Herbspro Business Case
From a Painful Journey to Successful Expansion: Herbspro Expansion to Latin America
Herbspro is a leading multinational eCommerce company in the United States that offers a diverse range of natural products, including vitamins, supplements, organic groceries, and natural beauty products. Since its establishment in 2004, the company has been dedicated to providing high-quality natural products. Over the years, Herbspro has achieved 100% year-on-year growth and has built an employee base of 300 people. The company is present in North America, Asia, Europe, Central America, and South America. Today, the company offers more than 80,000 products and ships almost 5,000 packages daily from its multiple warehouses in the US directly to consumers.
Herbspro’s Painful Journey into Latin America
Initially, Herbspro focused on selling in the US, but as soon as the company began experiencing significant sales growth, it started considering expansion into new markets.
“As we began to expand worldwide, Canada was the easiest market to penetrate because it shares many similarities with the United States, where we had already established a strong presence. We then shifted our focus to Europe and Asia, where we didn’t encounter any major difficulties despite cultural differences. However, our experience expanding into Latin America was extremely painful and presented a significant challenge.” – Tanu Bhattacharya
Herbspro initially started selling directly in Latin America through their eCommerce website, but it was not an easy task for them. From the beginning, they had to face two major challenges that were consuming a considerable amount of their time and resources.
The first major obstacle was dealing with the strict and unpredictable compliance regulations in Latin America. Customs and regulations vary from country to country, which means that a product that is allowed to be imported in one country might not be permitted to be imported in others. This was a new experience for Herbspro, and understanding the regulations of each country was time-consuming. As a result, they were missing out on opportunities to offer their wide catalog of products in the region.
“Our commercial team faced a significant challenge in listing products in different Latin American countries. We had several top-selling products in the US, but we couldn’t sell them in Brazil or Mexico since those countries only allow shipping of products up to 200 mg. It was incredibly time-consuming to understand all the different regulations. At the time, my catalog had 10,000 products, but we were only able to offer 80 of them. ” stated Tanu.
The second major nightmare for Herbspro was the constant struggle to get their products delivered to the final consumers in Latin America. Trustworthy US shipping carriers lacked the resources needed to provide a complete and efficient service in the region, including in Mexico. By using a local carrier, packages never arrived at their final destination; they were either stopped at customs or stolen at pick-up points. This led to hundreds of consumer complaints about missing products, forcing Herbspro to deal with refunds and unfair negative reviews.
“Only 2 out of 10 packages would reach the final consumer. Three packages would get stuck in customs without any prior notice, and the remaining 5 would be lost or stolen, even if they made it through customs. Unfortunately, Latin America is known to be one of the most dangerous regions in terms of shipping, with products frequently lost or stolen during transit.”
Despite Latin America being an attractive market for Herbspro, and their knowledge of the high demand for natural products in the region, they started to feel hopeless and were reluctant to put much effort into its expansion.
Achieving a Successful Expansion into Latin America with nocnoc
Herbspro first met nocnoc in 2021, and nocnoc quickly understood the major difficulties the company was facing. They presented a unique solution to localize Herbspro in Latin America and address all of their problems. With their help, Herbspro was able to sell its products on the largest Latin American marketplaces without facing customs regulations, last-mile deliveries, cancellations, or providing customer support.
“We realized that we needed local help to localize all of our products for this challenging market. This is where nocnoc came into the picture and provided a solution to all of our pain points.
Our first meeting with nocnoc went smoothly, and they quickly addressed all of our main concerns. After the meeting, we gave them our 80,000 catalogs, and within less than 48 hours, they identified which products could be sold in Latin America and which ones couldn’t, according to the regulations of each market. They later published our catalog in over 6 Latin American marketplaces. This completely eliminated our initial headache of compliance.
The second pain point they solved was shipping. They offered a solution as simple as sending our orders to their US-based warehouse, and they took care of last-mile deliveries to ensure our clients received their purchases.This was a game-changer for us! We no longer had to deal with shipping issues in Latin America. Additionally, in cases of cancellation, nocnoc kept the package in their warehouse in Brazil to avoid sending it back to ours and increasing logistics costs. Selling through nocnoc felt like selling locally.
nocnoc took care of the communication with our consumers. Their team handled pre- and post-shipment questions in the same language and time zone as our customers, significantly improving the overall customer experience and helping to increase conversion rates.
I see nocnoc as our “local Herbspro” in Latin America. They have greatly facilitated and improved our expansion in the region, boosting our sales. Their team is highly professional, committed to our success, and provides timely responses to our questions. The communication is clear and transparent. The commercial and operations team have the expertise in the Latin American market to ensure maximum exposure for our products. With the help of nocnoc’s commercial and pricing strategies, we have achieved stable growth and are now aiming to grow our FOB by 550% in the following 6 months. Additionally, we are looking to expand our reach to new countries and marketplaces.
I would definitely recommend nocnoc to other retailers in my business network. Anyone willing to expand their eCommerce business to Latin America should give it a try. The onboarding process is smooth and fast, and the team is committed to providing a great solution for sellers.”
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