Field’s and May On Different Online Page

Sep 23, 2004
George Anderson

By George Anderson

No one thought it would be easy and they were right.

Marshall Field’s is going through transition pains as it moves its computer system from Target to its new parent, May Department Stores.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports consumers are longer able to make purchases from the Marshall Field’s Web site. A trip to the shopping page on includes a notice that reads, “We’re building the ultimate website for the ultimate department store.”

A spokesperson for Marshall Field’s told the Sun-Times it was a priority to get the site up and ready for orders as soon as possible.

A spokesperson for May said the site would be ready to go live next spring. The company never issued a formal announcement it was suspending e-commerce from the Field’s Web site.

Moderator’s Comment: Has May Department Stores made a mistake in not placing a higher priority on keeping the Marshall
Field’s Web store operating?

We’re not so sure May Department stores has bought into the online model, which may explain why its targeting next spring for the Field’s relaunch. A quick
check of May’s other properties, finds that Lord & Taylor has no e-commerce function although Robinsons-May does.

We agree with Sid Doolittle, a founding partner at McMillan Doolittle, who told the Sun-Tmes, the department store will probably not lose an appreciable
amount of revenue because its online store is not operating. From a customer-service point of view, however, it’s a mistake.

George Anderson – Moderator

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