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The Future of Ecommerce for Beauty and Skincare Brands 2021

Derric Haynie
Jun 17
15
 mins

Sponsored by:

About

This blog post is a recap of a two day virtual event where we interviewed beauty founders and talked tech tools and strategy for growing your beauty brand. From trends in the industry, to viral Tik Tok campaigns, keep reading to discover tactics and tools that will work to grow your beauty brand.

You can also subscribe to our YouTube to dive in deeper.

Want the podcast version of The Future of Ecommerce for Beauty and Skincare, listen to this episode from 2020.


To check out the entire virtual summit, go here. Or follow along below to get the sessions and some brief recaps.

Here's the session list:

Stay Fresh: Becoming an Industry Trendsetter

A talk by Donna Lopez, CEO, Making Lemonade


Overview: Why defining disruption is the key to understanding how to make your brand trend in a meaningful way. How to see the opportunities other brands don’t see and be truly disruptive.


Summary: Becoming an industry trendsetter doesn’t mean disrupting everything at every moment. If you attempt to disrupt a market or industry without understanding how to make your brand trend in a meaningful way, then you’re unlikely to see the results you’re looking for.


There are 3 steps to prepare your brand for disruption.


  1. Ask yourself “what is your why”. Your “why” is your reason for attempting to disrupt a marketplace with a certain tactic or strategy. If your “why” is simply “my competitor did it”, then you’re already in trouble.
  2. Find the lemon. Get into the soul of your brand and use your brand superpower to fill the gap. This enables you to find the best opportunities for your brand to disrupt the market. It comes down to breaking free from perspectives that compare your brand to others.
  3. Squeeze it. Disruption begins as an opportunity to distort, but the time to do it runs out quickly. So if you see an opportunity for disruption, don’t spend days or weeks contemplating it in the boardroom. Instead, act quickly -- the most successful brands do.

How to Prioritize Customer Support in a New Era

A talk by Nicole Baqai, Strategic Partnerships, Gorgias


Overview: Learn how to please your customers with fast service and first-response times, through machine learning & automation to manage the growth of your customer inquiries, with personalization and scalability


Summary: Surprise and delight are key to turning customer experiences into a win. This can be anything from a bouquet of flowers to simply responding quickly and doing everything possible to resolve any issues quickly. You’ll learn how to maximize the customer experience with Emily Chae from Naked Frankie and Bunny from Blume, and you’ll receive their most important pieces of advice for turning your brand’s customer support into a win for 2021.


This advice includes:


  • Work smarter, not harder
  • Look at every piece of negative feedback as an opportunity to improve
  • Pay special attention to your personal relationships with customers
  • Most customer support tickets have to do with order questions

Drive 12-30% More Revenue with Personalized Experiences Your Customers Love

A talk by Tina Donati, Content Marketer, Octane AI


Overview: DTC beauty brand pain points—turning your web browsers into actual buyers. The power of online quizzes for virtual consultations in the beauty industry—how brands are succeeding. Leveraging a personalization platform and customizing it to drive more revenue, increase your AOV, and boost customer retention—tips for success.


Summary: Before the pandemic, you could go to the store, touch products, look at all the options, ask questions, and purchase with confidence that what you purchase will be the right product. Now, it can feel like you’re searching through a massive warehouse where you’re not sure if what you’re looking at will be the right fit for you. Because of this, every DTC beauty brand faces these challenges:


  • The industry is heavily saturated
  • Their products aren’t deemed essential
  • Their products are very customized
  • There’s a hesitancy to purchase without trying
  • There’s a lack of product knowledge
  • Consumers stick to one brand/product

Because of these issues, you need to ensure that every shopping experience feels as customized as the products you sell.


Personalization is key. Here’s the 5-step process to doing it well:

Maximize Conversions with a Strategic Approach to Live Chat

A talk by Jon Tucker, CEO, Helpflow


Overview: Most stores think of live chat as a customer service cost center, but it can be a massive conversion driver to recover a big chunk of checkout abandons and drive even more conversions earlier in the purchase flow. In this talk, Jon shares how to quickly implement the following strategies to maximize conversions with live chat:

  1. How to predict checkout abandons and engage directly in the checkout flow. 
  2. How to integrate live chat into cart abandonment emails to supercharge results. 
  3. How to identify highly engaged prospects prior to checkout, and convert them.


Summary: For every 100 customers who start the checkout process on a website each month, 50 or more will abandon. 57% of those abandons will happen on the payment page. If you can predict abandons before they happen, then you can save some of the revenue from those customers from leaking out. Live chat is the best way to do that. Here are 3 places where live chat fits in to drive conversions and reduce churn.

  1. The Checkout Process: Look at your current site traffic and identify patterns of how and when people abandon. The main way to do that is to look at the changes in progress and velocity that customers show as they move through the checkout process. The longer a customer stays on a page, the more likely they are to abandon. If you can predict WHEN they’ll abandon, you can use live chat to engage with customers before they leave.
  2. Product and category pages: Keep an eye out for customers who either look at categories without moving into product pages or who scroll through product pages without moving to checkout. This implies deep engagement in your products, but a likelihood to abandon the process without interference from your end.
  3. Email flows - cart abandonment emails: More than likely, you’ve already set up abandoned cart email sequences. What you don’t know is that most people tend to abandon due to questions. To combat this, add live chat as a CTA in your abandon cart emails. This will enable customers to get answers to their questions in real-time.

Merchant Interview with Tiila Abbitt of Āether Beauty

A talk by Tiila Abbitt, CEO, AetherBeauty and Donna Lopez, CEO, Making Lemonade


Overview: Donna Lopez of Making Lemonade and Tiila Abbitt of AetherBeauty share how AetherBeauty got its start and outlines the tactics that have made it a success story in the beauty industry.


Summary: Clean beauty always comes with a bucket of negativity, but it’s important to bring a positive spin to the space. It’s also important to allow your product to speak for itself. If the product can’t stand on its own, then all the marketing in the world won’t make it successful.


  • Making a connection with your client is extremely important
  • Your product should be able to speak for itself without any fancy marketing techniques
  • Be positive in all that you

Data-driven Commerce: How Transparency will Transform Beauty Shopping

A talk by Jay Hack, CEO and Co-Founder, Mira Beauty


Overview: Beauty brands suffer from a lack of data on their customers' behaviors. This leads to inefficient and wasteful marketing. A new retail solution, mirabeauty.com, combines the distribution of traditional retail with full data transparency, empowering brands to efficiently engage and retain high-LTV customers at scale.


Summary: Pre-covid, only 11% of beauty sales were conducted online. That, combined with the difficulty of getting everything right with online shopping, means that beauty has historically underperformed online. With the right data, though, online beauty shopping can be transformed into a raging success.


How To Be Profitable in the Beauty Industry: The Biggest Needle Movers

A talk by Juliana Jackson, Chief Evangelist, Omniconvert


Overview: The Beauty & Skincare industry is one of the fastest-paced industries in the world. What can you do as a brand owner to stand out and delight your customers on every touchpoint of their life-time with you? Watch this keynote to learn more about what you can apply to your growth strategy today to become profitable tomorrow.


Summary: There are only 2 ways to grow a business. You need to either acquire more customers or get more customers to return. Unfortunately, acquiring customers is more expensive than ever, and the actual formula for growth isn’t what many business owners think.


That’s where the 5 biggest needle movers for the beauty industry come in. These needle movers are:

  1. The Ecommerce Growth formula
  2. What affects the Customer Lifetime value (CLV)
  3. Transactional behavior segmentation
  4. Improve customer experience
  5. Optimize the customer journey

Look Good, Do Good, and Do Well: Building your Beauty Business with Social Impact

A talk by Savanah White, Head of Partner Success, ShoppingGives


Overview: Learn why Authenticity Wins, Measurement Matters, and Personalization Counts when it comes to building your beauty business.


Summary: The new generation of consumers is buying with their values and voting with their wallets. They are micro-philanthropists. They are agents of change. Because of this, Retailers are spending over $20B in digital advertising each year to acquire and retain GENERATION IMPACT. There are 3 strategies you need for social impact success:

  1. Authenticity: Be clear about your brand values and the values that your team supports, then donate to causes that align with those values.
  2. Measurement: Talk about the good you are doing, measure impact back to your bottom line, and track AOV lift and customer engagement.
  3. Personalization: Create personalized 1:1 experiences and target customers better based on their values. 83% of millennials say it’s important that the companies they buy from align with their beliefs, meaning they’re more likely to buy from your brand if it aligns with their values.

Why Is Post Purchase Important?

A talk by Bar Bruhis, Partner Marketing, Route


Overview: 2020 changed Ecommerce forever. 2021 continues to do that. Learn what top brands are doing to optimize their post-purchase experience and stay with the times


Summary: Only 3% of orders have issues each year, but 3% is more than you can afford. When you break it down, here’s what the numbers look like:

  • At 50k orders, that 1,500 bad experiences
  • At 150k, that’s 4,500 bad experiences
  • At 500k, that’s 45k bad experiences


As a brand, the goal is to give an Amazon-like experience. This is because 94% of customers prefer to work with shippers, not carriers, to resolve delivery issues, and 95% of customers expect the ability to self-serve to solve issues. Shipping Insurance is the way to give them that ability.


The Beauty of Customer Experience

A talk by Ty Givens, CEO, The Workforce Pro


Overview: Processes and policies you didn't know you needed. Being proactive in a time where you're not sure what to expect next. The importance of cross-functional communication. Visit www.theworkforcepro.com/beauty-full to learn more about our Customer Experience program designed JUST for Beauty Brands.


Summary: We're all wondering what will be the new normal once COVID-related restrictions end (hopefully this fall). Ty discusses the trends she’s seeing and how YOU can be ready to service your customers in this crazy time we're living in. These trends include:


  • Reflection is In
  • Customers are smart and savvy
  • Trust is required for anyone to make a purchase


To shift your business practices from reactive to proactive, it’s important to invest in tools, resources, channels, and partnerships that will improve your ability to communicate with customers. 

Analyzing Your Ecommerce Tech Stack

A talk by Derric Haynie, CEO, EcommerceTechnology


Overview: Most people don’t think about how the tools they’re using in their business work together, but what you add to your tech stack is important. A tech stack applies to anybody in an organization, especially in Ecommerce, where tech is the way you deliver on anything and everything. Watch this session to learn how to analyze and build out your tech stack for long-term success. To book a tech consult with Derric, go here.


Summary: There are two types of tech tools: KPI tools and Time Savers. No matter what problem you’re trying to solve, though, there’s an extensive process for choosing the RIGHT tools that all successful brands go through. Here’s the process:


  1. Needs analysis: What problem are you actually trying to solve?
  2. Integrations: What tools does this tool need to integrate with?
  3. Budget: Use this to help predict your ROI for the tools you’re evaluating
  4. Understanding switching and lock-in costs: The harder it is to switch off a tool, the more seriously you need to take the decision. Take longer to make it - be absolutely certain it will actually solve the problem you’re experiencing.
  5. Creating a shortlist: Compare at least 2 tools for most industries
  6. Demos, yay!: Get the nitty-gritty details to help you decide which tool will work best for you.
  7. Testing or onboarding: You can either split test a new tool against your current tool to see which is better or make a complete switch to the new tool.

5 Ways to Drastically Grow Conversions and Revenue

A talk by Omri Katz, CEO, Dialogue


Overview: Start with your data. Content is the KEY. Personalization can work if done right.


Summary: Every day you don’t work on improving your data means:


  • Lost time
  • Lost profits
  • Added costs
  • Missed opportunity


Content, personalization, and machine learning can help you improve your brand’s data analysis and do something about the results of that data.


Merchant Interview with Bili Balogun of Tribe Beauty Box

A talk by Derric Haynie, CEO, EcommerceTech and Bili Boboe-Balogun, CEO, Tribe Beauty Box


Overview: The unique challenges of a discovery box. How to Perfect Partnerships and Product Sourcing. Getting "Buy-In" From Influencers


Summary: Bili Balogun started Tribe Beauty Box right out of college with just $300. Now, just a couple of years later, she’s grown the business exponentially. She attributes Tribe’s success as a business to being flexible and pursuing growth without always pursuing a dollar value win. Her biggest piece of advice is that CEOs and business owners should learn the KPIs and metrics of every strategy, what matters, and what doesn’t, because the answer is always in the data.


How to Win at the Retention Game (Plus the Dinner Party Strategy)

A talk by Val Geisler, CEO, Fix My Churn


Overview: What successful brands are doing to win at the retention game. Get the dinner party strategy here: https://fixmychurn.com/tdps. In it, you’ll learn a framework for your email marketing, what kind of subject lines you should actually use, and how to style your emails so they are read and how to avoid the dreaded spam folder.


Summary: The internet is a busy place and it’s easy to get distracted. It’s 5x cheaper to keep a customer than to get a new one, so the goal of retention is to keep people around on your website and prevent the distraction that the internet can cause. There’s a very simple process for approaching retention the right way:


  • Start by talking to customers about them, THEN talk to them about your product.
  • Remember that there’s no right answer for sales and marketing, and what works for one business might not work for yours.
  • Talking to your customers will give you an idea of what they’re looking for and will help you win the retention game.

TikTok: Why You Should Give a $@#! in 2021

A talk by Evan Horowitz, CEO and Co-Founder, Movers + Shakers


Overview: By now, we've all heard of TikTok, but what's the opportunity for brands? How have many brand campaigns passed 1 BILLION views?!?!

TikTok is the fastest-growing social platform ever and has aged-up faster than any platform in history. As the platform continues to diversify, it’s becoming increasingly relevant for brands. Are you taking hold of this opportunity to connect with your consumers?


Key Topics Covered:


  • How TikTok has evolved and what it looks like in 2021
  • Which brands should care
  • The 5 success strategies for brands to enter TikTok


Summary: TikTok is expected to be a fully mainstream platform for all age groups/generations by the end of 2021, so if your brand isn’t utilizing it, you’re missing out on a world of viral opportunities. You don’t need a brand channel before you can start doing anything else, so don’t hesitate to get started. The most successful brands on TikTok are the ones that aren’t afraid to make a splash in a new and innovative way. Here are some of your next steps:


  • Remember that your TikTok journey is just beginning
  • Work to translate your brand personality onto TikTok
  • Get the first-mover advantage for your brand channel by starting on TikTok today

Final Thoughts

Even without the majority of retail sales, beauty has made tremendous progress in 2020 and continues to move into 2021. With cool tools like Mira’s beauty platform, and innovative marketing strategies like Mover’s and Shakers E.L.F. campaign, or Donna Lopez’s brand strategies…


The one thing that remains constant is the value of creating a strong brand connection, really owning the relationship with the consumer, and getting her to come to us, and only us, for her product needs. Stay tuned for future events, especially our retention event in April, by subscribing to our email list and bookmarking this page.

Sponsored by:

About

About the author

Derric Haynie is the host of “The Future of Ecommerce” podcast and Chief Ecommerce Technologist at Ecommercetech.io – Where Ecommerce stores go to research, discover, and buy the right tools to grow their store. Half of his day is spent reviewing tech tools, and the other half is talking with merchants to help them discover which solutions are right for them. When he’s not doing that, you can find him speaking, networking, or grabbing a drink at any of your favorite Ecommerce events.