A Whole New “Back to School”
The pandemic has stabilized to a certain extent; thus from the fall semester, it is likely that most students will attend school and conduct offline classes. Everyone is in a ruckus, half worried and half excited, feeling nervous and liberating at the same time. The phrase ‘Back to School’ sounds exceptionally new this year and it feels like happy news that makes us feel good, excited, and joyful. After more than a year of not really going to school, the demand for ‘Back to school items’ is expected to increase explosively more than any other year.
Last year, there were no Back to school specials. This is because the main focus was on stationary shopping, such as high-tech products and school supplies for online classes at home. Therefore, there was no need to buy Back to school items for styling, so the beauty industry couldn’t profit from it. But this year, customers’ psychological compensation will kick in and turn to Walk-Thru Offline Shopping, raising hope to recover from all the losses beauty supply suffered last year and wishing everyone a great success.
In particular, this year, the government has provided funding for families with kids and teenagers, the “Pandemic child support”, and gave $250 to $300 per child every month for six months since July. For those who do need it, it is precious money, like rain after a drought. In addition, the money is paid according to the number of children, so for families with a large number of children, the money is quite a lot. In a difficult time, it sure brings hope. Beauty products are not an essential compared to food, clothing and shelter- one can live without it. Thus, it is common for customers to spend their money on beauty supplies only when they have the luxury to. In this sense, the way the government promoted customers’ consumption activities by handing out money, albeit indirectly, is a relief to the beauty supply industry because one can expect at least some benefits from it.
For the Back to School Special, BNB did a brief mini-interview with two current experts. The voices of the sales staff seemed bright and lively. It seemed to be related to a large number of orders and a subsequent increase in sales.
< Model Model Chief Manager Yu-jin Jung>
Last year, there was no demand, but there was not enough supply either, so it was really difficult to manage sales, but this year, we have secured a lot of supply, so we have all the products. We have not been on a business trip for over a year due to the pandemic, but we have been on a business trip to each area since a few months ago and are meeting customers and making sales again with our beginner’s mindset. In response to the Back to School Season, we have secured enough of various braiding hair and other products. We are also doing our best in marketing. Although there are some regional differences, most of the local economies are showing signs of revitalization and the number of orders is increasing, so we are very busy. There is enough supply, but some customers who are concerned about rising prices tend to hoard items, so we advise that if you need goods, it would be better to contact us in advance so we could provide them.
< KONEX USA Director Sang-bin Choi)>
There have been a lot of companies that have ordered goods since July for the Back to School Season, but there are still a lot of companies that have, surprisingly, not ordered yet. There are many containers coming in from China that are packed in the port, but there aren’t many staff members who can operate the cranes that transfer the containers to the trucks, so they are often tied up because they can’t handle those containers in time. It is said that the situation is leading to price increases. The companies that are currently buying are doing a lot of Case orders, or Bulk orders, in preparation for price increases. We have enough to sell at Back to School season, but Hair Accessories had a large surge in demand so it can’t be sold in large quantities. We are trying to sell and distribute them evenly. Sooner or later, the price of all goods will be significantly increased by 30-50%, but most wholesale companies lack of inventory, making it more profitable to change the time of delivery. Thus, they are keeping a close eye on the situation. It seems that we will have a shortage of supply sooner or later, so it is important for retailers to secure a lot of goods first.
The One who Knows Gets all the Goods!
People with years of beauty experience know in advance what to prepare for the season, but still when they are busy, one may forget. The same is true for Back to School Sale preparation. So who are the first people to know and get prepared? The Wholesale company and its sales employees. They are one step ahead than regular retail stores and do the purchase first. They predict the fashion of the market and preempt the things that might be in order to sell more things. However, people who work in retail stores should not just wait until salesmen recommend the right items for the season. they should know in advance what they need and where they could buy those things. Those who do well and have expertise, and those who do not act different at this point.
Who are the Target Audience for your Goods?
The main customer base is African Americans, who are a permanent fixed customer base due to the nature of the beauty industry, no matter who says otherwise. The people that need the beauty products we’re handling most are probably African Americans. If you know the target audience correctly, then you need to put the products they want in a prominent location at the correct time. Then, don’t you think we need to know what products we need to sell to contribute to increasing sales?
What to prepare?
Traditionally for back to school items, braiding hair should be prepared as a priority. The trending fashion is different depending on the age, so you need to understand the trend well and prepare the products that your customers want most. Kanekalon Jumbo Braid is always in fashion and an all-time popular product, so it should be equipped basically, and Pre-Stretched Braid is also in steady demand, so it would be nice to prepare basic colors and various lengths. Also, it would be better to pay more attention to the Water Wave Crochet Hair and Butterfly Braid products that were popular last year.
In addition, parents with young children buy a lot of hair accessories such as hair Ballies and hair Beads to decorate their children’s hair by this time, so it is crucial to have a variety of basic colors such as Clear, White, black and other essential colored products in various sizes.
Hair Care products include Detangling Shampoo, Lock and Twist products, Relaxer, Texturizer, Edge Control, Shine and Detangling Spray, etc. They all needed for back-to-school hair managing, so don’t forget them.
As for clothes, Slouch Socks tend to sell a lot, so prepare the basic colors, and make sure stock up on stockings, Tights, Knee Highs, etc.; products that most usually care less about, should be carefully taken care of at this opportunity. Because these products are often back-ordered, a good strategy is to contact your clients in advance to secure them.
Track Hair is also expected to be in some demand because junior and senior students in middle and high school tend to prefer long hair. However, considering the situation in which the economy bad and households are in a difficult situation, low- and medium-priced Human Track Hair with better quality than expensive hair, is expected to gain response quickly. One Pack Solution Multi Bundle is likely to be more in demand.
And for male guests, Boar Brush, Durags, Wave Grease and Dreads Loc products should also be prepared in advance; make sure not to miss anything.
Personal Protect Equipment(PPE) items should be reinforced as well. Although vaccinations have been widespread, the majority of students still have not been vaccinated, so there is still heavy concern about Covid 19. Parents who send their children to school are also worried that their children will be infected at school. So even if they do offline classes, it will be mandatory to use masks in the school.The demand for Masks has decreased than last year, but still, during the Back to School Season, the demand will increase again, so you will have to pay attention to the sale of masks. Don’t neglect Hand Sanitizer and Alcohol, too.
Eyelash products are not to be excluded. After the pandemic, eyelash sales increased noticeably. Also, there are a lot of companies that started to make their own as well. With more various types of eyelash, consumers have a much wider choice than before. Perhaps, living in a world with masks made people’s attention focus on their eyes, thus the demand has increased. It is no exaggeration to say that the field that has received the greatest privilege under the influence of pandemic is the eyelash. The trend is expected to continue for the time being, especially with the success of longer eyebrows of more than 25mm. Companies are expected to create new products more aggressively and invest more in marketing at the same time.
Young Adults consumers, who wear a lot of makeup, seem to be slightly leading the purchase of cosmetics products, but since they have been wearing masks for more than a year and have to continue wearing masks for the time being, most Cosmetics companies are launching a lot of eye makeup and eyebrow makeup products. These days, one can only see people’s eyes, so if one does eye makeup really well, they can look pretty like a celebrity. It is said that because of this, consumers pay more attention to eye makeup and less attention to makeup under the eyes.
The One who is Good at Seasonal Display Survives!
The importance of Display, or placing objects, could not be emphasized enough. This is because noticeable display immediately leads to increased sales. Display is even more important especially during a particular event or season, because gives a strong impact. Beauty people who have been in the beauty industry for a long time know that they need to have a display system and do the right business by each season. They work hard to increase sales by preparing for spring, summer, fall, winter and seasonal products such as Easter, Prom Party, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. One of those seasons is the Back to School sale, and when one place items in the store, one needs to create a special section, put the appropriate items in the front, prepare a “Sale Sign”, create a simple Flyer… and if you have a “Website”, you need to update the special sale ads on the site so that you can connect them to mass sales. Depending on the situation of the store, if you create a special section in an appropriate location and display the appropriate the items at that time. When you’re done, you can clean up each event without much difficulty. For products that are sole especially well, buy products in bulk that can lower the unit price as much as you can, and sell them to customers at a lower price. Then, that would be the real event and a sure special sale.
This year, everyone seems to be ordering in bulk. It is said that they are hoarding products here and there because they fear they won’t be able to secure items. The price hike caused by the pandemic along with the stockout phenomenon is too much for ordinary retailers to handle, and it is part of their efforts to secure goods and save unit prices.
At the end of August, most schools begin to start again. It is still not late to prepare for the Back to School Sale. If you haven’t even thought about it yet before you read this article, we hope this can serve as an alarm. For all those who are engaged in beauty business across the United States, we hope that the items needed for this opportunity will be carefully checked and the “Back to School Special” that we missed last year will turn out to be a jackpot this year.
Hair Trend BY Jaylord Ryu
BNB Magazine AUG 2021 ©bnbmag.com