GROWING WITH STOCKISTS
After the initial stages of business development have been initiated, many entrepreneurs begin to consider stockholders.
Identifying reliable stockists who can act as representatives for your company is crucial.
Finding out if your gallery or store uses a consignment system for managing its suppliers is crucial. This may involve drop shipping, wholesale, or both. You need to be ready for any eventuality when making this decision, as it has significant financial and logistical implications.
DBP is familiar with “both ends” of the stockist relationship. Angela’s e-commerce platform, Leeloo, had multiple wholesale and consignment deals in place. That’s how I met Renee: she was an illustrator who sold Leeloo’s wares in her shop. She was in charge of Baker and Bailey and had her employees sign a number of consignment and wholesale contracts with retailers.
Based on our own experiences and extensive research, we have compiled the following guidelines for aspiring Australian stockists, designers, and makers.
Do the brand and the product go together? As a gallery owner, you want to ensure that your pieces complement the space and welcome visitors. Whether shopping in-store or online, try making a purchase undercover and see what happens. By observing how they run their company, you can ascertain if the way you do business is suitable.
Bear in mind that having too many retailers in close proximity to one another is not ideal. Depending on how crucial exclusiveness is to your retailer, you may want to limit availability to a single stockist within a certain radius (say, 5 km, 10 km, or more).
As a helpful hint, you should promote your stockists by listing them on your website. In the aisles of the flea market, people will be able to see your works up close.
Most manufacturers and sellers favor this option. It entails a retailer making a bulk purchase of your goods from you, who then resells them to end users.
As a rule, the wholesale price is set at 50% of the retail price, less the GST registration fee of 10%. Pricing is crucial if you are a new manufacturer. In order to accommodate a wholesale arrangement, you may need to reevaluate your entire pricing strategy.
You shouldn’t undervalue your services or products so that another company can profit from reselling them. Although the wholesale price may only be 10%, you still need to think about your profit margin.
The buyer (the retailer) takes title to the goods and is responsible for reselling them internally. If they came from your wholesale catalog, you can bet on them being purchased from you. You can streamline inventory management by having your wholesalers access your store through a unique login space or code on platforms like Shopify.
This could take the form of a physical storefront or an online bazaar. This maintains uniformity between labels. Once your products are purchased by a final retailer, you, the manufacturer, have almost no say over what happens to them. However, you can assist the retailer in making sales by providing them with information about you, your products, and your sales process. An important part of a retail salesperson’s job is to persuade customers to make purchases.
It’s important to establish guidelines in case the store decides it’s time to drastically reduce prices on unsold inventory. It is a decision about your brand’s image that you should make if you’re worried about the situation.
A showcase of your goods could be well received by your retailers. This helps keep the brand visible in areas where it normally wouldn’t be.
Suggestion: Your visual merchandising should feature your contact information. That way, the store can quickly replenish your products. Feel free to visit the store or call the merchant to double-check the products.
The sellers take on the bulk of the risk in a consignment arrangement. This setup can change from store to store.
The term “consignment” refers to a distribution model in which a manufacturer sells its products to a dealer or distributor. The dealer or dealer-reseller keeps the pieces and sells them to customers. The consignee runs the risk of not being paid by the reseller until after the goods have been sold.
The fact that the store will knock some money off the original price is also a major perk. If the agreed-upon consignment rate is 30% and the item sells for $100, the retailer will pay you $70. The actual percentage varies depending on the store you visit.
Once again, this may have an impact on whether or not a company is required to register for GST.
Art galleries and other businesses can stock their shelves with works without breaking the bank. Producers can coexist with other brands while retaining ownership of their own products.
Some stores may require you to accept consignment terms and conditions before they will sell your items. It’s important to read them thoroughly and agree to only what makes you feel secure.
Keep track of all stock that has been sent, sold, and is still available after setting up this arrangement. If an item doesn’t sell, most stores will let you bring it back to resell at a later flea market or another event.
Useful Hint: Check in with your consignment stockists on a regular basis to see how your items are selling. If items aren’t moving off the shelves, it may be time to try something new. Get on a monthly update schedule if you aren’t already.
With this setup, online merchants can operate without worrying about stocking shelves or handling shipments. The retailer provides the business’s platform for sales and technology, while logistics companies handle everything else.
There are benefits and drawbacks to this situation for both the seller and the maker. In a dropshipping arrangement, the retailer is bypassed in favor of the customer. You might pay a flat annual rate, or they might take a cut of your online sales. The terms of dropshipping agreements can change from shop to shop.
You will be notified if and when the item is sold by any of the listed online or physical stores. You must arrange to ship to the customer. Either the e-commerce site or the brick-and-mortar store will have contracted with a 3PL to handle all shipments. Knowing your delivery obligations and how you will be charged is crucial.
Drop shipping is a low-hassle, low-risk option for retailers. Using a drop shipper to sell your wares online can save you a lot of money. Retailers today need websites more than ever to reach their target audience, process orders and keep track of client information. The manufacturers are responsible for handling order fulfillment.
You should always be asking if you’re getting the best value for your money. To what extent do shoppers trust the retailer’s platform?
Verify that the retail label you select is a good fit for your company. It’s important to make sure other shops you’re thinking of patronizing have a solid reputation. Manufacturers can benefit from increased exposure and brand recognition through dropshipping. Managing the deliveries is less profitable and requires more effort. Instead of viewing a dropshipping agreement as a stockist relationship with a customer, the relationship should be viewed as a partnership.
You need visibility into a retailer’s marketing efforts and the results of those campaigns before deciding to partner with them.
Numerous points of failure emerge when products are produced and distributed by a large number of separate manufacturers. Your company’s image could suffer if competitors’ products are poorly made or take too long to reach customers.
Learn the store’s policy on refunds and returns and how it might affect your company.
One useful suggestion is to provide drop-shippers with a special selection of items. You’ll be able to keep tabs on sales and inventory levels with this method. Brand awareness and cohesion can be achieved through dropshipping partnerships.
This guide is intended to help designers, artists, and creatives in Australia locate retailers who are interested in carrying their work. Before signing any wholesale, consignment, or drop shipping agreement, make sure you fully understand all of the clauses contained therein.
Let us know if you want to get into wholesale but don’t know where to begin. Many of our guides have helped them enter wholesale with both eyes open and businesses ready to go.