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Health and beauty sales to surge online

Health and beauty e-commerce will grow more than three times faster than store-based category sales during the next five years.

That’s according to a new report from Edge by Ascential’s research and data insight arm, Edge Retail Insight, which predicted that e-commerce will account for nearly a third of global health and beauty sales by 2026, up from a fifth in 2021. The health, beauty and personal care category refers to a range of relevant product categories including over-the-counter and prescription drugs, vitamins and supplements, cosmetics, skincare, fragrance, oral care, hair care, as well as body care items such as deodorants and grooming accessories.)

Category sales online will have a compound annual growth rate of 12.1% between 2021 and 2026, far exceeding the growth rate of 3.3% CAGR for store-based sales. Shoppers will buy an additional $156.1 billion of health and beauty products online during the next five years, with e-commerce sales in the category reaching US $358.4 billion by 2026. In total, the health, beauty and personal care retail category is expected to be worth $1.34 trillion in retail sales — including in-store and online — worldwide by 2026, the report forecast.

“Items that were once bought in-store are not only becoming available online, but in an increasingly mobile-first age, brands have been rapidly experimenting with innovative digital technologies to engage customers remotely,” said Deren Baker, CEO at Edge by Ascential. “This includes such things as using augmented reality to allow customers to try on lipstick virtually and getting involved with seasonal events and shoppable livestreaming opportunities increasingly offered by digital marketplace giants like Alibaba, Amazon, as well as China’s fast-growing group-buying platform Pinduoduo (PDD), which — with an expected 17% CAGR between 2021 and 2026 — will lead growth in the category over the next five years.”

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