Our NASGW member wholesalers are an integral part of the shooting sports supply chain. They act as a buyer from manufacturers and a supplier for retailers, but their impact extends a lot further. They are a resource for both ends of the distribution channel and a true partner in the business. They keep product moving and play a huge role in financing. We want to make sure you, as a dealer, are leveraging your partnerships, therefore, here are a few questions that you should be asking your NASGW wholesalers. Some of these you may already know the answers to, and some you may have never considered.
1. Are you a member of NASGW, why or why not?
As the primary association of shooting sports wholesalers, the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers (NASGW) prides ourselves in providing a platform to bring together manufacturers and wholesalers, while acting as an information resource for both. NASGW Wholesalers are We organize an annual trade show where wholesalers and manufacturers meet to plan out sales and distribution strategies for the upcoming year. NASGW also works very closely with industry organizations like NRA, NSSF, and CSF to look after the best interest of the shooting sports industry. So working with NASGW wholesalers will help ensure your business can continue to prosper.
2. What benefits do I get working with a distributor that I wouldn't get buying directly from a manufacturer or a buying group?
Being a wholesaler is more than buying large quantities of products and shipping to retailers for a profit. It's about supporting retailers with information, marketing, timely product fulfillment, point-of-sale merchandising, product return, and pricing strategy. The role of wholesale has really expanded over the years. The industry knowledge, which wholesalers have, will help strengthen your ability to sell products and grow your customer base. Use your wholesalers as a true partnership and leverage their understanding of market conditions, compliance, legislative initiatives, historical sales and inventory to make better decisions for your business.
3. How often will I hear from your sales representatives regarding new products, pricing incentives, or other issues?
In any relationship, communication is crucial and with the variety of options for communications these days, how we communicate will vary. Talk to your wholesaler to establish expectations on communications. Understand the best way to interact with them as well. Do they prefer phone calls, emails, text message, faxes, or some other way to communicate? If you have questions, they are typically there for you in some way or another; and we encourage you to work with your NASGW wholesaler to establish best practices from the beginning.
4. What is your typical SKU count and how many days' supply to you typically carry in stock?
Getting products in the hands of consumers is the ultimate goal for manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers, so understanding supply and demand is a skill all NASGW wholesalers have. They track which products are moving and order accordingly to make sure they can fulfill your orders to the best of their ability. Talk to your NASGW wholesaler about their process for tracking and ordering so you can speak confidently to your customers. The last thing you want to do is promise a product to a customer only to have to let them know later that it isn't available.
5. What additional services do you offer beyond fulfillment?
As we said in question #2, being a wholesaler is more than purchasing products in large quantities and selling them in smaller quantities. Many NASGW wholesale members offer additional services that include national or regional marketing, in-store merchandising, credit solutions, reporting, and education. Talk to your NASGW wholesaler about different ways they can make your life easier. The goal is product sales, but they may be able to alleviate some additional pain points on your end so you can focus on sales.
While you are busy navigating the world of shooting sports retail, feel confident that your NASGW member wholesale partners are working to make your job easier. The great thing about our industry is the sense that we are all in this together despite mounting political pressures, biased media, and rollercoaster sales. The best way forward is together, and your NASGW wholesaler partners are there to give you a hand when you need it.