In its second-largest acquisition, Amazon buys the company for $970 million.
The French luxury crystal maker plans to launch other sites globally in 2012.
Baccarat, a France-based manufacturer of high-end stemware, jewelry and crystal decorative products, launched an e-commerce site for U.S. customers this week.
This is not Baccarat’s first attempt at e-commerce. A company spokesman says Baccarat has sold its goods online through an arrangement with Neiman Marcus Group since 2005, but with the new Baccarat.com, the manufacturer is now routing consumers to that new site. Neiman Marcus is No. 39 in Internet Retailer’s Top 500 Guide. The new U.S. e-commerce site is the first of several sites Baccarat says it will launch in international markets later this year.
Baccarat.com uses video and high-resolution photos with zoom functions to display merchandise on the site, which is built on the Demandware Inc. e-commerce platform. The manufacturer says it designed the site to showcase its products and convey the Baccarat luxury lifestyle to consumers. First-time visitors to the site, for example, see a 50-second video of women lounging in a spacious apartment in Paris where both the women and the apartment are decorated with Baccarat products.
“This new platform will no doubt advance Baccarat to be among the leaders in luxury e-commerce today, while providing our customers with the same level of excellent service they expect from us,” says Michelle Klein, Baccarat’s president and CEO for North America. Customer service options on the U.S. site include live chat, a prominently displayed toll-free number and e-mail. Consumers can sort products by type and by gift-giving occasion or recipient. Consumers can also create a wish list and manage a wedding and gift registry on the site.
Felicity Lewis, executive director of global online and CRM at Jurlique Holistic Skin Care Inc., a manufacturer and e-retailer of high-end skincare products, will speak at the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition 2012 in Chicago in June in a session titled “Six keys to an effective global e-commerce operation.” The IRCE $200 early-bird discount expires Mar. 31.