Luxury Retailing | A Diamond in the Rough
Australia’s luxury retailing industry is projected to grow by 2.4% annually over the next five years through 2025-26, to $4.5 billion. At first glance, this statistic may seem odd given the current pandemic, but unlike our new obsession with stockpiling toilet paper, this purchase habit actually makes sense. COVID has triggered a surge in innovation & expansion in the retail industry – particularly in the luxury market. Why? It turns out instead of packing our bags we’re purchasing designer ones.
It is estimated that Australian’s have saved a whopping $36 billion in overseas travel – the pressures of COVID transforming Australia’s retail market into an international diamond in the rough. Our inability to spend money on holidaying abroad has increased our real household disposable income, triggering an expansion in Australia’s luxury retailing industry. Notably, the country has effectively dealt with the COVID virus, and while the pandemic is still impacting everyday life, the market is recovering quicker than expected.
As a result, well-known designer brands are investing BIG in new physical retail spaces across the nation. In June 2020, Hermes opened their Sydney flagship stores after an extensive luxury fit-out. Saint Laurent added a store in Melbourne in December. Gucci invested in a luxury fit-out in Brisbane’s Queens Plaza last February, Mulberry (pictured above) has strategically opened stores across Australia, and Rolex has added its largest store in the southern hemisphere on Sydney’s Pitt Street. Even Australian brands such as Camilla & Marc are investing in stunning new physical stores. So, with an aggressive expansion underway, what store fit-out should your luxury brand be adopting?
When it comes to your store fit-out it’s important to consider consumer appetite for memorable experiences. Due to current restricted living, our desire for immersive experiences is at an all-time high. Therefore, your store should be adopting a consumer-centred store fit-out that optimises personalised client experiences. The store design will heavily impact how this is delivered. Look to create a distinct atmosphere that transports clients into an environment that screams luxury. Designer brands are often fortunate to have a rich history and strong brand recognition that can be utilised in your luxury fit-out.
Hermes, established in 1837 is the perfect example of an inconic luxury brand harnessing a unique design in their store fit-out to create a sought-after experience. The Sydney flagship store on King St, built by FDC, features a simple yet elegant design. The 800 square metre space spans across two levels, giving customers ample room to marvel at the exquisite store interior design. Upon entry, clients are greeted by an enormous staircase with stacked parallel columns of ash wood, each piece curving around the custom-made balustrade. The statement joinery piece, constructed by Brisbane boat builders, took 9 months to complete. This quality craftsmanship is perfectly aligned with the brand’s image.
By nature, luxurious garments are typically carefully designed & manufactured using the highest-quality materials. The result? A designer item with a price tag that matches. These pieces are built to be displayed. So, it makes sense that your luxury retail fit-out also includes the same level of craftsmanship that’s been invested into each unique designer product. Find a team that excels at installing bespoke joinery and can deliver high-quality finishes that meet your brand + client expectations.
Unlike fast fashion, quality and exclusivity drives luxury sales. Consider including simplified & effective store displays in your fit-out. It’s important to enable customers to see + feel the quality of products, this experience brings with it the confidence to spend at a higher price point. However, limit the number of products on display & implement clever storage techniques to manage stock levels to enforce a seamless and relevant luxury experience. This boutique fit-out approach will encourage the notion of exclusivity and make your products the star attraction.
Looking for luxury fit-out experts? Unita has delivered high-end fit-out & refurbishments for luxury retail brands across Australia including, Furla, Sneakerboy & Mulberry. With a history in shopfitting, we know how to create great in-store experiences. Get in touch.