Having products in several retail outlets is a dream come true for many professional crafters, small-time producers and artisans. But wholesaling is an entirely different business with different needs, procedures and focus.
First, wholesaling is a business model that involves selling product directly to retailers at wholesale prices. Retailers mark up the prices for sale to the consumer market through their stores.
As stated by Carolyn Edlund from Artsy Shark:
Selling wholesale is, of course, a standard business model – it’s how business is done in the commercial marketplace, where manufacturers ship billions of dollar’s worth of goods to retailers of all types….
If you are thinking about moving your business into the wholesale market, let me give you a few pointers:
Wholesaling is not for everyone and not all products fit into the wholesale business model.
Many artisans and professional crafters find it challenging to meet the needs of buyers and the pricing that is required for wholesaling.
Which brings me to the next point: Wholesaling is not retailing for half price!
Determining your product price is an involved process that takes into account costs, demand, and typically pricing in the marketplace. Not an arbitrary decision!
On the other hand, wholesaling can bring in a more consistent source of income for your business.
Repeat business from store buyers creates cashflow and a list of receivables to sustain your business. Also, your wholesale accounts become your marketing agent, freeing up your time to create and produce.
So, how do you go about selling your work at wholesale?
This is where I can help you move forward to establish your first wholesale account, hire your first sales representative, or prepare for your first trade show.
After nearly 20 years of experience, helping producers just like you expand into wholesaling, I have probably dealt with every situation you might encounter. In addition, my experience includes working as a store manager, being a gourmet food producer, and selling to buyers as a producer and a sales representative. So, I’ve been in your shoes and beyond!
If coaching or consulting with me interests you, there are several different consulting and coaching options available for you.