Road Show Success

How can your company grow a successful relationship with Costco through Road Shows?

As we have mentioned in previous blog posts, Costco Road Shows provide a fantastic opportunity for smaller companies to have a relationship with Costco Wholesale. If your products are high quality and you are able to provide Costco members with a significant savings, then you may have a shot at Costco Road Shows.

Through a Costco Road Show your items are placed directly on the warehouse sales floors. Your company is set-up as a Costco vendor and you are provided with a Costco vendor number. If your items are successful through a Costco Road Show, your chances at obtaining in-line placement are much higher than if you were to present without prior sales information.

In-line placement (also known as standard or full roll-out placement) is the most profitable and the most desirable avenue of Costco. Often companies wish to rush into full roll-out placement .This can be possible if your company is established in the retail industry and your brand is highly recognized, particularly to Costco’s demographic.

However, if your company is not “Costco ready”, Road Shows can be a great opportunity to create a Costco relationship, and ultimately create a profitable program within Costco.

Understanding Costco Memberships: Business

A step above the Gold Star Membership is Costco’s Business Member option. Business identification is required when applying for this kind of Costco membership. For $55.00 you can purchase the regular business member, or for $110.00 you can be part of the Executive club and earn rewards. Licensed businesses, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, farmers, and ranchers can all join as a business member. It includes a card for your spouse and additional membership cards cost $35.00 each.

Prices are subject to change and may vary by region, check your local warehouse for exact cost. If you are a supplier who is seeking to bring your product into a Costco warehouse or is interested to begin the process, VendorCo can help.  Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Understanding Costco Memberships: Gold Star

Costco’s Gold Star membership is designed for consumers on an entry-level basis in terms of pricing and benefits. At around $55.00, this membership is for individuals who do not qualify for, or do not need a business membership. It includes a card for your spouse and gets you into Costco, saving money at any warehouse or online at Costco.com. This membership is suited for customers, who do not expect the return from the 2% “cash back” program.

If you are a supplier who is seeking to bring your product into a Costco warehouse or are interested in beginning the process, VendorCo can help. Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Costco Membership: More Reasons to be a Member

The benefits of becoming a member quickly outweigh the price of a club card. Members will appreciate the quality and value of products they will find at Costco. Costco also promises to

refund your membership fee in full at any time if you are dissatisfied. They guarantee satisfaction on every product they sell with a full refund. Despite popular belief, you don’t need a big family to enjoy all the value Costco has to offer. You can expect to save on electronics, designer jeans, home décor, tires, books, DVDs, gasoline, prescriptions, seasonal items, and more. Members receive coupons exclusive to Costco for everyday items to provide discounts on-top of already low prices. Another top reason to become a member is due to Costco’s outstanding customer service, offering a call center and concierge services for free technical support on set-up help and warranty assistance on any of Costco’s electronic products.

If you think your product would sell at Costco, pair up with one of our representative to develop your strategy today! Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Costco Membership: Demographic

Did you know that 85% of Costco members are from upper income groups? In fact, more than 50% of Costco shoppers are from households with two to four people. Statistics also show about 70% percent of female wholesale shoppers are under the age of 55. These figures indicated the type of demographic segmentation Costco falls into.

This type of information can be valuable for manufacturers. What type of products would sell best to this member base? Costco has gained a reputation and is well regarded by prestigious consumer-goods makers. When Costco first started, well known brands such as Levi’s and Cuisinart would refuse to sell to Costco because of their misconception that it would degrade their reputation. Now, big brand names compete for the coveted and limited space on Costco’s sales floors.

If you think your product would sell at Costco, pair up with one of our representative to develop your strategy today! Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Costco Membership: Added Benefits

The operating philosophy of Costco is simple: keep costs down as much as possible and pass the savings onto its members. Since Costco has such a large membership base and immense buying power, members ultimately get the best possible prices. Costco is able to keep markups low due to making most of their earnings on membership fees.

A key selling point of Costco is its private label brands, such as Kirkland Signature which was launched in 1995. These private brands are comparable in quality and will always cost less than brand labels, it is no surprise that these brands generate 20% of total revenue.

If you think your product would sell at Costco, pair up with one of our representative to develop your strategy today! Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Understanding Costco Memberships: Executive Cardholders

Are you a black Costco card holder? If so, you are at the most prestigious card holder level. Each executive member must decide if the card is used for personal use or as a business. Both offer the same rewards and extra benefits, such as lower prices on check printing, auto financing, and long-distance phone service.

Executive Gold Star Memberships and Executive Business differ for individuals who set-up under a business. This membership guarantees the “2% Reward” program, that allows members to earn 2% cash back each year. This exclusive membership costs $110.00 annually, but will receive numerous benefits. If you purchase an Executive Business membership, it is available to owners and operators of businesses who want the benefit of the added value of an Executive Membership. The executive member is offered an annual 2% Reward on most of Costco’s products and offered lower prices on member programs. These members are able to add extra cardholders for employees as an additional fee, which differs from only adding family under the Gold Star Executive Membership.

If you are a supplier who is seeking to bring your product into a Costco warehouse or is interested to begin the process, VendorCo can help. Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Understanding Costco Membership

In 1988, Robert Price, President of Price Club said, “We thought of it as a speak-easy. We tried to create a mystique.” At that time, the idea that you could charge people to shop was unimaginable and originally limited to businesses and members of select groups. However, Costco has created a business model that other retailers have since followed.

This month we will discuss Costco Membership, and shed light on the groundbreaking business model that no other retailer has quite been able to match. Included this month will be the following topics:

  • Gold Star Memberships

  • Business Memberships

  • Executive Cardholders

  • Rates and Retention

  • Added Benefits

  • Demographic

  • More Reasons to be a Member

If you are a supplier who is seeking to bring your product into a Costco warehouse or is interested to begin the process, VendorCo can help.  Call us at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Inside Costco Warehouses: More Information

The look of Costco warehouses are simple yet rather complex at times; the concrete floors and high ceilings averages up to 100,000 square feet. The decor of the average warehouse is little to none, with minimum fittings and fixtures. Unlike other retailers, Costco stores are rarely located in malls or highly crowded shopping centers. Furthermore, the overhead is kept low and allocates savings passed onto Costco members.

VendorCo is dedicated to help manufacturers sell their product into Costco warehouses. We work with Costco buying staff on a daily basis and provide expertise and knowledge to vendors, so they do not have to figure it out through trial and error. There are thousands of products that reach the buyer’s desk each day, we ensure your steps to achieve. Call one of our experts at 949-600-7688 or email help@vendorco.com.

Reading Price Codes

In all retail establishments, items found on the sales floor will be accompanied by a price sign. Costco signs include the same basic information: a description, an internal identification number, a price, and supportive details about the item. However, Costco signage can often give away secret clues that can add to a shopper’s experience, but may be easily overlooked if you don’t know how to identify them.

Important to note, prices typically ending in “.97″ have been marked down. Other non-standard prices — such as items ending in .49, .79, .89 — are a sign that this is a special deal from the manufacturer. Sometimes there will be an asterisk (*) on the upper right-hand of the price tag, this indicates Costco does not have plans to re-order that product once the stock is sold out, so it’s important to move fast!

It is important to understand how Costco establishes pricing among vendors. If you are interested in submitting your product into Costco, it is vital to calculate all of the costs associated to your product. Contact one of our experts at info@vendorco.com for more details about how our services best serve you.