As the mighty 'Amazon' are now opening up further to include several well known 'luxury' brands some are saying this is a good move.
I don't know about you but I can't see how this is going to be a good move for any luxury brand.
Amazon look after Amazon first - Fact!
The attraction for Amazon to leverage the 'luxury' sector clearly isn't volume, but it is credence.
Luxury brands are very much focusing attention to the Chinese market to keep the revenue machine moving along, as a result they are first in the queue when it comes to be exposed to Chinese innovation in retail entertainment.
The difference between a Zara silk blouse and a Chanel one is the emotions they awake in customers. For those emotions to be stimulated, most customers need guidance — and chatbots, machine learning, or specific algorithms can’t recreate that unique interaction.
If your a brand, or retailer who has succumbed to the 'Amazon marketplace' drug (millions of customers) then it's a difficult place to be in at times.
Sure you get the sale, but it's always going to be Amazon's customer.
What about good old customer services?
The Amazon machine isn't designed to deal with CS in the way that works for the luxury sector, so this is also something brands need to consider.
eCommerce by definition is very much a functional led experience. Getting people through the funnel to purchase is what companies are obsessed with.
The landscape has changed with the rise of the Gen-Z consumer. While an older generation retailer like me still favours outstanding personalisation services, younger consumers are more pragmatic and experimental.
And as the most tech-savvy generation, these trendsetters understand “emotions” and “love” differently than I do.
They connect with videos, gifs, avatars, and virtual influencers and respond to video game-like graphics and engaging digital content.
'Browsing e-commerce' is a model where users come with the intent of having fun, much like going to a shopping mall, browse for products and end up buying things if they like.
What Amazon is to buying, browsing e-commerce is to shopping.
Most of our purchase decisions are driven by recommendations from our friends and family but current e-commerce models do not offer ways to integrate those recommendations.
This is why eCommerce as it stands will not work in the long run for retail, let alone the luxury sector.
As more people have now been forced to do more of their shopping online due to the pandemic its got to be a wake up call for eCommerce players to really think about how they add more fun, social, and entertainment into the transactional process.
Luxury is an indulgence, love, and emotion. It is customization and highly-personalized services, and it conveys images of champagne and chocolate-dipped strawberries, not browsing internet pages until something grabs our attention. That’s what companies like Zara are for — to claim products that come at a fraction of what Chanel pieces cost.