Personal Care, Health, & Wellness Ecommerce: Stats & Strategies for 2021

The global health and personal care industry was worth $116.5 billion in 2020. According to Google Trends, consumer interest in the term “self care” skyrocketed at the height of the pandemic in 2020 before plateauing to current levels. And 79% of consumers say that wellness is important to them.

It’s clear that brands in the personal care, health, & wellness industry are positioned to profit in 2021 and beyond.

In this article, we’ll dive into the latest personal care, health, & wellness industry stats and trends for online brands, how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted this industry, and tips and strategies for brands in this industry in 2021.


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2021 Personal Care, Health, & Wellness Ecommerce Stats

The global wellness market (including health, appearance, fitness, nutrition, mindfulness, and sleep products and services) is worth more than $1.5 trillion, with 42% of all consumers saying that wellness is a top priority for them. In a McKinsey survey conducted in August 2020, 23% of consumers said they plan to spend more on wellness products and 37% plan to spend more on wellness services in the next year.

Personal care retail ecommerce revenue will reach a record $35.1 million this year, up 10% from $31.9 million in 2020. That’s more than a $16 million increase in annual revenue compared to 2017.

Online revenue from personal care items is projected to surpass $45 million by 2025.

Global user penetration in the health and personal care market (including hair care, shower & bath, oral care, deodorants, and shaving) is expected to surge to 32.8% by 2024. In 2020, user penetration reached just 22.3%, with the US health and personal care industry worth $23.4 billion.

Physical stores remain the leading shopping channel for personal care products, with 69% of consumers shopping in-store for such items. Third-party marketplaces come in second at 25%, followed by retail websites (16%) and brand websites (12%).

Online health and wellness product sales increased $19.22 billion in 2020 and will increase another $39.56 billion through 2024. In 2021, ecommerce sales in the health and personal care category will grow 10%, with growth expected to steady out over the following years.

Health, personal care, & beauty ecommerce makes up 13% of total retail revenue in the US, followed by furniture & home furnishings at 29.9% and apparel & accessories at 36.7%.

COVID-19’s Impact on the Personal Care, Health, & Wellness Industry

Along with the pandemic came a renewed interest in health and wellness, especially from a personal care perspective. Personal care retail ecommerce revenue surged 27.1% in 2020 in light of the pandemic and consumers’ increased interest in personal wellness. Health and personal care ecommerce sales skyrocketed 20.5% in 2020, blasting past pre-pandemic estimates.

Personal care products will make up 7.61% of total ecommerce sales next year, up from just 6.97% in 2019 before the pandemic hit.

Ecommerce personal care saw record growth last year due to the pandemic, seeing 6% growth as part of all ecommerce sales. That may not seem like much, but that’s almost 3x the growth seen the year before. The year before that, this category saw just 3.5% growth.

Increased sales of personal care products online during the pandemic also helped propel consumer-packaged goods (CPG) growth last year. Digital ad spend for CPG is projected to grow 16.4% to $22.6 billion this year after seeing just 5.2% growth last year.

Strategies & Tips for Personal Care, Health, & Wellness Brands

Influencer marketing is extremely effective for personal wellness brands since these types of products often require more thoughtful consideration from consumers. An influencer is someone with an online presence who is able to impact consumers’ purchase decisions thanks to the uniquely close relationship influencers have with their followers. Influencer marketing allows your brand to reach your target audience through someone they already know, like, and trust.

In light of consumers’ heightened preference for buying products they can trust, being as genuine, transparent, and ethical as possible has also become a crucial component of a successful marketing strategy. If your brand is able to provide more natural, ethically created products, the benefits could be bounteous. In fact, 36% of consumers would choose a more natural skincare option over the more effective one, compared to 21% who would choose effective over natural.

Providing a personalized shopping experience is another key way to convert more of your health & wellness shoppers into customers. Consumers expect a unique shopping experience that makes them feel like a genuinely valued customer. Catering to your shoppers’ individual personal care needs through personalization will help them feel like their needs are important.

80% of consumers are more likely to buy when brands offer personalized experiences, and 88% of US marketers have seen measurable results from personalization.

The omnichannel opportunity is huge for all brands in 2021 – but especially personal care brands, and especially CPG personal care brands. The opportunity for CPG brands to thrive across ecommerce channels and earn repeat customers has never been greater, and with shoppers starting to trickle into stores more, the omnichannel opportunity is only becoming more powerful. To uncover more strategies to help your CPG brand thrive across channels, claim your copy of our CPG & The Omnichannel Opportunity report with BigCommerce.

Tying It All Together

Are you a brand in the personal care, health, & wellness industry with big online goals for the post-pandemic world? Whether you’re looking to increase your Amazon sales, boost your paid search or programmatic presence, optimize your website and landing pages for conversions, or anything else, our team would love to work with you to help not just achieve but exceed those goals. Reach out anytime through our consultation page to connect one-on-one with an industry expert who can help identify untapped growth potential for your business.

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