If you own or manage a boating and sailing store, it may be time to buy sailing equipment online. The most successful shops for boating enthusiasts are often family run, local ones that have been around for decades. For a long time these stores have survived simply on word of mouth and on the promise of dependability, reliability and expert knowledge. The internet, however, has added a new challenge for these boating chandlery shops. It now means retailers need to be more competitive than ever before and need to stock everything your loyal customers will expect. Read on to find out exactly why you, as a respected retailer, should be shopping online yourself for sailboat equipment.
Online Only Availability
Some sailing products are only available to buy online direct from the manufacturer. By limiting your stock to only that which is available from your physical wholesalers, you are missing out on the latest innovations from start-ups and progressive companies. Ensuring you go to both online wholesalers, directly to manufacturers via the internet AND to your trusted physical wholesaler, you will ensure that you have the widest stock of equipment at all times.
As you probably know, taking a trip to your land-based wholesaler takes time out of your busy day. Buying online is far easier. Many online retailers are able to offer bigger discounts by operating out of warehouses that are not open to the public, and can pass those savings on to you. Furthermore, online retailers, whether they are wholesalers or direct from the manufacturer, can offer free or discounted delivery costs. This means when you buy sailing equipment online, you save both time and money.
Depending on where your store is, you may have a lot of competition. Boating stores are often found in towns or areas that have a large boating community, such as the Norfolk Broads, the South Coast or the Lake District, and as such, you are often in competition with many other stores. The wider your selection and the most up-to-date your products, the better competitive edge you will have. In addition to this, by buying directly from manufacturers you will be able to sell products at lower prices, again gaining the competitive edge. Furthermore, many sailing enthusiasts are clocking on to buying online themselves, but provided you can offer the same low prices and wide range, your personal touch and reputation may well stop customers leaving your store for the cyber world.
As you can see, the internet is a double-edged sword. It has meant traditional retailers have had to become more competitive, but it has also provided an opportunity to get hold of a wider range of innovative products at lower prices. Use it to your advantage but remember what it is that customers like about you too. Never forget that you gained your reputation through your own hard work, but businesses that evolve with the times whilst retaining their core values will ride the wave of commerce more smoothly.