Monday, October 17, 2011

Wholesale Your Product

Wholesale isn't for everyone. You do not make as much money per item, in fact in most cases you make half as much money. As it gets closer to Christmas, retailers are looking to expand their product line and make some extra money. If you can sale your product at wholesale pricing it is a great time to start looking for some accounts.

First off, wholesale is not consignment. If you consign an item or items, you give over your product and only get paid when the item is sold. Most places charge a consignment fee of up to 40% I personally will not do business with someone who charges more than 30% commission. If they have a higher commission I can just offer my items at wholesale and get all of my money at once rather than waiting for it to sell to the consumer.

Wholesale is when you discount your items by 50% When dealing with a store you want to make sure that your terms are very clear. If you have a minimum number of items required for a sale or a minimum dollar amount that you need to get make sure you inform the store up front. If you want to be paid before or at delivery make sure that is clear as most retailers want to pay NET 30 which means they have 30 days to try and sell the product and make the money before they pay you.

Before you jump into selling wholesale you should evaluate your prices. Make sure that you are making a substantial enough profit if you sold your item for half of your retail. If you can, great! If you can't than wholesale isn't for you unless you want to raise your retail price. You should make a list of all the items you have available for wholesale and take a printable picture of it. By printable I mean a high resolution (hi-res) and have it ready to print or email. You will also need a short, one paragraph, description of the product. This is not your Etsy or ArtFire description. This is a boring to the point list of the details of the product. Do this for all your products.

That is it for today. Tomorrow I will be discussing your initial store contact and how to get your message across. Let me know if you have any questions.


  1. Great post! I look forward to tomorrows post. This is something I've been thinking about for some time, but have not done yet because I haven't found the right venue to approach yet.

    - Andrea

  2. Wholesale means selling at a price where the retailer can afford to mark it up and make a profit. It does not necessarily mean selling at a discount of 50% from the artist's point of view.

    Retailers will usually double the price they paid; this is called keystoning. Sometimes they will more than double what they paid, and sometimes they will still buy product even when they can't double the price!

    STAY AWAY from Net 30 if at all possible. It's VERY easy to get burned this way, just as it is with consignment. Stores come and go, especially with "pop-up shops" which are so popular during the holidays. At the very least, ask the store to prepay their first order or two before you offer extended terms.

    I've had a shop and I am an artist, and I've seen this topic from both sides of the fence. And yes, I bought things that I couldn't always double the price on, but there were also things that I could triple or quadruple what I paid and they still sold very well, so it all evens out in the end.

  3. Prairie Primitives Folk art,

    I agree with you to a point. Just because you have been burned does not mean that you should necessarily stay away from NET 30 accounts. I am not suggesting that you offer it to all shops. If you do proper research on a store you will be able to avoid the fly-by-night "pop-up" stores and build fine working relationships with stores.

    Net 30 is a standard among retail shops, especially chains and well established shops. By staying away from Net 30 you could potentially be losing a lot of business. Setting your own terms is important. I was planning on getting into all of this for part 2 of the Wholesale series so I won't spend a lot of time here on this reply.

  4. This is really timely for me as I'm preparing to head down the wholesale path...thanks!