A.S. Watson Group announces the grand opening of its 3,800th Watsons store in China, an important milestone for its market leadership in the country.
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Located in Kunming, the largest city in Yunnan Province with GDP growth of 8.9% last year, the store is designed to provide one-on-one beauty services to customers, with fully integrated digital experience.
Malina Ngai, CEO of A.S. Watson (Asia & Europe) officiated at the grand opening ceremony, said “Celebrating the opening of Watsons China’s 3,800th store is a significant milestone for A.S. Watson Group, as both ‘3’ and ‘8’ are the luckiest numbers in Chinese culture, representing liveliness and prosperity.”
“Our extensive physical store network provides unique touchpoints in over 470 cities in China, connecting us to customers through in-store experience and digital engagement. All stores provide 30-minute ‘click and collect’ service and 60-minute ‘click and delivery’ service which are widely used and appreciated by customers. Including China, this year A.S. Watson Group is on plan to open 1,300 new stores globally. That is, on average 1 new store every 7 hours,” continued Malina.
Rolling the Red Carpet for VIPs
The new Watsons store in Living Mall of Yunnan leverages the latest retail technologies to enhance customer experience by combining online and offline (O+O) platforms.
Spanning over 2,000 square feet, the new store is committed to providing customers with an exciting and engaging shopping experience through a wide range of Watsons offerings.
Kulvinder Birring, CEO of Watsons China said, “Building customer connectivity with our 65 million loyal members in Mainland China plays a vital role in our growth in this vibrant market. On top of that, we have launched our Elite Card VIP programme to ensure our highest-spending members enjoy the most privileged service. We are delighted to hear overwhelming response from these customers. Going forward, Watsons China will continue to enhance and upgrade our exclusive VIP offers, bringing more surprises to entice our customers.”
The Elite Card members enjoy a wide range of exclusive privileges, such as complimentary make-up and skincare services, exclusive invitations to meet celebrity KOLs, and even accommodation and culinary offers at 5-star hotel. These premium privileges make the shopping experience a real pleasure for those who are the top 10% highest spending customers in Watsons China.
Serving Customers One-On-One
Gen Z and Millennial shoppers are demonstrating increasing spending power in Mainland China. Watsons is rejuvenating its business model to best meet the demands of this rising segment. The landmark 3,800th store is equipped with “StyleMe 2.0”, an AR (Augmented Reality) technology to offer different mix-and-match trendy looks. This service upgrade comes with a personal make-up session with professional in-store make-up artists.
Nowadays customers can be impatient when ready to pay. Watsons China has accordingly developed the “Scan & Go” service where customers can save time by simply scanning a QR code with their mobile phones to purchase the products directly through the Watsons mobile application without waiting at the cashier.
The new store in Kunming will also feature the pioneering “One-on-one Beauty Consultation Service.”Customers can enjoy this personalised service by connecting with the store staff via the Watsons China WeChat account. If the selected product is not available in a specific branch, Watsons staff will help customers to place an order through the system.
Customers can choose to have their order delivered through courier, “Click & Collect” or the “1-Hour Flash Delivery” service. They can also make an appointment for the Skin Test and SPA experience through the members’ centre to enjoy a full range of private beauty and grooming services.
Insight-driven Product Offering
Young customers in Mainland China are keen on trying new products. In addition to well-known beauty brands, Watsons China has also introduced a wide range of high-quality, high-value products in recent years. Exciting new product lines include Korean beauty salon brand CLIV and BRTC, American social media cosmetics brand wet n wild, Mainland China’s social media-led beauty brand Judydoll and the dermatological skincare range co-created by Shiseido and A.S. Watson Group – d program Urban Damage Care.
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With the rapid growth of the health and beauty segment in Mainland China, Watsons is continuously upgrading its service through introducing the state-of-art retail technologies, allowing popular brands to better meet the demands of customers, rejuvenating the Watsons’ image and positioning to become our customers’ most-loved brand.