already the go-to place for finding high-fashion online for less. But with full-priced, full-on luxury labels reluctant to jump on the e-commerce bandwagon (for reasons we still don’t fully understand) Google might just be in the right place at the right time.

WWD reached out to Google regarding the rumors and they issued a somewhat standard non-denial: “We are hosting an exclusive fashion party to celebrate our partners. We don’t have further details to share.”

They may not want to share yet, but here’s hoping we’ll find out next week.

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