Casio is a brand known for making affordable, sturdy watches with excellent fashion sense. Many also wonder how Casio can make such great watches yet sell their watches at such low prices. Why are Casio watches cheap?
Casio watches are cheap because they focus on low-cost manufacturing and using materials creatively. Casio also uses third-party movements on some watches and leverages on scale to lower production costs.
This article will examine how Casio manages to keep its watches at a price point that is accessible to a broad audience and some questions that are frequently asked about the brand in general.
We have also discussed how several brands, such as Fossil, Festina, and Orient, have maintained the affordability of their watch brands over the years. Please don’t hesitate to click on the link so that you can find out more about these brands.
How Do Fossil Watches Become Affordable?
In general, most affordable watch brands apply these methods to help lower their production cost and increase sales:
- Adopting third-party movements
- Creative use of materials
- Making lookalike watches
- Low-cost manufacturing
- Partnership with sister brands
- Low-Cost Marketing
We will now look into each of the areas individually in detail.
Many high-end watchmakers prefer to design their own movements. This allows luxury watchmakers to set themselves apart from the competition. In-house movements also allow luxury watchmakers to improve the performance of their watches.
Developing in-house movements, on the other hand, necessitates a significant investment. Because of their high-profit margins, luxury watchmakers can frequently fund such efforts.
This is not always available with low-cost watch brands. Profit margins in the affordable watch market are slim due to intense price competition. The majority of designers are concerned with reducing and squeezing manufacturing costs.
Using third-party movements rather than developing their own is one strategy. Casio is known to use movements from Miyota and their own in-house movement.
In many ways, it made sense. To begin with, it reduces costs by allowing movement makers to invest in and develop movements.
Second, low-cost watchmakers can capitalize on the reputation of these movement manufacturers to help sell their products.
Creative Use Of Materials
Some inexpensive watchmakers maintain their prices low by cutting down on the costs of manufacturing their watches. They accomplish this by utilizing the material in more innovative ways.
Certain watch materials can be pretty expensive, but they contribute very little to the watch’s overall aesthetic. For instance, sapphire crystal, with water resistance of 200 meters, or straps made of top-grain leather.
Customers who had a more sophisticated sense of style in watches were more likely to consider these qualities essential. The vast majority of individuals who purchase inexpensive watches are either ignorant of or do not take the time to observe these minute distinctions.
As a result of this, low-cost watchmakers such as Casio replace certain materials with substitutes that are cheaper to keep their prices competitive. Mineral crystals are frequently utilized in place of sapphire crystals, and top-grain leather straps can sometimes be replaced with straps made of synthetic leather.
Casio is also known to be using resin and plastic to make watch cases and straps. This lowers the cost of Casio watches as well.
By choosing this strategy, Casio runs the risk of alienating potential buyers looking for more complex timepieces. On the other hand, these clients typically purchase watches with higher price tags, so it doesn’t make a difference.
Watch manufacturers who produce affordable timepieces usually outsource production to lower-wage countries to keep their prices competitive. For example, China, Thailand, or Vietnam.
However, there is a possibility that these low-cost factories will not be able to produce accurate parts. As a result, countries with middle- and high-level labor costs, such as Japan, Singapore, and Malaysia, may be brought in to assist production.
Affordable watch brands such as Seiko, Invicta, and Citizen are known to be manufactured in some of these nations.
Watches sold under the Casio brand are almost entirely produced in Asia. Casio primarily manufactures in Japan and Thailand. Casio can leverage lower production costs and sell their watches cheaper by taking this approach.
Casio can also keep their watches cheap by producing watches at scale. Casio is one of the world’s largest watchmakers, with one of the highest numbers of watches sold yearly.
When production is done at scale, there are many opportunities to implement automation. Casio can set up machines and robots to help manufacture watches, lowering labor costs by eliminating human technicians. Robotic assemblies also help to reduce human error.
Casio can also purchase raw materials such as steel, crystals, or leather at a lower price since the order volume is large.
As a result, the cost per watch is lowered significantly. Casio can remain competitive in the affordable watches market.
Last but not least, the reason that Casio watches are so reasonably priced is that the company never intended for them to be marketed as luxury watches in the first place.
Brands such as Swatch, Invicta, and Festina are some of the other companies that compete with Casio in the fashion/affordable market category. It is common knowledge that customers in this business are significantly price sensitive.
For instance, if people can buy watches with a similar design and set of functions and save $5 by getting a Casio rather than a Fossil, they will go for the Casio model.
To maintain its position as a dominant player in this market, Casio must maintain affordable watch costs while simultaneously enhancing the functionality of its products. This, Casio is mainly able to achieve.
Secondly, Casio did not spend a large amount of money on image marketing. You do not see Casio being very aggressive in sponsoring prestigious, high-class events such as tennis or golf events.
Instead, Casio focuses on building great watches and allows the quality of their products to help promote them – essentially leveraging word-of-mouth marketing. This is how some of Casio’s popular lines, such as the G-Shock, build their reputation and popularity.
Is Casio A Luxury Brand?
In general, Casio is not considered a luxury watch brand. Casio is better considered an affordable watch brand, similar to Citizen, Festina, or Swatch. Casio has a reputation for building robust, rugged watches with great designs.
Casio’s most famous line of watches is the G-Shock. G-Shocks are essentially watches made to last, with shock-resistant materials to help protect the movement inside. The watches are also built with sturdy materials such as resin to resist impacts and nicking.
However, Casio is not just all muscle. Casio’s Edifice line of watches is perhaps its most elegant collection of watches. The designs carry the vibe of racing chronographs, similar to watches from Tag Heuer.
The best thing about Edifice watches is that they are a lot more affordable and, in many cases, easier to maintain.
Why Are Casio Watches Good?
Casio watches are good because they look fashionable, affordable, and highly robust. This made Casio watches popular as beater watches for daily wear. Some Casio watches also look similar to luxury watches from brands such as Tag Heuer.
Casio is known for producing affordable watches that look great. Some of these watches also carry a level of toughness and reliability that is not rivaled by many.
Some watches are designed with toughness in mind, such as G-Shock or Protrek. These watches have been torture tested by many, such as being dropped from as high as 300M. This made G-Shock popular with outdoor enthusiasts, even the military.
As a result, Casio is very well known as a daily beater. Most customers buy a Casio, wear it until it breaks, and discard it.