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 torefund 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 949-326-8909 or email [email protected].

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 949-326-8909

Inside Costco Warehouses: Costco Signs

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 for vendors to understand how Costco establishes pricing. If you are interested in submitting your product into Costco, it is vital to calculate all of the costs associated with your product. Contact one of our experts at [email protected] for more details about how we can best serve you.

More Information

Although getting your products through the early stages of program development is a step in the right direction, establishing a price is perhaps one of the more pertinent steps that a vendor will set out to accomplish. Establishing a price is paramount with what visions you have set out with your company and with Costco. This will take careful consideration of key costs and hidden costs that are most often times more difficult for the seller to anticipate.

It is important that you understand how Costco functions and operates when you negotiate pricing with the warehouse company. Costco’s pricing structure varies greatly from other retailers that you may be accustomed to. Partnering with a manufacturer representative could be the key difference piece to creating a Costco appropriate sell price. To learn more about pricing your product, get help from a representative at VendorCo to help get you situated. Contact us at: [email protected].

Costco Discounts & Markdowns

The price of your product can fluctuate as your program evolves with Costco depending on some key factors. It is not uncommon for Costco to envisage a request to take markdowns on your product. Costco has an unparalleled reputation of generating high warehouse turnover. On average, a warehouse will have inventory turned over 14 times a year. Costco may ask for a discount for a promotional push, or in order to achieve higher volume sales and quicker turnover. Factoring in this foreseeable cost will help you build a safety net when these markdown requests eventually come.

To help ensure that you will be successful in this venture, contact [email protected] for more details about how our services will best serve you.

Costco Return Fees

This may be disheartening or concerning to some vendors; however, most Costco returns can be re-sold and occur within the first couple of weeks. Additionally, Costco maintains a delicate balance between satisfying the member with their return policy, while preventing vendors from being burdened with returns. One of the ways Costco helps to prevent massive returns is by only purchasing high quality items that will ensure satisfaction amongst members. If your product is high quality and lives up to its promise, then Costco’s return policy should not be a detrimental concern.

To help ensure that you will be successful in your Costco venture, contact [email protected] for more details about how our services will best serve you.

Training Options

As we mentioned in our previous post, you as the seller have the option to enlist your own employees, or hire a third party company for staffing. It is recommended that your employees do not go into Costco with cold feet and no know-how. This can be easy to ensure when you are using your own staffers – but what about Costco’s third party companies?

Luckily, the designated third-party staffing companies used by Costco for demonstrations do allow you to train and educate their staff. Like any sales team you may encounter, some employees will shine above the rest, but overall, the team members are seasoned and dedicated to sell your product while on the warehouse floor.

Want to learn more about this process? Partnering with a third-party representative like VendorCo will allow you to have advanced knowledge regarding all aspects of Costco sales, including the best way to ensure adequate training of your demo staffers. To partner with VendorCo, contact us today at [email protected].

Non-Food Demos

Not all of Costco’s demonstrations are related to food products. In fact, there are several non-food items that can be demonstrated at Costco Warehouses as well. These stations would be set-up in alignment with the appropriate department you are selling to. Non-Food items demonstrations are a different approach than food items. Unlike food items, customers will not always have the “hands-on” approach and instant gratification to sample. Because of this, not all non-foods items would benefit from a demonstration, and those that do should be navigated carefully.

If you have a non-foods product and you are unsure whether a demo would be the best fit for you, then you may benefit from expert Costco representation through VendorCo. We become an extension of your sales team and help you make the best decisions for your company. To get started or for more information, contact us today at [email protected].

Costco Regional Sales

The buying structure within Costco can be a major cause for error with new business programs. Of the myriad of ways that Costco buys new items, which is the appropriate method for your company? Often, there are several options available, and it’s simply a matter of pinpointing the area that will provide the greatest value for your company. This month, we will be delving into Regional Buys, one of the ways that Costco makes a purchase based on geography and often based on company size.

To be discussed this month will be the following topics:

  • Departments
  • Buying
  • Regional vs. National Sales
  • Benefits
  • Risks
  • Regional Sales Test
  • More information

Visit our blog throughout this month for more information concerning the titles above. If you’re interested in pursuing a regional sales program and would like an expert Costco Representative to assist, contact us today at [email protected].

Costco Shipping Containers and Trailers

If you have any experience with overseas shipping and/or domestic full truck shipping, then you understand that there are various container/trailer sizes and methods of loading. Vendors often make the mistake of quoting the method and size that is most familiar to them. Perhaps you ship internationally on a 20’ Size container on particular style pallets. Or you may ship domestically via a flatbed trailer with floor loaded master cartons. However, your methods may not be accepted by Costco.

Additionally, all load capacities should be based on maximum utilization of trailer space. For example, loads on pallets need to be turned inside the trailer in a very specific way. Failure to do so may result in additional freight charges to the vendor. Any small change or discrepancy can result in a significant price difference. Don’t make this mistake. Be informed of all Costco’s shipping container/ trailer requirements and load diagrams, by partnering with a knowledgable Costco representative company like VendorCo.

We help our clients understand the “do’s” and “don’ts” of Costco shipping before a price is quoted to Costco, so there are no false assumptions, no guessing games, and reduced potential for losses based on incorrect price quoting. Contact us today to get started, at [email protected].

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