China now has the world’s second-largest cosmetics market, lagging behind only the US. Sales of cosmetics and personal-care items across the mainland are expected to top US$39 billion in 2018, compared with $71 billion in the US. Given China’s much larger population, the actual spend per person is relatively modest at about $28 per capita. Chinese market looks attractive for foreign brands, but all new cosmetics, body care or hair care brand face with China government regulation for import brands entering the Chinese market.
Cosmetic products in China are divided into two categories: non-special use cosmetics (non-SUC) and special use cosmetics (SUC):
- Non-special use cosmetics that include hair care, nail care, skincare, perfumes, and makeup.
- Special use cosmetics that include namely products for hair growth, hair dye, hair perm, hair removal, breast shaping, fitness, deodorizing, spot removal, whitening and sunscreen protection.
Before being used, marketed or imported into China, all cosmetic products must get approval from the CFDA (China Food and Drug Administration), but the requirements for getting approval differ not only between the categories but also between imports and domestics. The duration of CFDA testing and approval depends on the cosmetics type and starts from 9 months at least.
Companies shall also check if there is any new ingredient in their product. A new ingredient that is not currently listed on the Inventory of Existing Cosmetic Ingredients in China (IECIC) also requires registration with CFDA. However, a new ingredient might not require registration if there is proof that the ingredient has been used in approved cosmetics in China before. It can be very difficult and expensive to register a new ingredient.
HOW TO “TASTE” CHINESE MARKET WITHOUT SPENDING HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR CERTIFICATION?
GMA offers a perfect solution for new body care and hair care brands: open your own flagship store on the cross-border e-commerce platform and avoid all the long and expansive process of CFDA certification.
You can get our white paper about cross-border e-commerce in China (contact me on Linkedin)
WHAT IS EXACTLY CROSS-BORDER E-COMMERCE?
Cross-border e-commerce is defined as import and export activities of cross-border trade conducted through e-commerce methods by transaction subjects from different customs borders. It is mainly classified into B2B and B2C.
Today, e-commerce in China become a big tool for purchasing. Because Chinese people middle class is increasing, they can buy more expensive products. The more important access to information opens their minds to other countries. They want better quality products. They want to show their purchasing power to others. The reason why cross-border e-commerce increase as fast.
WHY CROSS-BORDER E-COMMERCE PLATFORMS ARE THE BEST CHOICE FOR A NEW BODY AND HAIR CARE BRANDS IN CHINA?
Using cross-border e-commerce platform body care and hair care brands don’t need to apply for CFDA certification, all the products can be delivered to Chinese consumers from abroad or from the Chinese free trade zone located in China, Mainland. The advantage of this type of sells allows brands to avoid a long process of CFDA approval and a standard custom clearance process.
Each item is bought by Chinese consumers go through the “easy” process of customs clearance for each customer without a bunch of documents required for the standard process of import.
WHICH E-COMMERCE PLATFORMS COULD YOU CHOOSE?
You could find different platforms, popular among Chinese consumers and then offer different benefits for you. The most popular platform is Kaola.com. Tmall, the giant of e-commerce is in the second place. You have also platforms such as JD, Little Red Book, Yangmatou and etc.
Kaola.com is a website, launched in 2015, is today the most important cross-border e-commerce platform in China. At the beginning it was only a platform for Australian retailers, to sell their products in China. Now, all foreign retailers are allowed to sell on that platform. You can see more than 40 countries now sell their products through the Kaola platform.
XiaoHongShu (Little Red Book) is a little bit different than the other platforms. The site is a mix between a social media app and an e-commerce platform. The platform is relatively new, it was launch in 2014, but, has already a user base of over 25 million people.
The particular mix of the site allows users to post pictures of their purchases to their communities. They can purchase and chat directly on the same site. On XiaoHingShu, cosmetics and beauty products are very popular because most of the users are young women between 18-30 years old.
Tmall Global is the most important platform in China, but it’s also reserved for the most successful players. In most cases, brands are rejected by Tmall (85%). Tmall only selects brands that already have a strong image, reputation and do significant sales from China. If you start launching your cross-border e-commerce it will be difficult to start with Tmall.
THE SECRET WEAPON TO MARKET ANY HIGH-END SHAMPOO BRANDS IN CHINA IS THIS
HOW WE CAN HELP:
- Choose the right platform to start selling to China
- Set up and design of your flagship store
- Store management and 24/7 customer service
- Promotion, contests, and events
A MARKETING AGENCY TO ENTER THE CHINESE MARKET
Please contact us for more information about how we can help your business. We look forward to discussing your project.