NEW YORK — Wal-Mart is givingapparel another chance on the Internet — but this time it’s just dipping its big toe in, not plunging headfirst.

Wal-Mart pulled all of its apparel off its Web site in April 2001, admitting the category was not a profitable one, so could focus on more productive categories, like jewelry, gifts and electronics.

However, next week on, the Web site for Glamour magazine, Wal-Mart will feature 10 women’s tops and bottoms, all private labels, including military-inspired styles, floral blouses and jeans. Wal-Mart began running apparel ads in Glamour magazine in June and has an advertising commitment through December. (Glamour is published by Condé Nast, which, like WWD, is owned by Advance Publications.)

On the Web site, ordering the Wal-Mart items won’t be possible. But according to Suzanne Grimes, vice president and publisher of Glamour, “This will encourage a lot of people to visit Wal-Mart stores.” Wal-Mart goes live on Tuesday. Also, Glamour’s September issue, which hits newsstands that day, will have an ad hyping the program, she said.

Although you wouldn’t think the Glamour reader fits the profile of the Wal-Mart shopper, “our research shows that everyone shops at Wal-Mart unless they live in Manhattan, where there are no Wal-Marts,” Grimes said, adding that “Wal-Mart has a push to drive apparel sales. They came to Glamour for advertising” and out of that strategy emerged the online program.

If the tie-in with Glamour goes well, it’s possible that Wal-Mart could increase its apparel presence online. The company has been working to raise its apparel standards for quality and fashion, and is rolling out its George brand in the U.S. Glamour said no brands will be played up, just the Wal-Mart label.

Asked if might one day revive its apparel presentation, a spokeswoman replied, “At any given time, we are looking at a number of new categories in products and services and continue to evaluate those opportunities.”

For Wal-Mart, Glamour is utilizing the My Virtual Model technology, which enables browsers to create a virtual model of themselves, with the right height, weight, hair color and other attributes, and to see how selected items appear worn on the virtual model. The model also turns for side and back views, and the site will indicate which Wal-Mart store is closest to the browser’s home, once she plugs in her address.Meanwhile, My Virtual Model, based in Montreal, seems to be gaining popularity. The technology has been added to the USA and sites to sell Levi’s jeans. “My Virtual Model technology enables and to smash the oldest and biggest barrier to buying clothes online: the simple lack of a mirror,” said Louise Guay, president of My Virtual Model Inc.?

“The Levi’s brand has long used the Internet to reach consumers in innovative and compelling ways,” said Patrice Varni, director of digital business and consumer relations at Levi Strauss & Co., in a statement. “In partnering with Kohl’s Department Stores and My Virtual Model Inc., we’re able to bring our online shoppers real value — the ability to find and buy their perfect style and size of Levi’s jeans online.” Other My Virtual Model clients include Microsoft Network, Lands’ End, Home Shopping Network, Kenneth Cole, and NutriSystem.

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