John Hardy, the jewellery brand, has generated valuable insights by allowing consumers to buy its products via new payment services.

Kareem Gahed, CEO of John Hardy, discussed this subject during a session at CommerceNext 2019, a retail-focused conference held in New York.

More specifically, he cited a partnership between the brand – which sells handmade products, like necklaces and bracelets, that are made in Bali – and Affirm, a digital payments service that lets customers pay for goods in installments.

One benefit for John Hardy fits with the rise of “accessible luxury”, he reported, where the notion of extreme audience exclusivity has given way to the idea that brands can “feel luxurious” for consumers with a variety of budgets.

“We do believe that the [John Hardy] brand is a quite democratic brand,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: John Hardy uses a new payment solution to drive sales and customer insight.)

“We have product offerings anywhere from $195 all the way up to $85,000. And our average retail [offering] is around $1,000.”

If Affirm currently represents a “relatively small percentage” of John Hardy’s business, the brand has seen concrete benefits from this tie-up, starting with customer acquisition.

“Typically, the John Hardy customer is [from] an older demographic. And that's largely because of the commercial channels that we've been in over the past 20 to 30 years – primarily in department stores,” said Gahed.

Having moved into direct-to-consumer sales online, he added, “we wanted to be able to ensure that the demographic we're attracting is a wider audience … We needed to attract younger customers. With Affirm, that's exactly what we're doing.”

From understanding the frequency of transaction and gaining store-level customer insight to studying behaviours across different digital channels, the affiliation with Affirm has provided a rich seam of information for the brand.

“We're essentially understanding them more than we ever have, and the interaction has been quite strong,” Gahed said.

Sourced from WARC