Vitacost.com Catalog Proves to be Healthy

Selling dietary supplements such as vitamins, as well as cosmetics, organic personal care products and health foods in a catalog can be a tall order. But Vitacost.com, which has about 30,000 SKUs from more than 1,600 brands, embraces this task in award-winning style.

Vitacost.com secured a Silver Award in the MCM Awards competition’s Consumer Specialty Products Over $20 Million category with its Fall 2009 catalog.

Why it won Silver
Vitacost.com is at a disadvantage in that it doesn’t have the most attractive, compelling products to sell to consumers. But the judges agreed that the company’s prowess in merchandising and design laid the foundation for a well deserved award.

The merchandise assortment, one panelist said, gives a consumer the sense that Vitacost.com carries everything you need to stay healthy. “Great job merchandising for customer concerns,” one judge said.

The catalog effectively groups items to make it easy to shop, and uses strong editorial that supports the marketing strategy and merchandise.

Vitacost.com sells numerous products on each page, “but with good reference and organization,” thanks to strong headlines and use of color, a panelist said. The catalog is designed to supplement and reinforce an even broader offering of product on the Website, has solid calls to action and promos – including offers for free gifts and one-price shipping.

A helpful index on page 3, and the depth of product broken out by customer concerns, one judge said, “really helps the ease of shopping.” And the bound- in order form is “excellent in presenting the guarantee and ordering form information.”

Why it didn’t win a Gold
The front cover, which has pictures of bottles of vitamins with the central headline: “Are You ready for the Cold and Flu Season?” was fairly weak and could have benefitted from more lifestyle imagery. “They have a tough visual task when it comes to their products on the cover,” admitted one panelist, “but there are no benefits communicated here. There is nothing to inspire one to look further, unless the reader is someone motivated by jars of vitamins.”

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