Tag Archives: high-street

Multichannel retail strategy survey: the high street is central

The stats come from Shoppercentric’s ‘Shopping in a Multichannel World’ survey, and the results show that customers are using a wide variety of channels.

Mary Portas may have managed to produce a retail review containing just three references to digital, but online and mobile is vital for the future of the high street.

Channels used by customers during the purchase process

As the stats show, shops feature strongly in the channels used by survey respondents, followed by laptop and PC:

Multichannel Strategy Survey

The high street store still remains the most used channel, though for younger age groups, laptops and netbooks come pretty close.

In general, younger shoppers are more likely to use smartphones (and, to a lesser extent, tablets) as part of the purchase process.

Penetration of new technologies

Smartphones have now reached 45% penetration, but for the under 34 age groups, this rises to 62%.

Penetration of new technologies

Use of tablets and smartphones

As we’ve covered before, iPads can deliver impressive conversion rates and average order values (AOVs) but they are used by just 7% of shoppers.

Use of Tablet and Smartphones

At the moment, since the relatively expensive iPad is the dominant tablet, it may be that the wealth of the average owner means higher spend. However, tablet use is set to grow, so retailers should look at adapting their websites and marketing for this device.

The importance of the high street

The high street will always have a place. In fact, 45% of shoppers said they will ‘always love going to the shops, no matter what new technologies are available’.

These, and other multichannel retail stats, show that customers are rapidly adopting new channels such as mobile, and also that they will choose the one that suits their needs most at the time.

Offline retailers that are able to adapt to customers’ use of multiple channels will be best placed to prosper. This means things like launching mobile optimised sites, putting wi-fi in stores (to allow customers to view reviews, compare prices etc), having easy reserve and collect services, and in-store kiosks.

According to Danielle Pinnington, Managing Director at Shoppercentric: “Marketers should be excited about the prospect of being able to make an impact on the purchasing journey in many more ways than before. The opportunity to change shopper behaviour is better than it has ever been. The retailer or brand that is able to use all the channels at its disposal to meet shoppers’ needs is the business that will reap the rewards

Retailers shouldn’t necessarily assign fixed roles for channels. Customers may well research online before heading to a store to make a purchase, but the reverse is equally likely.

The trick is to understand that customers will use channels for a variety of purposes, and to deliver a smooth and seamless experience whichever one the customer chooses.

via The high street is central to multichannel retail strategy: stats | Econsultancy.

LVMH Group to fund India’s Ready-to-Wear Fashion Retail

The world’s largest luxury goods conglomerate, LVMH Group, will launch its private equity fund in India, in an attempt to tap the burgeoning disposable income and rising aspirations of the country’s urban population, especially women.

L Capital, present in New York, Madrid, Milan, Shanghai and Singapore, will invest in India from its fourth fund, which is dedicated to Asia and has a corpus of $650 million. It also will focus on economies such as China, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

“We are looking at investing in companies in the lifestyle arena in Asia, primarily from the aspirational segment, meaning people who are moving from mass-produced goods to the next layer up,” said Ravi Thakran, managing partner of L Capital. “We are not keen on top-end luxury in India. We may look at that, but that is not our main focus.”

Mr. Thakran said Indian high-end designers are missing out on the real growth story in fashion by focusing on couture, which caters to the richest 500 families, and the wedding apparel business. The opportunity, he said, is in the ready-to-wear segment.

Mr. Thakran–who previously worked at the Swatch Group and helped launch Indian jewellery brand Tanishq in the U.K.–also, is betting on discretionary spending gaining pace in India.

“Today the world is moving towards a new center stage, which is certainly Asia, but China and India are two pillars of that,” he said. “This was the case pre-crisis but post-crisis it is even more so.”

However, India lags behind China when it comes to scalable brands and businesses. “In China, there are already at least 10 businesses we might be interested in which are worth $200 million to $250 million, whereas in India none of the (best known) designers have even reached the $100 million scale,” Mr. Thakran said.

L Capital is looking to bring in expertise on operational improvements in areas such as product design, logistics, store design, visual merchandising, talent search and training and development. Assistance in these areas for an early stage growth company is more important than capital, Thakran said.

He will be looking for deals in shoe, apparel and wine businesses, makers of lifestyle furniture, beauty brands, apart from skincare centers and spas.

“This is where the new consumption is rising in India,” Mr. Thakran said. “When aspirations and disposable incomes rise, consequently consumption in new arenas, our targeted sectors, also rises.”

Fashion designer J.J. Valaya, in an e-mail response, defended the prevalent focus on couture and wedding dresses, citing “lack of infrastructure, distribution and adequate capital.” He added that ready-to-wear is profitable only if it achieves volume.

“At present the top names in the country are not prepared to reach those numbers single-handedly,” Mr. Valaya said. “In the West too, a Louis Vuitton or a Jimmy Choo achieved reach through strategic corporate associations.” According to Mr. Thakran, Indian fashion businesses suffer because the creative force, the designer, is forced to look after operations due to lack of resources.

This shortage of resources has prevented recognized Indian businesses from transforming themselves into brands with greater economic value, he said. “If the creative guy is busy sorting out the accounts and logistics, and looking after the retail store, he cannot focus on the creative part,” Mr. Thakran said. “If you can bring to them knowhow in these areas and to build that front end, these brands can really unleash their potential.” (Source: Online WSJ.com)