about you

Inside A Wholesale Catalogue: About You

Most makers don't get this

Okay, maybe we should take a breather. I brought some of those isotonic gel snacks to keep us going.

This one seems to be sausage flavour. Umm, you go right ahead.

In this series, we’re talking about the details retailers look for in your wholesale catalogue. We’ve covered information relating to your products and how you do business.

The next thing we need to include is information about you as a supplier. Now, this often comes as a surprise to creative people.

That’s because they don’t remotely see themselves as a supplier but as a maker or artist. That’s their identity.

But as far as shopkeepers are concerned, anyone we buy stock from is a supplier.

This holds true whether we’re working with an individual craftsperson or a multinational distributor. Regardless of the job title you personally prefer, if we’re giving you money in exchange for merchandise to put on our shelves, you’re our supplier.

But that’s not to say that we expect every supplier to behave in the same way.

Some are corporate behemoths with a vast team of salespeople and warehouses in two different time zones. Others are small scale producers who do everything from making the product to hand-delivering our order.

Some suppliers release new collections according to a calendar drawn-up by head office twenty months in advance, others get in touch because they just came back from a holiday in Cornwall and now can’t stop painting seascapes.

There are lots of ways to be a supplier.

The key, though, is to understand and accept that, to retailers, that’s what you are – no matter what you see when you look in the mirror. Most artists don’t get this.

But now you do. And with just a few simple adjustments, you can present yourself to potential stockists as a particularly credible, reliable supplier. More on this here.

So let’s look at the information about yourself you need to include in your wholesale catalogue.

1. Your name and photo

Many artists neglect to include a photo of themselves in their catalogue. Some never even give their full names. That’s a weird way to get someone to trust you with their money.

Since our transactions are generally carried out by email or phone these days, retailers and suppliers don’t get to see each other very much. The beginning of your catalogue, therefore, is a great place to start building that connection. Which brings us to…

2. Your welcome note

This is a short introduction from you to the shopkeeper, presenting your collection, giving an insight into what you offer and welcoming them into your business. See an example welcome note page in my Canva template, right here.

3. Your contact details

This will probably be your email address and phone number, but it’s also worth including your street address somewhere in your catalogue if you can. Few retailers will send you orders by mail, but it can help you to look more established and robust.

These tweaks cost nothing and don’t need to take an age to implement, but they can have a huge effect on helping retailers trust you.

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