L.L. Bean Tries Thinner Catalogs

L.L. Bean, Freeport, ME, is slowly transforming its catalogs into books that are thinner and less densely packed with merchandise than the catalogs have traditionally been. "We are looking to simplify the shopping experience in our catalogs for our customers," company spokeswoman Mary Rose MacKinnon said yesterday. "That means lighter copy, less crowded pages and ultimately thinner books." The process has begun in the company's recently dropped men's casual book. "With more catalogs in the mailbox, we wanted to make sure customers are spending the time they need with ours," MacKinnon said. Separately, L.L. Bean is planning a retail expansion for the year 2000. The retail stores would focus on products in the company's active sports line. Locations have not yet been chosen, but it is considering expanding into the mid-Atlantic region. L.L. Bean has a retail store on the site of Leon Leonwood Bean's original store in Freeport, ME, several factory outlet stores and a few retail stores in Japan.

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