What Are the Top Marketplaces for Selling Dietary Supplements Online Besides Amazon?
If you subscribe to our blog or regularly visit it, you’ve probably seen that our team recently published two separate articles that discuss how brand owners can sell dietary supplements on Amazon and what the best practices are for earning top placements on Amazon.
In this blog post, I’m going shy away from talking about Amazon and put the spotlight on some of the top marketplaces for selling dietary supplements online.
Why would I do that?
Because I feel it’s important for you as a current or aspiring brand owner to consider the different methods and platforms you can utilize to sell your products!
While Amazon is a terrific platform to sell supplements on, it also sells millions of other products. In contrast, there are other platforms that are specifically designed to sell nutritional products on. Again, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that Amazon isn’t a great platform – it’s indeed one of the best – but I believe it’s important for you to know about all the options available to you.
What Are the Benefits of Selling Supplements Online?
Before I dive into the meat and potatoes of this article, I've highlighted the benefits of selling supplements online below:
- Low cost and high consumer reach model that has the potential to generate significant profit.
- High-quality and dependable products build brand awareness and can grow your customer base.
- The hefty investment of building a brick and mortar store is avoided.
- Since online channels are not bound by limitations like time, customers can access your products 24 x 7.
- Online channels are easier and cheaper to maintain, and the revenue earned through them continues to rise.
What Are the Alternatives to Amazon?
The first step to successfully expanding your revenue streams is to identify online platforms that you can effectively sell your supplement products on. Here are the tried and tested choices you have:
- Established online supplement sellers
- Selling supplements on your own website
- Affiliate marketing
- Social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram
What Are Some of the Established Online Supplement Sellers?
- GNC (General Nutrition Centers)
This popular retailer of health and wellness products is based in Pittsburgh and operates in the U.S. and Canada, international, and manufacturing/wholesale segments. GNC has set the standard for nutritional supplements by prioritizing honest labeling, ingredient safety, and product potency. Over the last 6 months, it’s estimated that GNC had over 3.83 million online visitors – can you imagine the visibility your supplement can get?[i] [ii]
- The Vitamin Shoppe
Vitamin Shoppe's 700+ retail stores and online sites sell various nutritional supplements. The company specializes in selling a huge line of high-quality, cutting-edge supplements, proteins, healthy weight support, aromatherapy, herbs, superfoods, natural beauty products, and more. This even includes professional and specialized lines along with their own brands.[iii] [iv] [v]
This website is the most-visited fitness site and the largest online fitness store in the world! So, if you want to sell sports nutrition online, you should give bodybuilding.com a try. Aside from selling supplements, Bodybuilding.com also publishes daily editorial content and training plans.[vi]
Vitacost as a reputation for selling quality products at customer-friendly prices, and its procurement standards set a high bar. This retailer sells nutritional supplements, vitamins, and beverages, but they can sell anything within their niche, as long as the products are top quality. Their e-commerce website offers a wide range of vitamins and health supplements at affordable costs. Vitacost is a trusted brand in the industry and has sizeable offerings on its website.[vii]
What Are the Established Online Food Drug Mass (FDM) Outlets for Selling Supplements?
In addition to the established online sellers covered above, you may also want to consider FDM or Food Drug Mass outlets for selling dietary supplements like the ones listed below:
- Walmart Marketplace:
Walmart Marketplace helps you easily integrate your catalog, manage orders, arrange shipments, and provide customer care. With a customer base that spans over millions – you can confidently sell your supplements online through this platform.
Walmart Marketplace is also regarded as the largest innovative omnichannel retailer, and getting started with selling your products is also pretty simple! This channel also gives your supplement immediate recognition, increases profits, and gives you a shot at other retail contracts.
Target's online store allows customers to shop for supplements according to health benefits and types such as capsules, tablets, softgels, etc. It's a platform that's easy to access and navigate. As an e-commerce platform for selling your supplements, Target works as a visually appealing, informative, and well-organized website.
You can also explore online stores like:
- Thrive Market
Build Your Own Supplement Website and Start Selling
The best way to get your brand online is to build your own supplement website. Selling supplements through your own website, in comparison to relying on FDM outlets and e-tail websites, gives you the freedom to customize the user experience down to the smallest detail, gives you the freedom to create promotions and coupon codes on the fly, and you can grow and nurture your own customer and subscriber lists.
How to Sell Supplements on Your Website
You can start selling supplements on your website by following these 5 steps:
- Domain Registration: Start the process by choosing a unique domain name for your company and registering it through any one of the many domain registration sites available.
- Building a Web Store: Design your website according to your preference and include pages like "Home," "About Us," "Contact Us," and "Web Store."
- Shopping Cart Software: Choose how your customers can pay and integrate them into the shopping cart software, along with your inventory and pricing.
- Search Engine Registration: Register your site with the major search engines so that your website gains visibility.
- Go Live and Sell: Publish your site on the internet and see to the needs of your customers.
Now, when it comes to designing your website, you must ensure that it is mobile-friendly. I know it might seem obvious, but it's actually an area that many new supplement brand owners tend to overlook. Think about how you browse and shop on the Web these days - are you looking at sites on a desktop computer or on your smartphone? Chances are it's the latter.
What Are the Advantages to Selling Supplements on Your Own Website?
- Additional expenses, like third-party fees, can be avoided.
- It can be quite difficult for a small business that sells relatively low-value items to stand out, but you won't have to worry about competition with your own website.
- Customers can browse through your products 24/7.
- Customer queries can be automatically resolved through the site, and they can view all your products and the corresponding information in one place.
Check out this handy infographic to learn the top 8 reasons why you should start selling dietary supplements on your own website:
Affiliate Marketing for Dietary Supplements
Affiliate marketing is a popular way of driving sales and has a proven track record as it relates to generating significant online revenue. Viewed as extremely important for both brands and affiliate marketers, this is a great platform for supplement brand owners to tap into. In fact, 81% of brands and 84% of publishers use the power of affiliate marketing – it is predicted that this may continue to increase in the United States.[viii]
This can work both ways. For example, if you have a supplement and want to sell more of it, you can attract potential promoters with a financial incentive through an affiliate program.[ix]
How to Market Supplements on Facebook
A social media platform like Facebook has 1 billion active users and can act as a launch page to boost your supplement's visibility. Facebook ads that are authentic, branded, and provide accurate information can bring in dedicated customers who constantly rely on your brand.[x]
This is a long-term strategy since it takes Facebook some time to understand your target audience and display your ads for the highest conversions.
Once your ads reach the right people, they can increase your website's traffic. You need to identify effective Facebook marketing strategies to ensure you're targeting the right customers at the right time.
There are quite a few advertising policies that Facebook has in place, and before you start marketing your product, I'd recommend you to read it.
How to Market Supplements on Instagram
Instagram has 25 million business profiles, caters to a younger audience, and offers various insights into how well a business page is doing. Such insights help brand owners to identify effective marketing strategies.
By coming up with creative hashtags, reels, stories, IGTV, lives, captions, partnering with celebrities, posting eye-catching stories, interacting with your followers through the comment section, and sharing user-generated content, you can really enhance the visibility of your product and make it stand out in the competitive market!
Like Facebook, Instagram has its own community guidelines that cannot be violated – read through them to avoid any troubles.
What Would Be the Essential Steps for Online Marketplace Success?
- Knowing who your target audience is and ensuring that your products cater to all their needs and your advertisements are designed to attract them specifically. Once you've figured this out, find your MVP (Minimum Viable Platform) based on your budget.
- Before you begin working on your MVP, you need to do quite a bit of market research to keep it functional. By doing so, you can have a secure start and have useful data to develop your platform in the future.
- Make sure that your brand is authentic and stands out from the rest of the competition. Show customers why they should keep choosing you over other brands by working on your brand awareness and matching your values with your customers.
- Figure out which products are selling the best and invest enough to keep them going and then identify ways in which you can improve the sales of your other products.
At the End of the Day, Selling a High-Quality Dietary Supplement is King in the Nutraceuticals Industry
There are several platforms other than Amazon through which you can market and sell your supplements. But at the end of the day, it all boils down to a good quality supplement. Your marketing efforts will pay off if your consumers find value in your product! It is always suggested to hire a competent contract manufacturer to help you get through every step of the way.
NutraScience Labs has 50+ years of experience in the nutraceutical industry, offer competitive price quotes and lead times, and delivers unmatched flavoring and production capabilities. We’ve helped over 1,800 brand owners create high-quality dietary supplement products – and now we want to do the same for you! Call 855-492-7388 to speak with one of our production specialists or send us your request to receive a free manufacturing price quote!