Luxury brands provide a quality in their goods or services that set them apart from the rest. For these businesses, the experience they offer their customers online must match what’s available in their stores, which isn’t easy. Given this, luxury brands have been hesitant to join the online marketing bandwagon and instead have focused their efforts on delivering consistently exceptional experiences in store and in person.
Recently, however, a survey by L2 Think Tank found that in 2015, 76% of U.S. luxury brands offered product quick view features. This percentage is up from a mere 19% in 2013. According to eMarketer, these same luxury brands have also begun implementing FAQ and geolocation services. As consumers get comfortable shopping online, these high-end brands are building out their digital experience.
Unlike retail giants like amazon, Zappos, or eBay, however, these companies highlight their service instead of the features they sell.
If you are talking about retail, online customer service is as important as offline. There are also mane online resources that helps to find whatever service, info or goods you might need. Still some people prefer to contact call centers and have a real conversation with operator when looking for something they need. When you call answering services from PCN, you are sure to get an exceptional service and info you were looking for.
The Digital Experience
Luxury brands use online live chats, personal shoppers and social profile page logins to reach potential buyers.Their customer service efforts are moving online and for good reason. More than half of U.S. retailers said that customer service and support were drivers for customer retention.
So how does that typical digital experience become a premium one associated with luxury? Making a webpage look and feel luxurious is a challenge these retailers face. As the digital landscape has become more competitive, some brands have succeeded while others have fallen behind.
The Online / Offline Connection
Improved and increased digital customer service efforts have ramped up online purchasing from consumers. Data shows that about 60% of in-store purchases are actually preceded by online searches. A report from ContactLab and Exane BNP found that digitally contactable clients spend more in store, on average.
Premium brands use their websites to not only highlight their products but also as a way to connect with their customers and encourage them to visit a boutique shop.
Connect With Your Customers
In a report from ContactLab and Exane BNP Paribas, titled “Digital Frontier: The New Luxury World of 2020”, the digital futures of luxury brands were analyzed. The report also predicted the growth of luxury brands’ digital presence, saying that by 2020, luxury brands will know almost all of their digital clients by name. This is due in part to the fact that digital clients can now register using their emails and create accounts when making purchases.
The report anticipates that digitally registered and contactable clients will make up 90% of in-store customers by 2020. The report also predicts that digital execution will be making or breaking luxury brands and that separating digital and physical luxury will be a thing of the past.
Customer service can be enhanced by focusing not just on what is done, but why it’s done. View your company’s customer service as building, maintaining or repairing a relationship. A live chat feature has potential to develop relationships with website visitors who might not otherwise have interaction with the brand. By increasing their customer service efforts, luxury brands are reaping the rewards with customers who feel more connected and appreciated by their brand.
Match Your Company Culture
Shopping at a luxury boutique is about the experience. Merchandise displays highlight each piece, showcasing them while stores that focus on price often try to fit as many items as popular onto the sales floor. When these premium brands build their online experience, they take the same design approach. Miu Miu’s site features a sparse navigation, highlighting the products and avoiding the “cluttered” look other eCommerce stores, such as Amazon, create.
When you build your website, it’s important to create something that matches the image you invested so much time creating at your physical store. If you’re a luxury store, be luxurious. If you focus on offering the best prices, it’s ok to have a shop that’s a little cluttered, since people are really there for the sale, not the presentation. For example, this is how Amazon presents a Miu Miu bag:
This is the same brand, but the presentation couldn’t really be more different. Digital and physical components should be seen as complementary, not separate.
Make Your Website Customer Focused
When the first digital stores appeared, their appeal was convenience and a larger catalog than you could find in stores. Years later, if a brand isn’t currently online, they will be shortly and in a crowded marketplace everyone offers convenience and choice.
Premium brands command a higher price, in part, due to the experience they offered in their stores. When they built their online presence, rather than trying to become the next Amazon, or eBay, they tried to recreate their store experience online. Fashion labels understand their customers and how to target them.
When you’re designing your own site, think of who your customers are. Think of what they expect, what they value, and build that experience.