The global cosmetic industry is today worth nearly 630 billion US dollars, and it is expected to grow to a whopping 750 billion by 2025. And this growth could not be possible without the enormous and integrated supply chain that allows end-users to receive any products, anywhere, and at any time.
But while convenience and delivery speed are high up on the list of consumer priorities, so are authenticity and brand transparency. This is even more true for customers looking to invest in cosmetics including exclusive active ingredients, like CBD oil, Dead Sea minerals, or plant-based ceramides.
But how can brands combine efficiency in the supply chain with transparency? Real-time tracking presents itself as a sustainable solution to enable product protection, authenticity, and transparency as the supply chain grows.
How? Discover how real-time tracking works and what are the benefits of this innovation in this guide by the experts behind Authena L1VE™.
Real-time tracking refers to a system that allows manufacturers and end-users to visualize the journey of each product or supply through the supply chain. Real-time visibility is vital to reduce the risks of counterfeit, diversion, and adulteration, while also improving the efficiency and transparency of the supply chain as a whole.
Real-time tracking systems leverage a range of technologies – including blockchain, digital twins, enabled devices and smart packaging features – to detect fraud attempts, boost product availability, reduce waste, and streamline omnichannel supply chain management.
Intelligent shipment tracking systems often implement smart packaging solutions – or technology-enhanced labels, packaging, and seals. These technologies allow packaging to deliver vital information to manufacturers – including ongoing monitoring of product temperature.
For example, in the pharmaceutical industry, the ability to monitor the temperature of a vaccine batch or other medications can make a difference in the patient’s health and safety. With Authena L1VE ™ monitoring can be performed at the level of a single vial!
In the cosmetics industry, temperature control is just as important. Indeed, most cosmetics are sensitive to light exposure, temperature variations, and humidity. These factors might interact with the ingredients in the formula, which can compromise the product’s effectiveness – and even safety!
Not all cosmetics are made equal – and, considering that these products are applied to the skin, face, and hair, consumers have all the right to find high-quality products that are good for them and the planet.
And looking at new statistics, the picture couldn’t be clearer: nearly 90% of younger shoppers look for brands that are more sustainable or less impactful.
Real-time tracking can help consumers make sure that what they are buying is an authentic product.
Investing in traceability software is vital to guarantee your buyers the user experience you have planned for them to have.
Manufacturers in the cosmetic industry that fell victim to diversion, counterfeit, or fraud can see their reputation tarnished. That is because a consumer who unconsciously buys an adulterated or fake product that hasn’t gone through the strict checks necessary to guarantee its safety and quality, might blame the manufacturer for a negative experience.
What’s more, adulterated cosmetics can lead to a significant public health safety risk – or even scandals and recalls!
According to recent studies, pirated goods account for over 3.3% of the world trade – or for nearly 510 billion US dollars. Alongside fashion, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, and tech, the cosmetic industry has always been one of the worst-hit victims to fraud actors.
And fraud and manipulation of products often happen at the most vulnerable points of the supply chain, such as during product handoffs.
Real-time tracking helps the self-detection of counterfeit attempts and prevents diversification, thus ensuring a safe journey of each item through its planned distribution channels.
Smart product labels – or technology-enhanced labels – play a critical role in ensuring product safety. Smart labels boast NFC (Near Field Communication) or RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags alongside more traditional, but less secure, QR codes and Barcodes. These labels are usually a component of a two-part technology, and they are read by enabled devices.
Real-time tracking makes use of these labels because they can be easily read by most smartphones and provide a secure and private exchange of information about the product’s journey through the supply chain.
End-to-end supply chain real-time tracking solutions such as Authena L1VE™ also offer a range of technologies that might be implemented, including GPS trackers, geo-locators, and transponders. These technologies allow manufacturers to follow the movements of each product at a single-unit level across a global, multi-channel supply chain.
Tailored security management software solutions allow supply chain managers to automate the security and monitoring of a product through the supply chain. These solutions are designed around a company’s specific needs and leverage solutions such as IoT, cloud computing, and blockchain technologies.
When it comes down to choosing packaging solutions for your products, you should not have to choose between quality and effectiveness. Today, smart packaging and labels can be fully customized to meet the needs of your cosmetics brand.
And, tech solutions to boost effectiveness and authenticity can be adapted to the experience you wish your customers to have. Just make sure to partner with a product authentication expert that understands the needs of your brand both in terms of security and customer satisfaction.
A real-time product tracking system can eliminate the risk of diversion and prevent products from straying off the planned distribution channels. The most efficient types of product tracking software work thanks to a multi-part technology:
Now that you know what a comprehensive real-time traceability system is, let’s look at what benefits you should expect from it.
Real-time tracking can help manufacturers in the cosmetic industry with omnichannel inventory management. By knowing at what stage each product is, manufacturers can guarantee Just In Time delivery, cut waste, and boost efficiency.
End-users – or consumers – are valuing transparency always more in their buying decision-making process.
Real-time tracking, as well as smart labels, can offer consumers an unprecedented amount of information about where their products come from and how they were produced.
At the same time, manufacturers can gain valuable insights into how their products are used, when they are opened, and what customer segments are purchasing them.
Thanks to the associated web and mobile applications, real-time tracking software includes a two-way communication system. Users can also leverage an easy-to-use interface to visualize where a certain product is, who is handling it, and whether it meets high-quality standards.
Real-time tracking can be an unparalleled unique selling point in a highly competitive cosmetics market. While real-time tracking might help manufacturers, the same information can help consumers engage more with your brand and the products purchased.
Each brand working in the cosmetics industry is unique. That is why it is essential to work with a product authentication expert who can design a traceability strategy around your needs and goals. Partner with the Authena L1VE™ to deploy the latest technologies and secure your supply chain.