How to Buy Merchandise for a Retail Store



If you’re opening up a retail store and you’re looking to expand your merchandise for the retail store, you might be wondering how to do it and how to get the best possible products and prices out there. 

There are many things to consider when opening a retail store, especially when you start stocking merchandise, so we hope this blog post can guide you into the right direction. 

Here are some tips on how to buy merchandise for a retail store: 

Tip 1: Choose a reliable supplier 

You’ll definitely want to ensure you choose a reliable supplier when picking out where to source your retail merchandise from. Remember – you don’t want to hit onto something great, and then be disappointed when you can’t reorder stock or order more. That will not only be disappointing for you, but also for your customers too! You don’t want to create a demand and then not be able to fulfill it. 

Here at Garment Printing we not only have lots of stock to choose from, but we’re reliable and reordering is easy and quick. This means, if you find certain items are selling well, it’s easy and fuss-free to get more in. When you’re selling merchandise in a retail store, this is so important as it means you won’t be missing out on sales and opportunities. 

Tip 2: Choose a supplier with lots of choice

You might end up ordering your merchandise from several different suppliers – but we’d recommend aiming to find a supplier with enough choice that you only need to order your merchandise from one place. This way, keeping track of stock and orders and prices is much easier to manage – and you know you can extend the range too – if there’s plenty more to choose from on their site. 

Here at Garment Printing, we have so many different styles of merch available. From clothing (t shirts, hoodies, sports clothes, gym clothes, socks, etc) to stationary (notebooks, pens, pencils, etc) to quirky items such as sunglasses and laptop cases, to useful items such as tote bags. The possibilities are endless, so you’ll never run out of ideas or opportunities. The great thing about possibilities and variety is that you can try out lots of things and narrow down to what works. 

Tip 3: Choose items your customers will love 

It’s easy to get carried away when you start expanding your retail merchandise, but one of the key ingredients to success here is to ensure you’re picking items your customers will actually want to buy. It sounds silly doesn’t it? But you’d be surprised how many retail stores order items that they’re customers have shown no prior interest in. If you’re unsure what your customers would like to buy, then opt for merchandise that is a safe choice – such as useful items and household items that will get lots of use (mugs and tote bags are extremely low risk, as most people always have space for more mugs or tote bags in their lives!). 

Tip 4: Make your designs stand out 

When designing merchandise for your retail store, make sure you choose a design that will stand out. The more eye catching your design is, the more likely people are to want to buy it. You don’t want your merch to blend in and look boring – so get creative and have some fun with it! 

Tip 5: Split test 

In the initial stages of selling retail merchandise, you might want to try split testing a few different designs. What is split testing? It’s where you order the same item, but with different printed designs, and track with one sells faster or more. Whichever one is the better seller, is the more successful design and therefore the one you’ll place an additional order of. It’s a great way of trialing what works (without more risk) and it’s a great way of seeing what your customers are actually interested in buying too. 

For example, if you plan on selling t shirts as part of your merchandise range, why not order 4 different designs initially, and then see which of the four sell the quickest and are most popular. You’ll then only be spending money on the best performing designs going forward. 

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