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How To Navigate A New Era Of Luxury E-Commerce

  • Current events are reshaping how people think and behave.
  • Digital channels accelerate. 
  • Luxury brands can win in the new reality

When it comes to shopping, nothing beats the “Designer experience”. 

Lockdown may have caused us to forget what that experience actually feels like so let me take this moment to indulge you.

Imagine browsing the rails of a luxury boutique on Bond street, sipping champagne, and aimlessly looking for non-essential goods to add to your wardrobe. 

It’s a memorable experience. Maybe few and far between for some of us, but when it does happen, we remember it.

So how do you recreate the luxury experience online? 

We started this discussion and collated a report on how brands, thought leaders, and experts are putting humans at the centre of e-commerce.

By 2025, e-commerce will account for 30 percent of the luxury goods market. 

With this in mind, luxury retailers will miss out if they don’t take the quality service they have perfected in store, and digitalise it – essentially becoming a tighter concierge service online.

But what exactly is an “exclusive” virtual experience when it comes to a luxury brand? 

The same way that the luxury sector is built on craftsmanship and heritage, each digital model that accompanies a brand must be developed with the same fundamentals and attention to detail. 

Brands will need to transform their omni-channel capabilities by optimising the user experience, customer relationship management, e-commerce, partnerships and more.

What it really comes down to is that the flagship store is no longer on the high-streets, but, instead the website will become the digital storefront. It needs to become an elevated version of the champagne popping, endless mirrored changing suites, and personlised shopping experience that came with the brick and mortar territory. Luxury brands now need to use this time as an opportunity to morphe into a digitalised arena of pure delight for their consumers when they visit their online marketplace. 

wrapped up box

It’s important to remember that it’s not just about receiving the purchase in a fancy box with a ribbon, but rather the entire journey — from user navigation to transaction completion, to the package arrival at the customer’s doorstep. What does that experience look like? How does it compare with a standard online order, say from a retailer like Amazon? How can the process be speedy yet detailed orientated? Unforgettable and yet scalable? 

Will humanising the luxury e-commerce marketplace be the way forwards? 

Casey Golden of Luxlock shared that “1 in 4 Americans work in #Retail at some capacity and accounts for about 15% of the job market in every country. Yet, when we talk about the future of work the retail industry is rarely part of the conversation. “

Is this when Human commerce can start to come into fruition? Brands need to foster a direct connection with consumers and create the same delight they would have done in the “real” world and take the immersive experience online. The strategy needs to be sustainable and stories need to be shared. Imagine going onto a luxury website, immersing yourself in the brand’s story, selecting the products you’re interested in, and then activating a human that will go to the store, create a virtual walkaround, digital style consultations, pick up those products and then bring them to life at your location. Could this be the norm for luxury websites? 

2020 is a time for luxury brands to strategically redirect operations and invest in technologies that will set businesses up for long-term growth, create unforgettable user experiences and leave the customer feeling as though their digital journey was personlised every touchpoint of the way. This takes strategy, guidance, technology and insight.

In- house Content Strategist, Fashion and Food Enthusiast.