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"The Art of Finding Winning Products"
There has never been a better time to start a makeup business online. For a while now, the cosmetics industry has been on an upward trend, and it looks like it will continue to climb over the next few years. It is expected to grow 6.4% annually from this year until 2025, making it all the more enticing to get into this field.
If the trends are not enough to convince you, let's not forget about the pandemic, too. The virus has forced us to stay home and do most of our shopping online. Even those who weren't keen on digital shopping are now giving it a go. The shift to eCommerce has accelerated due to the pandemic, and it shows. E-commerce sales in the US increased by more than 30% between the first two quarters of 2020. With the holidays coming up, we can expect an even greater surge in online spending.
So if you're a makeup maven who spends hours watching YouTube makeup tutorials or simply someone who wants to try their hand in the business, now's the best time to do so. Here are a few tips to get you started.
You don't have to go up against the heavyweights of the makeup industry right away. If you find your target audience and position your brand well, you can have a thriving makeup business in the digital space. The secret is knowing your market and seeing what products they will be interested in.
Are you going for moms who appreciate multi-use makeup? Do you want to reach professional makeup artists who spend substantially on the tools of their trade? What about millennials who are on a tight budget and are looking for quality drugstore makeup finds? Knowing what interests your target market and keeping this in mind as you work on your branding will help you a lot. Determining this right away will also help you price your products. Makeup artists may shell out more compared to teens. In the same vein, budget-conscious moms would not likely fork over hundreds of dollars over makeup.
Ask yourself what's also in demand now. Natural beauty products or skincare products free from harmful ingredients are gaining more popularity among the health-conscious. The same goes for cruelty-free makeup. These products contain ingredients not tested on animals, which animal lovers are likely to purchase and endorse. Find out more about these critical things to get your positioning down pat.
Now, it's time to get to work on your digital shop. The good thing about the digital age is that you have a host of platforms to choose from. Whether you plan to use Shopify, Woocommerce, or Wix, it's easy to create your online makeup store. The best part is you don't have to be a tech genius to figure out how to set it up.
But before you decide what platform you'll use, do your research. Shopify and Wix both let you create your own eCommerce website. On the other hand, Woocommerce is a plug-in that allows you to make an online store in your WordPress account.
These are just some examples. When you do a quick search, you'll see various eCommerce platforms you can choose from. Check out different reviews to see the best fit for you. All these brands have their respective pros and cons, and it's up to you to choose which one is the best fit for your brand.
Here's another gift of the digital age. You don't have to literally "stock up your inventory" to have an online store. Dropshipping is a business model that allows you to sell products without doing inventory or shipping. When an order is placed, the products from your supplier are shipped directly to the customer. Simply put, you're selling the supplier's items on your website, but the supplier keeps the stock and does the shipping.
In traditional eCommerce, you would do all these yourself. The beauty of dropshipping is you don't have to worry about storing products and even shipping them. This way, you can focus on your marketing so you can start getting profits. It's a quick, simple, and low-risk way to get into the business.
It's easy to connect your online store with a dropshipping platform like Spocket. In a few simple steps, you can start choosing what items — in this case, makeup — you want to sell, click 'Add to Import,' customize, and you'll be all set. With the dropshipping model, you don't have to deal with maintaining supplier relationships and keeping stock.
Spocket is a good place to find quality makeup for your brand because they come from carefully chosen suppliers from the US and Europe. This also allows for faster shipping times so you can get great feedback from your clients.
Once you've figured out your niche, created your online store, and found makeup products to sell thanks to dropshipping, you can start marketing your business. Social media is an excellent place to start. Virtually free, these different social platforms enable you to reach different audiences and spark conversations.
Pick platforms that are relevant to your audience. Have you decided to go for millennials who love posting Stories on Instagram? Then Instagram is your best bet. If moms are your target, then look into Facebook for the Facebook Groups they frequent. Take the pulse on your market. Check out what apps they use. Makeup is very visual, so it works well on photos and explainer videos and that's the strength of social media.
Newbies may want to start with one first and see how you grow from there. Alternatively, you can be on two platforms right away, say Facebook and Instagram. You can use apps to sync these accounts to make posting and engaging with your audience hassle-free. For the social-media-savvy, this should be easy. But if you're not that well-versed on social media, don't fret. Pore over the accounts of different brands and influencers for inspiration. Think of them as pegs to get your creative juices flowing.
Eventually, you may start running ads, but that can come at a later time. If you have a limited budget, start populating your content first. Once you have more wiggle room to spend on ads, you can begin exploring that option, too. There are also a lot of tools online to help create your assets. The more you post, the easier you will find creating content as you go along.
Make sure to respond to comments as well, and do it in a timely manner. Keep the engagement up by creating conversations and answering queries promptly. Your social account will not have a massive following right away. It may take a while, but you can get valuable engagement and conversions or sales if you do it properly.
Here's one more caveat to remember: Don't fall for quick schemes on social media. It can be tempting to buy followers or use bots to grow your likes — but don't do it. You run the risk of having your account tagged as spam. The idea is to build an engaged and authentic following. Taking shortcuts won't do that.
Another powerful way to get your product out there is through influencer marketing. We live in a day and age when everyone with a story to tell can do so on social media, and influencers do this well.
How many times have you been convinced to buy a product just because you've seen someone using it? Probably more than you are aware. When you see someone you respect and admire endorsing a new product, it makes the product even more reputable. This someone doesn't necessarily have to be a celebrity. Influencers are like that. They have sway over specific audiences.
On Instagram, many makeup influencers have built a loyal and highly engaged following. They produce entertaining and high-traffic content like makeovers, tutorials, polls, and reviews. It also helps that the platform is very visual and interactive.
Most influencers charge, so see how much you're comfortable spending on an influencer campaign. It's often worth it because they will bring a lot of traffic and engagement to your brand.
You would want to find a makeup micro-influencer or someone who has around 10K followers and up. Although the following is not in the millions like mega-influencers, most micro-influencers have a highly engaged and targeted audience. These people will bring more value to your brand than an unengaged and highly diverse following of big-time influencers.
Now that you have the know-how on starting a thriving makeup business online, nothing is stopping you from building your eCommerce empire. Start a 14-day free trial with Spocket and watch your business grow.