The United Kingdom is one of the most dynamic markets for salon hair care products in Europe, experiencing robust growth year over year. It is also a country to watch for new trends that eventually make their way into other European markets after some delay. Spotting the trends and other key performance indicators will now be much easier with the launch of Kline PRO into the U.K. market. Kline PRO is a revolutionary salon tracking tool that enables users to access the latest sales performance data on the professional hair care industry. The ability to view sales at the product level, based on actual salon transactions, provides meaningful insights to marketers and allows them to manage their business like never before. It is more important now than ever to have fact-based data to understand the salon hair care market. While 85% of product sales remain in the salons, that share may slip as the business continues to change.
Jiri Michal, the project manager for our upcoming publication of the U.K. volume of the Salon Hair Care Global Series, shares some of the key dynamics to watch in this market, some of which are creating challenges for salons.
- Online drives a good portion of purchases for salon hair care products
The most important change in the U.K. professional hair care market is the way consumers are buying products. Online drives professional hair care retail purchases, and big online players, such as Amazon or eBay, are starting to provide good guidance to help consumers to choose the right professional products themselves without further consultation at salons. More competitive prices and convenience are some of the reasons shifting retail purchases from salons to e-commerce.
- Sales outside the salon environment create new growth opportunities for marketers
Retail is a fresh environment for many professional hair care brands, with many of them turning to this channel in search of new opportunities to increase sales when it is difficult to do so within salons. While some brands are afraid of losing their professional image by taking this route, others turned this into great success. An example of such a brand is Kérastase by L´Oréal, which is successfully driving its sales through e-retail. The first edition of Professional Hair Care Retailing: Channel Analysis and Opportunities will take a deep dive into the retail space to reveal the channel’s sales and developments, as well as some successful brands’ stories and selected retailer profiles.
- Brands that speak the language of millennials and generation Z
Millennials and generation Z are becoming key targets of the industry. Social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest, has given brands a whole new way to connect and engage with these target groups. KMS from Kao is a good example of a brand re-starting its growth by adjusting its marketing mix to these groups. It underwent a complete relaunch in March 2017, simplifying its name from KMS California just to KMS, redesigning its whole portfolio, improving product formulae, adjusting its distribution model, and, most importantly, changing the way it communicates. Quick reaction to the latest trends and consumers’ needs is a brand mantra now.
- Natural professional hair care products continue to thrive
Consumers are increasingly searching for less harmful products that are environmentally friendly or have a sustainable approach, whether in the mass or professional segment. Although interest in the topic is growing significantly, the natural products segment remains relatively small, accounting for approximately 5% of salon hair care professional business. Historically formed by small brands, this quickly growing double-digit market turns into an opportunity for larger companies who continue to enter the segment. Davines, with its sustainable positioning, is a recent example of a smaller player growing swiftly in the U.K. market. On the other hand, L´Oréal represents a large player focusing successfully on this segment recently with Kérastase Aura Botanica and Matrix Biloage R.A.W.
- Scalp care remains one of consumers’ top concerns when it comes to hair
Scalp care, specifically hair loss or scalp irritation, continues to raise interest among consumers; however, like natural products, it is still a nascent segment. The lack of hairdressers’ knowledge as well as proper in-salon technology to diagnose consumers’ issues are some of the main challenges that continue to hold this segment back. Despite this, scalp care grows by several percent in 2017 and is seen as an incremental revenue opportunity thanks to consumers’ tendency to rather trust their hairdressers than an unknown shop assistant.
More on the salon hair care market in the United Kingdom can be found in our soon-to-be-published Salon Hair Care Global Series report, covering 26 countries in-depth to reveal the industry’s most coveted trends and dynamics, as well as to provide marketers independent and trustworthy data and insights for their business strategies. The report is accompanied by an online database featuring various sales breakdowns and filtering capabilities.