Expert's Opinion

Consumer Confusion: A Key Issue In The Incontinence Category

By Tom Wilson, Co-founder and President, The CareGiver Partnership | August 7, 2014

Free online tool reduces cost in a confusing incontinence market.

As former global president of Kimberly-Clark’s feminine care and incontinence business sectors, and co-founder and president of The CareGiver Partnership it is clear that consumer confusion is a key issue in the adult incontinence category. 

At The CareGiver Partnership, a national retailer of incontinence supplies and other home health care products, we offer over 650 globally sourced incontinence products. It’s a daily challenge for us to keep up with the myriad of changes made to the packaging, nomenclature, absorbency descriptions, graphics, counts and sizing. And soon, P&G may enter the market with another 24 SKU’s under the Always Discreet name. We talk with thousands of consumers on the phone and they are very confused, which is why they call in the first place.

According to Kimberly-Clark’s own research, customers buying incontinence products for the first time waste an average of $130 trying-out products before finding what they need. That’s about 8 to 10 bags of product. With dozens of continuously changing names for styles, sizes, absorbency and features, it’s no wonder customers are confused.

That’s why we invested over three years designing and testing a free and useful online tool we call The Incontinence Product Finder.

As an already confusing incontinence market continues to grow, this free online tool helps customers find the right products from more than 650 choices, saving time, money and frustration. As the incontinence product market keeps expanding, more seniors and caregivers than ever before are using this free online tool to help them make better choices and avoid costly waste.

In a category that includes washable undergarments, swimwear, active wear, pull-on underwear, adult diapers, briefs, pads and now Butterfly body liners for accidental bowel leakage (ABL), there’s no shortage of available products to meet the needs of those with urinary or bowel incontinence. And the category keeps growing. On The CareGiver Partnership blog there is news about another type of device, a pessary, that may add to consumer confusion and affect sales of incontinence pads and pull-on underwear.

Free online tool reduces cost in a confusing incontinence market.
Using the Incontinence Product Finder, customers easily can sort through more than 650 products in seconds. Products can be narrowed down by gender, size, absorbency, style and brand. By selecting a product on the resulting list, a customer can see features, quantity, price per piece and whether a sample is available without leaving the page. The end result for customers is helping them better determine the best incontinence product choices while reducing their chances of buying products that do not meet their needs.

Like all areas of The CareGiver Partnership’s website, this innovative tool is designed with the senior shopper in mind. From the incontinence page, shoppers can access other user-friendly features such as an easy-to-understand section explaining incontinence product styles, answers to frequently asked questions, and information on how to become a product tester.

It’s hard to find help and get answers. Online stores don’t offer advice and pharmacists today are filling twice as many prescriptions as they were just ten years ago. They simply don’t have time to get on the other side of the counter. Those with questions also have free access to The CareGiver Partnership’s team of knowledgeable product specialists, all of whom are current or former caregivers themselves. The free customer service number, available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Central Standard Time, is 1-800-985-1353.

The CareGiver Partnership also offers its sample service to help customers avoid costly mistakes by allowing them to try samples before they buy; customers pay only a minimal shipping cost.

By combining our Incontinence Product Finder with our ‘Try Before You Buy’ sample service, we’re providing caregivers with tools to help avoid the costly mistake of buying incontinence products that don’t meet their needs.

The CareGiver Partnership is a national direct-to-consumer retailer of home healthcare products for incontinence, diabetes, nutrition support and more. In its eighth year of providing products and services that help caregivers and loved ones maintain personal dignity, the company also offers an online library of more than 1,500 family caregiver resources and personal service by experts in caregiving. Call 1-800-985-1353 or visit online at

About the author
Tom Wilson is co-founder and president of The CareGiver Partnership, a national retailer of incontinence supplies and other home health care products. He can be reached at

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