L2’s Digital IQ Index: Watches & Jewelry 2014 benchmarks 82 brands in digital. Analyzing over 850 data-points across site, digital marketing, social media, and mobile & tablet, the study highlights brands that are thriving and struggling as Watch and Jewelry brands become more sophisticated digital players.
Seven brands successfully defended their positions among the top ten but there has been a significant reshuffling of the ranking. Newcomers Alex and Ani, Montblanc and Shinola (the most improved brand in the Index) replaced Fossil, Tissot and Piaget. For the first time, more than a quarter of the brands reviewed in the Index were classified as “Gifted” or above–widening the gap between brands who “get digital” and make the necessary investments to shine, and brands choosing not to invest at all.
1. David Yurman
Digital IQ: 148
David Yurman jumped from 8th place in last year’s index to take the top spot in 2014. The brand pairs end-to-end mobile optimization of davidyurman.com for mobile and tablet devices, streamlining navigation, customer service, and checkout for a wide range of devices. “Ten Years with Kate”, a shoppable campaign featuring long-time ambassador Kate Moss, reflects tight coordination across social, email and display advertising channels.
2. Tiffany & Co.
Digital IQ: 144
Tiffany & Co. fell from the top spot in 2014, unable to repeat the all-out marketing blitz for the Great Gatsby movie in 2013, but continues to lead the Index in key areas. The introduction of the “Tiffany T” collection in August led to double the average email output, alternating between introductory materials and “In the Mix” profiles of New York influencers. In addition, Tiffany.com demonstrates highest organic brand visibility across non-brand keywords (e.g., ring, bracelet, necklace, etc.) appearing twice as frequently as nearest rival Cartier.
3. Alex and Ani
Digital IQ: 142
Alex and Ani moved from 12th in 2013 to the secure the 3rd spot in 2014. Over the past year, the brand has doubled their Facebook fans, quadrupled the Instagram followers and become the only jewelry brand experimenting with Like2Buy to make Instagram posts shoppable. The brand is also one of only three brands using select hashtags (e.g., #charmdarms, #whyiwear) to drive user-generated content for direct incorporation on product pages. Heavy investment in mobile search ads provides direct click-to-call and nearby store locations while active engagement with product listing ads (PLAs) has helped the brand control 66% of Google Shopping results.
Digital IQ: 141
Omnichannel investments are beginning to pay off for Swarovski. This year, the brand launched click-and-collect capability, joining the 10 percent of brands with in-store integration. Swarovski is one of only fifteen percent of Index brands that employ mobile-optimized email templates, catering to the 65 percent of email that is now opened on mobile devices. The brand’s marketing consistently caters to mobile users, employing narrow design templates that are built for scroll-and-tap input on smaller screens. On YouTube, the “Citra Sphere Chrono Watch” video for the Fall/Winter campaign, featuring supermodel Mirada Kerr was the third most viewed video published by an Index brand in 2014, with over 8.2 million views.
5. Van Cleef & Arpels
Digital IQ: 138
Van Cleef & Arpels has focused on making rich, comprehensive content investments to support new product launches and improving accessibility through mobile optimization, pulling away from one-off app development to provide the same features and functionality with greater e-commerce integration on-site. Microsites provide compelling exploration of product catalog, optimized for touch navigation, supported by interactive exhibits, 360º product views, and consistent drive to purchase. In addition, the brand is strong across the board on social, ranking within the top 10 for communities on Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.
Digital IQ: 137
New site launch in late 2014 eliminated the bifurcation between experience and e-commerce, providing focus on product discoverability, and extended m-commerce to the brand’s mobile site. Customer service options incorporate enterprise best practices from parent Richemont while incentivizing back-in-stock notifications and call-to-purchase. Innovative product development with the Samsung Galaxy Note and upcoming wearable integration show digital innovation on the sales and product development sides of the company.
Digital IQ: 135
Chopard performed above the index average across the board with the highest strengths in e-commerce and assisted sales on one of the top sites in the Index. An innovative integrated advertising and social media campaign, the “House of Secrets,” highlighted different brand lifestyles with interactive videos and product discovery vehicles, going so far as to send personalized messages to all of Chopard’s Twitter followers in conjunction with the campaign launch.
Digital IQ: 133
Cartier’s continued video dominance takes new form this year with a substantial global branded content sponsorship on the “Ones to Watch” segment launched with CNN in October. A latecomer to mobile optimization, the brand plugged a long-standing hole in its digital strategy with a best-in-class mobile site, integrating m-commerce, e-concierge eservices and drive to local boutiques–just in time for Holiday 2014. The brand also remains strong across the board on social; publishing five of the top ten most viewed Watches & Jewelry videos on YouTube in the last year and maintaining the second-largest community on Instagram.
Digital IQ: 132
Jaeger-LeCoultre has the best-in-class customer service and e-concierge services in the Index. Ease of commerce is supported by persistent links to customer assistance, call to purchase options, and delivery and return information. However, the brand is held back slightly by the bifurcation between the brand’s e-commerce and branded experience sites. Leveraging various social media channels, the high-tech “Geophysic 1958” campaign video reached one million views in less than two months.
Digital IQ: 131
The most improved brand year over year, Shinola takes a more iterative approach to site and strategy updates generally seen more in Retail brands than among Watches & Jewelry peers. In 2014 Shinola launched an m-commerce enabled mobile site, and became one of three brands incorporating user-generated product photos from Instagram in product pages to supplement brand collateral. Shinola sources UGC photos through the wildly successful #MyShinola campaign, encouraging user participation and consolidating that content into a usable resource through the hashtag and has been supporting social media activity by scaling paid media expenditure to enhance visibility.