People will continue to purchase makeup, even when the economy is slow. When you’re starting an e-commerce business, this is a wonderful attribute for your products to have. Makeup raises the self-esteem of its buyers and can be priced affordably. Consequently, cosmetics are one of the last things to get cut from budgets, even when times get tight.
With that in mind, here’s how to make money selling cosmetics online.
Choose Your Target Market
It’s important to know who your customer is before building out your site. Selling makeup to younger women requires one approach, while marketing to more mature women requires a different strategy. It’s also a good idea to narrow your focus even more within those two categories. You can focus on a specific segment like women with problem skin for example; or women who prefer all natural products. In so doing, your chances of success will improve, as you’ll be competing within a narrower niche. Once this decision is made, your customer choice will dictate site design, photography, product descriptions, supporting content and promotions.
When you know who your customer is, you’ll also know what products you need to carry to attract them. You can then proceed to figure out whom you’ll need to contact for suppliers. The Independent Cosmetic Manufacturers and Distributors (ICMAD) site is a good place to start. This organization provides business assistance, training, networking and publications for members of the cosmetics industry. It’s an outstanding resource.
Consider Affiliate Marketing
In affiliate marketing, you’ll act as a representative for the cosmetics companies with whom you choose to work. Employing this strategy frees you of the need to make an upfront financial investment in inventory. You’ll be paid commissions in exchange for promoting a company’s products on your site. This is a relatively inexpensive way to get started. Once you’ve established a solid following you can then buy products at wholesale, sell at retail and broaden your profit margin.
Provide Lots of Onsite Tutorials
Competition is fierce when you sell makeup from home, so you have to have something that will set you apart to be successful. The sheer number of products available makes it very difficult for customers to get advice regarding each one. This represents an opportunity. Producing video tutorials demonstrating the use of every product you offer will generate lots of sales. Make sure your site’s platform is adaptive so your content shows well on mobile devices too. That’s where most shopping (at least, browsing) is done these days.
Honest Reviews Are Crucial
Your customers will want some form of assurance when they’re considering new products. Testimonials and reviews provide insights to help shoppers decide whether to give an unfamiliar item a shot. With that said, here’s a bit of advice that might seem counter-intuitive at first glance. Include one or two negative reviews along with the positive ones. You’ll come across as trustworthy when you mention the bad right along with the good, so post the criticisms with the kudos. Make sure this same attitude runs through all of your marketing efforts and social media presences. You want your customers to see you as someone who is more concerned about their well-being than profit.
These tips will set you on the path to starting a successful business selling cosmetics online. It’s huge market with a lot of potentials. Of course, that means there’s a lot of competition too. How you position yourself within your competitive set will make all the difference.