Re: Manufacturer's Accounts
I've been in the racquet sports business for nearly 25 years. I just moved
into a 1200 sq ft shop to expand my selections in all areas; racquets,
clothes, shoes and accessories. I carry tennis(#1 $$ maker), squash,
racquetball, badminton, and platform tennis(#2 $$). I've found that most
companies are quite eager to open new accounts.
I agree with previous posts, stay away from the high profile shoe companies.
You really don't need them and they could care less about you! Stay with
high end shoes and clothes, and cherry pick the lines. Know your
competition, no matter how near or far they might be, and try to find
different items to offer your customers.
Racquet companies are just beginning to walk the walk after a lot of
talking. A demo program is a must! I combat the internet with knowledge and
service. Sure, I lose sales to the Tennis Warehouse's and Holibird's of this
world, but that number has been steadily dropping. If you must, set up a
demo program with a charge that is applied to the purchase price. Keep you
demos up to tension with high quality string and replace the grips often.
I've been able to dump Gamma completely. They own ATS and funnel your money
into that operation to compete against you(home stringers). I found better
quality strings that everyone doesn't have; LaserFibre. I was able to switch
all my Gamma addicts over to LaserFibre and they in turn have sent me new
customers wanting to try it. Behind Prince, LaserFibre is my number 2
selling string brand. I do over 1500 string jobs a year, so I think I have a
pretty good handle on things in this area.
Go slow and don't succumb to rep pressure. Try Volkl for an up and coming
racquet company. Avoid Yonex. They're yesterday's news!
Received on Fri Apr 28 2000 - 06:14:20 CDT