One of the ongoing challenges for brick and mortar retailers is integrating existing business with the disruptive nature of digital technologies. In the age of overwhelming use of smartphones and social media networking plenty of options exist for businesses to tap into their targeted customers.
The Italian eyewear company-Luxottica- the world´s largest company that controls over 80 percent of major eyewear brands, according to Wikipedia. Headquartered in Milan, the company has been exploring the depths and shallows of the digital realm of e-commerce. The Chief Information Officer Dario Scagliotti (CIO) was interviewed by Diginomica.com where he explained some of the insights of the company´s products and dynamics.
Scagliotti goes on to explain the intricacies of just how eyewear is different to sell. He said this product goes on the faces of consumers and its the first thing that people notice before other apparels or accessories .
Nevertheless, Scagliotti did assert the company has invested for the past four years in optimizing e-commerce and multichannel selling. Where the company wants to set itself apart from the competition is the online experience as a differentiating factor. This would be done by customizing and tailoring the shopping experience to the precise needs of consumers.
Eyewear is an accessory, but at other times a necessity for those who have prescription lenses. So to fill in the complicated task of conducting tests they acquired Glasses.com to take care of this other part of the process to streamline the whole purchasing process
Latest Luxottica developments and expansions
The Italian designer, manufacturer and retailer of prescription eyewear has expanded its business to the Chinese market. According to an Internetretailer.com report the company is selling shades on a China-based e-retailer called JD.com.
Thanks to its arsenal of brands and portfolio of products it will additionally open an e-commerce site in China for its existing Sunglass Hut retail chain. Currently, Luxottica owns Lenscrafters, Pearle Vision, Sears Optical, Target Optical and others. Designer brands that belong to them includes Chanel, Prada, Versace and others. Well-known brands includes Ray-ban, and Oakleys.
Sunglass Hut is one of the finalists for the “Web Redesign of the Year Award” and this award will be handed on June 3th, 2015 at the annual banquet and trade show (Internet Retailer Conference Exhibition) in Chicago.
Giving the continual growth of Luxottica in a separate analysis by Seekinalpha.com the company may face antitrust charges. Furthermore, because of its current rate of growth it may not be able to sustain this trend.
Examples of retailers innovating their business
In a presentation by community platform for data visualization and infographics, Visual.ly, it highlighted retailers fusing innovative tactics and creating exciting digital shopping experiences. Below is a list of the companies using breathtaking digital concepts:
- Kate Spade Saturday: Interactive storefronts for non-stop business
- JustFab: Integrating online features into the store
- Piperlime: Ordering clothes right from the store
- Deckers Outdoor: Innovation lab in-store concept
- Oasis: Seek and Send, multi-channel inventory
- Boxpark: Market Place, combining in-store with online payment
- Fiat: Showing cars to online visitors via real-time video from the showroom
- Yves Saint Laurent: Personalized beauty tips recorded in real time
These are just summarized examples of retailers really leveraging the different digital fronts (internet, e-commerce, mobile, advertising, etc.). The retailers who have a customer centric philosophy and stay up-to-date with consumer trends will reap the benefits, not to mention gain customer confidence because of the quality of service they provide.
Takeaways and conclusions
Creating and delivering on an excellent customer experience is just the start. If companies have a good rapport with customer satisfaction and excellent reviews then implementing the digital experience won´t be problematic.
Brands like Apple, Google, Nordstrom, Starbucks, Samsung, and Amazon are recognized for excellent service. All of them have integrated all of these elements of retail and digital technology into a winning formula.
Luxottica is making the strides to converge its business models onto the web. Every retailer faces unprecedented competition and a savvier consumer who has the ultimate say on whether they will purchase your product or service.
Those that deliver on creating and selling a meaningful experience have it made. However, those that can fully migrate the brick and mortar model with the cutting-edge will create longer customer relationships along with profitable results.