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Go Private, and Label It Right!

Exploring the private label strategy, here are six product categories that could create a win-win situation for an aspiring entrepreneur

India has become a growing hub of private labels across different categories. Naturally, it becomes a level playing field for private brands with voluminous growth opportunities. Business owners have significant scope to experiment and diversify their product categories. One of the most prominent reasons for retailers to include private labels in their retail strategy is the extreme profitability and high discoverability of these brands, obtainable at zero marketing and distribution costs. However, there are some factors that business owners and category heads must consider before putting their innovation cap on.

Indian Consumer Demographics

India has the largest population of youth in an ageing world. By 2022, the average median age of India will be 28. So, what would that mean for private brands? The millennial mindset is futuristic and aspirational. Brands need to offer authenticity and value-based products to this demographic. Furthermore, businesses that are currently present in the offline store fronts will also need to establish an online presence, as half a billion population in India is internet-savvy.

An Alternate Choice

In popular opinion, private labels are often considered as the cheaper alternative of premium brands. Consumers associate product pricing with the quality to understand brand importance while making a purchase. This is where the retailers will have to tread carefully with the low price strategy for their private labels. Particularly in the high involvement category, the consumer might not be able to substantiate the quality of the product based on the price alone and will, therefore, continue opting for national brands.

The Relationship Factor

Researchers have found that store brands have a favourable impact on the retailer’s image and vice versa. Private label brands that gain certain popularity among the buyers can enhance the credibility of their retailer. Similarly, a retailer’s image can influence the buyer’s purchase behaviour towards their store brands.

Packaging: The Real Hero

It is safe to say that innovative packaging is the only tool that brands need to market their private labels. Premium packaging is what sets PLB a class apart from national brands. Big retailers are already relying on cutting-edge packaging to enhance their brands. The biggest IP of any private label is its bouquet of distinguishable characteristics and innovative packaging is the best way to ensure that. Experts claim that the following elements of premium packaging should be taken into consideration while designing a product – convenience, consumer health and wellness, eco-friendly packaging, durability and technical design innovation.

Now that we have covered the scope and challenges involving a PLB, let’s dive into the most trending product ideas for starting a successful line of private labels:

Product Ideas

There are many reasons why private labels are the cornerstones of any retail or brand marketing strategy. One in particular is that private labels are getting picked up from shelves faster than ever and are beating premium brands in that order. However, many products end up being a ‘hit and miss’ opportunity. The following list is ideal for both big and small businesses that aspire to launch their private labels.

Here then are some of the most trending ideas to get you started:

  1. Cosmetics and Skin Care: If you are betting big on private labels then you might as well go all out with your line of cosmetics and skin care products. The Indian market is the most ideal space to establish a private label in this segment. The margins are insane and most cosmetic products that are out there are not suitable for the Indian complexion. The scope for customisation and innovation is abundant in this category. Examples of products you can launch in this category include cruelty-free makeup, vegan makeup, charcoal-based beauty products, essential oils, etc.
  2. Organic and Eco-Friendly Products: The gen-next is well and truly aware of what they want and brands are paying close attention to that. For instance, with the massive outbreak of wildfires and global pollution crisis, people are becoming environmentally conscious. The coming era will be dominated by eco-friendly and organic products and it will be a sure-shot win for your business in the times to come. Examples of products you can launch in this category include water bottles, organic food, reusable bags, bamboo toothbrush, compostable plates, etc.
  3. Fitness and Wellness: The fitness retail industry in India is currently valued at USD 2.6 billion. The market size is estimated to reach a massive USD 6 billion by 2023. This projection reflects a strong growth opportunity for players in the fitness and wellness market. Examples of products you can launch in this category include food supplements, keto snacks, yoga accessories, active wear, etc.
  4. Terrariums: City life entails a hassled and congested world where household plants and herbs offer a soothing ambience to calm ruffled nerves. Nowadays, people feel inspired to grow greenery around them in the form of mini gardens, desk plants and household decor.
  5. Packaged Food: It’s been done time and again and then some more. The most plausible and doable items are in the packaged food category. With the right packaging and labelling, these products can not only be scalable but also desired by a majority of consumers. The market size of packaged food is the third-largest in India. Examples of products you can launch in this category include organic baby food, custom sweets, matcha green tea, snacks, etc.
  6. Apparel and Accessories: The clothing industry has already garnered success in the private labels segment. Both online and offline retail businesses have successfully launched their private line of apparel. The average Indian closet has about 100 clothing items and customers love discovering new brands that help them stand out. There is plenty of scope for businesses to diversify into the fashion and apparel line of products. Ideas that would work in this category include cotton shoes, hiking boots, maternity clothing and lounge wear, etc.

These product ideas are among the many that businesses are currently exploring for their private labels and so can you. If you are an innovative entrepreneur who also possesses the tactical know-how, the sky’s the limit for you.



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