Going live in Japan: Shiseido and Isetan Mitsukoshi ride contactless shopping wave with live streaming launch
Live streaming, a combination of streaming video and e-commerce, have become increasingly popular in the last few months, especially in the wake of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) disruptions.
To combat the sales decline in the brick-and-mortar retail sector, Shiseido has partnered with Isetan Mitsukoshi, one of Japan’s largest retail groups which owns both Isetan and Mitsukoshi department stores chains, to conduct livestreaming sales programmes.
The live steaming sessions will be held on Isetan Mitsukoshi’s Meeco, a dedicated online beauty store launched the firm launched in February last year.
The COVID-19 outbreak and the impact of the physical retail sector has pushed the company to explore more avenues in e-commerce as the demand for ‘contactless’ shopping is continuing to rise.
By leaning into live commerce, Shiseido said it was strengthening its omnichannel model and ‘fusing’ its strengths with that of their retail partners.
At the same time, its retail partners can benefit from the larger consumer exposure Shiseido can pull into their platforms.
“Through this live commerce initiative with Shiseido, we’re aiming to expand new contact points with customers in response to rapid changes in purchasing behaviour, such as the reduction of contact opportunities due to COVID-19,” said Isetan Mitsukoshi.
Additionally, Isetan Mitsukoshi would be able to glean consumer insights from these live streaming sessions.
According to Shiseido, the live streaming sessions will be hosted its own SHISEIDO beauty advisors.
With the capabilities of live streaming, consumers will be able to communicate with the beauty advisors in real-time, just like they would be able to at a physical outlet.
For the first live streaming session, Shiseido will be focusing on introducing SHISEIDO skin care products that can help consumers tackle skin sensitivity brought about frequent mask-wearing.
Shiseido to invest in live streaming
This is not the first time the health crisis has prompted the company to turn to live streaming commerce.
Most recently, the company partnered with South East Asian e-commerce platform Lazada to host a live streaming session for the Thai market.
Over 90,000 viewers tuned into that session and the exclusive promotional item managed to sell out in just 30 minutes.
This generated 40 times gross merchandise value (GMV) for the brand compared to a regular hour on the e-commerce platform.
The company has also been promoting its products via live streaming in the Chinese market, which the company credits as the reason why its e-commerce sales have remained strong amid the pandemic.
The success of such ventures has prompted the company to ‘fully develop’ its live commerce capabilities in Japan.
In addition to live streaming, the company is also launching online-based counselling services on Meeco from July 27 onwards to offer more flexibility for consumers.
“Shiseido will continue to expand its line-up of live commerce and online web counselling platforms to respond to the need to combine online and offline commerce.”