The luxury watch market is increasingly competitive as new players leverage on new designs and technology to compete with long-established brands. The more significant challenge is differentiating a watch from a pool of excellent products. So brands have turned to different strategies all aimed at communicating unique aspects of their products or brand.
Most aim to blend customer experience and shaping perspectives and attitudes towards the brand in general with every model building towards the overall brand image. Websites provide a platform for brands to reach their clientele and the designs a way to differentiate themselves.
Here is a look at top brands that implement stunning luxury watch website design to differentiate their brands from the competition.
- 1. Omega Watches
- 2. Penarosa Watches
- 3. Audemars Piguet
- 4. Rolex
- 5. Zenith Watches
- 6. Parmigiani Fleurier
- 7. Richard Miller
- 8. Hublot Watches
- 9. Girard Perregaux
- 10. Ressence Watches
- 11. Tudor Watch
How to communicate status and exclusivity
Among luxury goods, one of the vital steps in any marketing strategy is to portray exclusivity. For buyers of luxury products, belonging to an exclusive group is integral especially if the product is being purchased as a status symbol.
Omega Watches understand this and made everything about their luxury watch website design to focus on this one aspect.
Three things helped achieved this:
- Influencers: With star power, Omega goes for leading names and personalities in diverse fields including sports and film and science. Instead of having models show you how the watch will look on your hand, you have a constellation of stars donning various models. From Daniel Craig to George Clooney, no other website integrates so much star power in every section.
- Content: Where they cannot fit a celebrity, Omega goes for content and heritage. Where others would focus on their own story or blogs on watchmaking, Omega watches content is designed to put the brand as a centerpiece of major and exclusive events around the world. Whether it’s the 50th celebration of the Apollo II mission or being the official watch used for timekeeping at the Olympics, the site content flaunts this generously.
- Homepage Layout: The layout of the homepage is also crucial in demonstrating the exclusivity of the brand. It picks its top models the ones with much storytelling, blends in a video of star power, throws in is Master chronometer certifications and ends with news stories. At every point on the layout, the emphasis is on the brand and its position as an exclusive status symbol.
A highly targeted and personalized and functional website
Brands like Penarosa do not have a long heritage or vast networks of celebrities to use. However, Penarosa watches win when it comes to defining and targeting their market. The homepage alone lets you know this is a brand for women even without saying it explicitly.
The soft colors and textures throughout the site communicate this aspect.
The site also goes for feminine themes and content that directly appeals and connects with its audience.
For a premium feel, the site has the easiest and interactive personalization feature. Instead of rolling through several filters to create your custom watch, the site offers a fast video 360 personalization feature. Through it, visitors can seamlessly customize every element of the watch they want to buy.
A minimalist design adds to the function with fast loading pages and no technical information junk to take away from the appeal of the watches.
Clear and non-intrusive CTAs guide the visitor to the next step seamlessly further adding to the customer experience. These features show a website constructed with ladies in mind and cater to their every question and worry.
Interactive and engaging website
Luxury buyers expect a unique experience when shopping – and offering this is further testament to the prestige of the brand. Audemars Piguet gets this right by providing an engaging and interactive experience to site visitors.
This effect is achieved by the following:
- Continuous dark background: The dark background on the site is dense and immersive, which provides a contrast for the watch photos and the white and gold font colors. It makes the whole layout easy on the eyes as the pictures seem to be stepping or floating out in the shadows. The illuminating light around them creates an elegant and luxury feel different from what you would have got with another background.
- Engaging descriptions: The descriptions are vivid and vibrant, targeting the visitors feeling and imagination rather than just a dull description of the function of each feature.
- Animated and video product previews: Audemars Piguet website wins for the most engaging product previews. It uses a combination of video and animation to keep you engaged with the animated previews being a novelty taking you through the features and aspects of the watches like you are in a live gallery.
The overall effect is that you are immersed and get a consistent feel and experience in the site. It cuts down on bounce rate, provides a premium feel and succeeds in keeping the visitor engaged throughout.
How to use a simple color palette and tell a story
Simple color palettes have always been a traditional approach for most luxury websites – allowing them to employ an elegant look, which accentuates their metals. Rolex uses large white spaces to create an expansive outlook and feel on the site, and the photo images are in grey backgrounds to stick with this look long associated with luxury.
Beyond the aesthetics, Rolex adopts a storytelling narration to describe each model and the different features.
The narrative covers inspiration and origin of the various pieces and instead of a listing of specs and functionality, you get a description of how each aspect improves your life.
These two aspects help emphasize on Rolex’s status and heritage as a leading brand with years of prestige and class-leading models.
Clutter free design and fast loading speed
Zenith watches offer a unique take on luxury watch website design by opting for a clean clutter-free design. The colors are minimalist allowing the visitor’s focus to be on the watches with no distractions.
Even the menu section only has only six parts that make for a light website with fast loading websites.
Individual watch model pages feature a straightforward approach with plenty of white space, and the specifications are delivered in infographic design.
A clean design with distinct call-to-action buttons, whether it is finding a nearby store, or adding to a wish list, help increase the number of potential leads.
More people see the important things, and it makes for a highly optimized site for conversions. It is also easier to achieve cohesion among the various website
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Using rich quality content for engagement
The Parmigiani Fleurier website is a treasure for anyone who loves everything about luxury watches.
The homepage starts with a video showcasing various watch models of the brand in day to day life and on exhibition at one of the stores. The captivating take pulls you into knowing more about the brand and the site uses varied high-quality content to deliver on this.
Whether you want to learn about the watchmaking process or the inspiration behind the different models, restoration pieces, you will find it here. In some sections, it reads like a blog on the art of making watches only this time with one brand.
The passion delivery of the content demonstrates the range of skill and passion you expect from a luxury brand.
By giving out intricate details about its process and models, Parmigiani Fleurier not only keeps the visitors engaged but also creates a familiarity with them that helps in conversion.
The ease of navigation with a detailed website
Richard Miller’s website makes navigation a breeze straight from the homepage. For most sites, getting to create seamless navigation, even on-page scrolling, they go for a minimalist design. Such an option, however, means many details are left out, and that can affect your storytelling and descriptions
First, the homepage uses a rolling slider that pops up the next item at the center of your screen. The homepage serves as a mini-sitemap for the rest of the site, so you do not have to use the menu.
From the homepage, you can get to the various collections in a single step.
The individual pages of watch models also proceed in slides form, allowing it to cover more details but in a seamless manner. Even first-time visitors to the site can get around quickly and which reduces bounce rates and positively impacts the user experience.
How to use Video and Bold Colors
Most luxury products and even watch brands opt for simple color palettes.
While it is a classical look already associated with prestige, it can be hard to stand out. Hublot watches go for bold colors which coincidentally match most of its brand colors and the overall perception the company wants the association. For website design, these bright colors work on the color psychology shown to help in persuasion and holding the attention of the audience.
The site uses red, black and blue themes to form whole page or sections of their products. This color scheme creates compelling and captivating scenes it matches the beauty of the watches.
To further build on this boldness and brand association, the website has a high density of video content.
Each watch and section has a vibrant video that is both engaging and informational as it is entertaining. The overall effect of the video content and color schemes is to give the website a bold and vibrant personality. This choice helps the website resonate with the kind of audience it is targeting.
Website architecture and layout
The Girard Perregaux website communicates luxury in a completely different way – through its site layout and architecture. The information is arranged in a logical layup and spaces out well; it looks like a chart showing relationships between different elements.
Everything is structured in sections that are organized intuitively, following a path any site visitor would naturally follow.
Individual pages are arranged this way too. The pages are broken down into subheadings and the space broken into text blocs besides pictures with grey backgrounds.
The transitions between sections and pages add the feeling of reading a book flipping pages and not being on a website.
The overall effect is pleasant user experience in both functional and aesthetic aspects.
How to achieve unity in website design
The one thing the Ressence watches website has got right is how to bring together the critical elements of web design to create a compact result. Ressence Watches achieves this through having consistency on the following aspects:
- • Patterns
- • Typography
- • Color palettes
Ressence watches use a single consistent font throughout the site only bolding in or using full caps to designate headlines and sub-headlines. The site splits content into squares and patterns to divide not just text but also photo sections. The use of complementing softcolor palettes completes the unified theme throughout the site.
This cohesiveness helps with how the site flows and on gets information while achieving a premium feel at the same time.
A mobile responsive design
There are different considerations a luxury watch website design has to follow.
These considerations mean for most of the time sites are forced to leave out certain aspects when moving to mobile or the transition is not as smooth. Previously neat sections get jumbled up, the menus are cluttered, and content is too dense to read through.
Tudor Watches manages to avoid all these with a truly responsive design so that content blocs and images still retain their orderliness, boundaries, and clarity. Navigations and scrolling is not a tedious scrolling exercise, especially when checking different model details.
This responsive design meets the needs of the mobile market who can access everything with a similar experience as those using personal computers.
LUXURY WATCH WEBSITE DESIGN: THE TIME IS NOW
Luxury watch brands have to balance between differentiation, projecting the expected prestige and site functionality when designing websites. They are an extension of the exhibition stores and convey what the brand represents and offers to the customer.
Finding unique strengths through the different aspects of web design can help achieve that as these eleven sites demonstrate.
By: Frank DePino
Frank DePino is Principal and Founder of Mediaboom. Since 2002, Frank has led Mediaboom’s award-winning staff of creative and technical professionals building the most effective marketing and advertising solutions for its clients.