Ecommerce Strategies for Marketing Luxury Watches

Updated 4 years ago
Paula Guevara
January 21, 2021
5 min read

2020 changed a lot in the retail world, both online and offline. If it feels like we’ve entered a new era, it’s because we have.

According to Deloitte, the changes forced by the pandemic have deeply and permanently affected consumer habits across the board. The shift in ideas about product value, in particular, is here to stay.

From economical shoppers to those who prefer luxury brands, everyone has a new paradigm for aligning themselves (and their wallets) with brands.

Wondering how to sell luxury watches in this new landscape? You’re not alone. 

Here are five strategies to embrace in 2021 and beyond.

How to Sell Luxury Watches: 5 Strategies That Work

With the pandemic interrupting every industry, competition has gotten fiercer than ever. Standing out from the ecommerce crowd now requires technology to deliver the white-glove experience that luxury customers expect.

Here’s how to work the system correctly to best sell luxury watches.

1. Elevate Your Visualization Game

A picture’s worth a thousand words—and when it comes to luxury watches, it can easily be worth thousands of dollars, too.

In ecommerce, how well you visualize the product for your customers will determine whether or not the item sells. Presenting high-quality product visualization can increase conversion rates by as much as 50 percent

If there’s anything we learned in 2020, it’s that the luxury ecommerce market has gotten tighter and even more competitive. Thankfully, delivering amazing product photos are totally within your realm of control. That makes it the first thing you should look at when optimizing for a competitive advantage.


  • Make it easy for your customers to imagine themselves wearing your watches. Stage non-listing photos to convey the lifestyle that your ideal customers lead. This makes it easy for them to imagine your watch in their world.
  • Look for a professional photographer who specializes in luxury watches. Unique materials like quartz, platinum, and leather require special skills to photograph. It pays to hunt for someone who’s mastered them. 
  • Consider 3D product visualization. This will help your customers see what their customization or personalization options will look like in real-time.
  • Use clean backgrounds and well-lit photos for product listings. Michael Kors uses both lifestyle photos (including a digital runway show) and minimalist product photos to create a sense of brand and luxury.
A group of watches

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Clean images denote refinement while presenting the watches attractively. Source: Michael Kors

2. Craft Impeccable Customization Rules

Once, custom was synonymous with luxury in retail. These days, everyone prefers customized products—but don’t take that to mean your luxury customers expect it any less.

Quite the opposite, in fact.

A study published in 2020 on luxury consumer behavior found that luxury brands have willingly met growing customer demands for ever more customized products. 

In short, in a world where we customize everything from our car features to our sock designs, even luxury brands aren’t truly luxurious unless there’s room for self-expression.

However, the study found that it’s possible for brands to take it too far, thereby eroding the product’s value as a status symbol. That has major implications for luxury watches, which have always been seen as a status symbol around the world.

A rules-based product customization software can help you avoid this. When you create customization options to display on your ecommerce site, make sure that you:

  • Identify configurations that stay true to your brand. Only allow options that maintain the essence of your brand. Anything else can dilute it, especially when that customized product is shown off on social media.
  • Offer configurations that don’t convolute production. It may sound great to offer 30 different colors of leather for the watch strap, but consider how that will affect your manufacturing process before you do.

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Nixon allows customers to “design” their own watch, but everything remains flawlessly branded – even the graphics used. Source: Nixon

3. Present Personalization Options in Style

Customization lets people select their preferred configuration from a variety of branded options, but personalization lets them add their own unique flair.

In watches, this frequently occurs using custom text. Sometimes, it can include things like custom faces or even hand-selected stones

Whatever you choose, offer up these options in style. That means:

  • Use a sleek interface. Product personalization software can really shine here to create a unique experience in the comfort of a customer's own home.
  • Choose software that supports multiple devices. Let your shoppers design and personalize at home from their personal computer or on the go on their mobile device. You can also integrate the customization experience in-store through a tablet or kiosk.
  • Take advantage of 3D. Today’s advanced 3D visualization technologies like WebGL can bring your product to life, allowing shoppers to see it from all angles, zoom in and out, and rotate the product in real time.  
  • Emphasize branding in the user interface (UI). Notice how Louis Vuitton has adapted their watch personalization experience to match the brand look and feel completely. 

Source: Louis Vuitton

4. Make Language and Currency Info Accessible

While the luxury watch industry faced challenges in 2020 like many other high-end retail products, recovery forecasts produced toward the end of last year remain bright. 

According to the Luxury Watch Market research from Technavio, the market will increase through 2024 to become worth $1.64 billion globally. Some 43 percent of all sales are expected to come from eastern Asia.

Setting your ecommerce site up to handle multiple currencies and languages can help you take advantage of this recovery. Before choosing product customization software, make sure that it supports this capability.

5. Present Your Brand Across Platforms

Think Instagram and TikTok are only for the teens or the common masses? Think again. Even luxury brands use it to showcase their best side.

In fact, social media is a great way to show off all those lifestyle photos and drive traffic to your site. It’s also a great way to create a community and ground your brand in the human element. Consider Nixon’s tagged page, which is chock full of user-generated photos of excited new Nixon watch owners. 

Luxury is good, and so is being popular. Wouldn’t you want to be seen amongst all these cool people?

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Source: Nixon on IG

Sell in Style with ConfigureID

With evidence pointing to a robust recovery for the luxury watch market, it’s time to bring your ‘A’ game. We’ve covered how to sell luxury watches with an ecommerce site and provided five proven strategies for you to put to use. 

From innovative product visualization strategies to harnessing the power of social media, you’re now equipped to sell in style. All that’s left is for you to implement the technology you need to put a flawless brand in front of your customers.

We’ve got you covered for that, too.

Discover what ConfigureID can do for your brand by requesting a demo now.

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