Setting Wholesale Order Minimums


Setting wholesale order minimums and sticking to them works not only in your favor but, also helps to insure the success your wholesale clients will have with your jewelry line. Your are not doing yourself or the retailer any service by not setting any wholesale order minimums and here is why:

Allowing stores to place orders with no minimum will inviteably attract clients who either:

  1. Like to buy piecemeal or have no concept of how to merchandise or market handmade products.
  2. Are not ready to make a serious commitment to your work.
  3. Are buying for personal use.

Purchasing just a few items from several artisans often shows poorly as it does not make a fair enough representation of each individual line. Small purchasers tend to lack the understanding of what it takes to make a strong impact. Whether it is because of lack of experience or not enough funds it almost always translates into lack of sales for the store owner.

Think of it like a fashion runway. If a designer has an extensive collection ranging from casual and trendy to streamlined high end garments and only shows you three outfits down the runway you probably would not get what the line is about.

However, if you saw thirty designs from the casual collection followed by thirty high end designs you would likely leave the show with a strong feeling and understanding of the vision the designer has.

Most people do not register design concepts with any degree of impact until they have seen a product in multiples. That is not to say that a customer could not fall in love with one of your designs if they only saw one in a store but, one is not going carry the bills for you or the store.

You want to create impact with a good assortment of what your line is all about. The more the customer sees the more they are likely to buy or at least remember your work until the next time they visit the same store.

Setting wholesale order minimums is one of the most important ways you can increase sales and insure a better success rate for your wholesale customers. So, lets look at how you can arrive at the right order minimum for your line.

6 Steps to Setting Wholesale
Order Minimums

STEP ONE - A simple way to start is to make a list of all the pieces you would like to wholesale then add up the costs of each item and divide that figure by the total number of pieces. This will give you your average price per piece.

STEP TWO - Multiply your average price per piece by 15 to 25 and you will have a general price range for opening minimum orders.

STEP THREE - After getting a rough idea of what fifteen to twenty-five pieces will add up to, take it a step further to arrive at a variety of order combinations that will give you a low to high end price range for order groupings. Lay out a selection from your line or draw out a good assortment on a piece of paper. Again keep it in a 15 to 25 piece range.

STEP FOUR - Start with three colour groupings and make sure to include sets for each colour as well as a higher ratio of earrings to necklaces or earrings to brooches.

STEP FIVE - Repeat this process for three different pricing options to include your low end items, mid priced items and high end designs.

STEP SIX - Total each group and you will have a good feel for how much your minimum order should be.

As long as you have included a good variety of your designs, some matching sets and complimentary colours you will be able to offer sound suggestions to your wholesale clients. You will also have a clear idea of what it takes to meet your wholesale order minimums while taking into account how to offer a comprehensive representation of your work.

Wholesale Order Minimums
5 Tips for Getting it Right with
Suggested Orders

  • If the total for fifteen or twenty-five of your designs does not reach at least $300.00 then you might want to include more of your designs to meet an order minimum of $300.00 or even consider raising your wholesale prices a tad until you have a well rounded suggested order grouping.


  • Offer your most popular items in a multitude of colour choices and in matching sets. This will make order filling easier and increase sales for your wholesale customers. By encouraging them to carry a focused selection of your work in a variety of colours it creates more impact. They will sell more and be eager to try the same approach with a new grouping of your designs.

  • Create a few earring rack displays with an assortment of earrings that will reach your minimum order price or slightly more. Displaying a pre-selected collection with a per rack total is a great way to make order suggestions that will meet your wholesale minimum and make buying easy. It also encourages buyers to have all your earrings displayed on one rack and refill that rack with your work.

  • If your jewelry is high end or fine jewelry, you will need to make your wholesale order minimums higher. When playing around with mock order groupings you might want to reduce the number of pieces per order depending on your price range and what kind of client budget you might encounter. When selling jewelry wholesale, the minimums can vary greatly depending on your price points and the type of clients you are gearing your line to. In other words, define your target market and set the minimum accordingly.

  • While it is best to have clear wholesale order minimums and adhere to them, you may want to also have re-order minimums. There may be times when your wholesale clients need a small number of items and will appreciate the flexibility to place a smaller order, especially after they have just recently purchased from you. For example, when they are not really ready to re-order, but they want to accommodate one of their returning customers with a few items. They will have the option to place a small order to meet their needs and they will think of you favorably for accommodating their needs. It is all about relationship building.

Start with a well thought out line, a good colour selection and a variety of price points. Once you have created a few mock wholesale orders and arrived at wholesale order minimums that will represent your work fairly, you will be well on your way to selling wholesale to retailers 


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