Planning to buy an expensive set of Rosenthal cutlery or a designer Tag Heuer watch or a fancy holiday to Egypt, but do not have the time to visit the shops selling all the above? Fret not e-commerce is here to make things easier even for luxury products such as these. Born out of this necessity Excluzen.com, a high end multi-brand online shopping destination, offers international luxury labels at the click of a button.
According to the portal’s , Urvashi Bahuguna Sahay, the initial marketing strategy was to bring finer and exclusive brands to the Indian consumer, including international labels. “This is our sixth month of existence and our focus is to bring in more international brands and make it affordable for the Indian customer,” she adds.
The price range as of products is between Rs 10,000 to Rs 45,000-50,000. Most of the products that have been uploaded recently are Italian accessories and British leather products, which are in the price range of Rs 20,000-40,000. Its portfolio of products includes labels like Rosenthal, Cavalli, Tag Heuer, Apple and premium holiday destinations.
The e-commerce brand has a segmented approach when it comes to consumers. Sahay says that the people it is targeting are split into three categories, which include the aspiring, who have a certain degree of disposable income and want to indulge in these products; senior professionals like CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, COOs. And the third category is the small and medium business owners who have Rs 100 crore turnover in a year.
At present Excluzen targets tier I and II cities and indulges in on-ground activations to attract potential TG. For example it has organised a golf tour with ace golfer Shiv Kapur in Chandigarh. “We are inviting corporate from Delhi, Patiala and Chandigarh for the same. We have concluded with corporate cricket in Hyderabad. Excluzen sponsored the entire tournament with more than 75 corporate wearing Excluzen caps and t-shirts,” adds Sahay. The e-retailer also tied with Prestige Ticketing, official hospitality partner for Olympics London 2012, to offer travel and stay packages for corporate in India.
In addition, Excluzen is also catering to a huge market of NRIs and Ex-Pats, who use this platform for shopping and gifting and it has social media pages that have offers of the day and competitions. “Offline is important to us because the nature of luxury needs one to build confidence in the brand therefore we do events like the corporate cricket in Hyderabad, the golf tour in Chandigarh, the wine tasting in Delhi and Mumbai. This is a good way for us to have face to face interaction with specifically targeted people,” Sahay appends.
Excluzen is looking forward to tying up with exclusive travel agencies in the UK and US for travel services through its website. It is also tying up with fashion brands abroad and in India as well as indulging in art to attract potential high income consumer base.
On competition Sahay appends that there isn’t a concept like Excluzen in India, which leaves it to be the first of its kind offering in the Indian market. She elaborates, “There are sites that are selling in a particular vertical but nothing such as ours. These days’ customers do not have time to go to 20 different sites for 20 different things. Today I want a watch tomorrow a bag and then a roman holiday so this is one place where they can find all of that. Luxury cannot be compartmentalised.”
She says that there are category killers which have different specific verticals but still cater to the mass market. The affluent spaces have single brand retail, which have their own online stores. According to her Excluzen fills this space in the online domain and also has the first mover advantage in the affluent segment of the market. The portal boasts of increased repeat purchases.
Excluzen also deals in cars as it recently ordered a Bentley from UK for a customer in Chandigarh. It is importing a line of limited edition watches too. For the record, Excluzen has got an import export license with which it can import anything from abroad and make it available in India.
For the portal its major sales come from the metros. Excluzen claims that Mumbai is the frontrunner followed by markets like Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad. Yet the company gets demands from Punjab, Bihar, Jaipur etc.
However, is it wise to purchase expensive items online, doesn’t that dilute the brand equity of a luxury product? V Rajesh, Retail Expert thinks otherwise. He says,“As a customer one would not mind buying a high value product if the credentials are good. The end of the day the brand matters more than the intermediate providing the service. But the website acting as the middle man will ensure that the customer will get the right product.
Therefore trust and brand value is an important factor for such online retail stores,”
A trend picking up fast globally, will it have takers in India too? Retail expert rajesh says that a lot of people do go online to buy such products, it is targeted toward those individuals who would usually go abroad to purchase these items of high value. There is a niche and focused clientele and per unit transaction is very high.
CVL Srinivas, Chairman, SMG India and Managing Director, LiquidThread, APAC also feels that today the customer who was the seeker of information is well informed and knows about the brand. Therefore, they have much more specific buys. Hence, this is the right platform. “I think the demand of luxury products is not only in the tier I cities but also other cities since the awareness is widespread and now the medium of communication is also present everywhere,” he adds.
The fact that Excluzen provides a one-stop shop for products across industries is an added advantage making it stay ahead of other e-retailers in the market. Rajesh adds that multiple categories of products drive volumes than those that cater specific vertical of products. But for such sites there is a small group of customers who keep purchasing and are regular buyers. “Since it is also giving travel services it is foraying from online to trying to be a connoisseur in this segment. Online retailing is as it is growing at a fast rate of 40 to 50 percent,” he adds.
Agreeing to that Srinivas says, “As far as an online luxury product website is concerned, it will do well if the property is backed by a good business plan and attractive offers. People need convenience these days. The upper SEC wants minimum time to do this therefore the best way to buy stuff is through e-commerce.”
Ecommerce or Etailing is taking off in a big way, in the early part of the dotcom boom there were a lot of companies who invested large sums of money and burnt it all. Now the ecosystem is more conducive to this category. Most of the large companies have ecommerce websites in place today to offer their products online which makes it simpler for a customer to purchase goods online at a one stop shop.