Growth of online shopping site Retailbuyers.com has encouraged the Canadian-based group to expand its market in the U.S. Launched in early 2005, originally the company started to service only the CGTA giftware suppliers in Canada. Today, the web site is dedicated to providing a unique wholesale shopping experience for home furnishings and gift retailers to purchase suppliers’ overstock, clearance, and discontinued merchandise. In January of this year, the United States surpassed Canada in number of hits to the site.
Founder and CEO Deborah Lalande, herself a past retailer as the owner of a furniture and gift store, says the idea sprang from conversations with one of her suppliers. “Suppliers seemed to have difficulty moving excess merchandise. As a business owner, I wanted to be apprised of these reduced price goods, but I found many suppliers weren’t set up for cash and carry, and their sales reps weren’t keen on selling clearance merchandise at reduced commission rates.” When she approached suppliers about her concept to create a web site that connected their overstock goods with interested retailers, the response was overwhelming.
Retailers can explore new suppliers and suppliers can pick up new clients. The company currently has approximately 15 suppliers with overstock opportunities, and over 1,000 registered retailers who shop the site.
Christine Tivas of Gluck Lifestyles Ltd., explains, “As a supplier, it is wonderful to have a vehicle like Retailbuyers to market excess stock to retailers. This channel allows suppliers to connect with retail partners and present them with exceptional opportunities usually reserved for the major discount companies. This means retailers can stock up on items for routine and special event purchasing, realizing significant margins and offering a broader product range to their customers. It’s easy to use, flexible, and generates results. The concept is unique, innovative, and value based—a win-win for everyone involved!”
An added benefit to all participants is a monthly electronic newsletter, E-Buyers Insider. It keeps retailers apprised of specials and featured items, offers profiles of new manufacturers and suppliers, conveniently lists upcoming home-related trade shows, and provides links to recommended trade publications and resources.
Deborah Lalande added, “We are a Canadian company just starting out in the American market. Based on our early success, soon we expect to be established throughout North America as a reliable site for retailers as well as designers to source overstock, clearance, and discontinued furniture, lighting, rugs, textiles, accent items, tabletop, accessories, and giftware.
Our service provides increased sales opportunities at all price points throughout the home furnishings marketplace.”
A retailer who has successfully used Retailbuyers.com, Marney Trotter of The Thank You Company says, “As an independent retailer, Retailbuyers.com provides us with a great resource for products that suppliers are selling off. It gives us the opportunity to expand our product line at bargain prices which in turn means bigger profits at the register."
Lalande is seeking additional sales representation in the U.S. to help fuel the company’s growth. For more information, visit www.retailbuyers.com.
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