Tough times imparted valuable lessons to the health and wellness industry, say respondents to SN Whole Health’s annual WH Asks poll. After a few sobering years that saw the recession and its aftereffects play out, companies have fought back with go-to-market strategies that are anything but niche.
“Supermarket retailers are pricing more aggressively to compete in this space, reducing the historical premium associated with these sales,” noted one respondent.
Fueling these efficiencies is renewed consumer interest in standards like organic, which 42% of polltakers picked as the health and wellness topic with the most consumer awareness. Specialty products like gluten-free and functional also continue to generate excitement, with benefits making their way into many leading brands.
“More health and wellness attributes are being added to mainstream products,” another respondent wrote.
Mirroring this momentum, however, are concerns both practical and ideological. Some think the growth of health and wellness overshadows its low volume. Others believe there’s a lack of integrity in labels like “natural” and “local” that could undermine the movement.
“Consumers still respond to the word ‘natural’ as a positive, but the word is meaningless,” observed one of those polled.
Such concerns are nothing new, but they become more of a liability as consumer awareness spreads to cover more mainstream shoppers. So while business is booming once again, a bit of housekeeping may be in order to prevent another dreaded downturn.