The online powerhouse that is Net-A-Porter.com has revealed several new pieces of news that will have their fans around the world buzzing. Firstly the one that had the blogosphere and beauty fans buzzing as the announcement that they were launching a highly edited assortment of beauty.
“We are delighted to continue the expansion of the NET-A-PORTER brand with the addition of beauty. The move is a natural evolution of our business. We have already established ourselves as a truly global fashion destination and have a super sophisticated, discerning customer with an appetite for newness and the latest trends that extends beyond fashion,” says Alison Loehnis, Managing Director, NET-A-PORTER.COM.
The Net-A-Porter.com beauty offering won’t see the fashion ecommerce giant compete directly with the likes of Sephora, instead offering luxury beauty products from brands like Aesop, Chantecaille, Natura Bissé, Le Metier de Beaute, 3 LAB, Beauty Works West, Philip B, Joya, Ilia, Sarah Chapman and James Read, all of whom aren’t as readily available to a worldwide shopper base.
“We have long featured beauty in our online magazine and have ramped it up recently with more dedicated features and the appointment of regular video columnists,” says Loehnis.
“We consider it a unique differentiator to be able to merchandise beauty and fashion together and educate our visitors not only on which bag or shoe to buy to get the look, but the nail polish and lipstick as well. The impulse to shop from the page applies to beauty as it does to fashion and now our customers can do both at one destination.”
The news of Net-A-Porter.com Beauty coincided with the news that the store had expanded its global distribution network with a third distribution centre in Hong Kong, joining the centres in England and New York, and the unveiling of translated websites in Chinese Mandarin, French and German.
The Hong-Kong distribution centre and dedicated website serving Asia-Pacific will immediately improve on NET-A-PORTER’s existing express delivery timing to the region by approximately one day – and result in more cost-effective shipping prices. These developments also allow visitors from Hong Kong, Australia, China, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, New Zealand, India, Indonesia, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam to shop in their preferred currency including Hong Kong, Australian and US dollars.
“NET-A-PORTER has been a global business since launch in 2000, committed to providing women everywhere with the best luxury fashion offering, the most engaging, shoppable content and, importantly, superior customer service,” says Loehns.
“We’ve continued to experience strong growth, particularly internationally, and place an ever-increasing importance on speaking to our visitors in their own language as a way of elevating the user experience. We started by recruiting a multi-lingual Customer Care team who spoke 22 languages between them before developing local language websites and launching a third distribution centre. These developments represent a great technological and logistical feat for the NET-A-PORTER team and are just some of the ways we’re continuing to make shopping with us even better. There’s much more in the pipeline and our plans include the integration of additional payment gateways for customers in China as well as a same day delivery service in Hong Kong and next day shipping service to major cities in Australia and China.”
The Hong Kong Net-A-Porter.com 130,000 sq ft warehouse will serve consumers in 17 countries in the Asia-Pacific region with a marketing team now based in Hong Kong and Shanghai. This signals the luxury fashion retailer’s push into the lucrative Chinese market.
Adrienne Ma, senior vice president at Net-a-Porter Asia Pacific Group, said: “The primary reason for choosing to open a distribution center in Hong Kong is because it’s a free port with strong courier networks, which will allow us to improve on our existing shipping service time period by around one day.
A fact worth noting is that the first order shipped from the Hong Kong distribution centre was a pair of Alexander McQueen skull-embellished suede slippers to a customer in North Adelaide at 1:15 pm HKT. With the lower shipping rates of AUD$10, we will be shopping a little more on Net-A-Porter.com.