SOURCE: Luxury Institute

January 18, 2007 11:00 ET

Luxury Institute Survey: High Net Worth Consumers Rank Leading Home Audio Web Sites: Bose, Panasonic and Sony Top the List

NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- January 18, 2007 -- The New York City-based Luxury Institute's 2007 Luxury Website Effectiveness Index survey for Home Audio brands found that wealthy consumers rated Bose Corporation's web site the clear leader by a wide margin. Many home audio brands did not receive ratings since they did not have enough wealthy consumers visiting their websites to obtain a statistical sample, indicating a major opportunity for home audio brands to develop their sites as informational and commercial channels.

Here is what wealthy consumers said about Bose's website:

--  "Clarity of explanation in 'Laymen's' terms and visual depictions and
    layouts of hook-ups and schematics of said items. I bought three products
    when I had intended on one. I have since spent nearly $40,000 on Bose
    products for home, office and family."
    
--  "All the information I needed regarding a comparison of their home
    theater products was available. I was able to determine which product was
    best for me and make that purchase. I have also been influenced by the
    overall quality of the product that I purchase."
    
--  "Their site was a dream, providing me with the information on several
    of their products that I am about to purchase."
    
"Luxury websites should be all about bottom line results. Yet, we continue to see many top luxury brands still need to transform their website into a critical channel for interacting and transacting with highly sophisticated, tech-savvy wealthy consumers," said Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute. "Unfortunately, many luxury executives think of their sites purely as catalogs or streaming media vehicles, while wealthy consumers expect well-organized, useful information, ease-of-use and ultra-quick check out functions. According to wealthy consumers, the only 'experts' who matter, Bose's web site is a 'how-to' clinic on developing and executing website effectiveness."

Brands rated, in alphabetical order, include: Bang and Olufsen, Bose Corp., Panasonic, Pioneer, Sony, and Yamaha.

The proprietary Luxury Website Effectiveness Index survey is the only measure available of the effectiveness of leading luxury brand websites to wealthy Americans. A national sample of wealthy American consumers, with a minimum income of $150,000, was surveyed online. Survey results are weighted to match demographic profiles of the same audience according to the latest Survey of Consumer Finances from The Federal Reserve.

About the Luxury Institute

The Luxury Institute is the uniquely independent and impartial ratings and research institution that is the trusted and respected voice of the high net worth consumer. The Institute provides a portfolio of proprietary publications and research that guides and educates high net worth individuals and the companies that cater to them on leading edge trends, high net worth consumer rankings and ratings of luxury brands, and best practices. Publications include the monthly Wealth Report, the Luxury Brand Status Index surveys, the Luxury Best Practices surveys, the Luxury Consumer Experience Index surveys and the Luxury Website Effectiveness Index surveys.

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