2022 China Health Supplements Market: Monthly Updates
It’s been almost 2 years since TMO debuted our first Data Pack series in 2020, which focus on the China Cross-border Health Supplement market, covering key data like China’s best-selling supplements each month. It’s been a great success so far and building on that success, we’re continuing to launch new Data Packs for this market every month in 2023, and this blog acts as a one-stop hub for each new release. Check back here each month for the latest update. And in the meantime, check out some of the highlights of those we’ve released already below!
After the Double 11 extravaganza, the overall sales performance of the e-commerce market in December will inevitably decline, and the overseas health supplement industry is no exception. But at the same time, affected by the circular on further optimizing the COVID-19 response in China, the demand for immunity-enhancing supplements and other related health care products surged. In this situation, we found some highlights of categories, products and brands.
Key takeaways from December:
Endocrine supplements are gaining popularity. Their market share increased from 8.7% in September to 19.9% in December, surpassing beauty and nutrition supplements (16.6%), making endocrine supplements the most popular category. Leading brand among producers of endocrine products is Funrich, accounting for about one-third of the market share. In terms of subcategories inside of endocrine supplements, blood sugar control has the biggest share, 53%.
DHA algae oil products are gradually becoming popular among the consumers. DHA, one of the Omega-3 unsaturated fatty acids, often known as “brain gold”, is claimed to strengthen the brain, stimulate visual and intellectual growth. Three of the top five products in December are DHA algal oil products. Among those, the most popular are DHA capsules from Reaps.
Immunity boosting supplements, such as vitamin C, are selling like hotcakes.Vitamin C sales increased 581.6% year-on-year and 268.5% month-on-month. Sharp increase in consumer demand for vitamin C and other health care products can be linked to the Chinese government releasing a circular on further optimizing the COVID-19 response. According to experts, an appropriate amount of vitamin C intake can boost human immunity.
Lung health supplements show enormous potential. The most popular product of respiratory nutrition supplements has quercetin as a main ingredient, a popular component for many lung health products. In December, quercetin products sales climbed by 82% year on year and 89% month on month, its market share increased from 0.3% a year ago to 3% today. As domestic epidemic control is gradually relaxed, lung health supplements are posed to gain customers’ attention in the coming months.
It has been more than a month since the Double 11 promotion in 2022 ended, and various industries have ushered in the peak of annual sales. For overseas health supplements, an industry with unlimited potential that has continued to develop rapidly in recent years, there will naturally be many highlights in the November sales data to be explored. So which health supplements are the most popular? If you want to know more, download our monthly data pack for November 2022!
As special edition, TMO added the following contents in November data pack:
2022 Tmall Double 11 Top Product List: from the list you can know which overseas health supplements sell the best on Tmall (Tmall supermarket excluded) during the promotion period (24 October – 11 November).
Top Brand Case Studies(* premium version only): covers five hot-selling brands’ sales data, including brand vs. flagship store sales trend, price range, sub-category market share and top products.
Key takeaways from Double 11:
In terms of brand, Swisse is still the best-selling brand, over 2.5 times that of Funrich, the second best-selling brand. FANCL is the only brand from Japan in the top ten of the brand list, and the best-selling products of this brand in November are mainly multivitamin/mineral products.
Beauty supplements still occupy the first place in sub-category sales, but their share has decreased by 10.2% from the previous month to 17.8%. Heart health and bone joints, which ranked second and fourth, performed outstandingly in November. Not only did their sales volume exceed the beauty supplements category, but their sales revenue increased by 127% and 140% month-on-month. It can be seen that during autumn and winter, when cardiovascular disease and osteoarthritis are prevalent, consumers tend to buy healthcare supplements for prevention.
People are increasingly interested in certain health supplements that improve immunity and strengthen the body as a result of the COVID epidemic condition. Compared with the sales in October, sales of B vitamins, vitamin C and multivitamins/minerals in November increased by 90%, 118% and 107%, respectively.
The pandemic’s impact on people’s mental health cannot be overstated. Many people have been experiencing negative emotions such as depression and anxiety. According to scientific evidence, supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids can help during depression. In November, fish oil products containing omega-3 fatty acids are also popular among consumers.
Starting from October 20, major domestic e-commerce platforms have successively launched the “Double 11” promotion pre-sale, which marks the prologue of “Double 11” battlefield. According to the data, the pre-sale of Tmall’s overseas health supplement market has reached 420 million CNY, as of October 31. Was the overseas health supplement market affected by the pre-sale promotion in October? Which health care product categories were more popular among consumers in October? For the upcoming “Double 12” promotion, the sales estimates in October also has some important reference value. To learn more, please download our monthly data pack for October 2022!
Key takeaways from October:
Overall, the overseas health supplements market grew moderately in October, with total sales revenue reaching about 2.85 billion CNY, the highest value this year. In addition, the overall average price is 348.92 CNY, also the highest this year.
In October, the sales of endocrine products reached a new peak, with a market share of 13.6%. Among them, the sales of blood sugar conditioning products, increased by 409% month-on-month. Additionally, urea conditioning products performed well. A plant essence composite tablet from BOOMHUE reached the first place in the endocrine product sales ranking.
The sales champion in October is a ginseng complex capsule from Meijia Nutrition Life. The average price is as high as 7,007 CNY, far exceeding the price of the other top five best-selling products. It is a beauty product with a high-end luxury concept. The rare ginseng it contains can help repair telomeres and protect the skin.
In terms of brands, Funrich from the USA performed outstandingly. The brand has rich product lines, covering young to middle-aged and elderly consumers. Their products, that prevent hypertension, nourish the liver and lungs are welcomed by the consumers. In the October market, Funrich’s main sales product is the small molecule saponin blood sugar capsule, which is mainly used to regulate blood sugar.
Farewell to the hot summer, we ushered in the autumn. However, autumn is a season of high incidence of infectious diseases. In addition to adjusting diet, people usually buy and take health supplements to improve their physical fitness. So which health supplements are the most popular? After the sales slump in July/August, how did the overseas health supplement market change during the previous month? After processing and analyzing the sales data of September, we found that there are many bright spots in the best-selling products, brands and sub-categories. To know more, please download our monthly data pack for September 2022!
Key takeaways from September:
In general, the overseas health supplements market began to pick up significantly in September. Although the number of SKUs has decreased compared to August, the overall sales reached about 2.6 billion CNY, which is close to the “6.18 promotion”.
The share of oral beauty supplements still ranks first this month, up nearly 2% compared to the previous month. The top 5 products by sales are all beauty products, 4 of them are focusing on the freckle removal, with the product price being in the 700-900 yuan range. The popularity of endocrine products has rebounded significantly this month. Among them, the maca extract, used for nourishing the kidney and strengthening the body, sales of these products increased by 115% compared to August. Another product that had a significant increase in sales numbers is uric acid conditioning food: 90% growth compared to August.
In terms of brands, VitaHealth from Australia has caught up in September and has reached the second place in the total brand sales list. Its sugar control products have attracted the attention of consumers in September. Founded in 1947, VitaHealth is a science-based nutritional supplement company focused on research and development of high-quality, high-purity products.
Looking at the country of origin, the sales volume of the US and Australian products are similar. In terms of monthly revenue, however, American items generate almost 2.5 times that of Australian, indicating that the average unit price of products from the US is still much higher than that of Australia.
After the 6.18 promotion last month, sales in July naturally declined. However, some areas in China were still affected by the pandemic, with occasional small-scale outbreaks in some communities. Consequently, most people still tend to take their health conditions seriously and purchasing health supplements is one of the actions taken. Therefore, in short, the sales didn’t see a big drop in July.
Key takeaways from July:
The popularity of enzyme products has picked up in July. These products mainly contain bifidobacterium and lactobacillus, as well as arginine, soybean lecithin and coenzyme q10, which can play a role in regulating immunity.
NMN products remain popular in China. Esmond’s NMN18000 was the best seller in July and its NMN12000 was also on the top-selling list. The average unit price of NMN’s products is as high as 3,000-4,000 yuan. The consumer group is mostly women from first-tier cities with good financial abilities and the willingness to make investment on their internal and external beauty.
According to the price distribution of the top ten brands in July, it can be seen that except for Swisse and Blackmores, whose products are mainly priced between 0-400 yuan, the unit price of the products that contribute the most to the sales of the other eight brands is more than 800 yuan.
From multi-dimensional data, the performance of men health supplements in July was very impressive. From the product point of view, the product with oyster/shellfish extract as the main ingredient ranked first in terms of sales volume, and the monthly sales revenue of Esmond ranked second among all brands. From the perspective of sub-categories, endocrine supplements have a gratifying sales performance this month, ranking fifth in all sub-categories, and four of the top five products are for men’s health.
Influenced by the epidemic situation since April, this year’s 618 promotion is very challenging for both merchants and consumers. On one hand, consumers pay more attention to physical health, with their increasing demand for health supplements. On the other hand, the delay or even stagnation of logistics makes many impatient consumers choose to give up purchasing. Under such contradictions, how did the overseas health supplements market perform in June?
As special edition, we added the following contents in June data pack:
2022 Tmall 618 Top Product List: from the list you can know which overseas health supplements sell the best on Tmall (Tmall supermarket excluded) during the promotion period (Jun 1st – Jun 20th).
Top Brand Case Studies(* premium version only): covers five hot-selling brands (Esmond, Life Space, Doppel Herz, WHC, Pola) sales data, including brand vs. flagship store sales trend, price range, sub-category market share and top products.
Key takeaways from 6.18:
Overall, the sales of overseas health supplement market in June increased compared to May, with sales revenue of about $2.7 billion yuan. The prices of products were mostly distributed between RMB 100-400 and RMB 1,000-4,000.
Life Space, an Australian professional probiotics brand, has emerged in June with a number of products in the probiotics category that are popular among consumers and occupy two of the top five best-selling products.
Under the continuous influence of the epidemic, the sales of health supplements with the functions of enhancing immunity and physical constitution have increased significantly.
Despite the rise of niche brands, Swisse is still the most purchased brand by consumers, and its sales revenue is 2.2 times higher than the second-ranked brand Reaps. On the top five monthly sales list, Swisse occupies two seats.
As a result of the epidemic, Shanghai is still in lockdown in May, while the epidemic is also showing an outbreak in some areas of Beijing. Therefore, in the general environment of the epidemic, people will pay more attention to their physical quality, in addition to working out more, buying health supplements is also a good way.
Key takeaways from May:
Overall, the overseas health supplement market fell back in May compared to April, with sales of around $2 billion yuan. Most of the products were priced between RMB100-400 and RMB1,000-4,000. Most of the top five brands in terms of sales volume were more affordable and well-known brands such as Swisse and byhealth, with the main price range being between $200-400.
The sales leader in May was Scophil’s SCOPHIL deto Internal Power 9000+. This brand from Japan is dedicated to the industries that are intrinsically linked to human health, restoring healthy function and status at the root.
Amidst the onslaught of products, Swisse remained the brand with the highest sales revenue, which was approximately 2.2 times higher compared to the second place Reaps and the sales volume was approximately 3.25 times higher compared to the second place Fancl.
In terms of the distribution of products by country of origin, more than 30% of the products came from the USA and Australia. Consumers are more familiar with brands from these two countries and the products have a high category coverage and a wider price distribution.
Affected by the sudden outbreak of the epidemic, Shanghai was shrouded in the shadow of the lockdown throughout April, and all the Shanghainese were quarantined at home. Online grocery shopping, group purchases, and covid tests have become daily routines, and in order to be in pink health, at-home workout is essential. Although Shanghai’s logistics was stagnant, the overseas health supplement market began to pick up in April. Consumers in many other provinces and cities became aware of the crisis and began to stock up on health products to in case their city is locked down.
Key takeaways from April:
After the sluggish months of February and March, the overseas health supplement market began to pick up, with sales reaching 2.6 billion yuan in April. Oral beauty supplementsare still the most popular category, with a further increase in market share to 25.6%. The top five products by sales revenue are all beauty products, with the Nad+ supplements and whitening pills from the US brand Meherb occupying two seats.
In terms of brands, the American brand WDCYH emerged in April and became the second best-selling brand after Swisse. Many of its products, including Nad+ supplements, selenium tablets and lutein, were popular among consumers. Founded in 1989, WDCYH is a science-based nutritional supplement company focused on developing products of high quality and purity.
Under the continuous influence of the epidemic, the sales of health supplements with the effect of enhancing immunity have increased significantly in the past year. Compared with April last year, sales of B vitamins, multivitamins, calcium tablets and fish oil products increased by 84.2%, 30%, 57.9% and 122.8% year-on-year respectively.
In April, among the products in the bone and joint health category, the products with the first and fourth sales werecalcium for children/teenagers. Many parents in China are very concerned about the height of their children. In addition to making their children drink more milk and exercise more often, the specialized calcium products are gradually favored by parents, and many of them respond that the effect is visible after their kids consuming the products for a while.
Since March, the epidemic situation in China has been serious. First, there was a large outbreak in Jilin Province, and then came the rapid fall of Shanghai, the capital of finance. For all Chinese, there is no doubt that they have ushered in a huge challenge both physically and mentally. During this period, everyone will pay more attention to their own health. In addition to frequent workout, purchasing health supplements can also be an important approach.
Key takeaways from March:
Overall, the overseas health supplement market in March slightly underperformed compared with February, with sales of about 2.4 billion yuan. The prices of products are mostly distributed between 100-400 yuan and 1,000-4,000 yuan. Among the top ten brands in terms of sales revenue, most of them are niche brands with higher unit prices, and the sales of products over 800 yuan account for 80% or more of brand sales.
Oral beauty supplements remain the most popular sub-category among consumers, with a market share of 24.5%. High-end products and new beauty ingredients are gradually favored by beauty lovers. The price range of products with the highest sales in this category is 1,000-2,000 yuan. Four of the top five best-sellers have unit prices over 10,000 yuan.
NMN products are becoming more and more popular in China. Fmuke’s NMN18000 was the product with the highest sales in March, while Esmond and Slekan were also among the top five in the monthly sales revenue list. The average unit price of NMN’s products is as high as 3,000-4,000 yuan, and most of the consumers are young and middle-aged women who have certain financial ability and are concerned about their health and quality of life. The majority of them are white-collar workers in first-tier and new first-tier cities.
February encountered the Spring Festival in China. Although affected by the epidemic, many people working away from home chose to go back and reunite with their families. During the Chinese New Year, most logistics companies are out of service with consumers’ enthusiasm for shopping online diminished. Although February is usually the trough month for the health supplement market, we still found that a few categories, products and brands stood out and achieved sales growth month-on-month.
Key takeaways from February:
The sales revenue in February this year is a bit higher on a year-over-year basis though it’s usually the lowest within the whole year. Among the subcategories, endocrine products have been selling well for months and Reap’s oyster tabletis the monthly best-selling product. Meanwhile, it shows an upward trend in the sales of eye products with lutein as the main ingredient. In addition, the sales of sleep management products are also quite good, and non-melatonin ingredients such as GABA and plant extracts are recognized and chosen by more consumers.
In terms of products’ country of origin, the monthly sales of products from US surpassed Australia in both volume and revenue in February. Consumers are familiar with and willing to buy from various American brands. Among them, the contribution of Reaps is indispensable, and its monthly sales hit a new high, with a month-on-month increase of 96%. On the other side, when buying Australian products, people generally choose to buy from Swisse, Blackmores or Life Space.
Probiotic has been one of the most popular nutritional contents. Judging from the characteristics of best-selling products, some specific probiotics are favored by consumers, such as Lactobacillus, which is particularly important for women’s health, and Bifidobacterium B420, which can help with weight loss.
Regarding brands, Biowell from Singapore had an impressive performance in February. The brand is committed to the research and development of healthy, natural, safe and effective oral bioremediation products. Its star product, Biowell Citrus Polyphenol 211K, had a monthly sales volume of 20,000 pieces in February. In addition, its Iranian saffron pills and sheep placenta capsules for women’s health also achieved high sales.
Entering 2022, as the first month after the Double 11 and Double 12 promotions, the overall performance of the health supplement market in January inevitably experienced a certain decline. However, early February coincided with the Chinese New Year, and many young people who returned to their hometown to celebrate the New Year chose to buy some health products for their parents and relatives as Spring Festival gifts.
Key takeaways from January:
BYHEALTH’s liver protection tablet was the sales champion in the first month of 2022, with its sales revenue and sales volume far ahead of the second. The product is rich in milk thistle extract which is effective in supporting the liver health. Its boost in sales is in line with the trend of more and more young people in China working overtime and staying up late. The market share of the sub-category of digestive supplements, to which thistle products belong, increased significantly in January as a whole. In addition to BYHEALTH, Swisse’s liver detox sells well all year around.
From brand perspective, the US brand Reaps suddenly emerged last December, occupying three seats on the list of best-selling products, and it continued to be in great demand in January, with its two main products stayed among top 5. At the same time, Esmond, which also performed well in December, became the runner-up in brand sales in January. In addition, the brand Snowson showed its market potential, with its Nad+ and collagen products being the top two of its category in January sales.
Omega-3 fatty acids are important for maintaining cardiovascular health, with fish oil products being one of the best-selling health supplements. Judging from the sub-category sales in January, krill oil, which is an “advanced version of fish oil”, occupies three of the top five best-selling products list. It shows that Chinese consumers are becoming more sophisticated and demanding. They are willing to spend more money to buy omega-3 products of high quality and purity for themselves and their elderly families.
Sleep management supplements is a new sub-category in January. Poor sleep quality is indeed a problem that many people urgently need to solve nowadays, and it has greatly boosted the sales of melatonin in China’s market. Meanwhile, GABA, another scientifically proven effective ingredient for promoting sleep, has been known and chosen by more and more consumers in recent years because it has fewer side effects than melatonin.
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