Impact of Fulfillment on the Nutraceutical Industry
As the American population ages the demand for nutraceuticals and dietary supplements has increased exponentially. According to a recent study by Transparency Market Research, the global nutraceuticals market stood at $182.6 billion as of 2015 and will rise to $278.9 billion by 2021, exhibiting an average annual growth rate of 7.3 percent.
Coupled with a steady surge of consumers opting for online ordering and home delivery versus traditional retail purchasing, the need for fast, accurate processing and delivery of dietary supplements is paramount to the success of nutraceutical companies. So what should these companies look for when selecting a fulfillment partner? Below are some key areas where a logistics business partner should excel:
Clean, Climate Controlled Facilities
Both of EchoData’s locations are FDA registered and audited facilities. Temperature and humidity can impact the quality and effectiveness of nutraceuticals. Therefore it is imperative for products be stored in a facility that provides consistent and reliable climate control. Supplements should also be processed with a first in first out (FIFO) methodology to ensure products do not surpass their expiration date.
Lot Tracking Capabilities
Nutraceutical companies need processes in place when the unexpected occurs. When product issues arise it is critical to have a recall process in place with the ability to track lots back to the consumer level. Lot control systems allow fulfillment providers to manage expiration dates and maintain detailed lot location data on each fulfilled order.
Strategic Shipping Solutions
Fulfillment companies with nutraceutical experience should employ a strategy for reducing parcel shipping costs. Gone are the days of just shipping USPS or UPS, by deploying a wide-range of strategies including zone skipping, zip code logic and bi-coastal shipping options, fulfillment providers can pass along significant discounts to nutraceutical companies.
Specialty Packaging Services
Today’s consumers want a brand experience that is personalized to their unique shopper profile. The ability to source and manage a variety of specialty packaging and marketing support materials can go a long way in delivering added value, increasing loyalty and enhancing a company’s brand.
Flexible On-Demand Printing
Fulfillment companies with on-demand printing capabilities have the ability to make quick print changes on the fly while keeping inventory levels and storage costs low. In-house printing also allows nutraceutical clients to conduct pre and post-sale marketing efforts with highly targeted messages in an effort to up-sell or cross-sell to customers.
Online, Real-Time Reporting
Getting real-time inventory reports and knowing which products are moving is critical to future sales and marketing efforts. Experienced fulfillment providers offer nutraceutical companies online metrics for inventory, min-max levels, verification’s and order shipments along with a variety of KPI metrics. Having this data at their fingertips allows nutraceutical companies to monitor sales growth and develop additional strategies for continuous process improvement.
When it comes to partnering with a fulfillment provider, nutraceutical companies should expect high levels of safety and operational standards as well as flexible order processing systems with complete eCommerce integration. However, choosing a partner that can take fulfillment to the next level with custom shipping strategies, specialty packaging and comprehensive real-time reporting will give nutraceutical companies a leg up in this highly-competitive market.