Setting wholesale terms is one of the first orders of business if you are thinking of selling handmade jewelry to stores. You need to ask yourself an important question regarding setting wholesale terms before you make your first contact with any store owner.
That question is will I offer credit terms to my customers? Credit terms are usually referred to as net 30 days. In other words you are giving the store thirty days after the shipping or invoice date to pay the invoice for their order.
Net 30 days is standard in setting wholesale terms in the industry, but if you plan to sell to large department store or chain stores, they often set the terms at net 60 or even 90 days.
Selling handmade jewelry should not be treated any different from any other kind of sales. You are running a business and need to make decisions that are best for your business and stop thinking like an artist....just for a moment :0)
let's talk about setting wholesale terms and what it may mean to your business. When I first started selling handmade jewelry to stores I thought like a shy artist... insecure about my product, afraid to ask for what I wanted and unsure about what was "okay or acceptable" to ask for.
Please let me save you the trouble. I really want you to feel confident about your product and your worth. Mostly, I want to save you the time it takes to learn the lessons that I learned. There is nothing wrong with knowing your stuff about the wholesale business when you are brand new to selling handmade jewelry to stores.
Once you have decided when, or even if, you will offer credit terms no one should make you feel like you should give credit sooner or even at all. If anyone triggers a feeling of inadequacy regarding your wholesale parameters it will only be because you have not yet strengthened your muscles and tightened your professional boundaries.
This is your business and you make the decisions on setting wholesale terms that are best for your business. Remember, selling handmade jewelry does not mean that the artist is running the show. Tighten up and make sure that you represent the artist within you with the level of professionalism he or she deserves!
When I started out, I didn't know how to sell to stores and there was nobody there to tell me how. I really had no understanding about setting wholesale terms. I would let people have thirty days to pay their bill whenever they asked for it. Sometimes I was just afraid to ask for the money up front.
The important lesson I learned was that when I gave my hard work away like that, without placing enough value on myself to ask for immediate payment, a funny would happen. Stores would be late paying or I would have to make repeated calls to get paid at all.
Once my husband and I participated in a wholesale show in Boston. We made the mistake of giving new customers thirty days to pay. Being from Canada I guess these store felt they did not have to pay at all. After all what where we going to do, chase them down?
Well, we did just that. On our next trip to the United States we actually drove way out of our way to visit these stores and we collected payment. Then we made sure to visit the banks that the cheques were issued from and had the cheques certified.
This was probably about fifteen years ago so I am not sure whether we were able to cash the cheques or certify them. I just know that we were able to get our money by making sure with the issuing branch that the funds where available.