Luxury Fashion Houses Woo Consumers Online


As consumers seem to get younger and younger, the web and its social networking sites have become important areas of potential growth for brands. Luxury retailers have taken note and are making great strides in getting attention.

“(The web) is very important by the sheer fact people are spending more time online, on Facebook, Twittering,” said Emanuel Ungaro’s chief executive, Mounir Moufarrige.

Design houses including Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana and Alexander McQueen, streamed their catwalk shows on the Internet at this past September’s fashion week. Facebook is bombarded daily with new brands, including these same fashion houses, whose pages have amassed hundreds of thousands of fans. Quite a few are using Twitter.[more]

Fashion brands have become aware of the power of bloggers, and have made room for them in their front-row seats to try to grab consumers before they visit their stores.

“The more you can open up your brand to the client, the better,” Frida Giannini, a designer fro Gucci, told a conference in Berlin last month.

By venturing online, designers are able to reach out to their customers directly. Prada is looking to give customers a chance to snag products on their website before they land in stores.

“In five years, 30 per cent of (fashion) goods will be sold on the internet in America,” Prada’s chief executive, Patrizio Bertelli, was quoted in Italian newspapers as saying, without giving a comparitive figure.

Giorgio Armani has a mobile phone platform for e-commerce, With web ventures like Forever21’s magazine and Burberry’s “Art of the Trench” site, brands can’t seem to stop thinking of new online tools with to reel in more customers.