The fashion blogger is the new weapon of the luxury goods industry. Luxury apparel, fine jewelry and high-end cars are benefitting enormously from the rise of the fashion blogger. According to a recent report, fashion bloggers are expected to push sales in these three luxury goods sectors. By 2015, says the “Digital Luxury Experience” report by Italian luxury foundation Altagamma, the three areas will together account for sales of over 11 billion euros ($15 billion). This sort of a boom has already taken place in the more Internet-forward areas like mobile phones and computers. The fashion industry has been a relative late bloomer in this aspect. Better late than never. As luxury brands like Burberry, Tiffany & Co. and Gucci embrace the online medium, bigger growth seems to be in the offing.
As of now, online sales in the luxury goods sector accounts for a tiny proportion (2.6 percent) of the overall sales of 172 billion euros. But in the coming years, these numbers should change considerably. Already, online sales of luxury goods is growing at an annual rate of 20%.
Driving this growth are blogs and social media. In fact, fashion bloggers have become more influential than fashion critics, especially in emerging luxury markets like China. This will become even more significant as China overtakes the United States to become the largest market for luxury goods in the world. The Altagamma report also suggested that the online medium remains a popular shopping avenue even in times of financial trouble, because affluent buyers are encouraged to shop from the privacy of their homes.