By Moe Lastfogel
Director of Sales and Marketing for The Retail Observer
I was recently at a convention and had the opportunity to sit down with an independent dealer that owned a Waterbed and Mattress Gallery. Yes, you read that right, waterbed. He kept waterbed in the company’s name because he felt it’s part of his brand recognition and he still sells a good deal of replacement parts to people hanging onto their ‘70s waterbeds (you know who you are!).
I asked him what he sold besides waterbed parts and mattresses. He told me pillows and bedding played a big part in increasing ticket sales. My next question was, “What does your showroom look like?” He told me they had vignettes setup to look like bedrooms with side tables, lamps, pictures, etcetera. I asked if he sold any of those items. The answer was “No, why?”. My reply was, “If you show it - you should sell it.”
Why, as an appliance, electronic, or furniture dealer would you show something you can’t or won’t sell? I’m not saying don’t show it, I’m saying if you do, then sell it too. If you sell appliances, why not pots and pans and decorative hardware along with sinks and plumbing products and lighting? Furniture dealers show dining sets, bedrooms and living rooms, why not sell TV’s, plates, carpets, pictures and lamps? Electronics dealers with home theater rooms can sell furniture and specialty appliances for these rooms. Think outside the box for the stuff inside the boxes you are selling.
Many of you are part of a buying group, attend the shows and have opportunities to pick up any kind of product you would like to sell. So, the next time a customer asks if you sell what you are showing, the answer should always be, “Yes.”