7 Signs It’s Time to Stop Retailing

So you’re a manufacturer or a distributor and you’ve been selling to consumers as well as to retailers? But it’s wearing pretty thin as you juggle different hats and try to be “everything to everyone”. You have an inkling that it could be different (and better!) but you’re just not sure.


1. You want to focus on retailers

You love your retailers and want to serve them. You really want to focus more on them and support them in doing what they do best.


2. You’re over it

You’re seriously just over it. Over serving two completely different markets. Over packing 1000 orders when you could be packing 100. Over stretching yourself too thin. The love for your business is slowly draining into a bazillion mini postage satchels.


3. You’re too busy

Your retailers find it hard to get in touch with you because you’re so busy. Or you find it hard to set aside time especially for them.

You’re struggling to meet the needs of both consumers and retailers.

You’re constantly frazzled, always answering emails or taking phone calls, struggling to find time to just sit down and write a blog post or create a marketing plan.

Here’s the thing. You could hire more staff, or you could just work with what you currently have and change the direction of your business. I’m not saying that wholesaling is less work than retailing. What I’m saying is that it’s completely different and the structure and focus of your business will change once you narrow your main market.


4. You want to simplify

You want to streamline and get really focused in your marketing efforts. Your main marketing focus will be on promoting your retailers and raising brand awareness in a broader sense.

Of course you’ll still be marketing to consumers, but not to get a sale. Rather, through retailer education campaigns and brand awareness.


5. You want to stop competing with retailers

By exclusively wholesaling your brand, you will have a competitive advantage over other wholesalers. You will have time to focus on your retailers, unlike other wholesalers who also sell to consumers and must therefore compete with their own retailers. You find this concept very appealing!


6. You want to educate

You either created the brand that you sell or you distribute it. Either way, you are intimately involved with it and you know it better than anyone else. Is your time best spent sending out thousands of orders? Or on educating hundreds of retailers about your brand so that they can do the direct selling?


7. You want to change the way you spend your time

I would wager that new product development is on the to-do list of most brand owners. But the reality of running a business and serving scores of customers is that this takes up a LOT of time.

Before you know it, it’s been 6 months since you even tested that new sample you put together or sent that new design off to your manufacturer.

You desperately want time for new product development and exclusive wholesaling can help you to gain more control of how you spend time in your business.


If you nodded yes to any of the above, it might just be time to start working through the possibility that wholesale could be where the future of your business lies…

If you are an exclusive wholesaler, tell me… what made you take the leap?

NOTE: Making the decision to switch from retailing and wholesaling to exclusive wholesaling is a big one, and your cash flow will take an immediate hit. If your product is priced correctly, this will even out over time, but unless you already have a significant wholesale market you will need to be prepared for the short-term struggle.

Eva Van Strijp | simple living. peaceful parenting. intentional business.

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