The beauty industry has been undergoing a radical shift in recent years, spurred on mostly by the trend towards digitalisation. From the way beauty products are designed, to the channels on which they are marketed and sold, to even the very business models on which beauty brands have been built – every aspect of the industry is being innovated upon, changing the paradigm for competitive advantage in the beauty space.
No industry has been immune to the advent of technology, and the beauty industry is no exception. Here are some of the key beauty trends that we expect to change the future of the industry.
Beauty retail is shifting from a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to a more personal approach. Consumers want to identify brands as their brand, seeking out personalized experiences like expert consultations and one-on-one makeovers to find the products that work for them.These days, customers, rather than brands, are redefining beauty based on their perceptions, which means that retailers need to start delivering an effective and personalized experience in order to meet customer expectations. An increasing number of beauty innovations are being introduced by brands to keep up with this trend. Brands like L’Oréal and Lancôme, for example, have tried to use smart scanners and virtual try-on apps that give shoppers more personalized product recommendations.
A key beauty trends which are being observed is the gradual shift of the customer journey from offline channels to online. Mintel reports that 66% of women in the UK prefer to research new beauty products and techniques online, a number that is bound to increase under the circumstances of the global COVID-19 pandemic. To reinforce this hypothesis, a report from analytics firm Content square, found that the number of online beauty retail transactions increased by 111% since the beginning of March. The convenience that digital beauty retail offers for customers and the cost advantage and data opportunity that it provides to brands are sure to spur beauty trends on even more in the future.
As the number of beauty brands proliferate, several retailers are rethinking their competitive strategy, shifting their offering from just the product itself to building an experience around the product. Beauty subscription boxes, personalised consultations, community events, loyalty clubs and innovative marketing campaigns – these are just some of the beauty innovations through which brands have started to create unique experiences that capture customers. This in turn helps to develop stronger brand loyalty, which is extremely important given that customer retention is both, cheaper, and more valuable for beauty brands in the long term than acquiring new customers.
A recent market study estimates that the global market for premium cosmetics will grow at a compounded annual growth rate of 7.5% over the next 5 years. As the number of beauty brands and products in the market increase, the time will be ripe for beauty innovation. Some brands have already started leveraging tools like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and hyper-personalisation to create smarter products for customers.Fenty Beauty, for example, recently introduced a foundation that came in 40 different shades – a level of personalisation that has never been observed before in the industry.
Data is a goldmine for marketers, and beauty brands have started to realise that digitalisation provides a better opportunity than ever to collect data on customers. Online beauty retail, of course, provides the perfect opportunity to grab customer information at checkout, but brands have started seeking innovative ways of capturing customer data in store as well. As the trend towards digitalisation continues, data and analytics will play an increasingly central role in defining customer journeys and identifying new product opportunities.
These are just some of the beauty trends that are likely to drive the industry going forward. While several beauty innovations have failed to catch on in a significant way, the unique technology that Odore offers combines the best of all of the above trends and is sure to capture the world of beauty retail. Odore’s in-store sampling device not only helps personalize the customer experience by providing samples based on individual needs, but also helps brands to collect data which can be used for targeted communication for different customers.