Companies spend millions of dollars each year designing ways to make their product fly off of your store shelves. Take advantage of this important research! Questions to ask each vendor:
* What’s the best way to sell this product line? Alone or cross-merchandised with your, or another vendor’s, product?
* Who else is selling this merchandise? What are they doing to move it that’s important for me to know as well?
* Where should this product be displayed in my store?
* Many vendors have a host of extras to help you display and sell their products, sometimes they are readily available, but sometimes you have to ask. Bring this list of questions with you to each booth you visit:
* Do you have presentation and display tips for his product or product line?
* Are there racks available to better show and inventory the product in my store?
* Do you have signing or other point-of-purchase materials available such as project sheets or brochures?
* Do you have videos I can uses for associate training and for in-store play?
* Do you offer merchandise planograms?
* Do you offer made-up samples for model boards and other in-store displays?
* Do you have people who can help with store sets and departmental relays?
* Do you have people who can train my staff on how to best use your product?
* Can you recommended designers I can bring in to help during special events?
* Can you recommend an in-store event or other idea I can use to promote your product and build foot traffic in my store?
* Do you have items I can have to use as giveaways and as door prizes during my special events?
* Are there co-op dollars available to help pay for bag stuffers and other advertising medias used in promoting your product line?
* Are there co-op dollars available to pay for part of my Yellow Pages ad if I list your product line in the ad copy or feature your logo?
* Do you have articles or photographs I can use to promote your line in my e-mail blasts, newsletter and on my website?
Don't miss a single sales trick in 2008 -- print this checklist and take it with you to each trade show you attend!