The secret to sell wholesale to stores

June 13, 2012

One of the most frequently asked question that I get is: How do I sell wholesale and get my products in stores?

Here’s my secret

I have been able to sell wholesale and get my shirts into over 300 stores since I started my company four years ago and the thing that has helped the most has been following up! It seems simple, but when I first started I would only send one email to the store owner/buyer and if they didn’t respond then I would assume that they weren’t interested.

About two years into running my business I started to follow up with store owners. My first email to them was a short intro, then about a month later I would follow up and ask if they wanted a sample tee, then another month later I followed up again to see if they had any additional questions and another month later I would follow up again.

Most buyers/store owners responded after the third or fourth email, not the first and second. Many told me that they initially didn’t respond because the timing was not right, they didn’t need new stock right then, they were too busy to respond, they forgot to respond, etc…

So by not assuming that they weren’t interested, I was able to get so many new stores to respond and actually place orders!

Of course targeting the right stores for my brand was key, but that goes without saying.

I hope this helps if you are trying to get into stores! To summarize, the key is PERSISTENCE! In the comments below, leave a note and let me know what has worked for you when you sell wholesale.

3 Comments. Leave new

This was very helpful! I’ve just begun reaching out to stores that seem to be a good fit and haven’t heard much back yet. I’ll follow your approach and appreciate the reminder to be persistent. It’s also a reminder to always think the best. I know I have a tendency to assume the worst which more times than not; has been totally off! Thanks!

Reply

This is very true. And not just for products, but in your business as a whole. Even when retailers like your product they rarely jump on it and buy on the first or even second try.

The same can be true with the press. Your product may not be right for one issue, but you have to keep trying over and over. I’ve done that for years before a magazine finally used my press release. (yes, I’m very persistent!)

Reply

Do you recommend email vs. trying to set up an appointment in person?

Also, when you send your first email, do you include a pdf of a catalog or some product photos?
Thanks!
Wendy

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