While many companies have always had massive growth in online sales, the health and beauty industry has been slower to grow in online sales. More recently, health and beauty companies have been turning things around, and the trends predict that it is set to grow even more in the coming years. One of the reasons why the online growth has been slow to start is because people like to see, touch and try health and beauty products in person before they buy them.
However, just because a consumer likes to test the product in store, their online shopping experience with that store is still very important. Customers will often browse a store’s website to find out more information about a product, locate a store, and check if the product is in stock. Many consumers will do this on a mobile device, so it isn’t just the website that is important, but the site’s mobile responsiveness is also a factor. If a customer doesn’t like a site, finds it slow to load, hard to navigate, or lacking the information they are looking for, then they can very easily move onto the next site. This is especially true for health and beauty stores that are online only, and don’t have a physical store.
Research has shown that there are a few things shoppers look for when they make an online purchase. Often, the customer knows the product they want, as shoppers tend to be creatures of habit, and they are looking for a better price. Sometimes the product may not be available in their area. They prefer free shipping, or low cost shipping. They also want some sort of education, and social experience.
Online only health and beauty stores tend to have lower overheads than physical stores. They don’t have the same property or staffing needs which gives them two distinct advantages over brick and mortar stores. First, they can offer products at a much lower price point and still be able to make a profit. In fact, research has shown that 87% of shoppers consider price as one of the most important influencing factors in deciding to make a purchase online. Another advantage to online retailers is that they aren’t limited by store floor space, which means they are more likely to have the specific product in stock, and have a wider range of products in general. Consumers often look online for products that aren’t available in their areas, or products that are online exclusives as well.
Secondly, one of the biggest influences on an online shoppers decision to purchase or not is the cost of shipping. If an online store offers free shipping, or at least a deal on combined shipping, the browser is much more likely to convert into a sale. Many stores offer combined shipping discounts, which can be a massive draw for customers.
Thirdly, online health and beauty stores can provide a higher level of education than brick and mortar stores. They can use images, and videos to demonstrate their products and explain how to use them. YouTube, and social media allow them to reach a large audience.
In addition, many online stores are offering their customers ways to sample their products. For some this means providing samples of products with purchases, but others offer boxes full of sample sized products. Finding a way to allow consumers samples is one very effective way to increase sales. One of the reasons why the health and beauty sector has been traditionally slower to grow online compared to others is because consumers like to see, touch and test the products, but sample size products, and other measures, are helping to overcome this.
Another way that health and beauty e-commerce stores are growing is through subscription services. Shoppers are creatures of habit, and once they find a product that they like, they tend to stick to it. Health and beauty subscription services mean that the customer receives their specific products on a regular basis.
When consumers purchase from websites like Fragrance365, they want clean sites, clear images, easy navigation, and mobile responsiveness. Every part of the process, from purchase to shipping needs to be streamlined. Consumers take every part of the experience into consideration, including how the product looked on delivery. Brands and companies who can provide a consistent customer experience are much more likely to see faster growth and higher rates of customer retention.