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Retailers Forum Magazine - January 2024

Monthly magazine for independent retailers, retail store owners and online stores. Every issue features interesting articles on how to start or expand your business along with news of the retail industry. In every issue we have ads from the country's leading wholesale merchandise sources where you can buy from to stock up your store or order goods to sell online. Visit our full site with 1000's of free articles and specials - all free at www.RetailersForum.com

Monthly magazine for independent retailers, retail store owners and online stores. Every issue features interesting articles on how to start or expand your business along with news of the retail industry. In every issue we have ads from the country's leading wholesale merchandise sources where you can buy from to stock up your store or order goods to sell online. Visit our full site with 1000's of free articles and specials - all free at www.RetailersForum.com

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etailers<br />

VOL. 43 NO. 09<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong><br />

Connecting Wholesalers and <strong>Retailers</strong> Since 1981


Want More Info? Circle #08 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

Page 2 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


Your Source for<br />

China Beads, Findings & Gems<br />

WHOLESALE BEADS & FINDINGS INCLUDING JADE, SILVER, PEARL, GEMSTONE, LAMPWORK GLASS & CRYSTAL ITEMS. WE SOURCE WORLDWIDE<br />

YOUR FACTORY-DIRECT SELLER IN CHINA • SPECIAL CLOSEOUT DEALS WEEKLY • INCREDIBLE DIRECT FROM FACTORY PRICING!<br />

Rose Gold Plated Alloy Letter Pendants,<br />

Rack Plating, Cadmium Free & Lead Free<br />

$<br />

2.55<br />

Brass Micro Pave Clear Cubic Zirconia Cuff Rings, Open Rings,<br />

Cadmium Free & Lead Free, Rectangle, Golden, Letter<br />

$<br />

2.06<br />

Brass Micro Pave Clear Cubic Zirconia Pendants,<br />

Nickel Free, Real 18K Gold Plated, Oval<br />

$<br />

18.50/50 pcs.<br />

Transparent Acrylic Linking Rings, Quick Link<br />

Connectors, for Cable Chains Making, Oval<br />

$<br />

7.39/250 pcs.<br />

Ion Plating(IP) 304 Stainless Steel Jewelry Sets,<br />

Cable Chain Bracelet and Necklaces, with Enamel<br />

$<br />

1.37<br />

304 Stainless Steel Crystal Rhinestone Ball Ear Studs and 3-Layer Lock<br />

Pendant Necklaces Jewelry Sets, Golden, 18.5 inch, 8mm, Pin: 0.8mm<br />

$1.41<br />

Natural Shell Beaded Necklace and Bracelet, Braided Jewelry Set for<br />

Women, Blanched Almond, 9-3/8 inch(23.8cm), 17.83 inch(45.3cm)<br />

$2.49<br />

Silver Color Plated Brass Cubic Zirconia Wedding Party<br />

Jewelry Sets, Leaf Pendant Necklaces and Rings<br />

$3.71<br />

304 Stainless Steel Cuban Link Chain Necklaces & Bracelets Jewelry<br />

Sets, with Lobster Claw Clasps, Golden & Stainless Steel Color<br />

$5.63<br />

Brass Jewelry Set, Bracelets & Earrings & Necklaces<br />

& Rings, and Cubic Zirconia, Bees, Pink<br />

$14.12<br />

Heart Glass Wishing Bottle Pendant Necklaces and<br />

Dangle Earrings Jewelry Sets, Red & Green<br />

$3.74<br />

925 Sterling Silver Finger Ring with Blue Cubic<br />

Zirconia, Real Platinum Plated<br />

$4.94<br />

925 Sterling Silver Micro Pave Cubic Zirconia Pendants, Cloud<br />

& Sun Charm, with Shell & 925 Stamp, Real 18K Gold Plated<br />

$6.21<br />

925 Sterling Silver Double Layer Open Cuff Ring<br />

with Cubic Zirconia, with S925 Stamp<br />

$6.95<br />

925 Sterling Silver Butterfly Open Cuff Rings<br />

with Cubic Zirconia, Golden, 6.6mm<br />

$8.02<br />

304 Stainless Steel Huggie Hoop Earrings,<br />

Oval, Stainless Steel Color<br />

$1.26<br />

201 Stainless Steel Huggie Hoop Earrings with<br />

304 Stainless Steel Pins, Hypoallergenic Earrings<br />

$2.29<br />

FAST SHIPPING<br />

ALL<br />

CREDIT CARDS<br />

ACCEPTED<br />

FAIR RETURN<br />

POLICY<br />

Ion Plating(IP) 316 Surgical Stainless Steel Thick<br />

Hoop Earrings for Women, Real 18K Gold Plated<br />

$4.24<br />

Brass Multi Line Claw Stud Earring<br />

for Woman, Platinum<br />

$5.87<br />

www.BundJewelry. com<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 3


ENTICE Your CUSTOMERS with a<br />

COMPLETE Bedroom Solution<br />

NEW with COOLING Technology<br />

PILLOWS - 25% of body weight is on the pillow,<br />

getting the right pillow<br />

with a new mattress will improve sleep<br />

SHEETS - 73% of customers<br />

that purchase a new mattress<br />

will buy a new sheet set within<br />

the next 3 days, give them all<br />

they need!<br />

CARRYING A QUALITY BEDDING<br />

LINE IN YOUR STORE WILL:<br />

• Increase sales<br />

• Finalize more deals<br />

• Increase foot traffic<br />

• Increase customer base<br />

• Get more happy customers<br />

FULL LINE OF COMFORTERS<br />

MATTRESS<br />

PROTECTOR<br />

You wouldn't sell a car<br />

without insurance. Don't sell<br />

a mattress without a<br />

mattress protector<br />

Want More Info? Circle #21 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

845.738.4832<br />

www.claraclark.com<br />

Page 4 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Call for your FREE Clara Clark catalog today!<br />

845.533.4590<br />

cs@sanderscollection.com


This is a Buying Guide for<br />

RETAIL STORE OWNERS<br />

Presented within the pages are the latest offerings from the country’s<br />

leading merchandise wholesalers. The advertisers herein sell strictly<br />

wholesale and require that you purchase with the intent of reselling<br />

through retail channels.<br />

HOW TO USE THIS DIRECTORY<br />

☛ Locate the products that interest you.<br />

See our product directory located on<br />

pages 6 & 7.<br />

☛ Make direct contact with advertiser.<br />

Most will have catalogs and price lists<br />

for you.<br />

☛ Order your merchandise, which will be<br />

shipped directly to your store.<br />

CLICK ON BANNERS<br />

IN SELECT ADS<br />

Want More Info? Circle #09 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

TO GET FREE CATALOGS/PRICING<br />

FORUM PUBLISHING COMPANY<br />

383 East Main Street, Centerport, NY 11721<br />

www.<strong>Retailers</strong><strong>Forum</strong>.com<br />

CONTACT US:<br />

TEL: 1-800-635-7654<br />

FAX: 631-754-0630<br />

Email: <strong>Forum</strong>Publishing@gmail.com<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 5


Sell to over 60,000<br />

stores through <strong>Forum</strong><br />

631/754-5000<br />

DRESS UP FOR<br />

PROFITS!<br />

Every Day’s A Treat!<br />

RS with a<br />

COSTUMES ARE YEAR ‘ROUND MONEY MAKERS!<br />

WHOLESALE<br />

100’S IN STOCK<br />

Costume Club<br />

All Occassions<br />

Fast Same Day Shipping<br />

Flat Rate Delivery<br />

Solution<br />

www.USACostumers<br />

See NEW our USACostumers.com<br />

with ad on COOLING page Technology 22<br />

Light Up Without<br />

Lighting Up!<br />

LLOWS - 25% of body weight is on the pillow,<br />

getting Full the Service right Wholesaler pillow • We Ship Worldwide<br />

• LOGIC Disposables • WHOLESALE<br />

Kits<br />

• E-Liquids<br />

with a new mattress<br />

• Atomizers<br />

will<br />

• E-Cig<br />

improve<br />

Batteries •<br />

sleep<br />

E-Cig Accessories<br />

see our ad on page 73<br />

OMFORTERS<br />

H2 E-Cig Round<br />

Mouth Atomizer<br />

$1.85<br />

Electronic<br />

Cigarettes<br />

Clara Clark Collection<br />

Sales<br />

in<br />

Slumber<br />

5mL Bottle<br />

E- Liquid E-Juice<br />

for E-Cig $1.30<br />

E-Case w/2<br />

Cigarettes + 1 USB<br />

Charger $10.50<br />

E-Cig kit Includes 1 cig,<br />

10cartridges, Wall, USB,<br />

Car Chargers $6.50<br />

Round Mouth E-Cig<br />

3.5ml Atomizer Set<br />

w/Coil Heads $3.83<br />

BLING IT ON!<br />

HipWholesale.com<br />

See our ad on Page 21<br />

SMALL<br />

BUSINESS a mattress without a<br />

mattress protector<br />

CONSULTING<br />

<strong>Forum</strong>BA.com<br />

Ad on Page 48<br />

SHISHA Zero<br />

Nicotine Disposable<br />

E-Cig $3.45<br />

www.Lightecig.com<br />

see our ad on Page 04<br />

We Dropship - Distributors WanteD • Scroll website bottom - Click on WHoLESALE<br />

SNEAKY<br />

SHEETS<br />

SAVINGS<br />

- 73%<br />

ON<br />

of customers<br />

SNEAKERS<br />

that purchase a new mattress<br />

will buy a new sheet set within<br />

the next 3 days, give them all<br />

they need!<br />

See Our Ad on Pg 15<br />

MATTRESS<br />

PROTECTOR<br />

You wouldn't sell a car<br />

without insurance. Don't sell<br />

Does anybody<br />

read these?<br />

CALL 631-754-5000 and<br />

you’ll get a FREE 3-mo.<br />

subscription!<br />

ark catalog today!<br />

Congratulations to<br />

845.533.4590<br />

PLUMBING WOES<br />

New York, NY<br />

cs@sanderscollection.com<br />

ADVERTISERS INDEX<br />

PLEASE PATRONIZE THE LEADING WHOLESALERS<br />

WHO ADVERTISE IN RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

THE TRUSTED BUYING SOURCE FOR RETAIL STORES!<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong><br />

ADVERTISING<br />

FORUM AD RATES .......... 09<br />

APPAREL<br />

1 STOP WHOLESALE. ........ 33<br />

BOUTIQUE CLOSEOUTS ...... 23<br />

CLOTHINGWARE .. BACK COVER<br />

DD BULK ................... 54<br />

FASHIONABLE SALES. ....... 37<br />

FLIRTY WHOLESALE ......... 36<br />

HEAVENLY SUITS ............ 18<br />

SCARF WAREHOUSE. ........ 31<br />

STYLE IN FASHION .......... 18<br />

STYLISH PLUS .............. 55<br />

T SHIRT REP ................ 78<br />

UIN DEALS ................. 69<br />

USACOSTUMERS.COM ....... 22<br />

ASSORTED ITEMS<br />

AUCTION FINDER. ........... 32<br />

CLOSEOUTS FOR SALE ...... 41<br />

DINO DROPSHIP. ............ 51<br />

DOBA DROPSHIP ............ 63<br />

EVERYTHING CLOSEOUTS. ... 66<br />

EZ DROPSHIP ............... 64<br />

FIND IT ASIA ................ 84<br />

HEAVENLY WHOLESALE. ..... 44<br />

MEGA UBID ................. 50<br />

RAMSONS IMPORTS ......... 19<br />

SWEET WHOLESALERS ...... 43<br />

TOP TEN WHOLESALE ....... 83<br />

BOOKS<br />

BUYERS CONTACTS ......... 85<br />

CLOSEOUT DIRECTORY ...... 82<br />

HIDDEN WEALTH ............ 80<br />

TRADE PUBLICATIONS ..... 86-92<br />

CANDY<br />

SWEET WHOLESALERS ............ 43<br />

CELLULAR<br />

CELLCITY.BIZ ............... 71<br />

WHOLE-CELL ............... 25<br />

COLLECTIBLES<br />

PATTER’S COLLECTIBLES .... 20<br />

COMPUTERS<br />

REFURB SHOPS. ............ 46<br />

CONSUMER ELECT.<br />

FIND IT CHINA. .............. 49<br />

SURPLUS GIANT ............ 02<br />

CREDIT CARD<br />

PROCESSING<br />

EXP MERCHANT. ............. 45


#1<br />

BUYING GUIDE<br />

FOR RETAIL STORES!<br />

DISPLAY/SUPPLIES<br />

& SERVICES<br />

AVVO ADVISORS ............ 60<br />

CC WAREHOUSE ............ 79<br />

E-STORE BUILDERS ......... 20<br />

E STORE SIGNS ............. 61<br />

E-STORE SITES ............. 28<br />

FB CAMPAIGNS ............. 62<br />

FORUM ADVISORS. .......... 48<br />

KWIK INC. .................. 68<br />

PAYROLL HELPER ........... 42<br />

PROTECTION PLANS. ........ 38<br />

SALES GROUP BAGS ........ 56<br />

SETON SIGNAGE ............ 81<br />

VACATION PROMO. .......... 70<br />

WHOLESALESOURCES.COM ....<br />

. . . . . . . . . . INSIDE BACK COVER<br />

DROPSHIPPERS<br />

DINO DROPSHIP. ............ 57<br />

DOBA DROPSHIP ............ 63<br />

EZ DROPSHIP ............... 64<br />

E-CIGARETTES &<br />

SMOKE SHOP ITEMS<br />

3’x5’Embroidered Flags $14.00 Each<br />

LIGHT E CIG ................ 39<br />

View our 148 page Catalog online !<br />

www.RIOhio.com<br />

LOGIC WHOLESALE ......... 73<br />

Hat Pins $6.00 dz<br />

Garden Flags<br />

$48.00 dz<br />

Metal Signs<br />

$5.50 Each<br />

Belt Buckles<br />

$36.00 dz<br />

Playing Cards<br />

$18.00 dz<br />

$24.00 dz<br />

3’x5’Embroidered Flags<br />

$21.00 dz<br />

$14.00 Each<br />

$18.00 dz<br />

USA VAPE DEALS ........... 65<br />

5” Patches $36.00 dz<br />

$39.00 dz<br />

Tri-Fold<br />

SNEAKER $36.00 dz CLEARANCE ...... 15<br />

$5.00 Each<br />

$36.00 ut 72 pcs<br />

$21.00 dz<br />

$9.00 dz<br />

FOOTWEAR<br />

HANDBAGS<br />

Garden Flags<br />

48.00 dz<br />

$18.00 dz<br />

Leather Wallets $5.50 each<br />

BAG CLOSEOUTS ........... 59<br />

BAG VENDORS. ............. 18<br />

12”x18” Metal Signs<br />

$5.50 Each<br />

HOME & HOUSEWARE<br />

WindSocks<br />

$48.00 dz<br />

Min.Order<br />

$150.00<br />

Metal Sign<br />

$4.75 each<br />

$48.00 dz<br />

$7.00 Each<br />

Patches $18.00 dz<br />

Belt Buckles<br />

$36.00 dz<br />

$4.50 Each<br />

3pc Magnet<br />

$5.25 Each<br />

Metal Plates<br />

$27.00 dz<br />

$15.00 dz<br />

$42.00 dz<br />

$15.50 Each<br />

8” x 12” Metal Signs<br />

$39.00 dz<br />

$4.00 each<br />

Magnets 3”x8” $18.00 dz SOARING $30.00 dz RC. 8” x ............... 12” Parking Sign $18.00 dz 58<br />

Belt Buckles<br />

$42.00 dz<br />

CLARA CLARK .............. 04<br />

DAKOTA STEEL ART .......16/17<br />

MERCHANDISE REP ......... 24<br />

RUG PROFITS. .............. 77<br />

RUSH SUPPLIERS ........... 52<br />

JEWELRY/ACCESSORIES<br />

BLING WHOLESALER .............67<br />

BODY CANDY HQ .................76<br />

BUND JEWELRY. .................03<br />

HIP WHOLESALE .................21<br />

JEWEL CLEARANCE ..............30<br />

JEWELRY MINERS ................57<br />

SHAKE WHOLESALE. .............40<br />

UNIVERSE WHOLESALE ...........29<br />

12” Metal Signs<br />

$5.00 Each<br />

NOVELTIES<br />

CARTOON CONCEPTS ....... 72<br />

COOL GLOWING. ............ 75<br />

NOVELTY SELLER ........... 47<br />

PPE SUPPLIES<br />

PPE STOCKROOM ........... 74<br />

R/C & TOYS<br />

RC VARIETY ................ 35<br />

Leather Bracelet $18.00 dz<br />

SPECIAL FEATURES<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP ......... 26<br />

READER RESPONSE ......... 11<br />

RETAILING NEWS. ........... 14<br />

WHAT’S HOT ................ 12<br />

12”x18” MetalSign $5.25 each<br />

$36.00 ut/72pcs<br />

$15.00 dz<br />

Stylish & Fashionable<br />

36 pcBiker Ring<br />

$24.00 dz<br />

Best Friend Necklace<br />

RAMSON’S<br />

$39.00 unit<br />

$24.00 dz/sets<br />

1ut/5 dz Mood Rings $33.00 unit<br />

SPORTING GOODS<br />

OHIO KNIFE. .................13<br />

TRADE SHOWS<br />

ASD MARKETWEEK. ..........27<br />

THE MARKET CENTER ........22<br />

WATCHES & CLOCKS<br />

TIME WHOLESALERS ........ 53<br />

WATCH DEALERS ........... 24<br />

WEDDING ITEMS<br />

SMARTEST BARGAIN ........ 34<br />

WELCOME NEW READERS!<br />

Advertise in<br />

Metal Sign<br />

12”X18” $5.75 Each<br />

See Page 9<br />

BUSINESS BOOKS<br />

www.BizBooks.org<br />

STYLE IN FASHION<br />

Fashions<br />

from Around<br />

the World<br />

$6.00 dz Hat Pins Also<br />

See our Ad on Page 18<br />

sold by the<br />

Gigantic dozen! Selection<br />

of Variety Goods<br />

See our Ad on Page 19<br />

DROPSHIP TO PROFITS!<br />

Tri- Color Necklace $18.00 dz<br />

1000’s of Items<br />

See our ad on Page 63<br />

WHOLESALERS:<br />

Increase Your Sales<br />

By Advertising Here!<br />

631-754-5000<br />

WIND SPINNERS<br />

Sells Like<br />

A Breeze!<br />

DAKOTA STEEL<br />

See Our Ad on Pgs. 16/17<br />

VISIT FORUM ON<br />

THE INTERNET<br />

View our latest books at<br />

www.bizbooks.org<br />

WE HAVE BUYERS<br />

Databases for ALL Industries<br />

www.BuyersContacts.com


ADVERTISING INFORMATION<br />

www.retailersforum.com<br />

VOL 28 NO. 2<br />

JUNE 2008<br />

MARKETING TIPS!<br />

MERCHANDISE SOURCES<br />

RETAILING TIPS<br />

SELL LIKE AN<br />

EGYPTIAN!<br />

Reach Active Buyers with our Print Readership<br />

Plus over 265,000+ Page Views Monthly Online<br />

✔ Apparel and Accessory Stores<br />

✔ Card and Gift Stores<br />

✔ Discount and Dollar Stores<br />

✔ Distributors and Jobbers<br />

✔ General Merchandise Stores<br />

✔ Internet On Line Stores<br />

✔ Mail Order Catalog Sales<br />

✔ Novelty and Toy Stores<br />

✔ On Line Stores<br />

✔ Resort and Souvenir Stores<br />

✔ Sporting Goods Stores<br />

✔ Variety Merchandise Stores<br />

✔ Wholesalers<br />

ESTABLISHED IN 1981 as a buying source for store<br />

owners and wholesalers, <strong>Retailers</strong> <strong>Forum</strong> offers advertisers<br />

a large national circulation to showcase their products<br />

and services. Many of our readers are located in rural<br />

areas where access to merchandise is difficult, making our<br />

magazine indispensable to their buyers.<br />

Through our unique direct mail and trade show<br />

circulation we constantly rotate our mailing lists, adding<br />

new stores monthly enabling us to deliver new, fresh<br />

buyers each and every month you advertise with us.<br />

In addition to your print ad, your company will be<br />

featured in our digital on line monthly version at<br />

www.RFmagazine.com. Our online magazine produces<br />

over 265,000+ page views monthly for our advertisers,<br />

which is in addition to our print and mail distribution.<br />

Your online ad will link to your website and email<br />

address and we provide unlimited transfers from our<br />

readers into your website 24/7.<br />

FORUM PUBLISHING COMPANY<br />

383 East Main Street, Centerport, NY 11721<br />

www.<strong>Retailers</strong><strong>Forum</strong>.com<br />

CONTACT US:<br />

TEL: 1-800-635-7654<br />

FAX: 631-754-0630<br />

Email: <strong>Forum</strong>Publishing@gmail.com<br />

Page 8 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


etailers<br />

ADVERTISING RATES<br />

AD SIZE 1 ISSUE 3 ISSUES 6 ISSUES 12 ISSUES<br />

1⁄8 Page $400 $300 $275 $250<br />

¼ Page $525 $425 $400 $350<br />

½ Page $625 $525 $500 $450<br />

Full Page $850 $750 $700 $650<br />

2 Pages $1,350 $1,250 $1,150 $1,050<br />

Prices shown per month, above rates include full color printing<br />

ADVERTISING SPECS<br />

1⁄8 Page: 2¼" high x 3¼" wide<br />

¼ Page: 4‚" high x 3¼" wide<br />

½ Page:<br />

Full Page:<br />

Email or provide CD of ad in exact dimensions as JPG, TIF or preferred<br />

PDF format in CMYK color, 300 dpi resolution only<br />

✔ Monthly print and mail magazine<br />

✔ Online magazine and search marketing<br />

✔ Distribution at top trade shows<br />

4‚" high x 7" wide or<br />

9½" high x 3¼" wide<br />

9½" high x 7" wide<br />

FULL MARKETING PROGRAM INCLUDED >><br />

Printed <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

• Your ad is featured in our<br />

printed magazine circulated to<br />

buyers across the USA. Includes<br />

distribution at industry’s top trade<br />

shows.<br />

Complete Digital <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

• Your ad runs on-line at<br />

www.RFmagazine.com<br />

• Over 265,000+ monthly<br />

page views<br />

• Active link to your website<br />

Phone APP<br />

• Your company included in our free<br />

iPhone and Android APP. Imagine<br />

YOUR company right<br />

on the buyers phones!<br />

Reader Response<br />

• Generates leads from buyers interested<br />

in your products through a<br />

code placed in<br />

your ad and on-line at<br />

www.vendor411.com. Free for<br />

all half and full-page ads.<br />

Search Marketing<br />

• Your company included in the<br />

industry’s leading search engine:<br />

www.supplier411.com<br />

• Saturation marketing coverage on<br />

our new wholesale portal: www.<br />

wholesalesources.com<br />

TOP INDUSTRY TRADE SHOWS <strong>2024</strong><br />

JANUARY<br />

Atlanta Gift Fair<br />

Los Angeles Market Week<br />

Philadelphia Gift & Variety Show<br />

Seattle Gift Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

FEBRUARY<br />

ASD Marketplace Las Vegas Show<br />

Louisville Gift Show<br />

Magic Sourcing Show<br />

New York Toy Fair<br />

Off Price Specialist Show<br />

Rocky Mountain Gift Show<br />

MARCH<br />

Atlanta Spring Gift Show<br />

California Marketplace<br />

Dallas Apparel & Accessories Show<br />

Greensboro Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

APRIL<br />

Hawaii Merchandise Expo<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

MAY<br />

Las Vegas Licensing Show<br />

New Orleans Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

Northern Michigan Gift & Souvenir Show<br />

Off Price Show NY TBD<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

JUNE<br />

Dallas Gift & Variety Show<br />

Greensboro Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

LA Fashion Market<br />

JULY<br />

Atlanta Gift & Home Furnishings<br />

California Marketplace<br />

Philadelphia Gift & Variety Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

AUGUST<br />

ASD Market Week<br />

Biloxi Wholesale Show<br />

Louisville Gift Show<br />

Off Price Specialist Show<br />

New Orleans Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

Rocky Mountain Gift Show TBD<br />

St. Louis Gift Show<br />

SEPTEMBER<br />

Asia America Wholesale Show<br />

Dallas Home & Gift Show<br />

Greensboro Gfit & Jewelry Show<br />

Hawaii Gift Show<br />

Norton’s Gift & Variety Show<br />

Philadelphia Candy & Gift Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

OCTOBER<br />

Dallas Apparel & Accessories Show<br />

Las Vegas Souvenir & Gift Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

NOVEMBER<br />

Gatlinburg Gift Show<br />

Hawaii Merchandise Expo<br />

New Orleans Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

Smoky Mountain Variety<br />

DECEMBER<br />

Grand Strand Gift & Variety Show<br />

Greensboro Gift & Jewelry Show<br />

The Merchandise Center, IL<br />

Our Large Holiday Issue Hits The Mails Before Thanksgiving to<br />

Maximize Advertisers Results!<br />

We provide physical magazines at shows or email free<br />

digital magazine to attendees using Attendee database lists.<br />

* Show schedules are subject to change without notice.


From the<br />

PUBLISHER<br />

Going Full Speed Into <strong>2024</strong><br />

WHAT an exciting retailing year we<br />

have had. Let me be the first to say<br />

Happy New Year! We made it through<br />

another holiday season together.<br />

And this one was definitely quite<br />

challenging in many ways.<br />

ODDLY enough, with all of the<br />

turmoil throughout the world and the<br />

ups-and-downs of the economy here<br />

at home, we have managed to have a<br />

decent sales season for the holidays.<br />

Shoppers have been out and buying<br />

despite inflation and the economic<br />

woes many have.<br />

WHILE some retailers have numbers<br />

that are up, many have seen the<br />

importance of offering value priced<br />

merchandise as well as having a robust<br />

online presence. It is increasingly<br />

important for your business, no<br />

matter what the size, have a big online<br />

footprint.<br />

AS has been the case over the last<br />

few years, foot traffic at traditional<br />

retailers has been down. We saw a<br />

decent increase during Small Business<br />

Saturday last month, but the shoppers<br />

went back online on Sunday! We<br />

encourage all retailers to have an<br />

order-taking website in place so that<br />

your business can prosper.<br />

ALL indicators show that this new<br />

year will be off to a decent start as<br />

the economy starts to settle and<br />

consumer confidence rises. We also<br />

have an election year which excites<br />

the markets. If you follow the trends,<br />

you will learn that there will be upticks<br />

>> ON-LINE SOURCING<br />

in some segments this year with the<br />

largest being consumers spending on<br />

house and home products.<br />

WITH the continued decrease in<br />

home sales, there will be an increase in<br />

home improvements and décor. And<br />

home is where the money will be for<br />

retailers.<br />

NOW is the time to stock up your<br />

stores and businesses with fresh new<br />

merchandise to kick off the new year.<br />

Replace your depleted inventory<br />

with new items that will excite your<br />

shoppers. Seriously, if your dusty<br />

widgets didn’t sell for the holiday<br />

season, they sure aren’t going to sell<br />

now. Run a special discount to move<br />

out the old goods and use the proceeds<br />

to replenish. Mark it down, move it out,<br />

trade it or donate it. Just get rid of it!<br />

USE this month’s special Restocking<br />

Issue to discover new merchandise<br />

and new suppliers to make your first<br />

quarter profitable. Now is the time<br />

to make a fresh start and speed into<br />

<strong>2024</strong> with gusto and new goals and<br />

ambitions. Let’s Make Your Store Great<br />

Again by taking advantage of all the<br />

opportunities around us.<br />

HERE at <strong>Forum</strong> Publishing, we are<br />

looking forward to another great year<br />

of serving the industry and are thankful<br />

to our loyal advertisers and readers. We<br />

will continue to expand our offerings<br />

through our comprehensive websites<br />

and trade show circulation where<br />

we get to meet and greet our fellow<br />

retailers.<br />

The entire issue of<br />

<strong>Retailers</strong> <strong>Forum</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

is posted on-line at<br />

www.<strong>Retailers</strong><strong>Forum</strong>.com<br />

Includes: Website Links *<br />

E-Mail Links * Printable PDF’s<br />

ACCESS OUR MAGAZINE<br />

FROM ANYWHERE 24/7<br />

RETAILERS<br />

FORUM<br />

SALES & MARKETING<br />

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Tom Richards<br />

Scott Savitt<br />

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OFFICE MANAGER<br />

Leah C.<br />

PRODUCTION<br />

Lisa Maresca-Smith<br />

CREDIT DEPARTMENT<br />

Kristine Hines<br />

CIRCULATION<br />

Discount Reading Svc.<br />

LITERARY STAFF<br />

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ART DIRECTION<br />

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42 Years<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM is published monthly at $75/year USA,<br />

$125/year foreign.<br />

Entire contents copyright ©<strong>2024</strong> by <strong>Forum</strong> Publishing.<br />

Publisher assumes no responsibility for contents herein.<br />

First and third class postage paid at Centerport, NY. Bulk<br />

mail paid at NY, Brookfield, WI and Hooksett, NH under<br />

private mail indicia via publication mailing.


etailers<br />

READER RESPONSE<br />

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MAIL<br />

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Receive FREE Information on Products & Services in this Issue<br />

APPAREL<br />

➥<br />

❑ All Advertisers in APPAREL<br />

❑ 14. Style In Fashion<br />

BUSINESS SERVICES<br />

❑ All Advertisers in BUSINESS SERVICES<br />

❑ 24. <strong>Forum</strong> Business Advisors<br />

COLLECTIBLES<br />

❑ All Advertisers in COLLECTIBLES<br />

❑ 03. Patter’s Collectibles<br />

CREDIT CARD PROCESSING<br />

❑ All Advertisers in CREDIT CARD PROCESSING<br />

❑ 68. EXP Merchant<br />

Look For Reader Response Banner in Our ADS!<br />

Want More Info? Circle #00 on page 00 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

ADVERTISER INDEX<br />

ELECTRONICS<br />

❑ All Advertisers in ELECTRONICS<br />

❑<br />

08. Surplus Giant<br />

GENERAL & VARIETY<br />

❑ All Advertisers in GENERAL & VARIETY<br />

❑ 07. Ramsons<br />

HEALTH & BEAUTY<br />

❑ All Advertisers in HEALTH & BEAUTY<br />

❑ 12. Corium 21 LLC<br />

HOME & HOUSE<br />

❑ All Advertisers in HOME & HOUSE<br />

❑ 23. Dakota Steel Art<br />

❑ 21. Sanders Collection<br />

SPORTING GOODS<br />

❑ All Advertisers in SPORTING GOODS<br />

❑ 04. Ohio Knife<br />

FREE INFORMATION REQUEST FORM:<br />

Fax: 631-754-0630 • On-Line: www.Vendor411.com<br />

Mail: <strong>Forum</strong> Publishing Co., 383 E. Main Street, Centerport, NY 11721<br />

Your Name ____________________________________________ Type of Business ____________________________________<br />

Company Name ____________________________________________________________________________________________<br />

Address ___________________________________________________________________________________________________<br />

City ___________________________________________________State _____________________ Zip ______________________<br />

E-Mail: ________________________________________________Tel _______________________ Fax ______________________<br />


WHAT’S HOT<br />

For more information, contact:<br />

www.SurplusGiant.com<br />

Tel: 1-954-607-8222<br />

For more information, contact:<br />

www.DDBulk.com<br />

For more information, contact:<br />

www.<strong>Forum</strong>123.com<br />

Tel: 1-631-754-5000<br />

Leg<br />

Avenue<br />

Black<br />

Crochet<br />

Long Sleeve<br />

Mini Dress<br />

Page 12 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

ELECTRIFIED DEALS!<br />

THERE is a huge market for consumer electronics, technology, cell phone accessories,<br />

laptops, computers, bluetooth audio and the like. The biggest problem<br />

that retailers and online sellers have had is fi nding the right merchandise<br />

provider who can offer them the best prices and selection.<br />

SURPLUS Giant has fi lled the void for retailers by offering closeout<br />

pricing deals on branded electronics of all types. The company is known as<br />

the Home of Giant Deals, and they do not disappoint!<br />

CARRYING all major brands, Surplus Giant will give you the selection<br />

and pricing for your business to be profitable. They sell to all of North<br />

America, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. With headquarters in<br />

Florida, the company is poised to ship anywhere to all businesses looking<br />

for great deals.<br />

DEALS UNDER $10<br />

THE lingerie and clubwear industry is a fast growing segment, as<br />

consumers venture out for more socializing and DD Bulk has you covered<br />

in fi nding the hottest fashions at the lowest prices.<br />

WITH hundreds of sku’s, DD Bulk can be your top supplier for dresses,<br />

lingerie, dancewear, rompers, swimwear, clubwear and shoes. These items<br />

can retail for three to four times the pricing that DD offers its buyers!<br />

THE company is offering a special deal of $10 in a new year’s blow-out<br />

sale while supplies last. The great part is that there is no minimum order<br />

so you can pick big selections to fi ll your racks as well as free shipping on<br />

all orders over $99. They ship quickly from the west coast and have been<br />

operating for over 12 years servicing the industry.<br />

THIS month’s special is your choice of dresses, cami sets, body stocking<br />

for just $10. The biggest seller has been the Leg Avenue black crochet long<br />

sleeve mini dress – yes, at just $10. Hurry while supplies last.<br />

BUY BELOW WHOLESALE<br />

NOW more than ever it is important to buy products at the sharpest possible<br />

prices so you can make more margins when you resell at your store or online<br />

site. With the costs of goods increasing so rapidly it is harder than ever to<br />

follow the double mark-up rule that was the gold standard or retailing. We<br />

have had to become much more competitive to make sales and part of that<br />

is not being able to get the mark-ups we need.<br />

THAT was until now! <strong>Forum</strong> Publishing has released the new<br />

CLOSEOUT DIRECTORY and Coursebook that lists (by merchandise<br />

category), companies that specialize in closeout priced goods. These are<br />

products that can be overstock, overruns, discontinued goods, store<br />

returns and product changes.<br />

CLOSEOUT merchandise can be bought 25-75% off regular wholesale<br />

prices and will improve your bottom line by mixing these goods into your<br />

lines. The Closeout Directory is just $29.95 in print or PDF versions.


OHIO<br />

KNIFE<br />

wholesale distributor<br />

909 EAST WAYNE STREET, SUITE 119 • CELINA, OH 45822<br />

Visit Our Website:<br />

www.OhioKnifeSales.com<br />

Apply for Dealership Online<br />

PHONE: 419.549.8200<br />

KNIVES • SWORDS • SHARPENERS • ACCESSORIES • HUNTING BLINDS & MORE<br />

FREE Shipping on your First Order of $ 100.00 or More When You Mention This AD!<br />

Warehouse Full • Order by 2:00pm Eastern time • Ships Same Day!<br />

OKC - M9 Bayonet & Scabbard - Black<br />

$<br />

117.36<br />

Bubba Blade-BB1-7F 7 Inch-Tapered Flex<br />

$<br />

38.12<br />

Smith & Wesson BSPECLS - Large Special Ops<br />

Liner Lock M.A.G.I.C. Assist... $ 18.99<br />

Stainless Steel Pliers<br />

8.5 inch... $ 39.87<br />

Smith & Wesson 3 Pack 8 inch<br />

Throwing Knives... $ 13.19<br />

OKC-705 5-Pc. Cutlery Set $ 39.59<br />

OKC-Spec Plus Alpha Survival<br />

$<br />

18.99<br />

Bubba Multi-Flex<br />

Interchangeable Blade<br />

$<br />

72.46<br />

KB0019-Kabar BK19<br />

$<br />

86.33<br />

Smith & Wesson 3 Piece Camping<br />

Set with Sheath... $ 21.99<br />

SOG-TACTICAL<br />

TOMAHAWK<br />

$<br />

34.75<br />

SOG<br />

FASTHAWK<br />

$<br />

35.49<br />

ColdSteel - B6254 - Big Boar Blowguns - 4 Foot Blowgun<br />

$<br />

SOG-SOGFARI - 13” MACHETE... $ 21.84<br />

24.89 ColdSteel<br />

Drop Forged Hunter... $ 34.56<br />

Schrade Old Timer Splinter Carvin<br />

Knife Traditional Pocket Knife<br />

$<br />

16.39<br />

IS9WD<br />

Italian Style Stiletto 9”<br />

Wood Handle<br />

$<br />

11.97<br />

Schrade Little Ricky Full Tang Drop Point<br />

Re-Curve Fixed Blade Knife... $ 32.99<br />

SCIMP165<br />

Schrade Imperial 165<br />

$<br />

5.64<br />

E37T-K-SOG E37T-K... $ 66.25<br />

Generational USA Sharpfinger 152OTG<br />

$<br />

56.24<br />

LNGELBKD-Lightning Elite Black Handle Drop Point<br />

$<br />

20.99<br />

KB0041-Kabar BK41<br />

$<br />

32.51<br />

SOG-KEYTRON - SATIN, STRAIGHT<br />

$<br />

16.54<br />

T979BL<br />

Mini OTF T979-BL<br />

$<br />

7.69<br />

CALL FOR SPECIAL PRICING DEALS!<br />

WE are a full line distributor for all the many brands we carry.<br />

We also have a full complement of Cold Steel Blowguns and Accessories.<br />

NEW PRODUCTS ADDED WEEKLY • LIMITED QUANTITIES ON ALL SALE ITEMS<br />

Want More Info? Circle #04 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 13


RETAILING NEWS<br />

Driving Sales on Social Media<br />

THESE days retailers understand that successful sales must co-exist with social media marketing.<br />

It is just a fact whether we like it or not. Social media will become a $100 billion market within the<br />

next year, up almost 30% from this year. This presents marketers with a huge opportunity if they play<br />

it correctly.<br />

THE biggest question is how to capitalize in this quickly changing market. Social media is no<br />

longer just for connecting to one another socially. It has become a real experience for users and<br />

one that is also driving merchandise sales. TikTok, while complained about constantly, has over 1<br />

billion users and marketing companies have taken notice.<br />

SOCIAL media sites still have a distance to go as most people are not going on their sites to<br />

make purchases. When an influencer on a site promotes a product and it is done with sincerity<br />

(although doubtful), sales can increase as much as 50% or more. While purchases are not expected<br />

on these sites we are seeing that Meta and TikTok are aiming their sights at changing that dynamic.<br />

The way they are improving the experience is by providing seamless transitions from the posting to<br />

the purchasing. These social commerce sites are also able to disseminate statistics on buyers much<br />

better and more accurately than any other platforms.<br />

TIKTOK aims to reach $10 million in sales a day by the end of this year. Yes, I wrote a DAY! This is<br />

an incredible goal and from the growth they are having daily it appears to actually be achievable.<br />

THIS year you will see many social media platforms gearing up more towards retail sales and<br />

connections. Your company will need to be part of this revolution in order to reach the younger<br />

buyers (if that is your market). This will be accomplished by providing specific experiences to the<br />

users and then integrating your products.<br />

Overcoming Marketing Challenges in <strong>2024</strong><br />

WITH the advent of AI those who market online are going to have to step up to the challenges<br />

that this new year will bring. Marketing will need to be tweaked in order to attract buyers as the<br />

marketplace will become more competitive. Your team needs to effectively communicate amongst<br />

themselves and ultimately to the consumer.<br />

MORE than ever, content is king. Online users are looking to be entertained and educated<br />

before they are sold on merchandise. Many are interested in social issues, which can be a doubleedged<br />

sword if you take a stand. Be careful when you back ideas and ideologies. Just keep BLM<br />

in mind. Started off seemingly good and turned into a fiasco. Same with Bud Light. Oftentimes wellintentioned<br />

plans go awry and can cause losses to your business.<br />

RESEARCH your buyer. Know what interests them and learn how to reach them and resonate<br />

with them. See what is relevant to them and target market to them. When you create content for<br />

your platforms make sure that you are generating leads. This is one of the most important functions<br />

of marketing. Increasing your company’s bottom line is the key. It’s wonderful to post about saving<br />

the environment, but you need to introduce your product line that is doing just that. Always be<br />

selling is the mantra for online marketing. You have a very limited window to keep the attention<br />

span of today’s consumer which means that you have to capture their attention and get them to<br />

take out their credit card within a paragraph or two!<br />

For Late-Breaking Industry News Visit: www.<strong>Retailers</strong><strong>Forum</strong>.com<br />

If It Affects Retailing We Report On It!<br />

Page 14 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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ASICS Sportstyle-EX89<br />

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CHUCK 70 Colorblocked<br />

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PUMA-Slipstream Lo Retro<br />

$<br />

36<br />

NEW BALANCE- 550 (TD)<br />

$<br />

40<br />

PUMA-Suede VTG Teams<br />

$<br />

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ADIDAS Originals<br />

Phormar I x Craig Green<br />

$<br />

74.75<br />

PUMA<br />

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$<br />

26.70<br />

CONVERSE<br />

Chuck 70 Archive Reptile<br />

$<br />

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PUMA<br />

Lqd Cell Extrol Helly<br />

$<br />

35.70<br />

VANS<br />

UA OG Classic Slip-On LX x Porter<br />

$<br />

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REEBOK<br />

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$<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 15


Page 16 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Want More Info? Circle #23 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com


Want More Info? Circle #23 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 17


STYLE IN FASHION INC.<br />

WEST-SIDE DESIGNS<br />

We Carry Winter<br />

Sweaters & Jackets<br />

at Moderate<br />

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MANY STYLES AVAILABLE IN<br />

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Tie-Dye, Hawaiian Print,<br />

Solid Acid Wash, Printed Dresses,<br />

Baby Doll Dresses, Blouses,<br />

Skirt Sets, Pant Sets, Skirts, Sundresses,<br />

Umbrella Dresses in Rayon & Cotton<br />

Fabric. We also carry Magic Wrap,<br />

Sarongs, Handkerchief Dresses, Pancho<br />

Tops - all in Regular and Plus Size.<br />

We also carry<br />

Belly Dance & Zumba<br />

outfits in lots of different styles.<br />

321 Olympic Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90015<br />

Tel: (213) 624-9728<br />

Fax: (213) 624-2115<br />

email: Andy@StyleInFashion.com<br />

View Our Catalog Online or Call for Catalog<br />

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Want More Info? Circle #14 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com<br />

www.HeavenlySuits.com<br />

FULL COLLECTION OF DESIGNER TOP QUALITY<br />

CHURCH SUITS FOR WOMEN AND MEN<br />

Donna Vinci 1 Pc. Dress Set<br />

11691 Black/Purple<br />

Regular Price: $249.00<br />

Your Price $99.00<br />

Donna Vinci 2 Pc.<br />

Jacket & Skirt Set<br />

5658-N • Black/Print<br />

Special Price $179.00<br />

Skirt Suits • Dresses • Hats • Jackets • Mens & Boys Suits<br />

All Sizes in Stock - 4 Through 34W<br />

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AUTHENTIC NEW DESIGNER HANDBAGS<br />

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NO MINIMUM ORDER • WEEKLY SPECIALS<br />

Michael Kors Jet Set Travel<br />

Medium Carryall Tote<br />

Brown MK Green Stripe<br />

$139.99<br />

Coach F36658 F37807<br />

Reversible City Tote Light<br />

Khaki Blue<br />

$162.99<br />

Page 18<br />

Tory Burch Kerrington<br />

Large Square Tote Garden<br />

White Floral Laguna<br />

$266.99<br />

Michael Kors Jet<br />

Set East West large<br />

crossbody in luggage<br />

(brown). The iconic<br />

shape is versatile<br />

and perfect.<br />

$104.99<br />

Tory Burch in a vibrant poppy orange-red color.<br />

Versatile and practical double zip design.<br />

$323.99<br />

WWW.BAGVENDORS.COM<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Michael Kors Hayes<br />

Medium Trifold Coin<br />

Case Rose Hold MK<br />

Signature Pink<br />

$57.99<br />

Michael Kors Jet<br />

Set East West<br />

Large Crossbody<br />

Vanilla MK<br />

Signature<br />

$103.99<br />

Kate Spade Cameron Street<br />

Flock Roses Small Hayden<br />

Satchel Black Floral<br />

$187.99


Want More Info? Circle #07 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 19


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Page 20<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


Bling On A Global Scale!<br />

Sophisticated Designs - Celebrity Inspired<br />

CHAINS - RINGS - NECKLACES - GRILLZ<br />

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Helloice 9mm<br />

Cuban Chain<br />

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$ 99.98<br />

Helloice 14mm Iced Prong<br />

Cuban Chain in Gold<br />

$ 89.95<br />

Helloice Iced Lil<br />

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in Gold<br />

$ 59.95<br />

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Helloice Iced Cross<br />

King Crown Ring<br />

$ 49.99<br />

Helloice 12mm<br />

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Prong Cuban Chain<br />

& Bracelet Set in Gold<br />

$ 149.95<br />

Helloice Iced Hoop Earring<br />

$ 39.95<br />

Helloice 14mm Iced<br />

Prong Cuban Ring<br />

in Gold<br />

$ 69.95<br />

Helloice Iced<br />

Rocket Powered<br />

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in White Gold<br />

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Helloice Iced 20mm<br />

Miami Cuban<br />

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Helloice 13mm 8” Iced Figaro Cuban Bracelet<br />

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Helloice 39mm Iced<br />

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Page 22 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 23


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Page 24 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 25


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

forumworkshop<br />

STARTING YOUR OWN<br />

Starting Your Own<br />

BUSINESS<br />

Business<br />

Take Time To Reassess<br />

<strong>January</strong> 1st is a good time to look into the future,<br />

too. What is changing in your world? What<br />

will it cost you to buy updated equipment or the<br />

latest giftware inventory? Of course, income<br />

you have earned from sales all year long has<br />

bought new inventory and supplies. But what if<br />

times have changed dramatically, and you have<br />

to buy something that will enable you to continue<br />

to compete in the marketplace – like the<br />

phototypesetting machines that kept Midnight<br />

Oil Typesetting in business? Or you have a<br />

large inventory of your best selling pink ceramic<br />

flamingos; and no one is buying them. You still<br />

have to buy new inventory and either discount<br />

those flamingos or put them in storage for another<br />

decade.<br />

Then take home whatʼs left over. Does it sound<br />

like you are going to work for free for a few<br />

years? It is possible. Some people do, or they<br />

make half as much as they could earn if they<br />

had a salaried job.<br />

Why? Because if you survive the first five years,<br />

itʼs likely you will be able to make more than<br />

you could ever earn working for someone else.<br />

That is – that should be – why you started a<br />

business. There are more reasons to start a<br />

business, which Iʼll discuss in a later article. But<br />

making money is what will keep you in business<br />

Page 26 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

and allow you to fulfill those other<br />

goals and needs. It is also the<br />

only thing that will justify all the<br />

hard work you must do to succeed.<br />

AVOID DEBT<br />

Getting into debt in the early<br />

years is not advisable. Your company<br />

will have a greater chance<br />

of surviving for a longer period of<br />

time if you donʼt owe anyone any<br />

money. It is simple to skip paying<br />

yourself a salary one month. Try<br />

skipping payment on a loan or a<br />

payable. Youʼll find yourself<br />

spending a lot of time on the telephone with<br />

creditors. This will interfere with everything else<br />

you need to do to make your business succeed.<br />

It will take up your time, will exhaust your mental<br />

and physical energy, and could cost you<br />

money – in interest payments or attorneyʼs<br />

fees. If you arenʼt sleeping nights because you<br />

owe money, you wonʼt make good business decisions.<br />

Youʼll be too tired, for one thing, too<br />

desperate for another. You might start lying,<br />

then youʼll start to believe those lies and begin<br />

to operate your business based on “fending off<br />

creditors” rather than “attracting customers.”<br />

Iʼve seen it happen many times.<br />

continued...


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Kittiphan -stock.adobe.com


The type of debt Iʼm talking<br />

about is not the money you<br />

have to spend to buy inventory<br />

and supplies for the<br />

day-to-day operation of your<br />

business (“working capital”).<br />

It is long-term loans from<br />

banks and lenders, or lines of credit you have<br />

taken advantage of (abused) beyond any reasonable<br />

expectation that you can actually afford<br />

to pay the debt. Reasonable expectation is<br />

what you can afford in a poor month, based on<br />

actual sales and expense figures. Going beyond<br />

that means you have projected that business<br />

is going to get better. It should, and you<br />

should project it, but only on paper as a personal<br />

goal for you and your staff. Donʼt get into<br />

debt based on those projections. Get into debt<br />

in direct proportion to your ability to pay.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Page 28 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Some new business owners break these rules.<br />

They find investors and loans and somehow or<br />

another sell the one product that the world has<br />

been waiting for. If you have one of those, youʼll<br />

have to take the risk. If youʼre like most of us,<br />

think twice.<br />

TRADE & BARTER<br />

A word about trade. Trade is<br />

not money except to the IRS.<br />

You have to pay taxes on the market value of<br />

anything you take in trade. You have to pay<br />

cash when you have not received cash. Can<br />

you afford to do this? If your company operates<br />

on a shoestring, where do you expect to get this<br />

tax money from?<br />

continued..<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 29


forumworkshop<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Donʼt trade working capital, only “excess profit.”<br />

New companies almost never have excess<br />

profits. Unless you start your business on the<br />

large sum of working capital your family gave<br />

you, or the money you earned from your last<br />

successful business, like the Gilzeanʼs Edinburgh<br />

Castle, you are probably cash short. Remember,<br />

you have to build a cash reserve for<br />

the business; and, chances are, in the first year<br />

both you and your employees are grossly underpaid.<br />

You need cash to pay for everything.<br />

Years from now, youʼll have a track record and<br />

some savvy. Your inventory purchases more<br />

closely match demand. You sell almost everything<br />

you buy at retail, and keep up with market<br />

rends, economic conditions, and changing<br />

times. Youʼve given yourself and your staff frequent<br />

and substantial pay raises. Your employees<br />

are telling<br />

you they want<br />

to work for you<br />

until they retire<br />

because their<br />

salaries are so<br />

high and they<br />

have good<br />

health and retirement<br />

benefits.<br />

You have trained a trustworthy and<br />

dedicated manager and can finally take a vacation.<br />

And for the first time, your profits exceed<br />

all your projections and expectations. After you<br />

pay your bills, salaries, taxes, and business,<br />

and yourself, you discover you still have a<br />

bunch of cash in the bank that you have no<br />

foreseeable use for. This is “excess profit.”<br />

continued...<br />

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Page 30 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 31


forumworkshop<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Coincidentally, you try to sell an ad to a company<br />

that rents time-share condos in Hawaii.<br />

They will only accept trade. Youʼve got the cash<br />

to pay taxes, and you were planning to vacation<br />

in Hawaii in a hotel that would have cost the<br />

same as the time-share condo. These are the<br />

conditions under which to accept trade.<br />

You may be very tempted to take trade for<br />

things you donʼt need just to get customers in<br />

the start-up years. Big mistake. For one thing,<br />

trade wonʼt pay your bills. Remember, I said<br />

pay yourself<br />

last. When<br />

you accept<br />

trade, you<br />

pay yourself<br />

first. Trading<br />

may cause<br />

you to run short of cash to pay debts because<br />

your creditors wonʼt accept pass-along trade.<br />

Your staff will start to wonder why you can afford<br />

a new wardrobe, a new car, and luxurious<br />

vacations when their salaries are so small.<br />

They will resent you; morale will plummet.<br />

Consider one other negative aspect of trade<br />

you will have to live with; once a customer has<br />

traded, he or she will expect to do so forever.<br />

Just how many meals in restaurants, overnight<br />

stays at local hotels, and gold necklaces do you<br />

need? How much can you really use? Youʼll find<br />

that your trade certificates start to pile up in<br />

your desk drawer. You canʼt use all those ballet<br />

tickets, and the season is almost over. After you<br />

give five away to your employees, a nice<br />

bonus, youʼll throw away three that no one can<br />

use.<br />

continued..<br />

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Page 32 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Now you have lost money. And the people who<br />

traded with you were hoping you would, because<br />

your loss was their gain. They had excess<br />

profits. They only traded for things they<br />

really needed and could use right away. They<br />

did not need the cash to stay in business.<br />

Taking trade is a vicious cycle; one that is almost<br />

impossible to break. Just try telling a customer<br />

who is acclimated to trading that he or<br />

she has to pay cash. He or she<br />

will not believe you. Odds are,<br />

you will not do business with that<br />

customer for a long, long time.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

If you continue to ask for cash,<br />

and donʼt back down at the last<br />

minute (which is a bitter temptation<br />

for a publisher whose magazine<br />

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As an employee, the most annoying thing<br />

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in trade. Employers like to pretend that<br />

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when my boss complained that she “took no<br />

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and her jewels, my stomach<br />

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had agreed to income goals for<br />

us all when we started. To me it<br />

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her share of what we had all<br />

contributed to.<br />

continued..<br />

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Page 34 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 35


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

We had all worked equally hard to create a successful<br />

company; the cash value of her trade<br />

was five times my monthly salary. I do believe<br />

an employer is entitles to more than an employee.<br />

But her denial that she was getting paid<br />

at all led me to believe that her willingness to<br />

pay me more had dropped to zero. In fact, it<br />

had at the time. She could only see her lack of<br />

cash in proportion to our cash salaries. It was a<br />

real morale killer for the company.<br />

She never took our advice to stop trading (our<br />

advice was free). It took the advice of a paid<br />

CPA to tell her she was courting disaster. She<br />

slowed down but didnʼt stop. Edna did business<br />

with a lot of the same organizations I used too.<br />

They paid me cash when I said “no” to trade. If<br />

you are tempted to trade, there is one exception<br />

to the rule: trade for essential supplies. For<br />

forumworkshop<br />

example, if you are a printer, itʼs all right to trade<br />

printing for paper and ink. Trade only for things<br />

that you can use in your business, which will,<br />

in turn, produce income and profit. If you trade<br />

inventory (i.e., an item from your line of gifts)<br />

for anything, put that thing on display for sale.<br />

Just remember, nine<br />

out of ten new businesses<br />

fail in the first<br />

year. Half of those remaining<br />

will be gone<br />

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A lot of reasons, but<br />

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Page 36<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 37


forumworkshop<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

The Entrepreneurial Spirit<br />

Why work that hard for an uncertain income<br />

and future? Because you are an entrepreneur.<br />

Because you want to, and it is important to you<br />

to take that risk. If you take the risk well, youʼll<br />

have things that money cannot buy. My favorite<br />

was control of my time. I set my store hours and<br />

days off. I worked late when necessary and left<br />

early when business was seasonally slow. But<br />

I was always promoting. Everyone I met knew<br />

me as a business owner. Something about that<br />

felt important to me. (I miss it now, which is why<br />

I freelance write.) If you have that type of personality,<br />

you have no choice. You will start a<br />

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over.<br />

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Page 38<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 39


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

You have to be honest with yourself about yourself.<br />

There are two categories of workers: the<br />

Risk Takers and the Security Seekers. Risk takers<br />

are potential business owners. Security<br />

seekers are perfect employees.<br />

Are You A Risk Taker<br />

Or A Security Seeker?<br />

Security seekers are the type of people who<br />

live for the weekend. They do a job for the<br />

paycheck and find comfort in becoming skilled<br />

at a specific job or trade. They like working for<br />

companies with long histories – a sign that they<br />

can count on having a job as long as they<br />

choose. Some security seekers are manager<br />

material; others will never get out of the mailroom.<br />

But none of them want to take work<br />

home on the weekends.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Page 40 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Risk takers like change<br />

and challenges. They<br />

want to be in charge of<br />

their lives – make decisions<br />

about what they do<br />

and how they do it.<br />

These people are willing<br />

to take both credit and<br />

blame for their actions.<br />

There are corporate-type risk takers, who,<br />

given the capital and laboratory facilities, will invent<br />

new products and technologies, perhaps<br />

create a subsidiary company. And there are entrepreneurial<br />

risk takers; they want to own the<br />

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continued..<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 41


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

In addition to being risk takers, the entrepreneurs<br />

I have met and interviewed (myself included)<br />

possess another characteristic that<br />

seems universal – they donʼt “fit in” and they<br />

donʼt want to fit in. These people are not the<br />

“dress for success” crowd. They donʼt enjoy<br />

making friends and influencing people to<br />

achieve promotions up the corporate<br />

ladder. I think the real entrepreneur<br />

is, above all else, open and<br />

honest.<br />

Not everyone who owns a business<br />

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personality. Those who<br />

do, start businesses to enable<br />

themselves to earn an honest living,<br />

perhaps for the rest of their<br />

lives.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Entrepreneurs realize that while clothing may<br />

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Unlike security seekers, risktaker<br />

entrepreneurs integrate<br />

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they do for a living; they have a<br />

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Page 42 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 43


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

When one is that ego-involved, it is hard to trust<br />

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knowing that success and failure are your challenge<br />

and responsibility, becomes the only<br />

choice. Real entrepreneurs like to do business<br />

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have entrepreneurial personalities.<br />

An entrepreneur has the ability to motivate the<br />

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is a good communicator. Management<br />

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agree to help you accomplish mutual goals.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Entrepreneurs tend to stay that way for life.<br />

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wanted documentation on my previous<br />

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continued..<br />

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Page 44 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 45<br />

Want More Info? Circle #68 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

That also might explain why so many business<br />

owners, who are now running successful companies,<br />

at one time or another owned a business<br />

that failed. Does it sound like an<br />

entrepreneur must be self-sacrificing? I believe<br />

that to be true.<br />

Some people start businesses with the intent to<br />

pay only themselves. They do not pay their<br />

suppliers and they keep employees in the perpetual<br />

poorhouse. Some get rich at the expense<br />

of everyone theyʼve<br />

done business with; some go<br />

bankrupt, some to jail. They<br />

are not real entrepreneurs. But<br />

letʼs not dwell on the dishonest<br />

people. Letʼs take a closer look<br />

at the characteristics of those<br />

who are in business to stay.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Other Entrepreneurial<br />

Characteristics<br />

Another observation I have made about people<br />

who start businesses is they tend to be either<br />

young (twenty-one to thirty) or unemployed at<br />

the time. Perhaps it is because young people<br />

donʼt have as many financial obligations or expectations<br />

about how much they should earn.<br />

Whatever income they produce from running<br />

their small business is, for a time, enough. The<br />

unemployed also have little to lose. People who<br />

work for large corporations at exorbitant<br />

salaries with company-sponsored pension<br />

plans simply have too much to lose. Would I advise<br />

someone making $50,000 a year, with insurance<br />

and pension benefits, to risk small<br />

business? Not a chance. continued..<br />

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Page 46 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 47


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

forumworkshop<br />

If you are comfortable<br />

with what you do for a living,<br />

stick with it. But if the<br />

job you go to each morning<br />

makes you dread the<br />

morning alarm, then<br />

save a big chunk of that<br />

salary each year until<br />

you have enough to live on for a year or two in<br />

the style to which you have grown accustomed,<br />

plus some capital for the company to grow on.<br />

You will have an advantage over the rest of the<br />

pack with money in the bank. But donʼt start a<br />

business that is completely out of your field of<br />

expertise. If something novel interests you, start<br />

on a part-time basis. Can the business be run<br />

with a full-time manager other than yourself?<br />

Perhaps another member of your family (husband,<br />

wife, grown children) can run the business<br />

full-time while you phase out of permanent<br />

employment. Work on the weekends and<br />

evenings to develop your skills. Then “retire”<br />

into a business of your own, as Bev Miller did,<br />

the woman who bought Midnight Oil Typesetting<br />

from me. As public relations director for a<br />

state agency, she often had to have pamphlets<br />

published. She gained an understanding of the<br />

typesetting business from the other side of the<br />

counter – as a customer. Learning the machinery<br />

was simple enough; and her daughter(s)<br />

ran the business until she left her state job.<br />

Entrepreneurs just donʼt like to work for<br />

someone else. Why? Because they<br />

would prefer to work for the best and<br />

smartest boss they know – themselves.<br />

Everyone else is an unknown.<br />

continued..<br />

Page 48 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Want More Info? Circle #24 on page 11 • www.Vendor411.com


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 49


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Iʼm never confident that an employer will run his<br />

or her company well. It makes me uncomfortable<br />

to be a potential victim of someone elseʼs<br />

inability to make intelligent, informed, accurate<br />

business decisions. And I have a sense of control<br />

over the outcome, a greater willingness to<br />

live with the consequences of my own decisions.<br />

People do change. And while owners of new<br />

businesses tend to fit the profile I have described,<br />

those who have been at it for a number<br />

of years may behave differently. After years of<br />

coping with the reality of running a business –<br />

meeting payroll, spending long hours filling out<br />

forms, having people who owe you money treat<br />

you like a loan shark – people change. Some of<br />

the humble and lovable features wear off.<br />

Some of the shyness does too. It is hard to sell<br />

forumworkshop<br />

other people on your dreams if you are shy. You<br />

have to do public relations for your own company<br />

all the time. Everyone you meet should<br />

leave the encounter knowing your name and<br />

the name of your company and what you sell.<br />

You have to be a walking, talking billboard –<br />

maybe forever. This will change you, too.<br />

Finally, the two things that change the small<br />

business owner the most are success and<br />

failure. Almost everyone experiences a little of<br />

both. But after five<br />

years, youʼll know<br />

which category your<br />

business falls into,<br />

and you will have<br />

been changed by<br />

the process.<br />

continued..<br />

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Page 50 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 51


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

The successful will want<br />

more time to themselves.<br />

Time becomes a precious commodity<br />

for the successful entrepreneur.<br />

The unsuccessful will<br />

change in ways that they could<br />

never have imagined (nor<br />

could their family or friends). If<br />

you fail gracefully – pay your<br />

debts and quit – you will be<br />

sad, and ready to do it better<br />

the next time. If you fail miserably<br />

– go bankrupt and leave debts unpaid –<br />

you will have also lost some of your honesty<br />

along with your business. Donʼt believe it? I<br />

have come to believe that this is a psychological<br />

self-defense mechanism. Healthy for the individual<br />

in the short run; disastrous for the<br />

business and all your future endeavors.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

WRAPPING IT UP<br />

It is perfectly acceptable to close your business.<br />

Not every good idea is a good business. Not<br />

everyone who starts a business should have<br />

done so. After sixty years, some people want to<br />

retire, canʼt find a buyer, donʼt have any off<br />

spring who want to run the business, so they<br />

just stop. Simply pay attention to your profit and<br />

loss statements and your gut feelings, so you<br />

can guide your company into a long and prosperous<br />

future, or end it gracefully and try some<br />

other way to make a living (another venture or<br />

employment).<br />

If you truly have an entrepreneurial<br />

personality – you are a risk taker –<br />

then youʼll keep trying.<br />

continued..<br />

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Page 52 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 53


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Youʼll keep trying, but not always right away.<br />

After all, economic conditions<br />

may not be just right, yet. Be<br />

patient with yourself, and try<br />

to time every venture to<br />

catch the next wave of worldwide<br />

economic prosperity. In<br />

retail, open in time for the<br />

Christmas shopping season.<br />

IT’S ALL IN HOW YOU SELL<br />

Large 5<br />

String<br />

Fish Scale<br />

Fishnet<br />

Panty<br />

Hose<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Page 54 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Now that you know what to sell, how do you<br />

sell it? How do you attract people to your place<br />

of business and make them spend money?<br />

Your place of business could be an office or a<br />

store or even a post office box. Perhaps you<br />

work at home. Since zoning laws in many residential<br />

areas prohibit you from conducting business<br />

out of your house – especially if your<br />

street might turn into a parking lot – working out<br />

of the home presents its own problems, a topic<br />

for another article series. But the rest of us want<br />

customers to come to us; in most cases this requires<br />

that they drive (or walk) somewhere. Different<br />

people have different shopping habits.<br />

Some will walk for blocks and shop dozens of<br />

stores until they find the right price. Some people<br />

“have to park out front.” Others will “buy<br />

from a good salesperson” no matter the price.<br />

There are so-called “impulse buyers.” In fact,<br />

impulse buyers have a perceived or real need<br />

to satisfy. The fact that they do one-stop shopping<br />

doesnʼt mean they see it. Still other people<br />

will look around, wait a day or two, and return to<br />

the place that offered the best price or the best<br />

service.<br />

continued..<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 55


forumworkshop<br />

FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

MOTIVATIONS TO BUY<br />

Some people are motivated by brand loyalty.<br />

Why are you a Republican or Democrat? Probably<br />

because your parents were; itʼs the same<br />

reason you buy Buicks or Fords; Ivory soap or<br />

Dial. There are so many choices of cars, soap,<br />

toothpaste, and the like, that it helps to have a<br />

reason to narrow the field – any reason. Habit<br />

is one reason. Price is a strong motivator when<br />

there is no real difference between products.<br />

Availability sometimes makes our choices for<br />

us. Just how many restaurants serve Diet Orange<br />

Slice, or both Pepsi and Coke?<br />

Proximity often determines where people shop<br />

for food and clothing. The nearest grocery store<br />

and the neighborhood shopping mall require<br />

the least amount of mental and physical effort,<br />

especially since frequenting the same places<br />

eventually helps us save time. Donʼt you have<br />

your local grocery store memorized so that you<br />

can go directly to most of the items you habitually<br />

buy? Wouldnʼt traveling to a different store<br />

with a different layout prove confusing and time<br />

consuming? Of course.<br />

If you plan to<br />

start a retail<br />

business, locating<br />

your<br />

shop near<br />

the people whom you hope to attract only<br />

makes sense. If you will sell cars, you need<br />

more space. People who arenʼt brand loyal car<br />

shoppers want to look at everything.<br />

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Page 56 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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| JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 57


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Once they<br />

have determined<br />

their<br />

“needs” –a<br />

car, a truck,<br />

a van –<br />

they will<br />

find out who is selling the best vehicle at the<br />

best price. These people will travel from dealer<br />

to dealer, so it makes sense to put your dealership<br />

close to others.<br />

Service businesses, like photocopy and printing<br />

shops, also benefit from proximity to customers.<br />

It makes more sense to have a legal<br />

brief copied at the shop in the lobby of your law<br />

firmʼs high rise than to walk or drive a block to<br />

a competitor, since prices and quality are fairly<br />

uniform in the industry.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Page 58 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

LOCATION<br />

So the first thing you can do to give your<br />

business a chance for success is choose a<br />

good location. Examine what you will sell and<br />

how much competition youʼll have. Then consider<br />

the shopping habits of your potential customers<br />

(like those described above). Cheap<br />

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people to go out of their way to get it. Charlieʼs<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 59


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

PRICE SHOPPERS<br />

& SERVICE SHOPPERS<br />

PEOPLE ARE “PRICE SHOPPERS”<br />

OR “SERVICE SHOPPERS.”<br />

QUALITY FACTORS INTO EITHER<br />

DECISION-MAKING PROCESS.<br />

The price shopper has decided what item to<br />

buy and is going to “look for the best deal.” The<br />

lowest price may or may not be the best deal.<br />

You can purchase a ten-speed bike for $100,<br />

but youʼll have to assemble it, and if you put a<br />

part on wrong and break something, the company<br />

you purchased it from offers no warranty.<br />

All bicycle pedals screw on forward. Screwing a<br />

part on is typically taken for granted. Itʼs the one<br />

part of the instructions that people fail to read.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Page 60 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

It usually costs them a new pedal. For those<br />

who fancy themselves, or who really are, mechanically<br />

inclined, a bike in a box is a bargain.<br />

For others, it could be a real danger. Ten<br />

speeds rely on wire to hold the tension of the<br />

brake and derailleur (gear changer). When a<br />

newly assembled bike is put together by a bike<br />

shop, these wires are tightened. The home mechanic<br />

may forget to do this. A month later, or<br />

sooner, the wires need retightening, and again<br />

about once a year.<br />

So what is it worth to you to make certain your<br />

brakes work? $150? If the<br />

shop offers periodic adjustments,<br />

$200. In that case the<br />

“best deal” for the lowest<br />

price is the price of the bike<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 61


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Cars are more<br />

complex. And<br />

while anyone<br />

can, in fact, adjust<br />

bike brakes<br />

with a wrench<br />

and a pair of<br />

pliers, cars require more knowledge and larger,<br />

more expensive tools. When they install the<br />

monorail in our town, Iʼll save automobile travel<br />

for vacations. Meanwhile, Iʼll gladly pay more<br />

than sticker price to get the car serviced and<br />

maintained by the dealer under an extended<br />

warranty. This sort of offer is not always available.<br />

But the one time it was, that dealer got my<br />

business. Again, the lowest price is relative to<br />

what you expect to own for your money. Even<br />

groceries, a commodity often advertised by relative<br />

pricing, reflect this fact. In the summer, a<br />

forumworkshop<br />

25 cents a pound head of lettuce will do if I plan<br />

to use it that evening; but if Iʼm stocking the refrigerator<br />

for the week, Iʼd for a head that will<br />

last longer, and Iʼll expect to pay more.<br />

The irony of pricing is how hard so many businesses<br />

work to be the “low price leader.” Being<br />

the cheapest does not mean people will flock<br />

to your door. A lot of companies behave that<br />

way. But their rivals typically match their low<br />

prices during special sales, so “lowest” becomes<br />

relative to price, quality, and service.<br />

Price your products realistically. Calculate (on<br />

paper) your cost of doing business. Project your<br />

overhead and cost of production, salaries, supplies,<br />

etc. Add to that what you would like to<br />

earn in salary (be conservative in the first two<br />

years).<br />

continued..<br />

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Page 62 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 63


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Measure your prices against the competitionʼs<br />

– not to match their prices but to find out what<br />

they are really selling at their prices. The competitor<br />

who sells bikes in a box is going to be<br />

the “cheapest.” Let that company have that<br />

market. In small business, a better strategy is to<br />

charge enough to offer quality and service<br />

along with your product. Carry a higher quality<br />

bike, for example, and offer to adjust the brakes<br />

for free for a year.<br />

PRICING PROBLEMS<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Page 64 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Perhaps you are thinking as you read this, if<br />

you can sell a lot of “the cheapest” bikes, you<br />

can make more money and attract more customers.<br />

Let me clarify. What enables one company<br />

to be “the cheapest” is its ability to buy<br />

large quantities of a single product. This presents<br />

two problems for the small business<br />

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outlay of capital for a single item. If you are just<br />

starting, you probably should not risk that much<br />

capital on a single product (unless it is your only<br />

product – like the pet<br />

rock). What if it does<br />

not sell? Is your cash<br />

reserve large enough<br />

to sell all those bikes at<br />

cost, or less, and purchase<br />

a new inventory,<br />

which in all likelihood<br />

will cost you more? If<br />

you sell seasonal<br />

items, like womenʼs<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 65


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

It takes three to six months for<br />

an order of clothing to arrive.<br />

You have to shop for each season<br />

that far in advance. If you<br />

get stuck with a large inventory<br />

of a single style, you not only<br />

wonʼt make money, you wonʼt<br />

be able to reorder soon enough to recover.<br />

Leave the price cutting wars to the big chains<br />

(Sears, K-Mart, JC Penney), the discount<br />

stores, and manufacturersʼ wholesale outlets.<br />

The large retailers buy merchandise for stores<br />

around the country. When they purchase a<br />

thousand of a single item, each store in the<br />

chain receives a small fraction of the order. The<br />

risk is spread out – since each store carries a<br />

wide variety, a single unpopular (unsellable)<br />

item wonʼt cause a catastrophe.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

STORAGE<br />

The second problem a small retailer faces<br />

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You should not waste rent money on excess<br />

storage space. Your inventory should always be<br />

on display for the customer to see and select<br />

from. Spend your rent on showroom space, not<br />

storage. Pewter by Ricker II uses the cabinets<br />

underneath the display shelves to store most of<br />

its inventory. When the single item on the shelf<br />

is sold, the manager replaces it immediately<br />

and easily. Furthermore, if a customer wants to<br />

compare the detailing on two figurines of the<br />

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the customerʼs presence. The back room is<br />

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Page 66 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 67


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

When a customer who has paid a deposit on a<br />

pewter sculpture watches the salesperson go<br />

into the back room to get his or her “layaway,”<br />

it gives the impression that the customerʼs purchase<br />

was, in fact, put aside just for that customer.<br />

On the other hand, when a salesperson<br />

leaves the floor to find something in the back<br />

room, it gives a person who is “just looking” an<br />

excuse to leave the store. Many people wonʼt<br />

ask whether you have more of an item if they<br />

canʼt see it on display. So if you forget to pull<br />

something out of the back room and put it on<br />

the shelf or rack, you could lose business.<br />

Shoe stores are a notable exception. Since<br />

we were little children, weʼve been trained to sit<br />

down, take off our shoes, and have a salesperson<br />

find our size. Shoe stores need only one<br />

pair (even one shoe) on display. Then the<br />

forumworkshop<br />

salesperson runs<br />

in and out of the<br />

back room to<br />

bring different<br />

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Page 68 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 69


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

SHOULD YOU BUY<br />

IN QUANTITY?<br />

If you have enough start-up capital to afford<br />

quantity buying, a large enough store to display<br />

your merchandise, and a large enough advertising<br />

budget to let a television/newspaper audience<br />

know you exist, do it. Youʼll need all<br />

three: quantity, space, and exposure – lots<br />

of it. McDonaldʼs sells billions of hamburgers<br />

because millions of people have heard the<br />

name over and over.<br />

Furthermore, you can<br />

find a McDonaldʼs in<br />

almost every town and<br />

city all over the country,<br />

even the world.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

The small retailer or service company should<br />

offer more for the price he or she has to charge.<br />

Shoe stores that hire salespeople to help customers<br />

sell better goods. The electronics company<br />

that sells a higher priced camera will help<br />

you learn to use it, and will offer a limited warranty.<br />

The bike store will assemble your purchase<br />

and adjust it for a reasonable period of<br />

time (flat tires not included).<br />

SELL QUALITY & SERVICE<br />

This is the type of business the beginner with<br />

limited capital wants to be in. You have a better<br />

chance of staying in business over a longer period<br />

of time if you sell quality and service, rather<br />

than the cheapest price. Price must be a factor<br />

of your costs plus a markup to cover overhead,<br />

expenses, and your income.<br />

continued..<br />

Page 70<br />

JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 71


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Every business owner I have interviewed made<br />

the same comment regarding his or her success:<br />

“I owe it all to my employees.” The employees<br />

(and you, if you deal directly with<br />

customers) control how much quality and service<br />

your company offers customers. You might<br />

sell the finest Italian leather shoes available in<br />

your city. They will last four years with everyday<br />

wear. But what if no one tells the customer?<br />

Say the customer is in the habit of buying $20<br />

shoes, which she expects to last “the season.”<br />

Fifty dollars to her is an “outrageous” price for<br />

shoes, unless you offer more. The shoes arenʼt<br />

going to tell her that they last longer. A person<br />

has to say it. A salesperson not only has to say<br />

it, but must point out the construction features<br />

of the shoes so that the customer can “see it”<br />

for herself. That is how you sell quality and<br />

service, by attending to the customerʼs “real<br />

forumworkshop<br />

need” (to buy a pair of<br />

shoes) and “perceived<br />

need” (to by a pair of<br />

shoes that will last, fit, feel<br />

comfortable, and provide<br />

good value for the money).<br />

Judy Harris, owner of Classy Lady, estimates<br />

that 75% of her business comes from repeat<br />

customers. “I hope itʼs because they like the<br />

clothes and the one-on-one service,” she says.<br />

Judy and her staff agree that shopping remains<br />

a popular activity, but some things have<br />

changed. They say they have observed that<br />

both Classy Lady stores have a large crowd on<br />

Saturdaysʼ but many professional women donʼt<br />

have a lot of time to shop, even though “they<br />

have more money to spend than ever before.”<br />

continued..<br />

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www.CartoonConcepts.com<br />

Page 72 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> |<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


PREMIUM VAPE PRODUCTS<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 73


FORUM WORKSHOP<br />

Since clothes cost more,<br />

women have turned toward<br />

“investment buying” – buying<br />

things that match previous<br />

yearsʼ purchases and that<br />

will last. Classy Ladyʼs staff<br />

is part of Judyʼs success, she<br />

says, because they realize<br />

this and cater to it.<br />

forumworkshop<br />

Judy avoids spending her capital on trendy<br />

fashions. She says any small business must<br />

specialize, then service customers well. “I try to<br />

hire people whose lifestyles are most like my<br />

customersʼ. The customers feel that. When<br />

someone comes out of a fitting room, we want<br />

them to look wonderful in the clothes, and when<br />

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Judy solicits input from her staff when<br />

she makes buying decisions, since they have<br />

the closest contact with the clientele. That is<br />

what you should look for in employees –<br />

people who are as interested in the future of<br />

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who want to help you make wise decisions<br />

about your business, like Judyʼs staff who keep<br />

her informed about her customersʼ tastes and<br />

preferences.<br />

What can you do to find this type of person?<br />

Part of it has to do with your hiring process.<br />

People like this are born, not made. They will<br />

be interested in becoming a part of your organization<br />

the day they start with you. The extent to<br />

which they behave this way depends on you –<br />

on your ability to manage and motivate.<br />

continued in next issue ...<br />

PPE SUPPLIES FOR RETAILERS<br />

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Page 74 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


CoolG owing.com<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 75


BODYCANDY<br />

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Page 76 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 77


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Page 78 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 79


Start Your Own<br />

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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 81


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Page 82 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 83


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Page 84 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE


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RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 85


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Page 86 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Page 86 86<br />

<strong>Retailers</strong> <strong>Forum</strong><br />

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Page 87<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 87


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Page 88<br />

Page 88 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Holiday Merchandise<br />

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Introducing our newest directory that puts<br />

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1-800-635-7654 Business Directories<br />

Page 89<br />

RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE | JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> Page 89


APPAREL<br />

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1-800-635-7654 Page 90<br />

Page 90 JANUARY <strong>2024</strong> | RETAILERS FORUM MAGAZINE<br />

Directory of Brand Name Apparel<br />

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