The World Federation of Direct Selling Associations has recently furnished reports on Global Direct Selling and Global Sales for the year 2019. While the Global Direct Selling report focuses on retail sales, the Global Sales report is based on sales by product category. The WFDSA in its over 40-year history has always maintained to promote the highest standards for responsible and ethical conduct globally. Their reports provide us with key insights about growth in the direct selling industry’s retail sales based on the product category.

Retail Sales – An Indicator of a Country’s Economic Pulse

Retail sales are always highly significant for a country’s economy. High retail sales foster growth in equity markets. This only means more returns for shareholders and a boost to a country’s purchasing power. Being able to fare well in the lifestyle markets is a good indicator of India’s market strength. A country that spends more only on necessities such as foodstuff and utilities has other pressing priorities. But since Indian retail sales have done well in Wellness and Cosmetics markets, it says quite a bit about the country’s spending power. QNET, India’s leading direct sales brand, has been a key player in boosting retail sales under the lifestyle market. QNET’s direct sales approach has helped empower entrepreneurs, providing them a sustained product and business opportunity.

 What the WFDSA Reports

The WFDSA Global Direct Selling Report for 2019 states that the USA leads the global market with about 20% market growth, China, Korea, Germany, and Japan are the other big market players holding more than 40% of the global share. The global direct selling industry grossed at 180,479 USD for 2019, which was 4.3% lower than the previous year.

Most big players saw a sizeable fall in direct sale percentages. China leads the pack despite a whopping 30% decrease, which is by far the most in the Asia/Pacific market.

India, on the other hand, enjoyed the biggest YOY (year-over-year) increase at 12.1%, just above Vietnam’s 12%. According to the report, India’s 3-year CAGR constant has been 16.3%, well above any other country in the Asia Pacific region.

The other clear gainers have been Israel, Africa, Germany, Argentina, and Uruguay. Steady increases have made these nations regional winners.

India Looking Good

The two product categories where India’s retail sales numbers peaked are Cosmetics & Personal Care and Wellness. While the global average for Cosmetics & Personal Care was 29%, India hit a strong 27%. In the Wellness category, however, India surged way past the 36% average with a score of 55%. It is safe to say that India has brought its A-game to lifestyle products. QNET has made a direct impact on this by ramping up direct sales of lifestyle products. This is a testament to India’s healthy market growth in the past 3 years.

Though India’s regional sales of ~2477 USD is nowhere close to the global average, it is a personal milestone that they can be proud of. With the downturn in retail sales in so many big markets, India’s big numbers are astonishingly hard to emulate. To boast of the biggest increase in retail sales in Asia/Pacific is no small feat.

What Next for the Big Names

Since the reports are based on limited member companies, an accurate figure of any country’s economic growth is hard to establish. That does not take away credit from the fact that some of the big names have not lived up to their reputations. Most notably, China, Canada, UAE, and the UK have all seen steady decreases in retail sales. Yesteryear stars have found it most difficult to capture the market and have missed their marks. If this trend is to go on, it can be safe to assume that new winners will take their places. The world is never short of hungry competitive markets. While some big names have dropped the ball, worthy contenders like India and Vietnam have stepped up.

The global drop of ~4.3% is also to be considered. That is way above the 0.3% 3-year CAGR constant. It tells us how difficult retail sales have been in the past year. To overcome this, countries need to allocate more resources to their retail markets to facilitate steady growth in the coming years. As for the WFDSA reports, the writing is on the wall – global retail markets need a pick-me-up immediately.

QNET Well-aligned to the Dynamic Trends

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the world around us for good, as we learn to live and work in the new normal. One of the key takeaways from this crisis is that consumers and businesses alike will look inwards for quality and value in products with impetus on ‘local’ gathering momentum. QNET has witnessed a consistent demand for locally made products across our vast network and as a community-conscious company, we strive to contribute to the local economy by sourcing regionally.

With entrepreneurship as a core value, we endeavor to promote locally manufactured products across our varied product portfolio. An initiative like ‘vocal for local’ is imperative in these times as it is essential for survival and sustenance. QNET has 80 products in India product portfolio with 75% ‘Made in India’ products

Key segments that are bucking the trend

At QNET, we have witnessed an upsurge in demand for health products especially products that boost immunity. The Nutriplus health and wellness brand under the QNET product portfolio includes – DailyHealth, LivHealth, ImmunHealth, GutHealth, and a diverse range of antioxidant teas, energy boosters, protein powder, bone and skin health supplements, and specialised superfood like monofloral honey. Our health, hygiene, and wellness portfolio has been a key driver of our growth and continues to be a key focus for us in India.

We are constantly expanding our product range in this segment. The demand for our home air purifiers and water purifiers have also seen a consistent uptick in the last few months. The main reason for this can be attributed to increased awareness and concern for healthier living.

QNET has 20 products under Health and Wellness brand – Nutriplus under India product portfolio. All Nutriplus products are ‘Made in India’.

Entrepreneurial opportunity in Direct Selling

The turmoil caused by the pandemic has forced corporations to realign and reduce their workforce, leaving many employees without jobs. While this is a major challenge for both employers and employees, this adversity also presents an opportunity for the enterprising people. Direct selling provides an excellent prospect for one to set up their own business with minimal overheads and cost of operation.

We at QNET have millions of Distributors who have successfully harnessed their potential through direct selling. In India, the growth of the Distributors has been stable, irrespective of the lockdowns and we anticipate this trend to continue for the rest of the year.