I use social media and my website to reach out to customers. I use Instagram Stories a lot in my business. I share my product details with a Swipe Up option that takes them to my website, from where they can easily purchase the product. The team at Zoho Commerce is amazing, and the personal touch they bring during the interaction makes a lot of difference. I feel comfortable working with Zoho.
CEO, Nature Foody to Your Skin
Nature has an answer to all issues related to health and beauty. Proof of that idea is Nature Foody to Your Skin, an India-based beauty and grooming business founded and run by Roshini Jerald, which has been providing natural solutions for more than five years. With a wide range of scrubs and nourishing serums to soaps and body care products, Nature Foody ensures that their customer's skin care routine is taken of in the most natural way possible. The significance of grooming and skin care in today's world can be understood when Roshini says, "People are fond of their skin—even before they know your name, they see your face."
Roshini began her business while in college. It was a personal problem that opened the door to her profession. "I had issues with my skin when I was in college," she says. "I consulted a dermatologist, but the problem persisted. I tried out a few organic alternatives and some DIY solutions. After a few days, it gave me good results."
This changed the road ahead for Roshini. "I was planning on becoming a teacher. But organic skin care caught my interest, and I wanted to know more about the formulations." She then went to study about organic beauty products and soap making in Myanmar and Thailand. "Skin care is a vast topic and one diploma isn't enough. I kept learning more."
Things were not quite rosy when Roshini began her work. "I didn't really think of starting a business," she says. "I prepared a few formulations, and my friends seemed to like it as it worked well for them. I was encouraged to keep going ahead. After all, I had put in quite a lot of effort in learning skin care formulations professionally. I started it and began selling my products on Instagram."
Initially, things moved at a snail's pace for Nature Foody at one order per week. Roshini was also simultaneously attending college and almost decided to hang up her boots. "I had purchased several bottles for packaging in bulk so that I could procure them at an inexpensive rate. But with sales of two bottles per week, those bottles were just lying there piled up. I was preparing the formulations, packing them, and also answering the queries. I had my hands full."
But good word about Roshini's products began to spread soon, and she began getting a few more orders. "I'd asked the customers to pay online, but I was unable to issue them an invoice and confirm payment as it was all being done manually by me." Roshini knew that a solution was needed to make the process smoother for her to scale up her business.
She got a website built from the scratch but soon faced some expected problems. The people who developed it began stealing her data and her customers were getting mailers degrading Nature Foody. Roshini decided to shut down the website and began looking for alternative platforms. A friend of hers introduced her to Zoho Commerce.
This was a challenging for Roshini and her business, but things began looking up soon.
Solution and Benefits
Roshini needed a website for her business, which she knew would make things better not only for her as a business owner but also change the experience of her customers. She tried Zoho Commerce and in just three weeks, her online store was ready.
"While, the customers were happy as it was now convenient to browse through the products, place their orders and get timely updates. I felt assured that we now had a process in place and my manual intervention was not necessary," she says. Soon after the launch of her website, she saw the revenue grow by 50%.
Two years back, Roshini had a different set of challenges, what with her website data being at risk. Over time, she solved them by moving to Zoho. While the learning curve has been steep, she believes that had she known better in the early days, photography and design were aspects she'd have paid more attention to.
"My finances were limited when I started off. In the early days, you don't think much about photography as you are quite focused on getting the product right. But aspects like photos, design, and packaging add so much more value," she says.
In general, the cosmetic industry was not doing well after the onset of the pandemic with lockdowns being imposed in several countries. But Nature Foody to Your Skin was able to beat the gloom quite successfully. The beauty and grooming industry is going through sweeping changes, and all for the right reasons. As per Statista report, revenue in the Beauty and Personal Care market amounts to $22,338 million in
2021 and is expected to grow annually by 6.95%. The report further cites that the global male grooming market will reach around USD 81.2 billion by 2024. These factors make the beauty & cosmetics industry a challenging and exciting space to be in. "There are several big names and they are also entering the organic space," Roshini says.
"I did not have much knowledge when I started on this road but did several courses and experiments before I decided to launch the products. Know your ingredients and your formulations; only then you will have the knowledge to come up with the right answers and solutions before your customer. Trial and error requires patience, but it is worth the wait. This year, I am starting with international shipments, and that is a big leap forward since I began this."
Roshini plans to switch completely to eco-friendly options and wants to make it more accessible for people. "That will happen when I can ensure it reaches more countries. I feel Indian organic brands maintain a low profile whereas India is home to the finest herbs the world. Many international brands use Indian raw materials and successfully sell their products worldwide. We need more intelligent marketing to ensure that Indian brands also can draft their success stories worldwide."