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How to Sell Cosmetics in Australia (The Ultimate Guide)

Are you looking for ways to optimise the presence and visibility of your cosmetics brand in the Australian retail space, in order to boost product distribution and sales?

Whether you’re a start-up brand taking the initial steps into the marketplace with ambitions to become a recognisable name, or an established player looking to take your brand to the next level, it’s important to take the right approach.

In this article, the team at full-service cosmetics sales agency Rocket has compiled a list of six tips to enhance your plan to sell cosmetics in Australia, through a focus on building and nurturing relationships with the right retailers.

Embracing a different approach to building relationships with key retailers

When looking at how to sell cosmetic products successfully, a key consideration you should make is shifting away from the traditional approach of simply selling your products to wholesalers and distributors and hoping for the best. You know your brand better than anyone, meaning taking a more involved role in getting your products onto shelves will add significant value.

As a starting point, critical thinking around where and how to sell makeup successfully, as well as skin care and other cosmetic products, is vital. A strategic approach is needed, and should be based on effective, direct negotiations with decision makers at the retail outlets you identify as being frequented by your brand’s target consumer.

Develop a winning pitch

Getting in front of the decision makers at the most appropriate beauty industry retail outlets for your brand is only the first stage in the battle to achieve in-store success. Next up is the pitching process. What you say once you’re in the room with them is equally, if not more, important.

Significant effort must therefore go into the development of a compelling pitch that will create the strongest impact. Make sure you clearly communicate why your products are perfectly suited to the customers of that specific retailer.

Outlining the points-of-difference associated with your cosmetics business will show retailers how your beauty brand will stand out in this crowded space, and will give you the best chance of being given the green light to move on to the next phase in the process …

Consider your negotiation strategy, and know what a ‘good deal’ looks like to you

So, you have successfully pitched to a target retailer, but what comes next? Typically, you will enter a phase of negotiation, with a view to coming up with a mutually beneficial agreement.

Make sure you research what retailers look for when considering what is a good deal for them. Understand what they would agree is reasonable, and what might put them off. 

Equally as important is taking the time to consider what a good deal looks like to you. This will stand you in good stead to make sure whatever you ultimately commit to will best serve your brand and its future success.

Conduct ongoing, proactive retailer relations to maximise the benefits of being in-store

Beyond getting your products in-store, what should be your next step when considering how to sell cosmetic products successfully?

Crucially, you’ll need to maintain positive relationships with your key retailers – and by extension with their customers – over the long-term. Proactive communication and regular negotiation should be conducted in an ongoing capacity, to ensure you identify, chase and capitalise on new opportunities as they arise.

Ongoing communication with your retailers in support of the development of successful, annual in-store plans is another path to maximise sales. Benefits may include:

  • enhanced prominence and visibility amongst loyal customers within the outlet
  • a commitment from the retailer to featuring your products in point-of-sale collateral
  • inclusion of your brand on websites, and in any hard copy, freely-available, product-focused magazines they may produce.

Any good retailer communication strategy should also include a program of in-store product training, equipping all customer-facing staff with the tools and knowledge required to sell your products proactively, enthusiastically and with confidence, thus enhancing the customer experience associated with your brand.

Keep a close eye on the numbers!

Ensure you have access to vital and easily interpreted analytics on the performance of your products. This will help ensure your products are always available to consumers in the correct quantities. Equally as important is having an understanding of what’s working and what isn’t when it comes to driving sales. This will help inform the evolution of your retail strategy, and the steps needed to amplify success as you look to the future.

Consider engaging an agency with expertise in the cosmetics space to maximise retailer relationships

Establishing and maintaining effective retailer relationships for maximum reward can be a complex and time-consuming task. And for the inexperienced the whole process can often feel overwhelming.

By identifying and engaging a full-service sales agency with knowledge and experience of the Australian cosmetics landscape, you’ll have ongoing access to invaluable support for the effective development, implementation and management of every element of your retailer relations strategy.

A good agency will walk you through the launch-to-market process and beyond, with attention paid to the many steps needed to drive your brand in the direction of greater success (and more sales!) 

Why not let them take on the responsibility of identifying and getting you in front of the right buyers? Take advantage of their ability to coach you on how to deliver a successful pitch and negotiate a great deal. Hand over the responsibility of maintaining strong retailer communications that will maximise in-store opportunities over the long-term.

As a result, you’ll benefit from extra capacity and time to focus on other important aspects of managing and building your business, with the reassurance that a capable expert is proactively overseeing this vital element of building the success of your brand.

The cosmetics industry is a relationship-based space where experience and credentials mean everything. Therefore, when looking for the right sales agency for your brand, make sure they demonstrate a passion for the sector, and have an impressive list of retail contacts. Also make sure your chosen agency has a proven track record for maintaining strong, long-standing and trusted relationships, both with key retailers and clients.

Over and above all of this, they must be able to demonstrate a willingness to take the time necessary to develop a comprehensive understanding of your products, brand, target market, and vision for the future. This will ensure they are in the strongest position to develop a strategy that will best support your specific goals.

Finally, ask them about their ability to interpret analytics in real-time, and how they might use this data to develop smart, successful and ever-evolving retailer engagement strategies that deliver results.

Could Rocket be the right partner for you?

At Rocket we think of ourselves as a leader amongst the next generation of cosmetic distributors in Australia. We exist to help new brands launch and existing brands grow, by ensuring all retailer relationships are properly managed. We consider ourselves to be a very different player in the market, with an end-to-end service that supports clients through the entire retail journey.

Our mission is to challenge the status quo by providing a smart and modern alternative to the reliance on cosmetic wholesalers and distributors. By engaging Rocket as the conduit between your brand and key retailers, you’ll benefit from access to our exhaustive list of contacts in the cosmetics retail space, expert and considered advice, aptitude for developing sustainable, mutually beneficial long-term relationships, and data interpretation abilities that will drive brands towards future success.

With ongoing access to a team of critical thinkers with a thorough understanding of the cosmetics landscape, up-to-the-second industry knowledge, ability to see the big picture, instinct for avoiding and managing potential risks, and proficiency in strategy development and execution, our support will help you remain ahead of the curve in a fast-evolving industry.

e have assembled a team that includes some of the best senior sales executives in the business, supported by a national network of passionate brand ambassadors, who are on-the-ground and in stores every day, making sure all steps are being taken at the retailer’s end to maximise sales.

It’s good to talk! If you’d like some help with retailer relations with a view to maximising sales, contact us today.