Last night Apple held one of their famous press conferences to announce the latest “must-have” products. The difference between the event in San Francisco yesterday and any others was that we knew the product that was being revealed. The Apple Watch was announced over six months ago, but it wasn’t until yesterday’s event that exact specifics, and more importantly, pricing for the latest product in the Apple stable was announced.
It took the market by surprise that the high-end product was designed at the luxury market and with a price tag of $10,000. Price is no issue to many Apple-aficionados and expect to see the faithful queuing overnight outside Apple Stores across the world on the 9th April 2015. However, the vast majority of us will be looking at the lower end of the product set with the sport band version retailing at around $349.
Unsurprisingly, within seconds of the launch detail, the watches were available “early” on certain online market place websites. TaoBao had hundreds of listings, ranging in price from $30 to $1,500, with quantities available in the hundreds, supposedly with immediate dispatch. It is a big risk to take to order from such sellers – the picture of the products are identical to those from the Apple website, but who knows what you will get when (and if) the product actually arrives.
It is incredibly hard for any organisation to stop such activity on online market place sites. As soon as one seller is removed, another pops up to take their place. The key to success is customer education – not only reminding customers to only buy from official websites and resellers, but also the dangers of buying counterfeit goods.
Apple were one of the global organisations who invested in a dotBrand gTLD (“dotApple”) and over time you can see where their strategy will be heading. Want a new gold Macbook Pro? Head to www.macbook.apple. A new iPad – www.ipad.apple. Knowing that you are buying an authentic product is probably the most important factor for any sales purchase, so if a URL has Apple to the right of the dot, customers know that they are buying a genuine product.