The Clock Runs Out on Free Shipping at 6pm

The popular shoe and apparel discount site instituted a $50 free shipping minimum. Very few of its best standalone deals will qualify.

For years, 6pm's awesome no-minimum free shipping has helped make it one of the top sites for deals on clothing and accessories, but that time seems to have passed. The site just enacted a hefty free shipping minimum threshold: $50.

The majority of the deals we've posted in the past would not be eligible for the new minimum. For example, we posted 169 single-item deals on 6pm goods in September, and only 53 — just over 30% — would bag free shipping today.

Shipping Is $4.95, Padding Is Difficult

The remaining 116 deals would cost an extra $4.95, the new fee for standard shipping. And no, padding isn't likely to help. Although there were several deals within a few bucks of the new minimum, 6pm doesn't offer the cheap cart-stuffers you can often use at stores like REI to tip a deal over the edge. At the time of writing, DealNews was only able to find a single item on the whole site that cost less than $4.95 — a $4 pair of Sperry Top-Sider embroidered socks.

Now, it's worth mentioning that even with the additional cost of shipping, many of those deals we posted would still be great deals. For example a pair of Born men's loafers we listed would "only" be a low by $57 with the new policy — still big savings. But other items would no longer be price lows, and others would have an edge by less inspiring margins — so it seems safe to say you'll be seeing fewer deals from this source.

The timing on this move is poor for customers, coming right before the holiday rush. The Black Friday weekend is a great time for clothing deals, with many sites offering free shipping, stacking discounts, and up to 80% off. 6pm has been no exception to this trend in the past, offering 10% off and 15% off coupons on top of discounts as deep as 82% off. Last year, we sent thousands of DealNews viewers to the site in search of great deals... but less than a quarter of the items we suggested they check out during that weekend would bag free shipping this year.

Less than a quarter of 6pm deals that DealNews listed during Black Friday last year would now qualify for free shipping.

If 6pm doesn't offer free shipping during Black Friday, many deals will be less compelling. If it does offer free shipping, it may do so in place of the coupons we saw last Black Friday and Cyber Monday, disappointing customers who planned larger shopping sprees.

How do you feel about 6pm's decision? Did you shop there for cheap buys in the past, or did you focus on steep savings on pricier brand-name items that won't be affected by the new minimum? Do you think you'll be less likely to check 6pm for clothing deals? Let us know in the comments.

Erin Coduti
Contributing Writer

Formerly a content writer for DealNews, Erin Coduti now brings that experience to the blog team as a freelancer. Previously, she wrote for a television news station and a literary fan magazine.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).


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Wow, I just found this out after trying to place an order for $12 athletic shorts. Saw shipping in the final price (after I almost clicked out of habit) and thought "wait, 6pm is free shipping, right? right?" A short google search let me back to good 'ole dealnews. What a bummer. As others have stated below, 6pm has now lost some business.
I used to get a lot of my shoes from 6pm, but just found out that they are now charging for shipping. That is really sad. I won't be buying much from them anymore.
This is very disappointing. I've often recommended 6pm to friends. I will probably not recommend any more. And will likely use Amazon Prime, which I consider to be a great bang for your buck, much more. Seems like a really bad move.
I was just about to purchase some stuff today-- I sometimes don't need it but the free shipping always justifies the purchase for me. Once I saw the shipping charges I canceled the order immediately. Definitely a deal breaker --- now 6pm is the same as the rest, no incentive to set them apart from the rest anymore.
Wow... I've ordered over 20 pairs of shoes from 6pm. Free shipping always kept me coming back. I'll be ordering a lot less.
On the positive side, this move by 6pm should help all the other shoe vendors on Dealnews who do offer free shipping.
It's a shame -- they're a great site with excellent customer service. My experiences with 6pm have been uniformly outstanding. I wonder if they'll rethink this, and perhaps change the threshold to $35 or $40. I mean, $4.95 for shipping really isn't outrageous, but it could be a dealbreaker for some potential purchases. In the end, if it winds up negatively impacting their bottom line, they'll revisit the decision.
I have bought A LOT of stuff from 6pm... It has been one of my "go to" sites, especially for Under Armour. Bought many things because I could justify it with the free shipping. The occasional discount code never hurt either. There's no doubt I will be ordering less from here on out.
I have bought A LOT of stuff from 6pm... Many things because I could justify it due to free shipping. The occasional discount code never hurt either. There's no doubt I will be ordering less from here on out.
ordered only once from them anyway.
Will definitely order less.
No, I'm out. That was the feature that drew me to that site.
This is one of my favorite sites but $50 min for free shipping will likely kill that. IMO this is a poor business decision on their part that I expect will have a huge negative impact on their sales. They should reconsider this policy altogether or reduce the min to $25/30.
I only use it once in a while when I see one good deal, almost always under $50. I can see why they are doing it, but it might prevent me from looking at deals posted.
With so many stores making the announcement that they will offer free shipping during the holiday season, I think this will really hurt their sales!
I have a closet full of 6pm shoes, all came with free shipping. I'm sorry to say I won't even bother to go to the 6pm site anymore. It was good while it lasted.