Award-winning Australian wellness marketplace InnerOrigin is making new strides in the wellbeing industry by promoting transparency and launching a world-first touch, learn and order store.
Founded two years ago after co-founder Sally Ann Ferguson grew frustrated with a lack of transparency in the wellbeing industry after her brother was diagnosed with an extremely rare illness, the marketplace hosts an expert-curated selection of wellbeing products.
Having personally felt bewildered by the pure volume of products in the health industry, Ms Ferguson told Retailbiz that the marketplace was launched with the aim of helping consumers make more informed decisions in an increasingly flooded marketplace.
“I always think most great businesses or breakthroughs come from a level of frustration which identifies a gap in the market, and that was a frustration for me along the journey with my brother,” she says
It was this frustration which prompted Ms Ferguson to create InnerOrigin, with the goal of helping other consumers to navigate a complex market.
“The wellness industry is growing at such a rapid rate my particular concern is about keeping integrity in that industry because I know in any fast growing industry a lot of people jump into that space, and so keeping integrity is important in creating a platform customers can shop from,” she says.
“As a customer I felt there needed to be that next level of transparency”
Launched in 2016, InnerOrigin is a world-first, according to Ms Ferguson, hosting a board-curated range of wellbeing products judged solely on quality.
The marketplace allows consumers to scroll through products based on a range of categories – from grocery products all the way through to supplements and cosmetics, each product includes a comprehensive list of the provenance of the ingredients.
Vetting the products through their advisory board and including a detailed list of the country of origin of ingredients allows consumers to make more informed product decisions, according to Ms Ferguson.
“The bottom line is most people are time poor and don’t have time to review every product available in every category and satisfy themselves they are what purport to be so ultimately I think people want to find an organisation which they can trust,” she says.
“We take labelling transparency to the next level. That’s very important because I think in the wellness industry shoppers are looking for that. It was something very important for us to deliver to our customers.”
The marketplace is highly responsive, allowing the curators to change the product selection depending on consumer appeal and product reviews.
“That’s the concept of a marketplace. Ultimately the market tells you if a product stays or not, the final say rests with a customer.”
Since launching just two years ago, the business has made huge inroads, going from 43 products to now upwards of 2,000 and looking to expand even further in Australia and New Zealand.
InnerOrigin are also shortlisted finalists in the Optus My Business Awards 2018 for Fitness and Wellbeing Business of the Year.
Touch, learn, order
The marketplace has now launched a first-ever touch, learn, order wellness store, hosting a range of 800 products in a 60 square metre space in the city, the shop allows consumers to try products in-store, and order them online.
The launch marks the retailers first debut in bricks-and-mortar retail, after launching two years ago as an e-commerce and advocate business.
“After a year of market research, we have developed the TLO store model – touch, learn, order only, because we believe people want the convenience of online, but they miss the experiential pleasure and accuracy that in store shopping provides. It provides the perfect ‘best of both’ solution for our customers”, says Ms Ferguson
The store is a world-first, according to Ms Ferguson, giving consumers the flexibility of online and the touch-and-feel experience of brick and mortar.
“We think it’s a world first, illustrative of retailers going into the future,” she says.
The store was such a huge success that the marketplace has now flagged plans to become a full omnichannel retailer with the launch of a flagship store in a matter of months.
“We were so heartened by our success that we are now looking into a permanent store in the CBD.”