Do you now shop more online than at brick-and-mortar stores? In this new, ever-shifting marketplace, ensuring a purchase is authentic has become tougher than ever. At the same time, “good design” has made online shopping thrive, as friendly user experiences make checking out from a desktop or smartphone easy and effective.
Amanda Dameron, Editor-in-Chief of Dwell recently joined us at WantedDesign for an in-depth discussion on the topic, “Authentic Design Online.” With the Conversation Room packed, Dameron was joined by Bradford Shellhammer, Founder and CEO, Bezar, Gregg Buchbinder, President and CEO, Emeco, and Max Fraser, design writer, curator and editor of London Design Guide.
How can the design community assert and promote quality through these intangible online channels?
Max Fraser spoke about the market’s priorities, citing price and comfortability as key, while Amanda Dameron brought up consumer confusion. For example, one might confuse an authentic design, one known to be comfortable and well made, with an inferior knockoff:
“Of course, quality costs. Sound manufacturing costs.” Dameron discussed the disconnect in information at consumers’ fingertips:
Gregg Buchbinder further discusses consumer confusion, and shares an example of misinformation spread by a “design blog” online:
But what’s missing from the conversation? The availability of affordable authentic alternatives for those who can’t afford a luxury item, says Bradford Shellhammer. Smart merchandising, he argues, can make an impact:
What do you see as the design industry’s biggest challenge in promoting authenticity online? How do you ensure your online purchases are authentic? Comment below or tweet us your thoughts @BeOriginalUSA.