The global health and beauty industry is forecasted to hit $464B in sales by 2027. A market-driven business whose bottom line is directly affected by consumer demand, the storage and logistics of health and beauty products requires a distribution facility and sophisticated supply that that is flexible, adaptalbe, and equiped with the right technology.
Here are 6 things to consider when looking to warehouse and distribute your health and beauty products
Finding a logistics partner that understands the health and beauty industry can be pivotal to scaling your business. Ask yourself, do they understand my product and how to design a supply chain solution that supports my growth objectives? Do they have experience managing large e-commerce orders and understand the flexibility needed during peak season and promotional periods? Finally, you should ask your potential warehouse/distribution provider about efficiencies that can be gained from their experience with cosmetics logistics.
- Can labor be shared? If you operatate out of a multi-client/shared facility, labor can often be shared to gain operational efficiencies
- What inventory control measures have they adopted based on their experience with other cosmetic companies?
- Are there opportunities consolidate your freight with other health and beauty partners and build more efficient truckload shipments?
- Does the 3PL partner have retail compliance standards that can help with cost savings and efficiencies to major retailers?
There are distinct regulations that need to be in place when warehousing cosmetics and health and beauty products. Some cosmetics, such as nail polish and nail polish remover, contain flammable ingredients that must be cautiously transported and warehoused. Other cosmetics, such as makeup kits and lipstick, must be handled with extra care because they are comprised of fragile material such as brushes and mirrors. When selecting a logistics provider, your company should feel confident that they are well versed in the particulars of the cosmetics and personal care industry.
It is a safe bet to acknowledge that many health and beauty products are expensive. Being large contributors to this aforementioned growing industry, high-value items need to be protected. Proper logging, tracking, and surveillance of inventory are essential components to a secure warehousing facility.
Accessibility to sizeable populations is a feature to consider when searching for warehousing for cosmetics. Having inventory in close proximity to your customers reduces transit time and ensures you get your product to market as quickly and efficiently as possible. Take Columbus, our corporate headquarters, for example. The central Ohio region has become a major logistics hub that reaches 46% of the U.S. population within a 10-hour drive. Challenge your logistics partner to identify the optimal distribution center location to meet the needs of yoru customer base. Finally, does the 3PL partner have the ability to grow and scale with your business with multiple DC nodes across the country?
While purchasing cosmetics and health and beauty products at brick and mortar locations remains relevant, the emergence of e-commerce provides companies and customers an additional way to have their orders processed. As your business scales, it is important to identify a logistics partner that can support your e-commerce business and deliver cost-saving solutions through labor efficiency, parcel shipping, and supply chain automation.
The health and beauty industry depends very much on supply and demand. Because it is one of the few lines of business that has a proven history of being "recession-proof," forecasting a spike in demand for cosmetics can be tricky. A desirable warehouse is one that can accommodate the fluctuating need for product and the factors that play into it: holidays, seasons and shelf-life of the items. Take into consideration how quickly you need the warehouse to respond and if your demands are within their capabilities.
The bottom line is to ensure that if you choose to partner with a 3PL to manage the fulfillment of your health and beauty products, ensure the logistics provider has industry experience, can identify solutions to your current challenges, and has the capabilities to grow and scale with your business as a long-term partner.