The rapid economic rise of China, combined with developments such as increased urbanisation and digitalisation of society, has had a significant impact on Chinese shopping behaviours. In the luxury market, consumers have adopted new channels to gather information and purchase products, while tastes have evolved as their knowledge of luxury products has increased. These changes have brought significant challenges for the strategies and positioning adopted by luxury brands for the China market.

Luxury Redefined: Building trust with Chinese consumers through authenticity and integrity is a comprehensive study into the luxury purchasing behaviours of consumers in China. Through a survey with 2,653 consumers in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities in the Chinese Mainland and Hong Kong (SAR), as well as interviews with a wide range of executives from across the luxury industry, the report offers a deeper understanding of emerging trends and changes in consumer behaviour that have taken place as the Chinese luxury market has evolved.

To understand the changes in consumer behaviour, a cluster analysis was conducted to segment consumers into five distinct mindsets. Consumers move from cluster to cluster as their experience with the luxury market and their outlook evolves due to socio-economic factors such as increased disposable income. In addition, analysis of the survey results resulted in the identification of five key personas in the luxury market: Luxury Newcomers, Status Reflectors, Community Approval Seekers, Luxury Connoisseurs, and 'New Luxury' Pioneers. As the market continues to mature, two emerging personas were also identified: Luxury Investors and Cultural Resonators.

Key topics covered in the report include:

  • The rise of Gen Z and what they seek in luxury
  • Use of emerging technologies such as AR, VR and the metaverse
  • Consumer interest in sustainable and purpose-driven brands
  • The travel plans and preferences of consumers following the reopening of China 
  • Usage of e-commerce platforms and social media in the purchasing journey
  • Positioning for growth in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities, as well as in Hong Kong SAR

Willi Sun
Head of Advisory, Consumer & Retail
KPMG China

Anson Bailey
Head of Consumer & Retail, ASPAC
KPMG China

Jennifer Weng
Head of Tax, Consumer & Retail
KPMG China

Daniel Hui
Head of Consumer & Retail, Hong Kong
KPMG China

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