It seems that the beauty and wellness industries are only at the beginning of a new period of staggering growth. The beauty industry alone is anticipated to rise from $483 billion in 2020 to $511 billion in 2021, with a global compound annual growth rate of 4.75 percent worldwide. By 2025, the industry is predicted to surpass $716 billion and climb to $784.6 billion by 2027.
New brands, cosmetic trends, and products are emerging every day, and eCommerce has made it easier than ever for consumers to gain access to a wide range of products to suit their taste, budget, and wants.
Beauty brands aren’t the only companies experiencing growth, though. The online health and wellness industry alone grew by $19.22 billion in 2020 and is projected to grow by another $39.56 billion through 2024. This year, it’s expected that eCommerce sales in the health and personal care category will expand by 10 percent.
But selling these products online means that eCommerce brands working in the beauty and wellness spheres need to prepare their operations to support this kind of boom in their order fulfillment strategies. Many online beauty and wellness brands are opting to work with a third-party logistics (3PL) provider to streamline their fulfillment operations.
Sure, online retailers could fulfill orders in-house, but this takes valuable time and resources that could be better spent developing new products, connecting with influencers for marketing opportunities, or finding new ways to amplify their brand and sell their products in new channels. Rather than go through the hassle of fulfilling orders yourself, you can focus more energy on growing your brand by partnering with a 3Pl provider experienced in beauty and wellness fulfillment.
What to Look for in a Beauty & Wellness 3PL
When selecting the right 3PL to support your beauty and wellness brand, it’s critical to look for a partner with the following qualifications:
- Seamless integration with your entire tech stacks
- Support to personalize packaging and showcase your brand
- Full, at-a-glance visibility of your inventory
- Fast, efficient, and transparent shipping practices
Seamless Integration with Your Entire Tech Stack
As your brand grows, you may want to consider multiple revenue streams, like omnichannel selling strategies or Amazon’s Marketplace. Your operations won’t always look the way they do right now, which is why you should find a 3PL that can integrate with all of the places you sell online without any issues, while still maintaining complete visibility of your delivery tracking, sales channels, inventory forecasts, and more.
OceanX is a modern, Fulfillment-as-a-Service solution that was designed to scale alongside brands as they expand their reach and sell more products in more places and fulfill greater order volumes. Our software harmoniously integrates with your eCommerce backend, capturing order data and supporting 3,000 orders (or more!) per minute. Once a customer places an order, OceanX’s integrations fulfill orders and manage data in real-time to empower you to make informed decisions about your business quickly.
Support to Personalize Packaging and Showcase Your Brand
As an online retailer, your storefront is replaced by your product packaging; something tangible that your customers can interact with to enhance their buying experience. Beauty and wellness purchases are personal choices, and consumers want to feel connected to the brands they interact with. In fact, Harvard Business Review shared that customers who have developed a bond with business are more valuable. On average, these “fully connected customers” are over 50 percent more valuable than even highly satisfied customers.
Your packaging matters. Thirty-four percent of consumers shared that branded or gift-like packaging affected their perception of the brand. Plus, of these consumers:
- 61 percent said it made the brand appear to be more “premium”
- 49 percent shared that they got more excited about receiving and opening the package
- 44 percent said it reinforced that their purchase was worth the cost
- 40 percent stated they would be more likely to refer the brand to a friend
Packaging can also help you generate free publicity: 60 percent of consumers are more likely to share a picture of a product they purchased on social media if their purchase arrives in a gift-life box rather than an unmarked or non-customized box made from brown corrugate.
For beauty and wellness brands, this means selecting a 3PL that supports you; one that can highlight your brand through the picking, packing, and delivery processes, helping you create special, memorable interactions with your brand with services like kitting, bundling, brand-specific packing procedures and personalized packaging.
OceanX is committed to helping beauty and wellness companies showcase their brand with branded packaging, promotional inserts, personalized packing, kitting, customization, and more. We become an extension of your brand, ensuring quality in every order for peak unboxing experiences, maintaining your branding standards, and serving as your eyes and ears on the ground throughout the fulfillment process.
Full, At-a-Glance Visibility of Your Inventory
Inventory management is critical in the beauty and wellness retail industry, dealing with expiration dates and/or shelf life—especially if your products are all-natural or organic. To avoid waste and lost profits, it’s essential to manufacture and ship the right amount of products to your 3PL partner.
Order too much of a product and you end up with inventory that goes unused and unsold. Order too little and your customers have to deal with stockouts, backorders, and delays, which can harm your reputation with your customers. To strike the right balance and ensure you always have the right amount of product on hand, choose a 3PL that offers full visibility of your inventory and your sales so you can track sale trends and gain valuable inventory forecasting insights.
Also? Because of the short shelf life of many beauty and wellness products, you should be sure your 3PL partner can separate inventory by lot numbers to ensure older products are picked and packed first and that no expired products are sent to customers. Other inventory management features to look for in a 3PL partner include: [Text Wrapping Break]
- Merging inventory information as products are bundled or kitted.
- Combining inventory information across eCommerce platforms and marketplaces
- Setting reorder notifications and automated reorder formulas based on data
At OceanX, we’ve excelled at inventory forecasting and inventory management for decades, helping our clients avoid oversold or excess inventory, providing better predictions to save them time, energy, and effort by optimizing inventory levels. Our solutions are modern, automated, and data-driven utilizing machine learning, automation, marketplace integrations, and predictive analytics to fuel our processes.
Fast, Efficient, and Transparent Shipping Practices
Just how important is fast shipping? It’s a deciding factor for an overwhelming majority of consumers, 87 percent of whom shared that shipping speed is a key deciding factor when choosing whether or not to make a purchase from an eCommerce brand again.
Consumers want fast shipping—that’s not new. But what is new is consumers who want the ability to track their order through a quick fulfillment process. As a matter of fact, 70 percent of consumers shared that the ability to track orders was one of tier top three considerations when buying a product online.
To make this happen, you need to work with a 3PL that can work with multiple carriers and integrate data from several sources to offer complete transparency of the entire fulfillment and shipping operation from the moment an order is placed until the moment it arrives at your customer’s doorstep. This also means that when customers contact you with questions regarding their order, you can give them the most accurate, up-to-date information, which can build trust and loyalty in your brand.
OceanX can leverage industry connections with fast, affordable carriers to offer fast shipping. What’s more? Our solutions have been designed to integrate seamlessly with your tech stack and your operations for full, at-a-glance visibility of the whole fulfillment process.
OceanX: Your Beauty and Wellness Fulfillment Expert
A 3PL provider can make or break your brand—why would you waste time on companies that don’t understand the health and beauty industries, or who don’t offer modern, data-driven solutions you can use and track in real-time?
At OceanX, we have decades of experience working with beauty and wellness brands—in fact, that’s how we got our start. We have an insider’s perspective on what works and what doesn’t when it comes to fulfillment. We pair our industry expertise with innovative, technology-focused solutions for innovative solutions that make sense for the work you do. To learn more, contact us for a quote today!