Over the last few months, we have witnessed a global pandemic which has shaken the foundations of almost all industries. But these uncertain times have been especially challenging for luxury retail brands when 90% of global luxury sales happen in China, and over 40% of luxury products are made in Italy, two of the worst affected areas.
Luxury brands must now take action to navigate through these uncertain waters and adjust digital strategies to shape the future or risk being swept away.
As more sales go online, one tactic luxury brands are using to stay on course is to create digital experiences that delight customers at every step of the ecommerce journey.
Styla & GPMD have teamed up to analyse how luxury brands are elevating the conversation with customers by creating digital experiences that engage audiences and deliver results.
Here are 4 best practice examples of digital experiences that could be applied to your business to help increase engagement and drive more sales.
Hawes & Curtis - Guided Selling
Heritage Brand Hawes & Curtis are renowned for making some of the best shirts in the world. Recreating the in-store experience online is often a huge obstacle for many brands but Hawses & Curtis have provided an online buying guide to act as the sales assistant helping the customer determine what fit, style and material best matches their requirements.
Here you can see how they have used a mix of animations, interactive elements, great photography and quality copy to engage their customers and help them find the right product and showing off some of the quality details within their products.
They take the customer on a journey helping identify what fit works for their body type, what type of cuffs they prefer, what fabric and what type of collar they like, then apply that mix onto a model to see how it all comes together.
By adding interactive elements such as hotspots on an image that encourage customers to explore, customers get additional information about products in a more visually interactive way. Always make sure to use shoppable content so the customer can add the preferred item directly to the shopping cart. This type of digital experience helps reduce returns as the customer is better informed and more confident about a purchase. Also, Styla clients who are using this form of content through the Styla Frontend Experience Platform see increased time on page and increased page views. This indicates customers are more engaged and results in a higher conversion rate compared to site averages.. So instead of sending all customers to standard category pages, think about how buying guides like this can help your customers find the perfect product in a more visually appealing way.
Tiffany & Co. - Bespoke Landing Pages
Tiffany is a leading luxury jewellery brand producing some of the most iconic jewellery in the industry. They have created this alluring landing page to promote a new product line and instead of just sending customers to a standard category or product page they have built a bespoke landing page to tell this collection’s story.
They start off with this oversized hero banner to capture your attention straight away.
With a product slider in between two banners, they combine the top-selling products from this collection with branded content about the design, what it represents and its key details.
Tiffany & Co. finish on a high by adding in a short video about the new collection to really bring it alive and build a sense of excitement about this new collection.
By building out bespoke landing pages like this, brands can tell specific stories about products or services in a highly targeted and personalised way. This provides a more visually appealing experience compared to endlessly scrolling through a category page looking for inspiration or help to make a purchase.
This type of content works really well when integrated with email and social strategies as you can easily target segments of users with highly relevant content. Styla clients that use this type of digital experience see significant reductions in bounce rates, increased conversion rates and positive impacts on SEO.
Fenty Beauty - Quiz
When Rihanna launched Fenty beauty back in 2017 many saw this as a breath of fresh air in the beauty industry with its inclusive product range. But it’s safe to say it outperformed what most analysts had predicted and within 40 days of going live the brand reportedly made $100m in sales.
One of the main reasons for its success, now dubbed the “Fenty Effect”, was down to the strategy to cater to over 40 different skin tones.
With this extensive list of products and being a new brand, Fenty Beauty wanted to create a way for new customers to find out what products are going to best fit their skin tones, so they created the shade finder.
This digital experience takes you through 7 questions to determine what product would best suit your style and skin tone.
This simple yet highly effective product finder engages the audience making them front and centre to the buying process. This helps remove choice paralysis, which can occur when presented with too many products or options. As a result, conversion rates increase and card abandonment is reduced. Quizzes are also helpful when purchasing a gift as you may not know what colour to get but this can help the customer navigate through and buy with confidence.
This type of digital experience is extremely versatile and can be used as a promotional tool around national holidays like Christmas, valentines and other days associated with gift giving or when you have complex product requirements akin to beauty, food or consumer electronics.
Quizzes can also be a great way to harvest data on customers to produce more relevant products and advertising and a great alternative to a typical survey.
Rapha - Community
Relative newcomers Rapha are an institution in the cycling community. Born from a love of the sport, Rapha regularly organises and sponsors unique rides and events. The Rapha Cycling Club was founded in 2015 to bring cyclists together, and today there are already more than 12,000 members worldwide.
Instead of just focusing on brand or product content they are celebrating their consumers’ passions and self-expression to build that into the experience ensuring they are relevant today and in the future for amateurs and professionals alike.
By creating a platform that connects its audience to all the events, people and news around cycling they have created a community to make sure they stay relevant and provide a destination for cyclists to get the latest news and the latest products.
This produces a sense of community regardless if you are going for gold at next years Olympics or at the back of the group of a local club ride (like me).
Within Rapha’s stories, they break this down for tips for training, product guides and reviews, events and also their values around sustainability, ensuring they remain relevant to today’s consumers.
The opportunities for marketing over social channels are limitless for luxury brands and Rapha are no exception as they frequently use user-generated content (UGC) to provide the foundation of the story.
To stay relevant, luxury brands will indeed need to create deeper and more meaningful engagement with their modern affluent consumers and by building this type of community that empowers individual identities and expressions they can stay in touch with their audience and not relying purely on their heritage or legacy.
Unfortunately, the reality is creating this type of digital experience often requires lots of internal resources or significant budget to outsource to a creative agency, which makes producing this type of content at scale challenging for most brands.
If, like many, you don’t have the resources of Burberry or Farfetch but want to create digital experience right across the ecommerce journey you need to look at ways to increase efficiency in content creation, production and consider a frontend experience platform.
To find out more about how Styla & GPMD can help solve this problem get in touch HERE!