A rapidly growing share of Chinese luxury shoppers are doing their purchasing abroad where good are often less expensive. This raises the danger that a brand may lose consumers’ trust if its stores or products fail to present a consistent image in both China and elsewhere around the world.
Chinese consumers’ tastes in luxury products are maturing with surprising speed. Shoppers with just a few years’ experience as buyers of such products increasingly prefer low-key and understated goods to ones that are emblazoned with popular logos. Yet the market is splintering, because the fast-growing numbers of new entrants still favor widely-recognizable brands that show off their status. As tempting as it may be for firms to try satisfying all kinds of consumers, doing so risks diluting their brands’ cachet.