Working with a sales rep or sales rep organization to sell your products will give you the freedom to work on your business and make more of your unique products. However, there are a few things you will need to provide your rep to help them sell your products.
• Flyers or Price Sheets: Most sales reps carry binders or some type of book containing all the lines they represent. Having a color flyer of your products to give your sales rep(s) will be most helpful. Be sure to include the product size, minimum order, wholesale price and terms of sale. You may want to offer additional flyers for your rep to leave with potential store buyers.
• Samples: If you have a large line, it is impractical to give your rep a sample of everything you make. But it is important to give them a good sampling of as many products as you can. Don’t begrudge your rep is they ask for more samples. Your sales should increase when potential buyers can look, touch and feel your products. Plan to replace the samples every year or two as they will get ‘road worn’.
• Sales Agreement: Having a written sales agreement is highly recommended. With all your information in writing, it will make it easier for your rep to have a file of your important information such as house accounts and terms (more on this subject next week!)
• Commission Schedule: Keep a written record of sales and commissions due each sales rep. The best way to show your appreciation for your rep(s) hard work is to pay them accurately and on-time.
• Good and Quick Follow Up: Assume that phone calls and questions from your sales rep(s) come initial from your potential customers. If you rep calls you with a question, respond as quick as possible. The shorter the time you respond, the greater the chance is they can close a sale for you.
Next week, we will talk about Sales Representative Agreements.