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10 essential health and beauty stats for the holiday season


Published on: October 30, 2021

Updated: September 4, 2023

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What does Christmas 2021 have in store for the health and beauty sector? It could be a big year for retailers… provided they’re on top of the latest trends.

Our research points towards a demand for omnichannel shopping and next-level customer service. Consumer interest in health and beauty has changed a lot, but it hasn’t gone away.

Here’s everything you need to know…

Shoppers are 4 times more likely to buy health and beauty products online than before.

Health and beauty is finally moving on from the brick and mortar store, led by customer demand. Shopping for beauty products online has become easier than ever – partly due to smart tools such as product recommenders, augmented reality for product testing, and beauty consultants available via live chat.

Sales are being driven by gift shopping, self-care and last-minute holidays.

Peak season shopping is usually all about seasonal gifts. But after a tough year, we’re also taking some time to treat ourselves. Retail Week reports a sharp rise in holiday bookings, which means a boost for travel toiletries and sun protection. Meanwhile, Pinterest says that self-care products rule their beauty boards.

42% of US consumers now buy their health and beauty products online.

That’s a massive shift in shopping habits. E-commerce for health and beauty is only just behind drugstores, pharmacies and mass merchandisers. What’s more, customers who choose to shop online tend to be well-informed about their products… and they’ll pay more for quality.

Delivery volume for the health and beauty sector grew by 70% this year…

Which should give you some idea of how much e-commerce has grown in the sector. As we head into another digital-first peak season, expect that delivery volume to rise and rise.

… but 96% of health and beauty brands fail to send personalized messages during shipping.

And that’s bad news. Shipping is an essential stage in the customer journey. It’s a chance for e-commerce retailers to connect with their customers, build loyalty, and encourage repeat purchases.

If you want your sales figures to grow, try personalizing your communications during shipping. Customer service is the key to success this holiday season.

This year’s big trend: natural makeup and camera-friendly looks.

Customers are searching for low maintenance, multipurpose products. Bonus points if they help you look good during conference calls from your laptop. This holiday season, party glam is out and five-minute makeup routines are in.

Skincare makes up 40% of the global cosmetics market.

Or at least, it did in 2019… and its market share is only growing. This area of the health and beauty sector is already dominated by e-commerce brands, which offer customized products and personal recommendations for online shoppers.

41% of consumers are looking for sustainable products for the holidays.

Sustainability and the environment play a big role in customer decisions, especially for younger demographics. Retailers can demonstrate green values at every stage of the buyer journey: from cruelty-free products to sustainable shipping options and recyclable packaging.

Shoppers choose e-commerce brands based on their quality and exclusive offers….

According to Pinterest, online beauty shoppers are motivated by exclusive discounts, unique products, and access to rewards programs. Retailers can stand out by highlighting the products and services that only they offer.

… but only 36% of health and beauty brands offer loyalty programs.

Whether they take the form of reward points, subscription boxes, a mobile app, or secret product drops, loyalty programs are the secret to growth in the health and beauty sector. Peak season is the perfect time to launch a new customer retention scheme to keep sales high.Want to improve the customer experience you deliver over the 2021 holiday shopping season? Check out our report for the latest tips for best-in-class Operations Experience Management.

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