Lamps Plus Inc. is the nation’s largest lighting retailer, an impressive number 163 on the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. Yet many consumers do not associate Lamps Plus with high-end lighting design, which is plentiful in its 40,000-item inventory. The company’s new LightingLuxuryStyle.com web store is meant to change that perception.
The name and positioning say it all: “LightingLuxuryStyle.com, offering a world of opulence and richness through light!”
“Lighting Luxury Style features a curated selection of top-end products for our most discerning customers,” says Angela Hsu, Vice President of Internet Marketing. “This site allows us to feature items that cater to the high-end customer.”
While all the goods on the new site are also available on the Lamps Plus site at the same prices, the new site looks and feels quite different. With its black, charcoal and silver palette, the website’s museum-like coolness and focus on fewer than 40 lighting brands are a radical departure from the “basic” Lamps Plus site, which “has it all.” Exclusivity is part of the plan, and so is the promise of superior service: “The new site is designed to streamline the process of discovering and shopping for exceptional lighting designs,” Hsu says.
Online retail sales have grown each year since 2000. According to Forrester Inc., consumers will spend $226 billion online in 2012, with online sales projected to grow by $26 billion yearly through 2016. To head off the competition, Lamps Plus is establishing its web domination like no other lighting player to date.
In March, Lamps Plus launched 55 Downing Street, where special deals on a limited quantity of home furnishings and lighting are available for a short time. Unlike most players in the online flash site arena, 55 Downing Street has no membership requirements.
Now four years old, the company recently updated the Lamps Plus Open Box site, which operates like an outlet store with a twist: new merchandise that has been returned or is in an open box. The updated site offers the Open Box Satisfaction Guaranteed pledge to remove any hesitation about buying opened merchandise.
Beyond its new niche sites, Lamps Plus is already adapting to the dramatic rise in mobile commerce. Morgan Stanley reports that by next year, more consumers will access the Internet by mobile devices than by desktop or laptop computers. Projects Analyst Mary Meeker of the bank predicts mobile commerce will account for nearly 2 percent of all retail sales by the end of this year.
In May, Lamps Plus launched a mobile-optimized site with all the bells and whistles of the regular website and more, including a store-search geolocation tool. With more consumers shopping with a mobile device in hand, Lamps Plus has added new product tags with scannable QR codes that produce product specifications and the option of saving the item to a wish list.