If you are a small retailer or are planning to be one, getting big brands to your store can be a big challenge. Big brands can be a boon and at the same time a curse. Having them in your inventory can boost your credibility. Again winning their trust as a small fish entails lot of trouble.
The moot question is: Can you do away with well known brands. The answer is a big no. People identify products with brands. Ignoring brands is as good as ignoring people’s likes. However, brands don’t come for the asking. They are scared of giving it away to stores with low pricing, which may wind up soon, but not before harming the brands pricing. In the process the brands risk incurring the wrath of their main distributors.
How then to meet brand expectations is the million dollar question. All major brands would look into aspects like: your finances, store location and appearance, your business history and your experience.
But as discussed before, you just can’t do away with brand-names. How then to go about? If you hamstrung by your own deficiencies and yet would not want to forego branded items then do not go straight to the manufacturer. To start with, engage with a purchasing group or even a distributor. You have to be content with less profit in the beginning. But this provides you with a platform to sell your business skills with branded items. Once you manage to take sales to a better position, compared to the brands of competitors, you move towards a position of strength – from where you can call the shots. Having built your case thus, you can approach manufacturers at your terms.
However, achieving this is easier said than done. You need to have acumen of a special kind, all of which can’t be inborn. One acquires a part of this business intelligence by diligently studying the market, by gathering information about other successful retailers, all of whom have started from scratch, by learning how to cut deals with suppliers, and by working with a single minded obsession.
Making big brands trust you is difficult, but not impossible. It calls for both perseverance and tenacity.