Since Gloture launched in 2015, we have released a large number of products on our Japanese e-commerce website, allowing Japanese consumers to enjoy a variety of the latest gadgets, accessories and lifestyle items from across the world that have been made possible with crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Naturally, some products are more successful than others. Our best performing items are those that effectively cater to Japanese people’s interests, improve their lives, offer innovative and unique products, that are well-designed, simple and WORK.
To best illustrate these points, this post will look at Gloture’s five best-performing products from our e-commerce site and explain what each product does right, and what you should learn from them if you want to enter the Japanese market:
GENKI Bluetooth Audio for the Nintendo Switch
GENKI is a Bluetooth audio connector designed primarily for use with the Nintendo Switch, creating the previously-lacking functionality allowing users to plug in wireless Bluetooth headphones. Here we have a clear and simple product, synonymous with many of the most successful projects on Kickstarter which identify a clear problem that troubles users of popular name-brand tech products, and offers an effective, simple-to-understand, and stylish solution that leaves you scratching your head wondering why Nintendo didn’t think to make it themselves. Many people trust name-brands and are keen to buy their products, so they are a great market to tap into, allowing them to optimize their experience while keeping up with tech trends.
NASA Space Mug
A mug that has a unique, quirky shape, and official NASA endorsement to commemorate its 60th anniversary. It’s coolest feature, however, is its AR functionality. By looking into the mug with a phone camera, you can see detailed satellite images of the Earth.
The success of this product obviously comes partly down to the appeal of the NASA branding, perfect for any fans of space and the unknown. As a country excited by effectively used technology, the Space Mug’s AR feature is also a big appeal, which explains Gloture’s generous selection of AR-enabled products on its e-commerce store. Furthermore, this is a product that innovates by developing what is already familiar: it takes an everyday essential, and gives it added depth with content that is both educational and entertaining. It’s not hard to see why the mug has proved to be a hit.
GO2SLEEP is a highly complex sleep aid that works to improve your sleep through monitoring and analysis of your sleep patterns and evaluating Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Luckily, all the user has to do is wear the light, sleek ring and sleep, then read the sleep quality report in the phone application. A common theme of success of Japan is simplicity in the products and the GO2SLEEP is a perfect example of this. Simplicity is often closely weaved together with good design, which the GO2SLEEP achieves not only visually, but also through prioritizing comfort in the ring part, so that the device is unnoticeable when worn. Furthermore, many people in Japan put a lot of importance on their health and well-being, so the GO2SLEEP caters to this demand, in a format that is unobtrusive and can be easily fitted into even the busiest people’s working days.
LunaR is a solar-powered smartwatch that features the best of both worlds. Its success lies in its innovation, as the world’s first smartwatch using transparent solar panels designed in France to charge the device in a way that is convenient for active and regular watch-users. As such it is highly practical. Also, like the GENKI, the LunaR watch offers a straightforward solution to a common problem – that of extremely short smartwatch battery life. The LunaR watch is a natural fit for the Japanese market, since it incorporates the classic look and the battery life of the traditional watch without sacrificing the functionality of the modern smartwatch.
EvaCHILL – Portable Air Cooler and AC Unit
Last but not least on this list is the evaCHILL. This product does many things right: it is a personal air conditioner which has triple functionality of cooling, humidifying and purifying the air all in the name of maximizing comfort. Additionally, its compact size means it is convenient to move around. What makes it especially enticing to the Japanese market is its practicality for the hot and humid summer weather of Japan. Coupled with its reasonable price compared to similar products on the market, it is unsurprisingly a winner. Furthermore, being designed in Cyprus, the product is more attractive to the Japanese market. Other products on this list were designed in the US, and there is certainly a lot of appeal in Japan for European and US-designed products.
- Simplicity as each product can be understood in one word and is easy to use
- Functionality as the product works well and is convenient
- Fashionable and aesthetically pleasing, especially when designed in Europe or the US
- Innovation with cutting-edge technology or ideas which cannot be found anywhere else
- Products serve solutions to problems
- Price is affordable, and justified by the added benefit to consumer’s life by having the product
What to do:
It is important to note that despite everything mentioned in this article, the Japanese market is not so different than any other consumer market, and certain aspects are important to get right everywhere. Details like practicality, affordability and comfort are prioritized in high-quality tech products everywhere. However, the success of the five aforementioned products in the Japanese market highlights the particularities that Japanese consumers look for, as identified in the common themes. By learning from the successes of these products, you can direct your product design and marketing with a Japanese target audience in mind.
If you’re a tech company that is thinking of expanding into the Japanese market, you could be seeing your business booming with high profits if you are successful. You don’t have to feel apprehensive about stepping into unfamiliar territory, and you are certainly not alone. We can help your company successfully launch into the Japanese market. Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org to expand your presence in Japan!