Bulu Insights: The Sexual Health Market  11/11/2015

Competing in an industry dominated by little blue pills isn’t easy to do. The sexual health market for vitamins and supplements is a competitive space with a variety of products attempting to make their way in. Many brands are searching for the right combination of benefits to appeal to their ideal user.

At Bulu Box, we’ve sifted through the data of numerous sexual health product sampling campaigns and have found some key insights into how the perceived efficacy of a product correlates to purchasing intent and conversion. The key indicators used in this article are as follows:

  • Conversion: The number of users who sampled through Bulu Box, then came back to make a full size purchase. 
  • Recommendation score: How likely a user is to recommend this product to someone.
  • Feel: The ability to feel the product working – the perceived efficacy of the product.
Through Bulu Box’s own sampling data software, Bulu Insights, we’ve had the benefit of seeing firsthand what consumers think of top sexual health products to identify what’s working for these brands and what’s not for others. In a market that is competing with prescription pills like Cialis and Viagra that promise an immediate physical benefit, these longer term libido enhancers have to find their own edge.

Sexual health in itself is a very broad field; we’ve sampled a wide array of these products, including testosterone boosters, lubricants, female libido enhancers, and aphrodisiacs. Casting a wide net on the category of sexual health helped show the trend of purchasing and what consumers find to be the most effective products. The metric we found to be the most important in this market is in the immediacy of the products’ effects. This aspect of each product was crucial to conversion rate.

After examining the results, one detail became clear in sampling sexual health products – lubricants reigned supreme. Because of their immediate effects and easy usability, these products showed the highest conversion in the sexual health category. So, we took it a step further. We broke this data on lubricants down even further to see what experienced the most conversion in this subset category of sexual health. Again, it confirmed our overall conclusion that ‘feel’ was the top indicator of conversion. Sampled products that featured a more intense ‘feel’ component (e.g. a warming formula) saw higher conversion rates compared to others.

While lubricants lead in conversions for sexual health products, it’s important to consider the trends of a pill-based sexual health booster. This subset of sexual health carries a variety of products. Testosterone boosting products are often the favorite in this category. But, while testosterone-boosting products ultimately take the cake for overall highest conversion, it’s the products that feature an aphrodisiac component that performed better in terms of conversion, efficacy and overall ability to ‘feel’ the product working. 

One great example of this would be an herbal-based libido enhancer sampled out to our subscriber base. This enhancer targeted both men and women and utilized the Maca root, a well-known non-hormonal aphrodisiac, as a key ingredient to promote a faster ‘feel’ component to their daily use product. Products marketed on their short-term benefits that also support long-term improvements were top performers in the sexual health category.

In the competitive market of sexual health, it becomes apparent that having a marketable ingredient or combination of ingredients that gives the user a short term effect – such as an aphrodisiac like Maca Root – or allows them to actually feel that immediate gratification consumers are seeking, improves conversion rates of the product and its perceived efficacy. Products that have a propensity to be the most prominent in sales provide a long-term solution for enhancement while also helping to increase sexual drive in the short-term. 


Paul Jarrett

Bulu Box

Paul Jarrett is CEO and Co-Founder of Bulu Marketplace, Bulu Marketplace is a data-driven, proprietary matchmaking platform built to connect retail buyers and consumer packaged goods suppliers. (www.bulumarketplace.com)

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