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Benefits of Purchasing Trade vs Retail

Updated: Jul 9

When it comes to purchasing interior design products, what's the best option for you? Here are some benefits of buying trade that may help you make your decision.

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If you're an interior designer, business owner, or anyone else in the design industry, you know there are benefits to buying trade vs retail. But what are they? And why should you care? In this blog post, we'll explore the differences between these two types of purchases and explain why trading can save you money and time. We hope this information helps you make the best decisions for your business!

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#1 Profit

For business owners, profit margins are always a top concern. To-the-trade products offer a great opportunity to increase profits without sacrificing quality or service. When products are purchased at wholesale prices, businesses can save a significant amount of money. Retail brands typically offer about 10%-20% (if that) off MSRP (the manufacturer's suggested retail price), which quickly gets eaten away from product damages during shipping and the time it takes you to handle returns, unpack and install in your client's home. It's totally not worth your time or the hassle! To the trade vendors offer a much healthier margin off MSRP. In addition, to-the-trade products often come with special services and benefits that can further increase profits. For example, many to-the-trade manufacturers offer volume discounts, which can help businesses reduce their overall costs and can help them be more competitive for their clients. Ultimately, business owners should purchase to-the-trade products whenever possible in order to maximize their profits. As profits are what help to keep us in business!

#2 Reduced Risk & White Glove Service

There are many factors to consider when choosing where to source furniture and home decor for clients. Retail brands offer convenience and a wide selection, but trade vendors typically provide better customer service. For example, trade vendors will often deliver and assemble the furniture for their clients, ensuring that it arrives in perfect condition. In contrast, retail brands typically do not offer delivery or assembly services, which can sometimes lead to damaged or incorrect items hurting the trust between client and designer. There are so many horror stories about recalls from retail brands due to incorrect assembly and improper testing. To-the-trade usually tests their products and fabrics for fire safety and weight capacity, usually uses higher grade materials, and primarily delivers to a receiver. Receivers unpack, assemble, inspect, and immediately inform you if there are defects. They also handle returns, deliveries, and installations at your client's home with meticulous detail providing the higher quality of service our clients deserve and that we aim to provide as designers. In addition, trade vendors often have a better return policy than retail brands, making it easier for clients to get their money back if they are not satisfied with their purchase (with the exception of custom orders of course). As a result, trade vendors typically provide a higher level of customer service than retail brands and allow the designer to resolve any issues before it even hits their clients' doorstep.

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#3 Relationships

When you source products through vendors, you form relationships with them that can be beneficial in many ways. For example, vendors may offer deeper discounts, free products, extra assistance, invitations to private events, and opportunities for white-label branding to help your business's visibility and success. Cultivating good relationships with vendors can pay off in many ways, so it's important to choose vendors carefully and nurture the relationships over time. By taking the time to build strong vendor relationships, you can create a network of reliable suppliers who are more likely to help you out when you need it most. Allowing you to come through in a clutch for your clients and always saving the day.

#4 Efficiency

When it comes to efficiency and client expectations, sourcing to the trade can be a huge help. When all items come in at a specific, projected time, it's much easier to manage expectations. Although most product is in stock with retail, you may also experience the same delays with shipping, but with no other solutions to get the product to your clients sooner. Sometimes trade companies can provide a floor model or let you borrow pieces until your shipment arrives. This can be essential for meeting deadlines and avoiding project delays. In addition, working with the trade can help you access exclusive lines and finishes that are not available to retail customers. By sourcing through the trade, you can ensure that your projects are well-equipped to meet your clients' needs and expectations.

#5 Innovation

When it comes to furnishing a home or office, many people turn to retail brands. These brands typically mass produce the same models of furniture, resulting in a cookie cutter design. While this may be fine for some people, others prefer to specify one-of-a-kind products that their clients can't find in big box stores. This is where sourcing to the trade comes in. Sourcing furniture from the trade can help you find more one-of-a-kind pieces. Trade companies typically sell their products to businesses, so they typically don't mass-produce their furniture. As a result, you're more likely to find pieces that are both stylish and unique. Of course, some trade companies also sell to consumers, so you may still find some pieces at a retail store. But if you're looking for something truly special, sourcing from the trade is your best bet.

Purchasing to the trade is best for both the client and businesses. The customer benefits from reduced risk, white-glove service and innovation. Businesses benefit from increased profit margins, efficiency, and relationship building when working with trade partners. I hope this article has helped you understand all of the reasons purchasing to the trade is best for everyone involved.

If you're a homeowner reading this blog post, know that purchasing furniture, accessories and materials for your project doesn't have to be a major pain in the neck! That's why we design so you don't have to. Our job as designers is to handle all the tough stuff so you can get back to enjoying life. If you have tried to find the right furniture piece and it still comes in too small or too big, resulting in lost time scouring the internet and money, let's connect.


Disclaimer: The DVS editorial team may highlight a curated selection of product recommendations for your consideration; clicking a link to the retailer that sells the product may earn us a small commission.

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