The latest Global Top 10 City Luxury Poll 2015 reveals insights on how, what and where affluent, global spenders are expected to purchase in the year to come.
I recently spoke at the International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) Asia 2015 in Shanghai, China. The invitation-only event was held June 1 – 4, 2015 and featured approximately 500 exhibitors and 500 buyers from a number of countries.
Other active participants included Rupert Hoogewerf, Hurun Report Chairman and Chief Researcher, Forrest Lynn, Founder and President of DIADEMA and Yu Hui.
Throughout the education seminar and panel discussions, I shared key insights on Generation AAA (Aspirational, Affluent, Ambitious) in markets such as Mainland China, Hong Kong and Singapore. In addition to the consumption habits among these affluent individuals, trends in overseas travel and perceptions of luxury products were also discussed.
Here, we present the key highlights on what the top Affluent spenders in key cities are expected to purchase, how they are expected to make their purchases and how the preferences differ from city to city.
“ Over half of Affluent residents purchase luxury products for their high quality ”
Agility ran the Affluential Global Luxury Pulse Survey 2015 to gauge the outlook for 2015 amongst Affluent consumers around the world.
The research was completed between March and April 2015 by way of interviewing 1,750 respondents across 10 cities known to be major markets for luxury products.
These cities include Beijing, Zurich, London, Moscow, Munich, New York, Paris, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo.
Key findings from the survey included:
• Chinese Spending – The Affluent from China and Singapore are expected to be the highest spenders in the months to come when compared to their Asian counterparts in Japan and other Affluent consumers in countries such as Switzerland, Russia, Germany and the United States.
• Types of Luxury Products Purchased – Shanghai (67%), followed by Beijing (66%), leads in the purchasing of electronics and gadgets. Although the majority of the Affluent consumers in the European markets surveyed prefer spending on vacations, Singapore leads the pack in vacation purchases at 84 percent.
• Mode Of Purchase – Shanghai (11%) is fastest in embracing mobile luxury e-commerce, with a strong preference for purchasing electronics. Of the top five countries shopping for vacations, Zurich (8%) ranks the highest in mobile purchasing. Munich (34%) ranks highest in desktop or PC.
• Product Research – About 48 percent of the Affluent shoppers tend to source information about luxury products from the brand’s websites, with another 40 percent making their purchase based on word of mouth.
• Reasons For Spending On Luxury Brands – Over half of Affluent residents purchase luxury products for their high quality. Slightly over 30 percent view luxury products as a form of pampering.
“ Chinese expected to be the highest spenders in the coming months ”
Looking at how much Affluent consumers in different cities were planning to spend on shopping for premium goods (watches, fashion, and jewellery), spending expectations are clearly the highest in China (Beijing and Shanghai) followed by Singapore.
New York, which has the fourth highest spend in the category, shows an average consumer spending one third less than his/her counterpart in Beijing.
On the other hand, Affluent consumers in London, which has the lowest spend, plan on spending less than half of what New Yorkers are planning. (View Figure 1)
Figure 1: Estimated Spend in the Next 6 Months on Premium Watches/Fashion/Jewellery- in USD (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
When asked in which categories Affluent residents of different cities intended to make a purchase in the next six months, Shanghai and Beijing lead the way in terms of shopping for both luxury items and electronics, with Singapore and New York behind them for both categories.
Affluent residents in Moscow and Munich also showed high inclination for electronics shopping. Singapore emerged as the leading country for overseas travel, with over 80 percent planning a trip. London and Paris made up the second tier of cities in terms of plans for overseas holidays. (View Figure 2)
Figure 2: Luxury Category Purchase Intentions in each City (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
When asked about where Affluent residents purchase luxury brands the results show Shanghai leading in terms of purchasing luxury brands online using a mobile phone or a tablet.
Buying luxury brands on a mobile device is also popular in Zurich, while cities like London, Moscow and Paris enjoy only a fraction of the popularity. It is interesting to see Tokyo, which is known as a mobile internet frontrunner, is also near the bottom of the list. (View Figure 3)
Figure 3: Proportion Of Affluent City Residents Who Have Purchased Luxury Brands Online Via Mobile Or Tablet (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
Looking at how many Affluent residents have purchased luxury brands online in a more traditional way, using a laptop or a desktop, Munich emerged as the clear leader, with over a third having done so, while Shanghai dropped to the middle of the list. New York, Moscow and Zurich complete the top four, with Beijing coming in at number five. (View Figure 4)
Figure 4: Proportion of Residents Who Have Purchased Luxury Brands Online via Desktop or Laptop (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
When asked about where Affluent residents across different cities tend to get most of their information about premium brands, brand websites clearly came on top of the list. These were followed by friends, family or colleagues and print media. New York was the only city where friends, family or colleagues were actually rated higher than brand websites. (View Figure 5)
Figure 5: Main Sources of Information on Premium Brands across Ten Cities (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
When presented with a list of 27 international luxury brands and asked them to identify which ones they owned, the respondents in Tokyo, Singapore, and New York indicated owning products from the largest number of brands – an average of four or more brands. Shanghai and Beijing followed with an average of three brands per person. Affluent consumers in Zurich and London owned products from the smallest number of luxury brands. (View Figure 6)
Figure 6: Number of Luxury Brands Owned by Market (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
Across all markets higher quality was seen as the primary reason for buying premium brands. The second most important purchase driver in most markets was rewarding or pampering oneself, except in New York and London, where premium brands were purchased more because they make one look or feel good. In Beijing the local Affluent value the exclusivity that premium brands can offer. (View Figure 7)
Figure 7: Reasons for Purchasing Premium Brands across 10 Markets (Source: Agility Affluent Insights 2015)
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