Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

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Learn how to create a personal care subscription model for your Shopify store.

Have you ever wondered why some subscription businesses thrive and others fail miserably?

Subscription businesses grow and thrive based on the value you offer to customers. Value-addition boosts customer brand loyalty, and profits.

This is why if you’re in the personal care retail business, you must not ignore a personal care subscription model for your Shopify store. 

There are hundreds of personal care brands on Shopify, including skin care, hair care, oral care, beauty, and cosmetics. 

And with so much competition in this industry, you have to ensure you’re doing subscriptions the right way!

In this blog, you’ll learn how to set up eCommerce subscriptions for personal care products for success.

What are personal care eCommerce subscriptions?

A personal care eCommerce subscription is a model through which customers can buy products on a recurring basis. Products are delivered to customers at predefined intervals, and customers pay fees based on the type of subscription model. Personal care products can be segmented into a few broad categories, such as skincare, hair care, cosmetics and makeup, and oral care. 

Consider these figures from the industry:

  • The beauty subscription market has projected a 26.6% CAGR from 2023 to 2033
  • Currently, the beauty subscription market is valued at $964.1 million
  • The number of users in the personal care market is expected to reach 1.52 billion by 2027
  • More than 50% of consumers subscribe to subscriptions

Here is a graph that shows revenue projection in the personal care market:

Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce


Types of subscriptions for personal care

There are different types of subscription models. eCommerce brands tend to choose the type of model based on the products, customer preferences, and pricing. Let’s look at some of the most common types of subscription models used for personal care products.

Curated subscription box

A curated subscription box model functions on the principle of surprise. Customers get different products in each delivery box. Curated subscriptions are suitable for personal care products such as beauty and makeup. This model provides a better opportunity to introduce new products and samples to customers.


  • You can send personalized products based on customer preferences
  • Easily introduce new products in delivery boxes
  • Gather customer reviews and feedback for new products
  • Add new products frequently to keep customers interested and engaged


Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

Customized subscription box

In the customized subscription box model, customers can choose the products they want. Some customized boxes also offer flexibility, allowing customers to change, add or remove products from the boxes. This is a popular type of subscription used by personal care brands on Shopify.


  • Increased customer satisfaction as a result of the ability to select preferred products
  • Boost the lifetime value of each customer
  • Provide customers with freedom and flexibility

Replenishment subscription model

Personal care products such as body care lotions, soaps, shampoo, conditioner, etc., must be replenished occasionally. Replenishment subscription models automatically send refills on the scheduled date or when customers notify brands about it. 


  • Gives personal care brands a competitive advantage by offering convenience to customers
  • Generate a steady stream of income
  • As demand is predictable, it makes inventory management easier
  • Get subscribers to sample new products easily


Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

Benefits of personal care subscription models?

Ecommerce subscriptions for personal care products have many benefits for customers and brands. We’ve listed some below:


Subscriptions make it easy and convenient for customers to get their required products delivered to their doorstep at specific intervals. Personal care products are recurring purchases. In addition, people prefer to stick to the same products, so getting a subscription works better than placing the same orders repeatedly.

Upselling and cross-selling 

It is easier for personal care brands on Shopify to know their subscribers’ preferences as the engagement is typically for long periods. Therefore, it is possible to upsell and cross-sell. You could use data to know which products to recommend to customers. 

Customers can try new sampler products

There is immense competition in the beauty and personal care industry. Personal care subscription boxes make it easy to introduce new products to long-term customers. For example, you can send surprise samplers in the deliveries or offer discounts on them. You could request product reviews and offer more discounts.

How to set up a personal care eCommerce subscription model for your Shopify store?

Follow this step-by-step guide to set up your personal care subscription box. Apart from the following steps, there are many more aspects that you will have to factor in. However, these are the building blocks that will get you started.

Step 1: Choose the type of subscription model

The first step to setting up your personal care subscription model is to choose a suitable subscription model type. Here are some factors you must consider when selecting the type of subscription:

  • Consider your customers’ preferences. If you’re launching a new subscription model, you could conduct a survey with your existing customers
  • Identify which type of subscription model would work best for your products
  • If you already have a subscription model running and want to change it, identify the aspects that are working well. Then double down on what’s working and change the elements that aren’t. This will help you create your unique subscription model

Step 2: Identify your products

Every vertical within the personal care industry is sizable. Therefore, focusing on a smaller selection of products is crucial when starting ecommerce subscriptions for personal care products. 

There are many benefits of narrowing down and identifying products. For example, it helps you manage the inventory better. 

In addition, you must also identify ‘star products’ — items that are fast-selling, popular, and generate considerable revenue for you. Additionally, you can roll out your subscription services and products gradually. Meaning keep adding new products slowly and steadily.

Here are a few cues for choosing the ideal products for your subscription business:

  • Ask customers to take a survey and list their preferred products
  • Determine your star products—the best-selling products—based on past data 
  • Add new products or discontinue existing ones based on sales and customer feedback

Step 3: Determine the delivery frequency

Subscription deliveries can be made daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc., depending on your goods/services. You must choose the delivery frequencies when setting up your personal care subscription model.

Most personal care products last a few months, for example, if it’s cosmetics, skin care products, etc. Hence, quarterly or half-yearly deliveries would be more suitable. 

However, the delivery duration would also depend on the type of subscription model. For example, you would send surprise items if it is a curated box subscription for makeup. In this case, the delivery frequency could also be monthly, bi-monthly, etc., as people use new makeup products regularly.

Although you may choose the delivery frequency options yourself, asking your customers what they prefer is a good idea. Conversely, you could have many delivery options when you first launch your subscription business and make adjustments based on what’s more in demand.

Another strategy is to make it straightforward by only providing two or three delivery options, then add more later to serve your customers better. 

Step 4: Know your subscription value proposition

The market for personal care products is flooded with subscription options. And so, you must ensure your subscription model stands out if you want to flourish in the market. At this point, introduce your distinctive value proposition—the perks and advantages you provide.  

How to create a value proposition:

  • Before you begin promoting your subscription business, define your value proposition
  • Define your objectives, goals, and brand voice
  • Recognize what your intended audience wants and expects from you
  • Examine the value, advantages, and benefits you can provide to customers

Your value proposition will depend on the following factors:

  • Financial advantages including savings and discounts 
  • Community involvement, special events, etc.
  • Exclusive access to promotions, new collections, etc.
  • Feedback and reviews from customers so they feel like a part of the brand

Step 5: Bring in flexibility and freedom 

At times customers may want to alter their deliveries. For instance, when traveling or, they may want to take a break from the subscription, or just change a few products in their subscription box. 

You can improve personal care subscription box experiences by being flexible. Flexibility can be added throughout the customer experience. Let’s look at some ways to do so:

  • Give customers the option to select the plan they desire and make it simple for them to change their plan
  • Allow customers to add or remove the products and services
  • Make it simple for customers to reach customer service
  • Give customers the freedom to choose their preferred communication channel
  • Make it simple to cancel subscription

Step 6: Determine pricing for your subscriptions

One of the critical factors for the success or failure of subscriptions of personal care brands on Shopify is the pricing. And it takes work to get your subscription pricing strategy right. For example, you might set a low price only to acquire customers, but it could result in losses in the long run.

Your products, services, and business objectives will determine your fees and pricing. For example,

  • Fixed cost: fixed cost pricing is a simple pricing strategy where prices remain constant
  • Tier-based pricing: varying costs for various customers. The tier-based pricing structure performs well when you have a wide range of customers
  • Variable cost: determined by the products and delivery components. Prices of some personal care products may vary depending on factors including availability, season, freshness, expiration dates, etc. The variable pricing strategy works effectively for personal care products. For instance, customers can be charged more when they add additional items

Some factors to consider when pricing your subscription:

  • Consider your competitors’ pricing structure and see how you could beat it
  • Work out your costs and add a profit to it
  • Change your pricing structure frequently to reach pricing that works for you

Step 7: Set up dunning management

Once you figure out the pricing strategy for your personal care subscription model, it’s time to set up dunning management.

But what is dunning management: When a customer’s payment is declined for whatever reason, including expired cards, card decline, payment failure, etc., dunning helps send messages and instructions to customers to take the appropriate action.

Dunning management helps generate more income, save time, and experience less churn. You require an efficient subscription app that includes dunning management features, for example, Appstle Subscription and Loyalty app.

Step 8: Figure out the shipping and delivery requirements

You will need competent shipping partners to manage your personal care subscription model well. Shipping and delivery are crucial elements of subscription businesses. Because no matter how good your products are, your shipping and delivery need to be excellent to ensure good customer experience. 

Take into account the following aspects when selecting a shipping carrier partner:

  • Proper handling and product safety
  • Accountability and prompt delivery
  • Company standing and dependability
  • Location and coverage specialization
  • Technological prowess. For example, do they use apps and can their app integrate into your subscription app
  • Pricing
  • Their capacity to scale as your business grows

Step 9: Set up automated communication

Personal care brands on Shopify with subscriptions aim for long-term customer relationships. Proper communication is a crucial component for retaining customers. Customers expect brands to inform them about their orders, deliveries, new product introductions, etc. To ace communication, you require a subscription app that has automation features.

And these are some of the messages you could automate:

  • Automate messages about order status
  • Install an automated dunning management system
  • Reminders for payments
  • Message about delivery time and changes
  • Thank-you messages

Step 10: Create a landing page for your personal care subscription model

Landing pages help bring traffic to your website and share information with customers. For example, say you have social media posts in which you have added a link to your landing page. Through the link, you can drive customers to the landing page and provide useful information about your personal care subscription.

Include the following elements on your landing page to increase conversions:

  • Information about subscription plans
  • Content that helps consumers in deciding whether to subscribe or not
  • CTA buttons to drive actions
  • Create different sections that gather data, such as geography, demographics, etc.

Step 11: Create a marketing plan for your personal care subscription box

You’ll need to create a marketing strategy to attract new subscribers and retain the current ones if you want to run a profitable subscription business. Include the following elements in your plan for personal care subscription marketing.

  • Offer incentives to new customers, such as offers and discounts
  • Create a rewards or loyalty programme and combine it with the subscription model
  • Create campaigns using a variety of platforms, including social media, SMS, and push notifications
  • Share user-generated content on various platforms, such as social media
  • Collaborate with micro and macro influencers in the personal care industry
  • Run a referral campaign for your current customers
  • Plan offline gatherings exclusively for your subscribers
  • Monitor and optimize your marketing plan

Get started with your personal care subscription model

With the industry growing, you must ensure your personal care subscription model is set up for growth and can withstand the hurdles that may come along the way as you scale. It is essential to have a Shopify subscription app that provides the required features and scalability capacities.

Merely setting up a good subscription model is not enough. It has to be constantly monitored and optimized. Moreover, you must be able to add new features as and when required. To ensure your Shopify subscription model has all these features, explore Appstle Subscriptions and Loyalty app.

Install Appstle Subscription and Loyalty app on your Shopify store today!

About the author

Appstle | A Complete Guide To Personal Care Subscription Models In Ecommerce

Vanhishikha Bhargava

Vanhishikha Bhargava is the Content Marketer for Appstle Solutions. You’ll always find her creating content or reading up on the industry with a cup of coffee in hand, which makes her anxious at times! But stay tuned for insightful pieces. Always.

If you are looking to understand more about Appstle Inc’s products and solutions, you can get in touch with us. Our 24x7x365 available experts will be happy to assist you further.

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