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Chanel strengthens digital brand experience via site relaunchBy Tricia Carr
French fashion house Chanel remodeled its Web site to more effectively intertwine product browsing with content and imagery so that visitors become immersed in the brand world.
The label revamped the navigation offered on its site to be more intuitive of consumers’ usage habits and is featuring higher resolution imagery that much of the time offers detailed information about the products pictured. Additional features of the site include an increase in video content, mobile compatibility and new social functions exclusive to its ecommerce-enabled fragrance, makeup and skincare sections.
“Chanel will surely see vast improvements in visitors, time spent on-site for each device, increases in social followers and mentions, growth in store visits, online and offline revenue increases, and likely expansion of new and repeat customers,” said Andrea Wilson, Fort Worth, TX-based luxury practice lead at iProspect.
“What it has digitally created will highly inspire all that experience it, and speaks to consumers in a new and thoughtful way, she said.
Ms. Wilson is not affiliated with Chanel, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Chanel declined comment.
Chanel’s new look
The largest change to Chanel’s Web site is the way in which users navigate to and within each section.
When users arrive at the site, they are shown a rotating selection of images from the site that each take up the entire browsing pane. Below is the main menu.
Users can scroll down or click the “more” button to view the different sections of the site that include Inside Chanel, Fashion, Accessories, Fragrance, Makeup, Skincare, Fine Jewelry and Watches.
Additionally, Chanel presents a few news items and blog posts below as well as a store locator, customer service links and social media links.
Each section of the site has its own look and feel. The updates to the site that are evident while browsing include changes in menus, product list pages, collection pages and product detail pages.
Another aspect of the site enhancements is larger and higher-quality images. Photography and videos will continue to be more visible on the site, per Chanel.
For instance, the fashion section leads users to a screen where they can view the latest collection video.
Subsections such as Fashion Shows and Ready-To-Wear feature runway videos and new enlarged, high-resolution images. Users can choose which product image to view on horizontal menus that show thumbnails.
Each image is accompanied with full item details and a product number if available. Users can also zoom in on the accessories in some images.
The images are larger than the viewing pane. Users must move their mouse to scroll up or down the image.
Users can navigate back to the homepage or to any other section of the site through toolbars throughout the site. There are also “back” buttons on certain pages.
Also, the site is now accessible to both desktop and tablet users. Desktops users can choose high or low bandwidth.
Meanwhile, the ecommerce-enabled fragrance and makeup sections feature campaign images and videos alongside products available for purchase.
Users can now share products and content via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ or Tumblr.
Facebook capabilities include the ability to “Covet” or “Love” a product and share it on users’ personal Timelines. Users must sign into the site with their Facebook accounts to access this function.
Soon, a new site section called Editorial will feature videos such as those from makeup artist Lisa Eldridge.
“The depth of engaging content is unparalleled and will surely drive the site’s success,” Ms. Wilson said. “There is a vast amount of content that will inspire visitors to spend lengthy periods of time on the site, digging into articles, images, videos, product information, brand history and interactive features.
“My personal favorite elements of the site are the Inside Chanel, Chanel News and the Chanel Fashion Shows,” she said. “They include beautiful exclusive images and history in an extremely appealing format.
“Finally, the fact that the site delivers the experience with ease on smartphones, tablets and desktops with low or high bandwidth is going to make it easy and convenient for consumers to communicate with the brand.”
Time for a makeover
Quite a few luxury marketers are revamping their Web sites during the fourth quarter of this year.
For example, Marc Jacobs Intl. revamped its Web site and enhanced its mobile optimization to increase online traffic and captivate consumers with improved visuals, mobile commerce features and social sharing options.
The Web site now offers a high-impact visual experience including larger product images, social integration, mobile optimization and PayPal integration.
The brand also added the MyMJ account to give consumers a more personalized online experience (see story).
In addition, U.S. fashion label Rebecca Minkoff redesigned its ecommerce site to include a social media aggregator and additional brand content to enhance the overall digital experience for its customers.
The new site is meant to offer a shopping experience that provides context, insight into the brand and lifestyle, per the label.
Rebecca Minkoff will also tap responsive design to offer a mobile-optimized version of the site in the near future (see story).
“It is a time for evolution,” Ms. Wilson said. “Digital is finally being seen by luxury marketers as a necessary communication point, and they are realizing the absolute necessity of building device-friendly and highly inspired Web sites.
“Each experience on a smartphone, tablet and desktop are essential pieces of the consumer journey, and brands are finally listening to affluent consumer usage patterns and aligning their digital content and experiences accordingly,” she said.
Tricia Carr, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York
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