top of page

The Top 5 Characteristics A Retail Buyer Looks for In A New Vendor


April 02, 2022

Key Largo, FL--One comment we hear 365 days a year from suppliers is, "We want new retail doors." A common problem we see across the board is on the supplier side. That’s because most of the team never worked in a retail environment nor were they ever a retail buyer. So how are they supposed to know what a retail buyer looks for when potentially adding a new vendor?

Below I will share what the top five characteristics a retail buyer considers when adding a new vendor.

1. A Story

What is your company or your product’s story? Is it a fifth generation family-owned business whose products are made in the US and are ethically sourced? Are all your products made by hand from recycled metals? Competition is fierce out there so if you don’t have a story, brainstorm with your team and include the sales reps who will be the ones telling your story.

2. A Differentiator

What is different about your product compared to other vendors? Do you have a quilted inlay on the inside of your engagement rings for comfort? Do you have bin stock of your top-selling products? Can they be delivered right away? Or is your turnaround one or two weeks? Why should they buy from you and what’s different about you and your products?

3. A Solution

Retailers face challenges daily. Can you solve any of their problems? Many face the competition of Ecommerce and margins every day. Are your diamonds graded with AI technology to ensure accuracy and consistency that eCommerce cannot offer?

4. Service

If you had to rate your service from one to 10, are you at least above a seven? How above and beyond will the team go to fight and help your retailer customer? Will your sales rep drive four hours to hand-deliver one engagement ring to help the retailer meet a deadline? Is your customer service team available over the weekend or do you offer a retail login so they can get live pricing at any time?

5. A Partnership

As a past buyer, I didn’t want new vendors. I wanted new partners. Ones that shared the same values as me like continually looking at sell-through and data, having the ability to exchange products that’s not turning, or having access to memo products that have a slower turn. As a supplier or as a retailer it has to be a healthy partnership. Just like the old expression, “I’ll scratch your back and you scratch mine.


bottom of page