How did watch brands move towards e-commerce?


The pandemic has driven commerce and commerce on the Internet. This is especially true for retail businesses as we have seen it change over the past ten months.

Significant changes in consumer buying behavior are here to stay. Online shopping has multiplied, although the impact on price segments is not yet clearly quantifiable. With people being held back in their homes, their methods of dealing with isolation and uncertainty are reflected in their newly acquired buying behavior. This includes buying in bulk, increased online browsing, and the unpredictability of what, when, how and where they buy things. Market dynamics are changing, as are the fate of vertical markets. Brands are now grappling with the question “where the customer”?

While the kids of Generation Z made most of the shopping online during the pre-pandemic period, they have now been joined by Generation X, Generation Y and even the “Baby Boomers”. Everyone is online and retailers have started to focus on how they can meet the needs of each generation. COVID-19 has changed the way we use the Internet; in many households, buying groceries and clothing online has replaced visits to stores and malls.

When it comes to luxury goods like watches, Swiss luxury watch brands that previously hardly viewed the internet as a serious retail option, are now fighting for attention. With little or no outdoor activities, the watch industry faces its most difficult period since its renaissance in the early 90s. This period of uncertainty has led brands to reschedule new product launches and reposition existing collections.

Urbanization across the country is impacting millennials and the demand for aesthetic, unique products with smart features and projecting luxury appeal is growing in popularity. Interestingly, the price is not a game-changer. The value of the brand is.

Marketing and PR budgets have been completely reworked and the focus has shifted to social media, with print media losing its appeal among most TGs. Although we are physically separated, social media is a fantastic way for diverse communities to connect. With the rise of social media, bloggers and influencers have replaced brand ambassadors, and a personality is only associated with a brand for a limited time. This pandemic has caused many business disruptions and has led brands to rethink their marketing strategy. Brand collaborations are multiplying. Co-branding has also become a norm rather than an exception, and brands are willing to make connections between different genres.

Swiss watch brands have constantly made efforts to bring new product innovations that will bond with the next generation. One thing that watch brands could capitalize on during the pandemic is the smartwatch features that are all the rage with the new generation. A whole collection of “smartwatches” with multiple functions and connectivity is now offered by Swiss brands. Obviously, the target audience appears to be urban youth.

The lines between fashion, lifestyle and luxury are blurring as brands begin to understand how customers have evolved and exposure has grown. An important aspect for Gen Z when shopping online is that they are always on the lookout for the next big thing to hit the market. With new features and an improved product line hitting the market almost every other day, brands have done their best to stay relevant and fresh in these unprecedented times.

The good news is that working from home has actually increased disposable income, although net income may have decreased. These are the megabucks that brands are chasing.

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