luxury brands

Facebook aims for luxury brands with study into how the rich use social

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the super-rich had better things to do with their time than Facebook-stalk their friends, but you’d be wrong.

In fact according to a new study by Sparkler, Facebook is the most popular and most frequently used social network among Europe’s most affluent citizens.

The survey was commissioned by Facebook to understand the social media attitudes and behaviours of its wealthy users, and involved an online survey of 1,991 respondents in the UK, France and Germany.

Respondents were all among the top 20% of earners in their respective markets and 80% of them were the main or equal share breadwinners.

poor ux

17 luxury brands with poor web user experience

I’ve always found it ironic that some of the most fancy hotels have some of the worst websites in the world. It’s the same with restaurants. Both are long serving fans of Flash and autosound, and the result can be hellish.

If websites are particularly bad, and if I’m the one tasked with booking or buying something, then I can tell you for a fact that I will look elsewhere. The problem is that there isn’t always an ‘elsewhere’. Luxury brands pride themselves on their uniqueness, after all. If your better half wants some Jimmy Choo for her birthday then that’s what you need to buy.

I’ve seen signs of improvement, especially in the restaurant sector, but many top class brands still have a lot of work to do.

Here are 17 examples of the kind of user experience issues that drive me mad, and which feel like a punch in the face when the brand in question charges a premium for the quality of its products and services. 

GSI Commerce goes upscale with acquisition

The good life isn’t so good for luxury brands these days. Thanks to the Great Recession, many consumers aren’t as eager to spend big bucks on high-end fashion and accessories. Spending less is in vogue and that has been good news for companies that are ready with bargains.

And that explains why GSI Commerce, an e-commerce and multichannel solutions provider, is paying up to $350m for Retail Convergence, the company that operates private sale website and off-price e-commerce website

Q&A: Bec Clarke on selling luxury goods online

Bec, an online retailer of exclusive jewellery, launched its redesigned website this week, as well as a revamped showroom in London. 

The company has been trading for three years, and received £2.75m of investment from Index Ventures in 2008.

I’ve been talking to Founder and MD Bec Clarke about the company, the thinking behind the new website, and the challenges of selling luxury goods online…

The importance of recession decision-making

During a recession, many companies are forced to make very difficult decisions. This has been especially true in the current recession, which has been not only been deep, but global.

Most recession decision-making is pragmatic. The future is not guaranteed and depending on your company’s financial situation, short-term survival often trumps long-term strategy. But while surviving may be your priority, decisions made during a recession can have a significant impact on the future of your business well beyond the recession.

Customer engagement index plunges 15%

unhappy customerCustomers are not happy. And unless you are an ultra-high end brand, they’re checking out of their attachment with you…and telling each about it via social media channels.

Those are some of the results of the PeopleMetrics second annual Customer Engagement Report. It shows that when it comes to value and emotional connection, one man’s search result is another man’s luxury suite. According to the survey, consumers connect emotionally to brands that provide value, and that emotional connection has dropped 15% over 2007.