Initially, the beauty industry was greatly impacted just like any other industry as the world went through a massive global crisis with this pandemic, however, it did open up a lot of avenues for many brands to develop new strategies digitally by venturing into the e-commerce segment.
Along with this, it also taught us to be nimble on our feet and come up with immediate solutions for not only catering to our consumers but also to adapt ourselves to the changing times.
And to adapt to this changing environment, Kiehl’s launched an e-boutique in June 2020. Even during the pandemic, the strategy of the brand has remained consistent which is #1 customer service, experience, and satisfaction via their KCR’s thus providing the best to customers keeping the sanitization guidelines in mind.
“During the lockdown, we turned our Social Media page into a Mental and Wellness Centre garnering consumer trust as the brand brought around the concept Kiehl’s #Madebetter. Keeping in stride with the current scenario, we launched the e-commerce platform www.kiehls.in to cater to their entire consumer base. We also introduced contactless delivery, home delivery for both online and offline consumers, Kiehl’s Koncierge – live chat e-skin consultations with their KCRs. These are the few steps that we had taken to meet the situation head-on,” says Shikhee Agrawal, AVP, Kiehl's India.
The retail strategy of the brand has been the same as what it was in the past 90 years that in consumer culture when purchasing skincare products 76.8 percent of female consumers wish they had access to more expert advice and more high-quality samples ‘Try Before You Buy’. Hence Kiehl’s has been granting this wish ever since.
“Being agile, we shifted focus from offline retail to online retail. We channelized 90 percent of our spends to digital for creating awareness – this has become the new brand motto as initially Kiehl’s as a brand was known to take a traditional route earlier by heavily relying on word of mouth and traditional PR approach. Now we have our digital presence which offers virtual consultations to our customers. The customization options help the customers to have a virtual experience and also cater the right fit for their skin concerns,” she states.
“The brand also launched a lot of new services like digital presence, contactless delivery, and LUCY (let us change your skin) amid the pandemic,” she adds.
The new e-boutique is intuitive, user-friendly, and aspires to replicate Kiehl’s experience digitally. With a sophisticated user interface designed to make shopping online a fulfilling experience, the website is optimized for mobile phones and desktops.
“Kiehl’s Koncierge is a Live Chat feature that provides e-consultations and elevates the online customer experience through complimentary and individualized skincare consultations by providing them with tailor-made skins solutions according to the concerns shared with the E-Kiehl’s Customer Representatives,” she explains.
“The pandemic was one of the major reasons for digital presence. Contactless consultations, virtual consultations, live sessions are a part of educating our customers. We have an omnichannel approach with online and offline visibility running live shopping events and even exclusive offers at our platform Kiehls.in,” she concludes.