Why I Stopped Promoting the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

All opinions are my own and do not reflect any of the companies or bloggers I mention. This is an opinion piece that is meant for a healthy discussion on the sale and influencer marketing, but not meant to be taken as the only opinion out there. This post contains affiliate links.

#NSale Nordstrom Shopping Bag for Anniversary Sale, nsale, #nsale

It's overdone 
I was never sold on the idea of promoting the sale, but last year I definitely partook in the pushing! I was invited by my local Nordstrom to shop early with other influencers, and I took a couple photos inside the dressing room to post. The sale has grown exponentially every year because of the influx of more and more bloggers promoting it. This year I could feel the anticipation in blogger groups I participate in; it was obvious everyone was planning on posting about the #NSale! While competition can be healthy, I tend to go a different route when there is too much competition. With the saturation, I have heard many of my readers saying it is annoying to see all the posts and refreshing when the content isn't about the Anniversary Sale. Besides, there are a lot of shopping bloggers that can create better content than me!

I don't like to spend that much on new clothing 
It's no secret amongst my offline friends that I love to save money. I do love a good sale! However, the sale prices at Nordstrom sometimes still break my budget. I prefer to find clothing in thrift shops or stores with a smaller price point. When it comes to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, you will only find me spending money on staple pieces like denim and jackets!

nordstrom anniversary sale bag, nordstrom anniversary sale, nsale

Sometimes the products aren't up to usual quality 
Sorry Nordstrom, it is nothing against you, but sometimes the products promoted for the sale are produced specifically for the sale. They can be manufactured cheaply to stay at a great price point, which means you aren't always getting the same quality you would from regularly stocked items.

I am not trying to sell to you 
Part of my job as an "influencer" (a term coined by marketing agencies) is to encourage brand awareness and stimulate the market around a product. Yes, I do sell to you when I am working with a company and I am endorsing an item I love! However, I have never been into creating every post about selling to you. It isn't in my nature to be a salesman! You won't find me posting LikeToKnowIt often. While I enjoy the affiliate income I can get from commissions on sales, I would rather keep my audience's trust and only talk about products I absolutely adore.

nordstrom gift card, nordstrom gift, nordstroms

The sale always has technical issues 
Without fail, there is always some sort of issue the first few days of the sale. The past two years the website has crashed when the sale opens. I tried to get Madewell jeans within the first few hours of the opening ceremonies and was met with transaction problems. It said my card details wouldn't work (a common issue amongst other shoppers) three separate times. Even though I had the money, an up-to-date credit card, and a Nordstrom card, I was unable to get the jeans I wanted because by the time the site was fixed, the jeans were sold out. Others have told stories of being charged every single time that their card "didn't work" or having items stuck in the shipping center only to have orders canceled later. What a hassle!

They dropped the commission 
While I don't think I can legally disclose the exact commission rate that rewardStyle has negotiated with Nordstrom, the commission rate has dropped significantly over the past few years. We are talking a drop of more than 50% what the previous commission was. So, when someone makes a huge purchase, I make pennies on the dollar in comparison to previous years. That type of supplemental income isn't enough for me to invest hours taking photos of outfits and cross-promoting my affiliate links on my social channels. 

Anniversary Sale shopping bag, yellow shopping bag, nordstrom bag

Nordstrom employees deserve the income and don't deserve the abuse 
Let me tell you first hand: Nordstrom employees work their butts off during the sale weeks. I used to work at a Nordstrom kids shoes department and know what it is like to work a sale. The employees are on a commission rate, but if they don't make enough in commission, their hourly rate gets kicked back into minimum wage ($7.25 in Utah). They are told to call previous shoppers and ask them to come in for an Anniversary Sale appointment. They deal with some pretty ungracious clients who make them carry clothing around for them, clean up dressing rooms, and spend hours doting on them. Also, can you imagine being on the order fulfillment team or the customer service team during the sale (these two departments don't make commission to my knowledge)? Eek, pretty nightmarish. So, in my humble opinion, the sales employees on the floor of Nordstrom deserve all the monies from the sale. Plus, I do not want to add to their stress by taking up a dressing room for an hour or two and leaving it a mess, only to buy a few items, like some bloggers have become infamous for during the sale (or even on the off season)!

What are your thoughts on the sale being promoted? Did you buy anything this year? 



  1. Wow, I could have written this post! I actually did talk about it briefly on my post today. I do think it can be too much and tends to drive people to buy things they probably don't really need. But like you, I love a good sale and don't do liketoknowit links that much because I thrift every now and then!

    xoxo Carolyn

  2. This was so refreshing to read, I follow and read over 70 fashion/lifestyle blogs so these past few weeks have been so oversaturated with nsale posts. As a current Nordstrom employee, your last point is also deeply appreciated.

  3. Great read! I'm not a fan of "brand sale" posts, and as a Growth Marketer for a brand I also cringe heavily whenever someone says they are an "influencer".


  4. girl - i echo EVERYTHING you have said! I'm so over the overdone hype!

  5. This title caught my eye! What a great read and now I am starting to realize it is a bit too much with this Anniversary sale happening! Totally agree that it breaks your budget on items that you don't really need! I only bought 4 items so far and I don't like to go crazy! Thank you for this post❤️

  6. Thanks for sharing your opinion! It can be overdone, but it is nice to see what everyone's top picks are instead of browsing the whole sale. Great post!

    cute & little

  7. I'm with you - I don't like the idea of buying things just because it's on sale, even if you don't need it and I sometimes feel like that's what a lot of influencers inadvertently promote through this sale. It's not actually cost effective if you're just buying things you don't need, just to say you shopped a popular sale.

    xo Deborah
    Coffee, Prose, and Pretty Clothes

  8. I can see how it's overdone and overshared for SURE - it is - but at the same time I personally do think it's a great sale to share since there's so many new items marked down. Some things are worth it more than others though, definitely agree with that!

  9. This was a really interesting read. I def agree that its over hyped - but I do think its a great sale. I was annoyed they dropped the commision but I was going to shop it anyways.

    xo, Whitney

  10. This was so interesting to read! I promoted the N Sale a lot, but I really enjoyed hearing a different opinion and agree with you about Nordstrom employees! Minimum wage is 7.25 here in Virginia too so I totally get it! -Tonya Tardiff

  11. I actually did not shop it at all this year or even post about it. It used to be so fun a few years back to do my picks and share them and have a few people shop them here and there! Honestly, I was so sick of hearing about it, even before it started. Everyone thinks they are a personal stylist or shopper now and it feels like there is no point in even posting about it!

    Denise | Fashion Love Letters

  12. This is a breath of fresh air! I thought I was the only blogger who didn't post about the Nordstrom Anniversary sale LOL! Thanks for this post, girl. xo Suzanne www.suzannespiegoski.com

  13. This is a great post! I see how this is overdone. And as a new influencer, I shared the last sale and took part in this year’s, we’ll see how worth it is to put my effort into this as a newbie.

    Xx, Nailil

  14. I don’t usually shop at Nordstrom either, I’m really a Target gal myself or American Eagle/Express! Now while there were a lot of beautiful shoes, I too feel that I can get a better deal elsewhere!! Oh, I’m so sick of it now, it lasts forever, lol!’n

  15. Oh my goodness I’m so so thankful someone voiced my thoughts. Last year I even took a blog/social media hiatus around the sale just so I didn’t have to read hundreds of posts about pieces that were still out of my budget while on clearance haha!

  16. I have been expecting a post like this about Nordstrom

    Have a lovely weekend
    new post

  17. I've definitely heard more of this lately, but in all honesty I love the N sale! I've been shopping it for years and this year I actually had several readers ask for a list of the best buys so they could prep ahead of time! I do totally get the headache that goes along with items being sold out - its such a bummer!

    Birdie Shoots

  18. Wow I had no idea what they were doing to their employees, that’s so sad! $7.25! I don’t know anyone that can live off that price. Thanks for sharing beautiful.


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