The men’s grooming market has been growing swiftly and steadily in recent years–with more sophisticated products and offerings available in cosmetics, hair care and skin care. Valued at $57.7 billion in 2017, the global men’s grooming market is expected to reach $78.6 billion by 2023, according to researchandmarkets.com.
This growth is largely thanks to greater consumer awareness of health, wellness and body care trends across all genders. To meet demand for men’s grooming products in particular, stores are not only stocking up on more haircare, antiaging and makeup brands just for gents, but bigger chains such as Nordstrom and Target are also investing in larger, dedicated grooming sections to serve the additional shoppers.
When growing the men’s grooming section in your own store or salon, skin care is a great addition. The most important rule is to focus on simplicity when addressing men’s skincare concerns. “Though some customers are looking for an intricate step-by-step process, the overwhelming majority want something easy, simple and targeted,” says Andrew Grella, founder of the New York-based House of Formen professional cosmetics line for men.
To make your store a go-to destination for men’s grooming products, consider taking the following steps:
1. Think beyond the razor. While shaving products will always be male essentials, skin care is one of the fastest-growing segments of the men’s grooming market, according to Kline research. Meet demand by adding a selection of moisturizers, antiaging creams, body washes and sunscreens formulated just for guys. Make sure your staff is also prepared to answer questions about men’s specific skincare concerns, such as minimizing blemishes or wrinkles.
2. Focus on millennials. While Gen Xers and baby boomers tend to pick up their grooming products in department stores or big-box chains, millennial men are more likely to seek out a specialty store where they will spend more for their skincare needs, according to a recent survey by Prosper Insights and Analytics. Drive traffic to your store by stocking up on the clean, eco-friendly brands this younger generation favors.
3. Create prominent displays. You want your men’s products to be instantly accessible and visible, especially if your store is not yet known for this category. When space is at a premium, Grella suggests setting up an inviting section along the perimeter of your store, or an eye-catching endcap that is clearly dedicated to men’s grooming needs.
4. Offer men’s styling services. The current popularity of upscale, retro-style barbershops makes these establishments the perfect place for customers to experience firsthand such luxury grooming products as a beard balm or a new aftershave. Take a page from Nordstrom’s playbook and consider adding men’s styling services to your salon menu to help boost retail sales.
5. Engage female customers. Women often influence the personal care product purchases of the men in their lives, according to a Mintel survey. Create marketing materials that tout your men’s grooming brands and fragrances to all of your customers, and make sure to offer irresistible discounts during gift-giving holidays, including Father’s Day and Valentine’s Day.
6. Build your online presence. Although men tend to prefer shopping in brick-and-mortar stores, according to a recent study from First Insight, it helps to offer products online as well. Grella advises being patient with this process, especially when using social media. “You never really know if what you’re doing is making an impact (positive or negative) until a few months down the line,” he says. “I’d suggest starting small, possibly with a targeted offer to previous patrons, or take to a platform like Instagram and test a collaboration or two.”
7. Tempt with samples. Lack of brand awareness is the main obstacle to retail sales in the men’s grooming category. Consider handing out free samples of men’s products at the checkout counter. Giving men no-cost opportunities to try new products, such as anti-wrinkle creams or gray-reducing shampoos, helps build brand–and store–loyalty, too.