How to Sell Your Health Products to China?
The China health products market is extremely valuable. The size of the elderly population has made the selling of health products seem effortless. However, it is always essential to be detail-minded and to understand the target market.
Do you want to avoid mistakes and be successful in the China health products market? If so, you’ve come to the right place.
The Landscape of the China Health Products Market
Before digging deep into the topic, it is critical to know about the landscape of the market first.
In 2016, the net worth of the industry was RMB 260 billion. Experts expect the figure to be RMB 400 billion in 2021, maintaining a yearly growth rate ranging from 10% to 15%. On the other hand, the position of health products in China is shifting from luxury goods to ordinary consumer goods.
With the rise in living standards, the two largest consumer groups, the middle-aged and elderly groups, are paying more and more for health products. Forecasts also predict that the spending of elderly Chinese will climb to the level of RMB 106 trillion between 2014 and 2050. A huge portion of the spending is distributed among the categories of health, wellness, and medical care.
Foreign Brands are Entering China
The entry of foreign brands is changing the market as multinational companies often enjoy advantages in funding, R&D, production management, and marketing. Nonetheless, there are existing barriers. For example, the traditional Chinese culture of health products is affecting consumers choices.
As for the competitors, Amway, Avon, and Herbalife gained approval to include health food products as one arm of their direct selling businesses. However, enterprises like Wanji, Golden Sun, Infinitus and Hong Fu Loi account for larger shares in the traditional health product market.
How to Attract Chinese consumers?
Here are some tips for you!
1. Plan Your Marketing Strategies Carefully
Devising a proper marketing strategy for selling your health products in China is crucial to your business. Gaining exposure for the products both online and offline is necessary as it is a highly competitive market.
Some companies have made mistakes in the past. They tried to deceive elderly groups with grand promises regarding the benefits of their products and believed that it would magically maintain their sales. However, this decision is no different from catching all the fish by draining the pond. It is not sustainable and brings with it negative connotations for the market as a whole.
Building up a trust-worthy image is imperative for health companies. You don’t want to risk your credibility in exchange for short-term sales targets. In fact, young people are buying health products as well. They help the parents to choose and make sure they are not being deceived. Young people are educated and extremely sensitive to anything similar to multi-level marketing or pyramid schemes. Once they consider your brand a fraud, it will be difficult to rebuild trust.
What Chinese consumers desire are genuine and safe products. Therefore, how to gain trust has become a big issue. Utilizing various platforms, such as Zhihu, is one of the many effective ways of selling your products to China.
Dragon Social is a professional China marketing agency. If you want to sell your health products, don’t hesitate to contact us!
2. Double-Check the Advertisement Content
Currently, “deceptive advertising” is a major issue for the regulators in China. They’ve increased the number of industry-wide random inspections to protect consumers rights accordingly.
According to the latest update, companies cannot use health functions to name the products. Advertisements should include the warning “This product is not a substitute for medicine”. The related departments will take severe measures against deceptive advertising. Before releasing any campaign, make sure it does not violate the regulations in China.
To address the confusion of customers, the content of a health product advertisement must be consistent with the user manual and label. Moreover, the company must not compare the products’ effects with other healthcare equipment or drugs.
3. Utilize Multiple Sales Channels
At present, companies mostly use methods like direct selling, conference marketing, and E-commerce to sell health products. Survey results further indicated that using the direct selling and conference marketing models can help you to achieve higher sales revenue, although E-commerce is quickly catching up as one of the main sales channels.
Another important trend in the industry is purchasing through TV and online platforms. They are becoming powerful as Chinese customers welcome E-commerce more than ever. In recent years, foreign brands expanded into the market through cross-border E-commerce. For instance, Swisse and Blackmores have set up overseas flagship stores on Tmall Global to gain Chinese consumers.
Making your products present in multiple channels can attract more customers. It can also facilitate the selling of your products significantly.
4. Cultural Gaps
Contrary to the western world, “Health and Wellness” plays a significant role in Chinese culture. It is deep-rooted in China’s history and still influences the Chinese today. Ancients often explore how to keep your body and your mind healthy. Classic articles and concepts about the art of prolonging life are also popular.
Regarding the latest report, there are 12,807 types of Chinese herbal medicine resources in China. 4 billion people use products related to Chinese herbal medicine around the globe, showing the increase of its international influence. Companies are cooperating with relevant agencies to build global platforms for Chinese herbal health products. For example, Amway invested US$25 million in the Amway Botanical Research Center in Wuxi to study the power of Chinese herbal medicine.
If companies want to enter China health products market, it is necessary to know more about the local culture. Both the designs and developments of products and marketing strategies should include elements that Chinese consumers are familiar with and interested in.
5. Stay Up-to-date with Regulation
The China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) regularly updates the list of allowed food manufacturing enterprises.
It expanded the scope of health foods’ function certification to 27 functions, dividing them into two main categories. The first one consists of 16 functions related to preventing diseases, alleviating symptoms and auxiliary therapy. The other one includes 11 functions such as enhancing health and physical fitness. Health products having the same formula can only apply for certification in no more than two health functions.
There are other changes constantly happening, and the key to success in China health products market is to follow the latest regulations. Violating laws in China will cause you troubles and will definitely affect sales.
Conclusion on China Health Products Marketing
The China health products market is becoming competitive but is growing rapidly. Foreign companies need to be detail-minded when entering the country. Remember to plan your marketing strategies carefully and avoid breaking the regulations.
We will stay up-to-date with any trends and regulation changes in the China health products industry. If you have any questions regarding the selling and marketing of your products, feel free to contact our Dragon Social team!