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How to Sell Private Label Supplements on Amazon
Stay on top of the latest e-commerce and marketplace trends.
In the U.S., retail e-commerce sales of health, personal care, and beauty products are on pace to exceed $53 billion in 2019, which represents nearly 20% growth over the last year. Within that space, savvy enterprise sellers on Amazon are flocking to vitamins and supplements particularly. Why is this the case?
These items, which include niche dietary supplements, herbal supplements, and sports nutrition products, are becoming more popular for several reasons. First, consumers are seeking to become more conscious of their health and wellness in general, stimulating an ever-increasing interest in recreational fitness, more active lifestyles, and preventative healthcare.
Additionally, an aging population allows demand to remain stable for multivitamins and condition-specific supplements. If consumers are sold on your value proposition, they will likely return to reorder the vitamins or supplements once their current product runs out. Lastly, the vitamin and supplement industry is a beacon for growth — this segment of the aforementioned mega-category is slated to reach nearly $32 billion this year.
For those private label sellers willing to conquer the intricate rules and regulations, growing level of competition, and high barrier to entry for these products on the Amazon marketplace, vitamins and supplements symbolize a lucrative opportunity.
Know the Rules and Regulations, and Remain Compliant With Amazon
While Amazon has an extensive compliance checklist for vitamins and supplements, here are a few of the most important requirements to keep in mind when entering this Amazon category and building out your listings:
- First and foremost, make sure to comply with all federal, state, and local laws and Amazon policies applicable to vitamins and supplements.
- Make sure your supplements are new, unused, and sealed in the original manufacturer’s packaging. They must clearly display the manufacturer or distributor codes, such as lot numbers or serial numbers.
- Supplements must be labeled in English with the following information: the name of the dietary supplement; the total quantity or amount (such as 100 tablets or 5 milligrams); a “Supplement Facts” panel; the ingredients list; and the name and address of the manufacturer, packer, or distributor.
- The products must not state that the products cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent a disease in humans unless that statement is FDA approved. This also applies to the product detail page copy.
- Supplements must not be named in an FBA recall or safety alert, and they can not contain ingredients prohibited by the FDA.
- On the other hand, supplements must not use the FDA logo or claim that they are FDA approved. The labels can not state any language such as “tester,” or “not for retail sale.” These same requirements apply to the copy you populate on the product detail pages.
- Product detail pages for vitamins and supplements must include the name of the supplement and the ingredient list, including an image of said list from the product label. This requirement likely steers counterfeit merchants who sell unauthorized ingredients that can lead to serious health risks from participating.
- Listings must not include disease names in the keywords or claim that the products produce an effect similar to that of an anabolic steroid, such as “Legal Steroids.”
- Supplements are considered by Amazon FBA to be subject to expiration, even if an expiration date is not included on the packaging. These products must have a remaining shelf life that includes the consumption period in addition to a 90-day shelf life. For example, a 200-count bottle of supplements must have a remaining shelf life of 200 days, plus an additional 90 days at the time it gets received at a fulfillment center.
Narrow Your Product Options and Find a Private Label Supplement Manufacturer
Before you begin the search for a manufacturer to source your vitamins and supplements from, parse down your list of ideas to come up with a realistic set of products in this category that you intend to sell. Do you want to sell vitamins, supplements, or both? Do you want to specialize in holistic medicine, herbal supplements, fitness-related products, or a mix?
While vitamins are chemical compounds made of essential nutrients, supplements are typically conglomerations of minerals, nutrients, fibers, amino acids, and vitamins together in one product. Supplements typically come in the form of capsules, tablets, energy drinks, bars, or powders.
When beginning the search for the right supplier to fulfill your unique needs, do your research. E-commerce company Alibaba allows you to connect directly with overseas manufacturers that sell like items. You can also attend trade shows in your geographical area to connect with different manufacturers face to face.
In every meeting, be sure to ask for a comprehensive product list, regular pricing and wholesale pricing for bulk deals, shipping discounts, and any minimum order quantities — there are companies out there that will go as low as producing 12 bottles of a private label supplement at the beginning of the partnership.
With consumable products like vitamins and supplements, be on the lookout for manufacturers who are Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) compliant, as well as registered with the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF). Pick suppliers that have extensive experience shipping with FBA and are working with other Amazon retailers and brands, as some will be able to send your product directly to Amazon fulfillment centers, eliminating the costs associated with shipping to you first.
Create a Brand Concept and Design
Talk through your specific vision for your formula, logo, product name, product labels, bottles, and packaging with each supplier to ensure that they can execute on your ideas. Seasoned manufacturers will offer you samples for testing and marketing purposes to make sure both parties are aligned on the final product and packaging. Go with a product name that is short, relevant, and easy to pronounce.
Make sure your branding is consistent across every product you are considering adding to your Amazon catalog, as that will account for a stronger, more seamless consumer experience. Once your new private label supplements have been launched on Amazon, be sure to leverage social media to drive off-Amazon traffic to your product detail pages.
Of the best practices outlined above, however, above all is the importance of being transparent with customers, as you are dealing with products that they are going to consume. Provide ample information and any value-added benefits or product features that will help inform their purchase decisions and make them trust you.
As healthy eating habits and active lifestyles continue to gain traction, the market for vitamins and supplements on Amazon will remain lucrative. In your private label venture, be sure to source quality products, stay in line with federal and Amazon-specific regulations, and stay true to your brand across all channels.