Customers who buy online and in-store typically spend 50 per cent more than those who visit only shops, according to Exane BNP Paribas analysts. While ecommerce is still a relatively small portion of sales in the global luxury goods market at 7 per cent, it will expand to 12 per cent by 2020, according to Boston Consulting Group estimates from September 2016.
And by 2025, online luxury goods sales are expected to increase fivefold, according to a Bank of America Merrill Lynch report this month.
Brands are increasingly blending their digital and in-store sales strategies, offering options such as “click-and-collect” in recognition of the fact that revenue is driven by a combination of both. Six out of 10 sales are digitally influenced, said BCG, and in-store purchases often follow online research.
The growth of online sales of luxury goods encompasses everything from platform aggregators such as LVMH’s new offering to discount sites such as Ynap’s Theoutnet.com. There are also sites for flash sales such as Vente-privee.com and Showroomprive.com, plus luxury resale platforms such as Vestiaire Collective.