Belgians search luxury goods online, but buy offline

e-commerceA recent study by Microsoft Advertising among 1,800 Europeans revealed that Belgians keep buying luxury products (such as watches, perfumes, cosmetics, designer clothes and handbags) mainly in classic offline shops. A third of the participants do however search in advance for product information on the Internet. We also learned that 80% of the Belgian participants visit the official websites of the luxury goods.

Almost half of the luxury goods that are sold are meant to be gifts, and to find inspiration, 38% of the participants ask for advice from friends and family, often via e-mail or instant messaging. Belgian Internet users appreciate online advertisement for luxury goods less than in the neighbouring countries and yet 42% have at least clicked once on an online advertisement for a luxury product. Moreover, classic forms of advertisement (via the desktop) remain the most efficient; the new forms, via social media, seem to have less impact.

So the study shows once again the importance to own a website, also for companies in luxury goods that sell exclusively in their classic shops and that are not into e-commerce. It also seems that perfumeries have a bright future on the Internet: according to the study, cosmetics and perfume are the products that are the most likely to be bought online in the future.