Large retail merchandisers have much to consider when adopting a new, or revised, strategy. They want to continue to tailor their goods to long-time customers while making way for innovative new products that attract new people to the brand. These motivations are in play even as more and more retailers are shifting their focus to e-commerce offerings as well as in-store selection.
One option for big-store buyers is to adopt a dropshipping model, where a segment of goods available for sale is actually held in the inventory of the manufacturer. When a customer makes a purchase online, the manufacturer is notified immediately and fulfills the order. The retailer is the face of the transaction and takes a profit on each sale.
Dropshipping is particularly relevant for retailers who want to maintain a personal relationship with manufacturers and have control over the quality and availability of stock. By partnering with a specific kind of dropshipper — one that specializes in one segment — they gain access to market knowledge as well as goods customers want to buy. If you’re a home goods retailer, here are some reasons why you may want to partner with a bedding dropshipper.
1. You Want to Reach a Niche Market
Big-box retailers are caught in a dilemma: they want to appeal to growing consumer interest in artisanal, natural goods, that fit with a boutique shop model. However, it is tough for big-box brands to open a stand at the local farmer’s market. Instead, they have to integrate that customer desire for local, unique goods by offering distinct product lines they can’t get anywhere else.
In 2018, bedding dropshippers are noticing a shift towards upcycling, “wellness” focused products. By partnering with a manufacturing that offers customization, you can let someone else handle the inventory while offering your customers something different. While most dropshippers offer a great deal of selection across market segments, only a few give you the opportunity to create short runs from scratch, starting with the 2018 trends of outdoorsy patterns on fabric.
2. You Want to Reduce Shipping and Inventory Costs
E-commerce retailers typically have lower overhead costs than brick-and-mortar chains. They don’t have to maintain as many showrooms or physical locations and have fewer floor staff to greet customers. For big brands to compete, they have to find other ways to reduce costs. Growing their e-commerce presence is one way to do so, at the same time taking advantage of the economic efficiency of offering products for sale online.
By partnering with bedding dropshippers, you save money on warehouse and distribution costs. You offer the same variety of products for sale as you would in-store, but don’t have to worry about ordering too much or too little of one particular item. That is the responsibility of the dropshipper, who can control what’s brought into the warehouse and made available to the end user. That includes, of course, custom lines developed in consultation with the partner retailer.
3. You Want to Maintain Consumer Trust
Even big-box retailers can become overloaded by trying to meet too many demands across market segments. This may become the case when a brick-and-mortar retailer all of a sudden has to expand its product selection in order to compete but has limited insight into sourcing opportunities. The retailer may attempt to be all things to all people, but simply lack the organizational capacity in order to do so.
Bedding dropshippers are experts in their segment. They know where to source a variety of fabrics and styles in order to appeal to all tastes. By partnering with a manufacturer who can not only source the right items but deliver them in a timely and efficient manner, the retailer becomes trusted by the consumer. There’s less opportunity for a link in the chain to break when a retailer brings on the expertise and service of a company that specializes in one area.
4. You Want Insight Into Market Trends
Because bedding dropshippers focus on one type of product, they have to know everything about that product in order to stay competitive. As B2B enterprises, they have to support the success of consumer-facing retailers in order to survive. Therefore, they invest heavily in their own knowledge of market trends. They know what consumers are looking for and work to bring those goods into their warehouses.
As a retailer, information is power. Working with a niche dropshipper who anticipates future trends, you can gain an edge over a competitor who does not work with a specialized manufacturer. Manufacturers who know this one area well offer a distinct value-add to the retailer, who will gain insight as well as access to quality products.
There’s no denying that retail continues to be a competitive space. As options for innovation emerge, brands have to shift their operations accordingly. For those selling home decor, carefully selecting the right manufacturer of bedding can mean the difference between a brand that effectively weathers the ups and downs of consumer interest and one that fades into the background.