How Are Sachets Changing The Game In Skin And Haircare
The trend started in 1983, when Cavin Kare introduced the most innovative packaging concept in India’s fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) history by launching its Chik shampoo in sachets for Rs 1. That one step revolutionized not just the shampoo segment, but also the entire FMCG sector in the country, and today, sachets make up for more than 75% of the total volume of the shampoo segment. Since then, sachets have played quite a role in mobilizing FMCG products in India. Sachets have now become popular in the skincare and haircare segment too, including face creams, face wash, hair color etc. Can sachets create the same magic for the entire skincare and haircare segment, like it did for shampoo?
The new wave of sachets
Gujarat-based company, Zydus Wellness, (which has brands like Sugar Free, Nutralite and Everyuth) recently launched facewash in sachet, a first in the product category. These sachets are priced at Rs 1.
According to experts, this can be a breakthrough for the brand in the face wash category, especially with all the big brands wrestling it out in this field. The sachet strategy gives Everyuth an advantage, especially in the rural areas and villages, where face wash is not a regular product. This can help the brand boost its volumes and capture the bottom of the pyramid in this product category. If Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) decides to follow this strategy for face wash, it can win more consumers thanks to its strong distribution network in the hinterlands of the country.
HUL had applied the sachet strategy for its flagship fairness brand Fair & Lovely cream a few years ago. In fact, market reports suggest that sachets account for more than 50% of Fair & Lovely’s sale in India. Encouraged by the success of sachets in fairness cream category, Garnier skin naturals launched Garnier Fair Miracle and Garnier White in Rs 10 sachet to capture the market.
Next in sachet category is hair colour creams. To compete with powder hair dye which is preferred by masses, L'Oreal launched its hair colour, Garnier Black Naturals, in a sachet of just Rs 39, whereas any other cream-based hair colour costs Rs 100. This clearly gives Garnier Color Naturals an edge in the mass market. This helps the product increase its overall sales. This is quite a shift in strategy for the brand as globally, it prices its products higher but in India, it is targeting the lower-end customer.
Clearly, one can see that sachet packaging is increasingly being adopted by various companies in skincare and haircare category to tap the bottom of the pyramid of India’s FMCG market.
Why sachets work in the Indian market
The question that comes to one’s mind is what makes sachets such a success in the Indian market. Firstly, Indian consumers are always up for value for money. Through sachets, they get to use an expensive product for a very low cost. Secondly, due to the low cost, new consumers who have never tried the product/brand are more inclined to give it a try. After a few uses, some of these consumers may upgrade to other products of the brand.
Way forward for FMCG marketers
Certainly, there lies a big opportunity for marketers in the skincare and haircare categories. They can expand their consumer base by utilizing the real potential of sachets in many sub categories of the cosmetic segment, which are not so popular among the masses, like anti-aging creams, sunscreen, night creams, etc. Sachets can really be a complete game changer for marketers in these categories and even others.
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