Customer care comes first
In this guest blog for The Scale Up, Daniel Perez Vidal, Director of food supplement store for the Ageless, shares what he believes to be the key drivers for the Cannabidiol (CBD) and food supplements today. He also unearths real customer concerns.
The ground has been shaken to its core. This pandemic has given us all so much to think about and we’re in an environment of deep uncertainty, separated from the people we love. We’re isolated, which is completely unnatural for human beings – and we’re concerned for our safety and our health.
At for the Ageless, we hear these worries daily when customers call and email us. There’s a real sense of despair and anger, especially among the elderly. It’s really important that we treat our customers as though they’re a family member. We’re respectful and provide the care and attention they expect, even more so throughout these turbulent times.
By listening, we’re better able to understand our marketplace, what our customers need and react accordingly. Here are five consumer behaviours and industry trends that we think will be pertinent this year.
A continued focus on mindfulness
Doom-laden headlines, seldom good news – it’s all we seem to experience at the moment. As a result, we’ll see people practising and learning about relaxation techniques and serotonin to release that ‘feel good’ factor. It’s a sense of escapism from the realities of an upside-down world.
Customers reveal to us that they’re concerned about their health, but the economic uncertainty adds another level of worry. We’re a company that champions taking care of the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual dimensions of wellness, so we offer direction on how our supplement products can be incorporated into daily life to support mindfulness goals.
Studies show that CBD products are more effective when consumed with a bit of food, because cannabinoids are fat-soluble, so we suggest taking them before the main meals. Not everyone knows that when researching hemp-based products, so it’s our duty to educate customers on how to maximise the benefits in line with a well-balanced diet.
Positive mental attitude advocacy
It’s somewhat related to mindfulness but it deserves a specific mention. We’re finding that although the pandemic brought about worries and uncertainties, it’s also forced people to move outside their comfort zones – and they’re energised by it. They’re more open to trying new things, especially things that make them feel good, and if they feel good, they’re generally more positive about life.
More and more customers are coming to our online shop by word of mouth, to discover supplements they wouldn’t have ever considered before.
The rise of collagen
We’re definitely seeing collagen consumption gain in popularity. Much scientific research is yet to be done in this area but people are realising the benefits of taking collagen supplements. We sell a range of collagen supplements, and our customers who take them tell us they see improvements in 1- 2 weeks.
Responsibility (of brands)
This one’s always been important to us but will be more prominent this year as consumer trust dwindles.
We take a responsible approach to customer guidance – we’re completely transparent with what’s in the products and how best to take them. We’ll always encourage customers to try a new supplement or CBD at the lowest possible dose. It isn’t about forcing customers to consume more of your product so you sell more.
We consult with customers to find out why they’re looking to try CBD and ask questions about their lifestyle, for example, are they getting the right amount of sleep, nutrients and down-time? Sometimes CBD isn’t the right fit for them – and we’re open about that. We believe this is why we at for the Ageless have such a positive reputation, because we enforce responsibility, guidance and reassurance.
CBD best practice
As a company we have rules and regulations to uphold, set out by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and the Food Standards Authority (FSA). They confirm that media coverage and social media interest in CBD containing products has increased in recent years, resulting in a significant uplift in consumer awareness.
Whether it’s taken as drops, capsules, tablets or in tea form, we mustn’t suggest any benefits for taking CBD in any way, as it is sold as a food supplement to support general health. Consumers discover the benefits for themselves, so you’ll never find us taking a hard-sell approach or claiming things that are unsubstantiated.
We take a responsible approach to customer guidance.
Rolling back around to my point on responsibility – when adding a new CBD brand to the for the Ageless portfolio, we look at six criteria to not only ensure the quality of the oils is superior, but that the supplier is both trustworthy and transparent.
I think the overarching theme throughout all of the customer talking points and trends I’ve mentioned is trust. In an industry where we see inaccurate labelling, messy regulations, a lack of independent testing and communication of the facts, trust must be the guiding principle.
We need to be truthful about our products and their ingredients.
We need to have a trustful relationship with suppliers, partners and customers.
And most importantly, we need to continue to be most caring, as we have chosen to dedicate ourselves to making a positive difference in people’s lives.
James and James Fulfilment
It all began in 2010, when James Hyde and James Strachan couldn’t find a modern shipping service for the eCommerce business they ran. Faced with messy warehouses based on out-dated systems, they decided to build their own.
We’ve not stood still since, helping hundreds of online brands scale up – and scaling with them.
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