This briefing examines how beauty retailers utilise curation as a strategy in store and online in response to shifting consumer demands, the rise of self-service retail culture and the walk-away consumer. Retailers are no longer seen as experts and consumers are much more knowledgeable about the products they want, which puts more emphasis on retailers to deliver additional value through services and product selection. Curation of peer-to-peer, blogs, social media and celebrities is further exam
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Distribution of beauty and personal care products has seen a shift to more self-service environments. Even growth in beauty specialist retailers, which generally have a strong service element has been driven by self-service environments in large chains such as Sephora.
Retailer-consumer relationships are changing - curators are not just retailers but consumers themselves, using social media platforms to propagate their views and to gain followings.
Social media impacts pre-purchase decision-making and informs post-purchase behaviour. In addition, it democratises information on beauty products allowing celebrities and consumers to form consumer expectations through social media.
Changing economic environment, which has changed purchasing habits, rise of self-service formats such as supermarkets and chained beauty retailers, internet retailing and growth in social media are among the leading factors.
“Curation” is a word typically associated with museums or art galleries - it suggests that the products are best in class. When celebrities or industry insiders are chosen to select products, it adds an aspirational element to the mix - not only the best of the best, but the best of the best chosen by the best of the best.
Curation helps online and offline retailers to diversify and compete more effectively in a marketplace dominated by self-service retail culture and strong emphasis on pricing.