Chinese travelers have long become equated with their extensive shopping lists. Getting onto the luxury shopping list used to be top priority for luxury executives. How has this list changed as luxury matures in China?
Women traveling for the first time have between 2 and 30 items carefully researched and prepared on their list. Most travelers who have been abroad more than 5 times only have 1 or 2 prepared items on their shopping list. These women continue to spend the same amount on each shopping trip, they just indulge more in impulse buying as they become more comfortable with overseas purchasing.
These women tend to choose a location (a mall or a store), then impulse buy the majority of their luxury budget.
High income women (above $70,000 USD) listed service standard reputation as a top factor.
Every income bracket wanted value versus in-China pricing. These women are more value sensitive than price sensitive. They want to visit locations that are known for having products or experiences that are not available in China. Impulse buying is not an issue if the design and style fits the needs of these women. About 80 percent of respondents said that they indulged in substantial unplanned luxury buying on their last trip.
The sophistication level of the Chinese shoppers is changing quickly. The question now is less about a shopping list, and more about experience. The brands that are more customer-centric will be the winners of the increasingly competitive luxury battleground.
Sammie Liu oversees consumer insights at SILK CRM, a social CRM provider for Luxury brands catering to Chinese consumers. She is the former researcher on Chinese outbound tourism for the Dept of Cultural & Creative Arts at the HK Institute of Education
image credit: peter hilton