Sports Store Distributors
Distributing to Sports Store Distributors is all about satisfying the store’s needs in what type of products their customers demand. Sports Store Distributors want a product that has been established and will sell quickly. Contacting local Sports Store Distributors is a good first step to get a feel for what products do well in that market.
Finding a distributor who already has an established relationship with independent specialty retailers is essential. The distributor and retailer relationship is important in product placement in Sports Store Distributors. If a distributor has a good reputation with an independent specialty retailer the process of getting products into the store is a lot smoother.
Building a relationship and a positive track record is a very important part for the distributor. It is important for the distributor to do some research on what kind of specialty products do well in each specialty store, which can be dependent on where they are located. If a product does well in one independent specialty store the likeliness the distributor will put it in other stores is high. In Sports Store Distributors and independent stores in general it is all about shelf space and what sells well will claim that shelf space. Products that do not, will be given less space or no space in order to move in a new product that sells well.
Sports Store Distributors look for products that are innovative and will set them apart from competitors. So, new products have a better chance of making it into an independent specialty store vs. a big box retailer. An independent specialty store will have a stronger personal relationship and knowledge with products compared to big box stores as well. This is beneficial to everyone involved because having knowledge about the product in stores will improve sales.
In order to get a product into an independent specialty market contacting the correct distributor is the first step. The next step would be sending samples and other pertinent information to that distributor if requested. They like to see proof of sales and selling points of that product. Communicating about price points and minimum order quantities is very important. If the distributor likes the product and thinks it would be a good fit for their route they will purchase the product.
If the product does well in stores, the distributor will continually order more. Proof of sales will bring more orders and getting in contact with other distributors in other parts of the country is the next step. A product with proven sales in a few Sports Store Distributors will make its way to Sports Store Distributors all across the nation through different distribution channels. Establishing and building relationships with distributors is the best way to get products into Sports Store Distributors.
Here are the 6 steps you need to take to have your product picked up by a distributor.
1. Start with the right questions.) Before you try distributing your product, you need to ask yourself a few basic questions. Do you need to build demand for your product, or is there already a demand for it? Do you know that the distributor would be interested in selling your product? If you can strike a deal with them, can you handle the production volume? Do you want to sell directly to the distributor, or do you want to license your product to a manufacturer that will handle distribution?
2. Be prepared to profit.) Does your product offer enough of a profit margin for a distributor? Can you sell your product at a reasonable enough profit to cover the packaging, shipping, commissions, marketing and wholesale distribution? Check the distributor’s guidelines for other fees that you will have to build into the cost of your product in order for you to be able to turn enough of a profit to make the effort worth your while. If you work with a discount retailer, they will try to strip your profits down to zero in order to keep their prices as low as possible.
The typical breakdown of margins are: If a products costs $1 to produce, that product will retail for $4. That product that retails for $4 will wholesale for $2 to distributors and stores that purchase direct. Big box retailers like Walmart may offer to pay $1.25 to the manufacturer if the product costs $1 to produce. That is the typical profit margin.
3. Determine if the distributor is the right one for your product.) The relationship between you and the distributor starts with you browsing the store’s that they service for competing products. If the stores already has a similar product, it is going to be very difficult to get your product picked up. Picture in which zone your product would best fit on the shelf and keep in mind that the most precious asset that these big box stores value are their shelf space. Keep this information in mind when you are preparing your presentation to the distributor.
4. Pitch your product.) Decide whether it will be you or a representative to present your product to the distributor. Your presentation depends heavily on your strengths as a businessperson as they will most likely ask financial questions and logistics questions.
It’s common for companies to hire a broker to pitch their product to a distributor, as it will be more likely that your product will make it to the next stage if the individual pitching your product has industry knowledge or a personal relationship with them. The percentage of commission verses, however generally a broker will take around 5% to represent your product.
We at Mr. Checkout have experience dealing with brokers and know that there are several retail brokers that have poor business practices that can potentially damage your brand. If you are seeking a legitimate broker, please give us a call for a recommendation. It could save you a huge headache and a lot of money.
5. Complete the required paperwork.) Often a distributor will have you go through an application process. However, before submitting the paperwork required, you should contact them and let them know your intentions. Having a contact inside of the company will potentially move your application more smoothly through the process.
6. Anticipate the need for increased volume.) Having a distributor pick up your line will most likely mean a significant increase in volume. You should be prepared to ramp up your production and informing your manufacturer of this opportunity.
Having production, logistics and distribution to sync is not only difficult, it requires a significant amount of time invested in customer relations. Also, distributors may have stipulations in the contract that may penalize you for delays in shipping and production. Have an attorney explain all contracts to you if you don’t understand the terms.
If you’re looking to distribute your product through a distributor, be sure to thoroughly assess the marketplace, carefully prepare for production growth, and take full advantage of resources available to help you grow your business.
Top 6 Sports Store Distributors
The competition in the sporting goods market is quite tough. There are big brands and some other brands trying to fight for the average teams. The team may have to invite tenders from these manufacturers to know which one would be providing outfits for a particular sporting season.
However, sporting goods are not only for professional teams; high school lacrosse teams, football, baseball, and many others also need sporting goods. They need the balls, the outfits, the helmet, and so many others.
It was back in the days that sporting goods used to come from a couple of brands; now, several brands are in the business of producing sporting goods. These products are needed by sport professionals and non professionals as they are easy to wear and they are even objects of fashion statements. The Air Jordans was originally made for basketball players; now, it has become fashion sport shoes.
In no particular order, a list of sports store distributors would be given below.
Fielders Choice Wholesale
Fielders Choice is a wholesale distributor of licensed sports novelties for most major licensed manufacturers. Some of their products include flags and banners, license plate frames, car accessories, blankets, and more.
ATAFA Sporting Goods
Atafa offers wholesale sporting goods products such as football supplies, golf drivers, lacrosse protecting gears, and others. They have proprietary sources of procurement worldwide and, more importantly, by using cutting edge supply chain technologies to achieve optimized inventory control. The company allows dropshipping.
Green Supply, Inc. is a wholesale distributor of hunting, outdoor, camping, fishing, and sporting goods equipment located in Vandalia, MO. The company employs over 80 personnel to run its sales department, technology department, and its 120,000+ square foot warehouse. From firearms to camping tents, the wholesaler offers over 45,000 products from more than 300 manufacturers. Its products can be viewed on its website or in our catalog which has over 12,000 copies in circulation annually.
Maurice Sporting Goods
Maurice Sporting Goods is a well established wholesale distributor of wholesale camping gear, wholesale camping tents, and a full range of wholesale camping equipment. The distributor prides itself as the largest wholesale sporting goods distributor in the country, offering its customers true nationwide service through our network of six warehouses.
Sportsman’s Supply is one of the largest distributors of top of the line brand name fishing, ice fishing, hunting, archery, optics, marine electronics, marine accessories, camping, and water sports products. This is an Authorized Wholesaler of Sporting Goods including manufacturers such as: Coleman, Callaway, Daiwa, Okuma, Snugpak, Wilson, and many more.
They carry a large variety of Wholesale Knives, Daggers, Swords, Hunting Knives, Survival Knives, Binoculars, Crossbows, Soccer Balls, Basketballs, Tummy Belts, Nail Clippers, Scissors, Flasks and more. Wholesale prices are listed on their site for all items.