Saks Fifth Avenue Taps Into Penchant For Health And Launches Online Wellness Business – Forbes

Saks Fifth Avenue’s online Wellness Shop contains more than 1,000 products.
With the Covid-19 pandemic putting a spotlight on health and well-being, Saks Fifth Avenue is launching a Wellness Shop focused on four pillars: fitness, health and nutrition, rest and relaxation, and sexual wellness. This is a significant expansion from previous wellness offerings. 
The Saks shop is placing an emphasis on a holistic approach to wellbeing, knowing that true wellness encompasses everything from sleep and nutrition to fitness and recovery.
According to a survey by McKinsey & Company that involved 7,500 consumers in six countries, 79 percent of the respondents said they believe that wellness is important, and 42 percent consider it a top priority. The study found that consumers in every market said they have been thinking about wellness to a greater degree over the last two to three years.
McKinsey estimated the global wellness market at more than $1.5 trillion, with an annual growth rate of 5 to 10 percent. The Global Wellness Institute is even more bullish, estimating that the sector stands at $4.4 trillion in the midst of disruptions of Covid-19, and expects the category to reach $7 trillion by 2025.
Saks wants a piece of that pie. “Over the last two years, with more people working from home and changing their lifestyles, we’re seeing a larger demand for health-related items across all categories,” said Tracy Margolies, chief merchandising officer. “Customers are living a more casual lifestyle, pushing their fashion purchases toward athleisure. They’re also focusing on their wellbeing through nutrition and looking for ways to live a healthy lifestyle at home.”
While select items will be available in stores, the bulk of the assortment lives online. “We meet our customers where they are, and launching the shop online allows us to provide quick and easy access to elevated wellness items,” Margolies said. “With the launch of the Wellness Shop, we also have a virtual event series on Saks Live that will address different topics from workouts and plant-based beauty to lifestyle tips. It’s important that Saks offers a fully-integrated shopping experience and Saks Live will allow us to do just that.”
Saks Live events include Wellbeing with Vyrao on January 11 at 4 pm, Naturopathic Skincare with Dr. Nigma Talib on January 12 at 4 pm, and a workout with Isaac Bootz and Terez on January 13 at 2 pm.
Neiman Marcus has robust wellness offerings that include ingestibles, home fragrance, CBD and oral care. “Every time I turn around, there’s a new sub-category,” said Tatiana Birkelund, vice president and general beauty manager at Neiman Marcus.
“We launched the wellness category way before the pandemic, and the pandemic really afforded all of us the luxury to invest a little more time in ourselves, into our routines and gave us the opportunity to lean in and take a walk around the block or light a candle.”
A rise in both consumer interest and purchasing power presents outsize opportunities for companies, McKinsey said, especially as spending on personal wellness rebounds. McKinsey said that spending stagnated or even declined during the Covid-19 crisis, while the wellness market became increasingly crowded.
Brands such as Womaness, an e-commerce site that also sells its products at Target TGT , and focuses on menopause, launched in March. “The conversations are opening up, and women are starting to be more comfortable talking about it,” said Sally Mueller, cofounder of Womaness.
“We’ve seen this with our brand,” said Mueller. “As soon as you start talking about it, they open up and want to talk about it more and be connected with experts. They’re hungry for information. That’s why there’s money out there going toward Telehealth services as well and other forms providing expertise and information to consumers. It’s not just for consumer products, it’s for all of these other companies that are popping up.”
The consumer for the Wellness Shop already exists at Saks, but the launch makes accessing their favorite products easier so the retailer can serve all aspects of the luxury customer’s lifestyle. The Wellness Shop has an assortment that appeals to both male and female customers, Margolies said, adding, “We know that our beauty-centric customers will also naturally gravitate toward the collection as they seek self-care products for the mind and body.”
Margolies said Saks has seen a rise in consumers gravitating toward its golf and rest and relaxation assortments. Customers are also responding positively to aromatherapy oils, bath salts and scrubs and sound machines. The positive response to these different items allowed Saks to increase its brand offering by 57%, introducing more than 50 new brands with the launch of the Wellness Shop.
With more than 1,000 products offered in the Saks Wellness Shop, new fitness equipment includes Hyperice, Equipt, Tracy Anderson Method, while new apparel brands consist of SoulCycle, Beyond Yoga, Swag Golf and Galvin Green, among others. There’s health and nutrition items such as supplements from Dr. Nigma, LARQ water bottles, supplement patches from The Good Patch, and more. 
Surell weighted blankets, therapeutic fragrances from Vyrao, and Asystem sleep gummies are among the new items in the rest and relaxation category, while Lady Suite feminine wellness, Joylux intimate wellness, and Maude intimate care are among the brands that comprise the sexual wellness offering.
“The goal of the Saks Wellness Shop is to bring a holistic, seamless luxury shopping experience to our customers,” Margolies said. “With expanded products and an increase in the brands we offer, we see this as an opportunity to serve any and all needs our customers have. We definitely expect them to shop multiple categories within the Wellness Shop.”

“At Saks, we set the bar for luxury retail,” said Tracy Margolies, chief merchandising officer. “With this incredible expansion of top-tier wellness brands and product offerings, we’re ensuring that our customers can get everything they need for a healthy lifestyle in one seamless shopping experience. Whether it’s fitness, rest and relaxation, health and nutrition or sexual wellness, the Saks customer can find it at once.

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