Description

“The VMS ecommerce market is benefiting in a number of ways in 2020. The overall VMS market has been on a steady upward trajectory for many years, and consumer reliance on these products to support both physical and mental health makes them even more valuable as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. The pandemic has also expedited growth of online shopping overall, and this trend is likely to continue in the longer term as consumers come to rely on the convenience of avoiding in-store shopping. It is critical for VMS brands and retailers to adapt and offer consumers the seamless online experience they crave, or risk being left behind.”

– Karen Formanski, Health and Nutrition Analyst

This Report looks at the following areas:

  • The impact of COVID-19 and the recession on consumer behavior and the VMS ecommerce market
  • Key factors in providing ideal online VMS shopping experience
  • Top barriers to increased online VMS shopping
  • Importance of a strong social media presence for brands and retailers

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Key issues covered in this Report
        • Definition
          • COVID-19: market context
          • Executive Summary

              • Top takeaways
                • Market overview
                  • Impact of COVID-19 on VMS ecommerce
                    • Figure 1: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on VMS ecommerce, December 2020
                  • Opportunities and challenges
                    • Brands can find their target audience shopping online more often
                      • Figure 2: Percentage of total purchases made online before and during COVID-19, by total online shoppers and online VMS shoppers, October 2020
                    • VMS subscription services deliver convenience
                      • Figure 3: Online VMS subscription service participation, July 2019 and October 2020
                    • Harness the power of social media
                      • Figure 4: Would trust VMS product recommended by online influencer, by gender and age, October 2020
                    • VMS e-retailers must meet high expectations for online experience
                      • Figure 5: Factors important for ideal online VMS shopping experience, October 2020
                    • Quality assurance critical for online VMS sales to grow
                      • Figure 6: Concern about quality of VMS sold online, by age, October 2020
                    • Amazon domination is real, but can be overcome
                    • The Market – Key Takeaways

                      • Online shopping is on the rise across categories
                        • Parents are a key audience for VMS ecommerce market
                          • Staying healthy at home boosts ecommerce, VMS sales
                            • Recession driven by health crisis brings shift in priorities
                              • Offering new technology is key for increasing online VMS sales
                                • DTCs need more exposure
                                • Target Audience by the Numbers

                                  • eCommerce is used on a regular basis, across categories
                                    • Figure 7: Items purchased online, May 2020
                                  • VMS ecommerce market has plenty of room to grow
                                    • Figure 8: VMS shopping methods, October 2020
                                    • Figure 9: Percentage of total purchases made online before and during COVID-19, by total online shoppers and online VMS shoppers, October 2020
                                  • Middle life adults are top online VMS shoppers
                                    • Figure 10: VMS shopping methods, any online, by gender and age, October 2020
                                  • Parents far more likely to purchase VMS online
                                    • Figure 11: VMS shopping methods, any online, by parental status, October 2020
                                  • Lower-income households less likely to purchase VMS online
                                    • Figure 12: VMS shopping habits – any VMS purchase and online VMS purchase, by household income, October 2020
                                  • Impact of COVID-19 on VMS ecommerce
                                    • Figure 13: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on VMS ecommerce, December 2020
                                  • Lockdown
                                    • Re-emergence
                                      • Recovery
                                        • COVID-19: US context
                                          • Learnings from the last recession
                                          • Market Factors

                                            • Consumers more likely to seek VMS deals during health crisis-driven recession
                                              • Figure 14: Consumer confidence and unemployment, 2000-October 2020
                                            • Brands continue to innovate with eco-friendly sourcing, packaging
                                            • Market Opportunities

                                                • Personalization is the hook for DTC brands, but more consumer awareness is needed
                                                    • Figure 15: Ads for online VMS brands featuring personalized products, October 2020
                                                  • Online VMS shoppers show interest in new technology
                                                    • Figure 16: Mintel Global Trend Driver – Technology
                                                    • Figure 17: Use of select technologies while shopping online, by total online shoppers and online VMS shoppers, October 2020
                                                • Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

                                                  • People can’t stop talking about immunity
                                                    • Increased competition continues to hurt specialized VMS retailers
                                                      • Amazon faces competition from smaller brands with curated selections
                                                      • Competitive Strategies

                                                        • Social media buzzing over immunity
                                                          • Figure 18: Online mentions of immunity, December 2019-November 2020
                                                          • Figure 19: Online mentions of immunity and VMS, December 2019-November 2020
                                                          • Figure 20: Topic cloud, discussions on VMS and immunity
                                                          • Figure 21: Ads for online VMS brands featuring immune support products
                                                        • Specialty VMS retailers struggle to stay afloat in a sea of competition
                                                          • Figure 22: Ads for GNC and The Vitamin Shoppe
                                                        • VMS not immune to the Amazon Effect
                                                        • The Consumer – Key Takeaways

                                                          • VMS ecommerce market gets a boost during COVID-19
                                                            • Shipping fees, selection overload barriers for some
                                                              • Avoiding stores motivates online shoppers as much as lower prices
                                                                • Shoppers have lofty expectations for VMS online experience
                                                                  • Pandemic encourages subscription service growth
                                                                    • VMS brands should get on the influencer bandwagon
                                                                    • Purchase Location of Certain VMS Products

                                                                      • Specialty supplements a gateway to online purchase
                                                                        • Figure 23: VMS products purchased in-store and online, October 2020
                                                                      • Immunity support is a staple in e-baskets
                                                                        • Figure 24: VMS products for immune support purchased online, October 2020
                                                                    • VMS Shopping Behavior Changes in 2020

                                                                      • Shift to online VMS shopping evident in 2020
                                                                        • Figure 25: VMS shopping behavior changes, October 2020
                                                                      • Younger men, especially dads, driving increase in online VMS shopping
                                                                        • Figure 26: VMS shopping behavior changes – online more often, by gender, age, and parental status, October 2020
                                                                    • Barriers to Online Shopping

                                                                      • Shipping fees, selection overload are barriers for some
                                                                        • Figure 27: Barriers to online VMS shopping, October 2020
                                                                      • Younger men more prone to seek guidance, ease of selection
                                                                        • Figure 28: Select barriers to online VMS shopping, by gender and age, October 2020
                                                                    • Reasons for Buying Online versus In-store

                                                                      • Safety and low prices equally important in these pandemic times
                                                                        • Figure 29: Reasons for shopping for VMS products online, October 2020
                                                                    • Ideal Online Shopping Experience

                                                                      • VMS shoppers have lofty expectations for their online experience
                                                                        • Figure 30: Factors important for ideal online VMS shopping experience, October 2020
                                                                        • Figure 31: Mintel Global Trend Driver – Value
                                                                      • Parents crave advice, wellness support, and it can best be served digitally
                                                                        • Figure 32: Select factors important for ideal online VMS shopping experience, by parental status, October 2020
                                                                    • VMS Subscription Habits

                                                                      • Pandemic pushes subscription participation
                                                                          • Figure 33: Online VMS subscription service participation, July 2019 and October 2020
                                                                        • Participation rises consistently
                                                                          • Figure 34: Online VMS subscription service participation, by gender and age, July 2019 and October 2020
                                                                        • Automatic replenishments are also on the rise
                                                                          • Figure 35: Online VMS subscription preferences, July 2019 and October 2020
                                                                      • Attitudes toward VMS Shopping

                                                                        • Seeking a good deal is common, online offers more to consumers
                                                                          • Figure 36: Find good deals on VMS products, online and in-store, October 2020
                                                                        • Trust an issue with the majority of online VMS shoppers
                                                                          • Figure 37: Concern about quality of VMS sold online, by age, October 2020
                                                                        • Store and online support get similar accolades
                                                                          • Figure 38: Good product recommendations from in-store staff and online customer services, October 2020
                                                                        • Online influencers can help brands market to younger adults
                                                                          • Figure 39: Would trust VMS product recommended by online influencer, by gender and age, October 2020
                                                                          • Figure 40: Celebrity influencers promoting VMS products on Instagram
                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                        • Data sources
                                                                          • Consumer survey data
                                                                            • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                              • Abbreviations

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