During tougher times in retail, it is vital to make the most out of every customer that walks into your store, but what about getting them in??
Menswear stores have struggled for a long time now at Father’s Day and Christmas. No longer are they the gift destinations they once were. Today, gifts are more in the form of vouchers, electronics or alcohol. The stores need to find new categories of product which, displayed in windows, around the store and on the counter, will bring back the sales. The rise in popularity of Kringle makes unique giftware even more of an opportunity!
To this end, FAB-event are pleased to welcome new exhibitor: CURATED GROUP. We spoke with Tara Barnes, National Sales Manager……
The Curated Group was formed in 2015 from many years of both retail and wholesale experience.
We felt there was an opportunity from knowing both sides of the fence, to bring to the retail market a concept based on truly understanding what retailers were wanting from a supplier. We knew our customers were time poor and dealing with so many suppliers dilutes their time on the store floor, so we decided to become as much as possible a one stop shop with a wide category base for them to order from. One look at the categories on our website will show how broad this is and that there’s literally something great for all retail groups.
We proud ourselves on these 5 aspects:
Service– Too many times did I hear from my customers their frustrations from not being able to connect with their suppliers or get the after-sales attention, to maximise the sell-through of products. We approach all our customers as a partnership relationship. Whenever required, we give ideas and can supply materials to showcase the products to their best. This has enabled us to retain customers both remotely and locally.
Product Quality– More and more your customers are expecting a long shelf life product – less disposable, well-made, with as many good environmental boxes ticked as possible. This philosophy goes into all our brand/product searches/selections we bring to you from around the world and locally.
Value– There’s no point finding the best product that sits on your shelf for too long due to its price. We understand with escalating rents/overheads etc, that multiple stock turns are paramount. We keep our margins tight so we can pass on the value to you the customer.
Products with a point of difference – We try not to get involved with overnight trends and focus on strong “main-stayers” that become destination purchases, but universally accepted across a broad range of age-groups and demographics.
Stock availability – We strive to keep good stock numbers to ensure ongoing supply, you won’t often see “out of stock” on our products, which again often echoed as a frustration.
We made a decision very early on to not engage in the large chain/ department store environment. This has been a good decision, as our customers are not having to compete with the same product being price slashed at certain times, and perceived as being seen “everywhere”.
The key to taking advantage of gift and accessory opportunities is changing your mindset. A good example can be seen in the book trade over the last few years. They were very reluctant at first to even look at stocking a non-book product. We started with gently introducing gift/designer style stationery and from there, gift offerings of all kinds have become an almost compulsory offering in most bookstores today – and with great margins, have become really important to their bottomline at any major gifting time.
Also, remember that customers are time poor, and wherever they have a single “go to” store that can satisfy many needs in one go, it is a blessing. This brings that customer back many more times than that one-off purchase they may usually make. It can also give your store a fresh look and extra personality. It creates talking points which is another great way to engage with your customers!
Once you’ve worked out your bestsellers, try and keep them there to avoid disappointment and keep fresh new offerings for your regulars.
Likewise, by continually reviewing OUR current ranges and sourcing fresh product from around the world, we have not only kept our current retail partners happy, but been able to grow our stockists across the country. The future looks strong!
Meet The Curated Group at the upcoming FAB Event.
When: 26th and 27th August 2018
Where: Stand 160, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
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