Laura Mercier recently revealed that only 5% of sales come through its website, making clear that beauty brands that fail to incorporate engaging and intuitive digital features on their websites are missing an opportunity to attract and convert consumers. But parent company Shiseido has set its sights on doubling that figure in the next three years, following a digital strategy overhaul that has already brought a 55% uplift in retail sales.
As part of the strategy, Laura Mercier has revamped its website to incorporate how-to video tutorials, user-generated content (UGC), a ratings and reviews section, and influencer marketing. These features are increasingly becoming table stakes among brands, according to Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Beauty UK, and will help to boost Laura Mercier’s benchmarking performance. Currently, the brand’s digital competence is Feeble, according to the Index; along with Buxom, this contributed significantly to Shiseido’s 21% fall in Gartner L2’s overall ranking of beauty enterprises.
Instead of a branded blog, which 43% of brands tracked in the study have invested in, Laura Mercier created a section focused on brand ambassador Mario Dedivanovic. The section includes how-to videos and his favorite products, aiding in cross-selling. Adoption of video content like how-to tutorials on beauty brand sites has increased rapidly, up from 61% in 2017 to 86% in 2018. While 51% of brands link their videos to product pages, only 26% link directly to e-commerce. To secure the sale, brands must reduce the number of steps required to take the consumer to checkout.
Incorporating UGC is another good move for Laura Mercier. Almost half of UK consumers trust UGC more than content created by brands, and these consumers are 53% more likely to purchase a product after seeing it featured in UGC. It’s therefore no surprise that brands are quickly adding UGC throughout their sites.