Packaging Your Product For Major Retail Success

It is essential that you spend extra time and effort on your packaging.  Packaging can make or break a buyer’s decision as to whether they buy your product or not. I’ve seen amazing product concepts not get realized by Major Retailers because of packaging.

If you think about it from a Buyer’s point of view, packaging is what a customer notices first when entering into their store.  If the packaging isn’t attractive or clear, customers won’t buy. It’s as simple as that. So spending time on packaging is essential to Major Retail success.

So how do you know if you are on the right track with packaging your product?

The following are three great questions to think about when preparing your product for Major Retail success:

1. Does your packaging convey a clear message of what the product is or does?

If you pick up your product in its packaging and don’t immediately know what it is, then you know you have a problem.  Always make sure that your message is clearly conveyed on your packaging.  The truth is that people usually decide within a few seconds as to whether they want to buy your product or not.  So it is imperative that you create a clear visual experience for the customer as to what the product is and how it can help them.

2. Is the packaging attractive? Does it make the consumer want to buy now?

You might think that you have the most fabulous packaging, but if no one else agrees, then you know you have a problem.  Your packaging must be attractive, concise and enticing.  How do you know that you are on the right track? Ask people!!  Ask your friends, family, colleagues, people on the street….ask anyone who will give you an honest answer.  Tell them you need the truth, not a compliment.  You’d be amazed at how brutally honest people can be!

3. Is the package size consistent with its competition?

If you went to a store and saw that your competitors packaging is 3X smaller than your packaging, then you know you have a problem.  Always make sure that your product aligns with how much space a Buyer has to work with.  There is a reason why Buyers chose to layout their space in a store!  They are allotted a very limited amount of space for their category.   So pay attention and be respectful for how much room a buyer has to work with.

Either way, if you are not 100% convinced that you are on the right track with packaging, then get some help! Look for a company or packaging expert that specializes in product packaging for your product type.  Working with an experience packaging expert can save a tremendous amount of time, money and headache!

And at the end of the day, the more energy and time you spend on packaging the better. So take the time to prepare your packaging and you will be on your way to Major Retail success!

About the author: Karen Waksman (www.productforprofit.com) is a Successful Manufacturer’s Rep turned Author, Speaker and Consultant. She has written a step-by-step guide called ‘How To Sell Your Product, Invention or Craft to Major Retailers…No Sales Experience or Existing Buyer Relationships Required!’

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Should I Manufacture or License My Product or Invention?

I recently attended my local Inventors Association (Inventors Alliance in Northern California) and noticed that Inventors kept inquiring about the differences between manufacturing and licensing a product.  New Inventors were confused about what these terms meant and wanted to learn more about the factors to consider when deciding which way to go for their own product.   So I thought I’d take a minute to discuss both options as this comes up all of the time in my workshops and classes as well.

Let’s start with Manufacturing.  Manufacturing is the process by which an Inventor actually designs, develops, sells and markets their product. Basically they are working on a product idea from start to finish.  They are responsible for taking a product idea and bringing it to market and creating an entire business venture around this product idea.   Inventors who manufacture their products typically take on all facets of a business—they are responsible for product development, packaging, marketing, selling and much more.

Licensing is a bit different. Licensing is when you actually ‘rent’ your product idea to a company who will do all of the work for you.   And when I say work, I mean they will handle all of the product development, packaging, marketing and selling for your product idea.  In other words, you provide a company with your brilliant idea and they in turn will bring your product to market and write you a check for every unit sold.

Why would a company agree to license a product idea?

(more…)

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How to Access a Retail Buyer’s Contact Information

Ever wonder how to get access to a Major Retail Buyer’s contact information? Check out this quick and informative video!

Also, if you would like to learn everything you ever wanted to know about selling your products to major retailers, then please join us for a FREE 2 HOUR WEBINAR hosted by Ponoko on Saturday, October 30th, from 2-4pm PST

Space is limited.

Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/546031472

About the Author: Karen Waksman (www.productforprofit.com) is a Successful Manufacturer’s Rep turned Author, Speaker and Consultant. She has written a step-by-step guide called ‘How To Sell Your Product, Invention or Craft to Major Retailers…No Sales Experience or Existing Buyer Relationships Required!’

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How to Sell Products to Major Retailers Webinar is Tomorrow!

Just a quick reminder…if you would like to learn everything you ever wanted to know about selling your products to major retailers, then please join us for a FREE 2 HOUR WEBINAR hosted by Ponoko on Saturday, September 11th, from 1-3pm PST.

Space is limited.

Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/974838481

About the Webinar Organizer:  Karen Waksman (http://www.productforprofit.com) is a Successful Manufacturer’s Rep turned Author, Speaker and Consultant. She has written a step-by-step guide called ‘How To Sell Your Product, Invention or Craft to Major Retailers…No Sales Experience or Existing Buyer Relationships Required!’

Check out my previous blog posts for more info:

http://blog.ponoko.com/2010/08/25/can-i-really-sell-my-new-products-to-major-retailers/

http://blog.ponoko.com/2010/08/09/selling-to-major-retailers/

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Can I Really Sell My New Products to Major Retailers?

Following on from my previous post on selling to Major Retailers, a common misconception about selling to them is that you have to be a large established company in order to sell to them.  This is absolutely not the case! The truth is that there are many small start-up companies with just one product SKU that have gotten their products into Major Retailers.  They had limited cash flow and very little marketing exposure but had a cool product concept and more importantly a conviction to succeed.  And that’s what matters!

My experience as a Manufacturer’s Rep has taught me that Buyers actually care more about finding the next cool new product concept than they do about working with a large established company.  The reality is that Major Retail Buyers are always seeking new products and inventions because they need to deal with the insane amount of competition that they are constantly up against.  This is why Major Retailers have special sections in their store to showcase new product concepts.

For instance, if you’ve ever walked into a Bed Bath and Beyond Store, you will you will notice that there are always new and interesting products around the counter area that you’ve probably never seen before.  Bed Bath and Beyond actually have specific buyers designated to finding new products.   And the reality is that most Major Retailers actually set up various events throughout the year to meet new potential vendors.   So you see, Major Retailers are always on the lookout for new product concepts!

What most people do not know is that if a buyer likes your product, they will find a way to make it happen.  Yes, you will need to ensure that your product is ready to be sold to Major Retailers prior to a buyer making a purchasing decision.  But please note that Buyers WILL buy your product if it is something that they believe will sell in their stores. And either way, they will probably only start out by buying and testing a small quantity of your product to ensure that there is an interest in the market place.

So if you have a product that you think would be perfect for Major Retailers, please don’t hesitate to try and make this happen.  You could be the next million dollar new product success story!!

If you would like to learn more about how to sell your products to major retailers, please join us for a FREE 2 HOUR WEBINAR hosted by Ponoko on Saturday, September 11th, from 1-3pm PST.

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/974838481

About the author: Karen Waksman (www.productforprofit.com) is a Successful Manufacturer’s Rep turned Author, Speaker and Consultant. She has written a step-by-step guide called ‘How To Sell Your Product, Invention or Craft to Major Retailers…No Sales Experience or Existing Buyer Relationships Required!’

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Selling To Major Retailers

What Not To Do (And What 95% Of People Tend To Do!)

The biggest mistake I see people make while trying to sell their product into Major Chain Store Retailers is that they start by contacting a retailer’s Vendor Department.

Every Major Retailer has a Vendor Department.  This department is in charge of sifting through all of the new vendor requests.  If the Vendor Department reviews a product and finds a match, they will pass the information on to the appropriate Buyer.  A great example of a Vendor Department is if a retailer redirects you to a page on their website.

If you’ve ever dealt with a Vendor Department, then you know how incredibly depressing and disheartening this can be.  Vendor departments are notorious for asking you extensive financial questions about your business.  I’ve encountered countless product developers/ inventors who’ve given up on selling to Major Retailers simply because they were overwhelmed by this time consuming and frustrating process.

And it’s even more unfortunate that most Inventors assume that going through a Vendor Department is the only way for a retailer to review a new product. The truth is that if I had waited for a retailer’s Vendor Department to get my product into stores, I would have never had the success that I’ve had over the years!

Vendor Departments gets inundated with an endless array of products to review. By the time they review your product, it could take 6 months or a year to get an answer.  What’s the point?  You must go to the Buyers directly to get any traction into the retailer.

I know for a fact that most people start by reaching out to the retailer’s Vendor Department.  This is great for you. You will differentiate yourself from the competition.  By connecting with Buyer’s direct, you will increase your chances of getting your product on the shelves of the World’s Largest Retailers faster than you ever thought possible!

Some of you may be concerned that you might upset the Buyer if you start contacting them directly.  But please know that I have NEVER upset a Buyer by going direct! And I have sold products to Major Retailers for years!

Even if you come across that one random Buyer that gets really angry with you about going direct, know this…the Buyer will forget about you in a matter of days!!!   Buyers are incredibly busy and get inundated with phone calls all day long.  They might get mad for a moment, but I assure you that this will be short lived.

The truth is that Buyers understand how important their job is.  They know that it would be such a huge opportunity for a business owner to get their product into their stores and tend to be sympathetic toward potential vendors who contact them.  So just know that even if the Buyer is in a bad mood, they will get over it!

Ultimately, contacting Buyers directly is the most effective way to get your product sold to Major Retailers.

If you would like to learn more about how to get access to Major Retail Buyers and what to say to them to get them to buy, please join us for a FREE 2 HOUR WEBINAR hosted by Ponoko on Saturday, September 11th, from 1-3pm PST.

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/974838481
 

About the author: Karen Waksman (www.productforprofit.com) is a Successful Manufacturer’s Rep turned Author, Speaker and Consultant. She has written a step-by-step guide called ‘How To Sell Your Product, Invention or Craft to Major Retailers…No Sales Experience or Existing Buyer Relationships Required!’

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