For luxury goods buyers, the path to purchase is heavily weighted to offline shopping sources. According to a new study from Havas unit LuxHubm just 16% of luxury fashion brand sales are attributable to e-commerce even though luxury brands are perceived as more comfortable and of higher quality.
Part of the problem: the lack of a “luxury” experience online, according to the study, which surveyed 6,400 consumers in eight markets (U.S., China, UK, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, and the Middle East region of Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates).
For luxury goods, the study concludes: “The physical point of sale is still the most reassuring channel, confirming that touching and seeing a product is still an essential part of the shopping experience. The luxury experience itself represents the main barrier to e-commerce as on-line boutiques are not always able to meet customer expectations.”
That said, digital marketing techniques have impact beyond e-commerce channels. The study found that 40% of traditional sales are “strongly impacted” by digital content, online advertising and Web editorial.
The study found that the highest-impact touchpoints for luxury brand awareness and intention to buy include boutique “experiences,” brand Web sites, word of mouth, search engines and on-line fashion publications. The weight of each touchpoint varies by market. Social media, for example is more significant in the Middle East and China.
More on the study can be found here.