French luxury goods giant Louis Vuitton has signed a partnership with JD.com to strengthen its presence in the Chinese e-commerce market. This is a most surprising agreement as the brand traditionally favours direct access via its own e-commerce sites. As such, it is the first time the brand has entered into an agreement with a third-party e-commerce platform in China.
Indeed, although the number one luxury goods group has already had its own e-commerce shop in China since 2017, it was one of the last in its sector not to use the dominant platform system in China.
Louis Vuitton confirmed that the partnership announcement was accurate, but declined to comment.
Special brand means special treatment, which is why Louis Vuitton products will not be sold directly through the JD.com platform. Indeed, the platform had to innovate in order to compete with Alibaba’s Tmall Luxury Pavilion and attract the best luxury players.
“Tmall and JD have been engaged in a turf war for luxury brands for several years now, each racing against the other to meet the demands of consumers and brands alike with ever more innovative features and exclusives,” says Adam Knight, co-founder of digital marketing agency Tong. “Signing Louis Vuitton represents a huge coup for JD, which has arguably always played second fiddle to Tmall’s Luxury Pavilion.”
To this end, Chinese consumers will be taken to a personalised brand page by searching for Louis Vuitton on the JD app. From there, by clicking on individual products, customers will be redirected to the official Louis Vuitton WeChat mini-program, where they can complete the transaction.
“We are delighted to partner with Louis Vuitton to further enhance the luxury experience in Chinese e-commerce,” said Kevin Jiang, president of JD. Kevin Jiang, president of international business at JD Fashion and Lifestyle, said in a statement. “This is an unprecedented model that offers a seamless shopping experience. JD will continue to innovate in the Chinese luxury market to deliver an unparalleled experience. ”
The partnership allows Louis Vuitton to access traffic from JD.com’s 472 million annual active customers, while simultaneously maintaining control of the shopping experience through its own mini-program.
Louis Vuitton had already embraced Chinese social media and social commerce platforms such as WeChat, Xiaohongshu, Douyin and even Bilibili, through its partnership with the video game League of Legends.
It was one of the first Western luxury brands to hold a live event on Xiaohongshu and its Shanghai men’s fashion show, which was broadcast in China on Weibo, Douyin, Tencent and OOH, was seen by 95 million users last year.
Featured Photo : © Louis Vuitton