Shop Club

Reporter: Sally Obemeder

People can save up to 70% online, after people have used member only shopping they never want to pay retail again. Members' only shopping clubs are the newest way to get designer goods at bargain prices. There's lingerie, sunglasses, homewares, cosmetics, kids toys, kids clothing, outdoor wear, sports wear. You name it and they've probably got it.

Stephen Coles and Ben Hollenstein run Buyinvite, one of Australia's fastest growing online shopping clubs. Currently they have 160,000 members, and those numbers are increasing every day."We're getting more than 1000 members a day, Membership is free, and the massive range of designer brands is a big drawcard for those looking to bag a bargain.

"Manta body boards normally $350 we have those at $70 to $90, K Swiss shoes we had at $40, normally $150 and we've got Reidel Glasse, we've got sets of 8 recommended retail about $500 we had them at about $170 and they sold out in about 3 hours" said Ben. most of our members become members by invitation where existing members of the shopping club invite them. Members can also sign up independently at the site" said Ben.

"Phillips electronics we've got recommended retail of $270 and we've got them at about 65% off which is around $100 or less for top line headphones, stuff for girls we have Clarins. We've got 77% off retail so you can get great cosmetics at the $10 to $15 mark" added Ben.

§ Calvin Klein jeans retail for $220, the Buyinvite price? $75.

§ Seafolly Sunglasses almost 80% off - marked down from $180 to $39.

§ There's 70% off Casio sports watches. In the shops - $229. Here - $69.

§ A sun dress by Aussie designer Auerlio Costarella was a splurge at $600, but online you can get it for a more reasonable $120.

With genuine savings like these, the bargains don't last long, every day different brands go on sale at 6am. The sales last a maximum of three days, but it's first in first served and you have to be quick.

"The Reidel glasses were gone in 3 hours, the hussy dresses were out the door in 2. Homewares, sheets, linen, it all goes extremely quickly, so we've created this game mentality. People love logging onto our site and finding those hidden bargains we partner directly with brands so it's all genuine product, typically it might be clearance stock or excess inventory" said Stephen.

"Online exclusive shopping is just going to take off, I think it's going to rocket from here" said Nedahl. Nedahl Stelio runs Cocolee another online members only shopping club tailored specifically to womens fashion, Nedahl has based her website off a US concept.

"There are really, really successful sites in the US that are doing this, they don't deliver in Australia, which is why we started Cocolee, the concept originated in Europe, where shopping clubs have almost 15 million members and that's where Stephen and Ben got the idea" Nedahl said.

"Well like a lot of people we lost our jobs in finance in the global financial crisis we saw this great business model out of France put every cent we had put into it we actually started in Stephen's parents backyard so we were taking up their garden, their garage, and their pool house it was just him and myself getting brands, packing, working the sales events, doing the shooting. Nine months later our warehouse is overflowing and we're just looking forward to the next sales event not back at our jobs in finance" said Stephen.