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    • Total posts: 3

    Hi all,
    Hoping I can get some advice here for my homewares business.

    Currently I am trying to sell my homewares to both retail and wholesale customers, however with some price increases recently my sales have dropped off in both areas.

    I had a really successful spring season last year selling well into stores through a sales agent. This year however I haven’t gained much through this avenue. I think my products are good, however I have had some price increases and my wholesale price is a bit high compared to others. It seems made in Australia doesn’t make enough of a point of difference to my overseas made competitors.

    I am getting a better social media positioning however there is still a lot of growth possible here.
    My retail price is still a little high now as I have had price increases and I have to sell at a comparable retail point to stores.

    I am also considering getting my products made overseas to get pricing lower but that’s a longer term strategy.

    I am wondering if I should restructure my efforts and concentrate on retail and go back to wholesale when I have a better brand profile.

    What is other people’s experience? Can one successfully sell to both retail and wholesale? Or is it better to focus on one rather than both?

    I look forward to hearing from everyone!!!

    • Total posts: 712

    My advice is to concentrate on either wholesale or retail, not both.Concentrating your efforts makes it easier to manage marketing and put more money into effective strategies. Trying to be everything to everyone can end up being confusing and dilutes your market.

    That said, there has been a general downturn in consumer confidence and purchasing lately (going by reports lately) so you have to come up with new strategies to keep your customers interest, and make sure they think of you rather than your competitors. It can be difficult but maybe a bit of brainstorming with someone you trust might help.

    Only you can decide if Aussie made is working for you or not, maybe you can look at getting some of your stock made overseas and see if that makes a difference. Maybe some branding changes may be all you need. You should really talk to someone who is experienced in your area, and has a new and independent perspective.

    Adam Martelletti
    • Total posts: 47

    Look at what is giving the best ROI in cost and time. Then look at the scale of growth, I would also be looking at how you can reduce your over heads so you can either reduce your price point or increase your profit without the price hike to your clients.

    • Total posts: 25

    Hi. I’d suggest getting answers to a few questions before deciding what to do.

    1) What is your number 1 business goal in the next 12 months? Is it to grow customer base? Improve profit margin? Or build brand awareness? How do the 2 channels (wholesale and retail) help to achieve your #1 goal? Basically whatever you decide to do with the 2 channels should aim to further this #1 business goal.

    2) What’s the driver behind declining sales in wholesale? Is price the only factor? You mentioned wholesale isn’t going as strongly as it did the previous year, so what’s driving the decline? Is it being experienced by other players in the industry? What has the sales agent done to drive growth in the past year?

    3) What are the margins through wholesale and through retail? Not just looking at gross margin, but factoring in cost-to-serve as well e.g. would you hire a sales person in your retail side of business which you wouldn’t on the wholesale side? By understanding the channel margins, you know if wholesale or retail is making you the most profit.

    4A) What are the growth opportunities in each channel in the next 12-24 months? This is looking at the potential of each channel so you know where the biggest growth is likely to come from.

    4B) How easy is it for you to take on the opportunities? The answer to these 2 questions help you work out which opportunities are the low-hanging fruits that you should be tackling first.

    Hope this helps! Good luck.

    • Total posts: 145

    I agree with Studio S – you probably need more detailed information about what’s causing the decline for both retail and wholesale. Price might only be one factor.
    Have a look at your figures over the last few years & see if there are any patterns/trends.

    Take time to make any decision about changing the country of manufacture – at the moment it still seems to be factor that distinguishes your products. Is enough being done to educate customers that this infers quality & a better ethical choice? If you turn to cheaper overseas manufacturing then you might only be able to compete on price.

    Good luck,

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