Where Consumers Shop for Luxury Goods

March 2024

The pandemic, cost-of-living crisis and high inflation continue to have an impact on affluent consumers, their wealth, and their shopping habits on luxury goods. Offline retail maintains its importance alongside e-commerce, as luxury consumers demand seamless integration of online and offline channels, leading to store renovations. E-commerce is projected to outperform offline channels, and generative AI as well as re-sell and “third space” retail holds promise for the future of luxury goods.

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This report comes in PPT.

Key Findings

Macroeconomic factors continue to weigh heavily on industry recovery

The global luxury goods industry continued on its road to recovery in 2023 with 4% year-on-year growth, driven by Asia Pacific and the US. However, challenges persist as it moves into 2024 thanks to slower global growth and high inflation, teamed with ongoing energy pressures, rising cost of capital, tight labour market, geopolitical risks and a reset of globalisation.

Blurring the boundaries: Seamlessly fusing online and offline shopping

While luxury consumers still expect the convenience of e-commerce, they also seek a high level of customer service and distinctive experiences that only brick-and-mortar stores are able to deliver. In this context, building an omnichannel presence has become paramount for luxury retailers, including digitally native direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands and retailers.

The emergence of interactive and tech-driven enhanced in-store experiences

Offline channels experienced a revival as luxury consumers embraced in-store shopping again. To cater to consumers’ emerging expectations for in-store shopping, companies are prioritising store renovations and the incorporation of technology.

Leveraging technology for enhance customer experience, streamlined processes and completeness

In 2023, e-commerce accounted for 18% of sales, just slightly up from the 17% in 2022 but significantly higher than the 10% recorded in 2018. Luxury retailers and brands are prioritising omnichannel strategies, delivering seamless online and offline experiences, and enhancing the online shopping journey through innovative techniques, such as personalisation and AI.

E-commerce's dominance and the rise of generative AI, re-sell and the future of third space retail

Challenges persist for the industry’s growth in the five years to 2028, including high inflation, and the war in Ukraine. E-commerce is projected to outperform offline channels, diminishing the market share of physical stores. Generative AI holds promise for product innovation, as well as the re-sell model and “third space” retail as luxury looks towards future innovations.

Key findings
Luxury market continues to show resilience amid a new economic reality
Luxury retailers grapple with persistent pressure on discretionary spending
Performance across different categories continues to show mixed results
Navigating economic challenges as global regions strive to attain pre-pandemic sales
Luxury retailers to benefit from boost in number of affluent consumers in emerging markets
Recovery in travel retail remains in motion but macroeconomic factors challenge growth
Travel spending on luxury remains low, but numbers creep closer to pre-pandemic levels
Repatriated and tax-free shopping habits in mainland China may be hard to break
While affluent Chinese are travelling again, they are staying much closer to home
Anticipated surge in luxury travel retail amidst Chinese domestic shopping resurgence
Retailers to optimise diverse customer engagement by tapping into multiple touchpoints
The unfolding journey of digital transformations across luxury retail gathers further steam
Store-based retailing remains the largest distribution channel across the luxury landscape
Digital transformation becomes a playground for luxury retail development
Consumer pathway for mobile mavericks and digital natives thrives on the smartphone
Gaming crosses over to the realms of luxury emerging as an alternative distribution model
Retailer strategies are adapting to meet the needs of Gen Z consumers as they come of age
Pre-owned luxury poised to gain more prominence within the realm of luxury and fashion
Luxury brands and retailers move further into recommerce , diversifying product categories
Case study: LVMH introduces Nona Source, the first online resale platform for materials
Luxury department stores retain their leading status despite major challenges in key markets
Luxury brands benefit from their own monobranded stores and the D2C channel
Leisure and personal goods specialists continued to thrive
Embracing the unique offerings that only physical shopping can provide
Luxury consumers will continue to crave the physical aspect of in-store shopping
Shoppers yearn for the customer-centric and tactile experience of brick-and-mortar stores
French luxury department store Galeries Lafayette expands into next frontier markets
Growth in e-commerce stabilises from pandemic highs with steady expansion in all sectors
Continued acceleration of luxury e-commerce albeit at a slower pace of growth
Increasing digitalisation r eshapes luxury shopping h abits a cross all regions at varying speeds
Generative AI to shape online experiences ushering in next “Uber moment” in luxury retail
The increasing prevalence of mobile internet usage has significantly impacted luxury sales
Consumers increasingly favour businesses that offer a hassle-free experience
Leveraging social media and s-commerce to cultivate Gen Z engagement in fashion
More luxury consumers flock to TikTok and Douyin with China leading the pack
Fresh wave of l ivestreaming and social commerce further drives luxury digital sales
Luxury brands aim to capitalise on TikTok’s popularity with viral video content of their own
Luxury brands expand to livestreaming on social media to increase exposure in China
Case study: Alibaba uses generative AI to optimise the Tmall shopping experience
Inflationary pressures encourage consumer exploration in non-retail channel
The “third space” and hyperphysical stores as the next luxury retail channel?
Outlook for luxury retail development faces continued pressure due to economic uncertainty
Selling to the 1% of global VICs will become ever more challenging amid a market slowdown
The TikTok economy looks set to become a significant part of the luxury retailers’ puzzle
Bridging e-commerce and offline retail to complement each other’s strengths in luxury goods
Luxury consumers will continue to want the best of both worlds
Omnichannel strategy paves the way for the future of retail and luxury transformation

Luxury Goods

This is an aggregation of: Personal Luxury, Fine Wines/Champagne and Spirits, Luxury Cars and Experiential Luxury.

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