Sometimes suppliers say no
We were talking the other day about when a deal wasn’t really a deal, and, of course, the whole issue of buying cheap and paying twice crept into the conversation. And that, we thought, is what makes a global retail giant a global retail giant – or so it seems, as in the following all-too-common scenario.
Problem: Cheap trainers purchased at Global Retail Giant™ fall to pieces within three months.
Solution: Head straight back there for another, equally cheap, pair.
And then repeat as necessary.
So that’s why, to just about anyone producing just about anything, getting it sold by Global Retail Giant™ could well be the ultimate wet dream. At least for the first year.
But then, it’s very likely each successive year down the line would become less of a dream and more of a nightmare.
How easy is it, for example, to keep up a high standard of product quality when the company you’re supplying demands more and more of the same – at a lower cost – every year, year upon year upon year?
In time, something, somewhere along the line, is going to have to give. Sacrifices in quality are going to have to be made to keep costs down: a change in specification here, a spot of off-shoring there … and that’s the start of the spiral that could send an established Quality Product spinning swiftly down the pan.
And as for the reputation of that Quality Product before it was taken on by Global Retail Giant™, consider this: it takes years – decades, even – to establish, build, maintain and nurture that reputation.
One of the prime reasons for that fine reputation has to be the distributors who actually know the Quality Product inside out, and so can help buyers with any problems that may have developed after their purchase.
But Global Retail Giant™ isn’t going to plant a specialist dealing with that Quality Product in each and every one of its many thousands of stores around the world, so the best anyone can hope for when it comes to advice there would be the chance of speaking to a floor supervisor about a replacement.
And if you happen to be the person who’s taken that Quality Product from conception to where it is today, you really don’t want to see its quality and then its reputation go down the drain.
Yes, Global Retail Giant™ sales could well add a few million to your bottom line each year, but how much is your product’s reputation worth in the long run? And how valuable are those knowledgeable distributors to you? And how valuable is the Quality Product and its reputation to them – especially if Global Retail Giant™ is busy selling the product for much less?
So although being part of the family might be good at first, there’s the distinct probability that as time goes on, there will be regrets, and lots of them … and that’s why some quality products will never find themselves on the shelves of any global retail giants.
Which brings us neatly back to buying cheap at Global Retail Giant™, and then paying at least twice.
Happy shopping …