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Wholesale Moulding Supplier Selling On Ebay

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by arstis, Feb 4, 2008.

  1. FramerCat

    FramerCat SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Just had to chime in with my two cents after following this thread. :icon9: 1) Jim is right find your niche and do it right. Customer service especially. I know that we pick up customers from Michaels due to the fact that we don't lie about pricing and get the work done faster. 2) Anti-trust laws! 3) On principle alone, it is ethically wrong for a wholesaler to sell to the public!!!;) Business ethics should not be a contridiction in terms.:nuts: That's it, I'm done. Please don't hurt me.:D
  2. Whynot

    Whynot SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Bang-bang!! you're just a memory now... ;)
  3. mayos

    mayos MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    I think in the beginning, it was a rare manufacturer who could handle the manufacture of a product and the consumer marketing of that product. That's where the retailer stepped in. They were supposed to be able to reach the consumer in ways the manufacturer didn't have the ability to do. Well now it doesn't seem there are many manufacturers who actually manufacture their own product. A lot of it is done by contractors in Asia, etc. In our clothing part of the business we used to do a lot of business with OP (Ocean Pacific). They didn't even own a sewing machine. They were a design firm and employed salesmen so sell their good they had produced.

    Today, I believe it is a rare manufacturer who can market efficiently, hence the big box stores. BUT I believe the consumer will still yearn for a person to person contact. I think there are some commodities people will be content with buying over the net....books, some hardware items, videos, music cd's. They're commodities that are the same if you buy them one place or another.

    There will be things though that people will want human interaction in their purchasing decision. I think framing is part of that realm. There will be those who "just want a frame for this picture". But there are others who want to have something special that no one else has just like it. That's why we have prestige type cars, designer clothing, luxury townhouses, etc. A human being has a need to feel good about themselves. The internet can't give that to you. It's cold and impersonal. A human being can. A human can give ideas of special types of framing, matting, special decorative treatments, etc that you just can't get from the net. Plus the internet can never Oooh and aaah over the artwork like a human.

    I think in the long run there's going to be a good mix of both types of commerece. But I think the more people use the net, it will become routine and shopping a retail store will become a novelty and the "in" thing to do ....again (hopefully).
  4. Paul Cascio

    Paul Cascio SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

  5. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner

    BTW……….Dell’s fastest growth area for consumer business worldwide (they are now in over 13,000+ retail outlets around the world about 3,500+ of them are in the US) is selling via retailers……which would indicate that for some sales channels retail outlets will always have a place or for the foreseeable future this will hold good…………Dell has a seven year+ road map for their current retail product range……..

    I’m intrigued by the fact that most people seem to think or imply that what you buy on the net is cheaper than retail or at wholesale……………my personal experience is that virtually everything on the net is more or less at the same price as retail (I buy from the US as well as Europe on the net)……………..yes there are some exceptions but for the most part the net and high street pricing are the same…….in fact in Dell’s case there is a good chance that you will get a better price on their retail focused products in a retail outlet than you will direct from them on the net…………

    What makes the net look cheaper is that they can bring price changes to the customers attention much quicker than a retail outlet…………..it’s simply one of the advantages of selling on the net………..that most people perceive it to be cheaper………….

    The reference I made (in an earlier post about the US company involved in the same business area as myself) of a company shifting their focus to selling on the net, had nothing to do with pricing, whether you buy from them or another supplier in the traditional manner or from them on the net prices are the same……….it’s all about how they focused on selling on the net….

    In fact I would say that if a wholesaler thinks they will grow their market by selling wholesale (read cheap) on the net, I would suggest that you get a new supplier/wholesaler they are not likely to be around for very much longer and most definitely not as a wholesaler……………in this case they would have made a decision intentionally or by default to change from a retailer to a wholesaler……….

    The net is just another shop window/ retail outlet and to treat it as anything else in the area of pricing will lead to a very poor business model………….it’s how you focus on selling on the net and the targeted customer that uses the net to shop.
  6. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    Isn't one of those Walmart? Gateway tried retail stores. They're gone.
  7. mayos

    mayos MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Dermot has a point....I just priced my car insurance. I checked the net with Progressive, Geico, etc and found a what I thought was a good price with Progressive. I took the quote to my local agent and showed it to him. He said "I can write Progressive, let me see how it prices out." You know what? His price was around $100 less per 6 months than on the net for the same company. The internet does not alway equate with "cheaper".
  8. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Unless your supplers are dumping on it wholesale....
  9. Luddite

    Luddite PFG, Picture Framing God

    Just wondering why you are so worked up over this? Don`t like it..drop them from your supplier list.I don`t think anyone is going to go out of business because of this.The people that were going t come to you,will do so anyhow.How many of them would know how to proceed,and do it well..even with a custom made?There are plenty of other companies out there.Voice your displeasure with your checkbook.Drop any one you feel is being unfair/illegal. I will now step back into my spot and wait for the enraged drive by shootings.....L.R.
  10. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Frankly, I wonder how anyone who has an entrepreneurial spirit wonders why anyone would get worked up when their suppliers dump on ebay.

    So we can wonder about each other.
  11. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner

    Point taken Jay

    Gateway and Dell were never the same type of companies………..consumer products for Dell have never made up a very large part of their sales program, in Gateways case consumer sales was one of the largest parts of their business……..

    You have to look beyond the US to really see Dells retail strategy, it is outside the US that retail will have the major impact on Dells and where most of their retail driven sales will come from, in many ways the US is a matured market for Dell, the US is not where most of Dells growth will come from, example, they only opened the second manufacturing plant in Europe last month, the EU has a bigger population than the US never mind the populations of some of the more eastern European countries and Russia ………two manufacturing plants in Europe as against I think it is 5 or 6 in the US (the US plants only supply the US and Canada) would indicate that there is plenty of growth around the world for Dell

    Have absolutely no fears about Dell (one of the most successful US business ever) they are there for a very long time to come………the road map for Dell as a company and for their products is very impressive…………Dell are like Apple both are great US business, both companies will continue to thrive and impress the market place……..

    In any case Gateway are still there as part of Acer Sales (there are two Acer businesses one sales the other manufacturing) the 3 or 4th biggest sellers of computer in the world
  12. mrdeck

    mrdeck Grumbler

    If you look at his feedback, all he is selling is atg, sawteeth, point drivers and points. All that work and he is probally only making a dollar or two per transaction. Let him sell lenth,"and take it to a local gallery to cut it" I'll cut it for $2.00 a foot, and sell them some mats and glass.
  13. TGFU

    TGFU CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    I continue to hear comments like this. I heard them in every lecture at this years WCAF & PPFA shows. The problem is that I just don't see the big boxes in my city turning customers my way because they won't or can't do 'difficult' work. And yes...I've visited them and asked for their referrals. Honestly, I think they are doing more and more complicated boxes these days and some of them are looking darn good. Maybe some of their mounting techniques might be in question, but I suspect that few customers ever question that, or know the difference. And at least one in my area has a large sign at their sales counter telling the customer to ask about their non-invasive mounting techniques & acid free materials. I too wish I could follow Jim Miller's model, but not sure I would have enough to keep my doors open.

  14. Luddite

    Luddite PFG, Picture Framing God

    Maybe it`s because I DO have an "entreprenurial spirit"..If I see "stuff" on ebay,(or anywhere) that`s the same quality style ,or materials I need..For less..I`ll take advantage of it.Scavanger behavior ? Maybe,but it has worked for 22 years(obviously the ebay thing is new...but interesting).A supplier is just a supplier.I`m not going to be dining with them later,or marrying them.They are a resource,and those can change.This coming from someone who has actually done direct design and import..We change overseas sources VERY quickly,if some one else can do a more cost efficient quality product,or even the same item,for less(it`s Our..my..Design),then company A gets left behind for a while,and company B gets this particular job.It`s standard business. L.R.
  15. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I think that if you're still around at this point in most cases you're using Jim's model whether you know it or not. He has good advice there. This past 12 months saw a bunch of stores around here that did not do this dry up as they finally had their day of reckoning. Shadowboxes, difficult framing, great design and marketing... design & marketing, design & marketing, design & marketing... can't say it enough. You can still do well.

    However, you still shouldn't take it with a grain of salt if a supplier is dumping inventory into the retail arena. Minding your business is one thing, but you have to care about what goes on in your industry with some passion too.
  16. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    The craft stores around here no longer refer customers openly, either. Apparently the store managers have decreed they should take in anything and then learn how to deal with it. Trouble is, sometimes they can't deal with it, and that's when they lose customers -- who come to me for repairs.

    A few of the more friendly employees still keep my business cards in their pockets and pass them to their customers discreetly, when they know they're in over their heads. But if the bosses knew, they might get into trouble.

    Jim, there's no magic in the concept. I agree that there probably isn't enough high-tech shadowbox business to sustain any of us. But by choosing to market and advertise that way, we set ourselves apart. So, customers bring us all kinds of things, including their posters and vacation snapshots.

    And by restructuring the inventory and product offerings for optimum profit, we operate leaner. Did I mention that I make more profit now than I did a few years ago, when I was raking in almost 20% more sales dollars? The differences include operations and sales techniques, not only a shift in target customers. For example, on typical open-edition art prints we often sell 2" poly muldings, alphacellulose mats, and Museum Glass.
  17. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    New-found optimism? Actually, I've always been optimistic about the future of framers who stay informed and seek new solutions.

    But let's be realistic. A large percentage of those traditional framers we talked about will not stay informed about changes in our industry, and will not seek new solutions. Unfortunately, some of them don't even understand the problem. I don't mean for that to seem pessimistic, it's just reality.

    The smindie (small independent) segment of the framing industry is under assault. It would be irresponsible for us to minimize the need to take positive action, or the potential of harm for those who don't.

    I appreciate your congratulations on my success so far, but admittedly, the 'comfort zone' is a long way off. Success for us smindies has become a fast-moving and elusive target.

    Lock and load, friends.:thumbsup:
  18. Paul Cascio

    Paul Cascio SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    This should serve as a wakeup call to those who think the AOSFs are their friend because just because they throw them a bone every now and then.
  19. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Appreciating a mass marketer for referring an occasional order would be like appreciating the nice girl who offers to help you up after her big tough-guy boyfriend purposely knocks your teeth out, and plans to do it again tomorrow and every day for as long as you're standing.

    The pessimist focuses on the big tough guy, dazed and confused. :faintthud:
    The optimist focuses on the nice girl, hoping she'll stick around. :shrug:
    The realist focuses on his missing teeth and develops a survival strategy. :thumbsup:
  20. nave

    nave True Grumbler

    Name your suppliers for a brief summary of their "other" sales channels

  21. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

  22. arstis

    arstis Grumbler

    Lets take a vote.

    How many frame shops would offer Southern Moulding's products knowing they are selling the same thing on EBay at wholesale price or less? - Not me.

    How many shops have already removed Southerns samples? - I have.

    I think Tony and Southern Moulding is hoping this thread will just fade away into the Grumble abyss of forgotten threads.
  23. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    And so it shall, joining all the rest of those contentious, opinionated, embarrassing-to-someone threads languishing in the archives.
  24. arstis

    arstis Grumbler

  25. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Isn't that like closing the barn door after the horse gets out?
  26. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner


    It’s corralling the horse in the right stable….. :)
  27. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    Either way you still have to deal with the horse ****.
  28. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner

    I'm cracking up laughing......good one Jay :)
  29. Rockymountian

    Rockymountian Grumbler

    We have the control of our own purchasing so why would anyone continue buying from a company that is under minding your business and the framing industry. Continuing buying from these types of supplier are part of what is destroying our sales. Shop owner need to see this and stop allowing it to happen, but we all have our excuse why we feel we should continue supporting suppliers who don't care about the retailers. This is from selling to the direct public or selling to low level home base businesses, qualifing all businesses is a great idea and that dosn't mean to stop suppliers selling to home base framer, alot of us started home base and worked our way into retail.
  30. Emibub

    Emibub PFG, Picture Framing God

    RockyMountain, if you take a good look around you will find this type of stuff with most if not all your suppliers. Maybe not as blatant but none the less many are doing this. Our walls would be bare. I was outraged a few years ago when this stuff started showing up. But then I had to make rational biz decisions. Not much point taking stuff off your walls if you actually sell them, it would be an emotional decision. As the industry shrinks these suppliers have to find other avenues to sell their products. It is what it is.

    BILL WARD SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    disturbing allegation last week

    just bring this one out of mothballs
    Not just your common garden variety bitch'n'moan----but grist for the mill that warrants looking into I think----

    had a rep stop by last week & in talking on many subjects related to 'us' mentioned that LJ was working a deal with Wallyworld to open frame shoppes(I assume LJ frame shops but that not established in conversation).
    anyone heard about anything about this(or am I just THAT far out of 'the' loop???)? If true, this will certainly put 'us' behind the proverbial 8-ball! those wallys are EVERYWHERE!!!!!!! I'd think that only the 'super'-WM's were due for this but as most of them seem to be named that, could mean most/all of them, eventually.
    If this was just the usual 'poke the next guy' stuff, it will give me an insight into reps ethics, and if true, will give me the same look into LJ's !!!:shrug:

    am gonna call my LJ guy, this week, and see what I get out of him(assuming he's allowed to talk about a project like this)
  32. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Frame shops in Wally Worlds has already been tried and failed.

    The only way that would ever work is by using the cheapest plastic from China. You could not make it work with any product that has a reasonable quality.

    I would say, not true.
  33. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

    disturbing allegation

    An allegation...

    Might I suggest that we look into these things a bit further before posting gossip and allegations?
  34. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Bill, I think you're displaying a healthy skepticism. Rumors about LJ entering the retail end of our industry have been going around for years, all without a grain of truth.

    Unless there is solid proof of such allegations, I believe any rep spreading such a rumor would be ethically out of bounds. if he/she is young and inexperienced, I might point that out. If he/she has been around the block a few times, there is no excuse.
  35. Bob Carter

    Bob Carter SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Have you noticed that every time this type of allegation arises, it always starts with "a sales rep told me..."

    Let's list some of the LJ rumors I can remember

    LJ bought out Marc Bluestone
    LJ was providing ultra-low financing for frame shops if they would be exclusive LJ dealers
    LJ was going into Wal-Mart
    LJ was going into Craftsmart
    LJ was going into JoAnne's
    LJ was a favorite supplier of Frame UP (okay, that one is true)

    Anybody else want to add some
  36. Paul N

    Paul N In Corner

    LJ has WMDs
    LJ has caused inflation and the housing bubble collapse.
    LJ is run by Klingons (wait, this one MIGHT be true).;)
  37. EllenAtHowards

    EllenAtHowards PFG, Picture Framing God


    LJ is going into McDonalds
    LJ is going into Starbucks
    LJ is going...
  38. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    LJ Is selling consumer-direct framing through a phantom website.

    LJ is going to launch its own huge chain of retail framing stores.

    LJ is buying up successful frame shops in test markets.

    LJ is buying up competitive framing suppliers so they can have an industry-wide monopoly.

    LJ is going bankrupt.

    LJ is helping craft stores drive small independent framers out of business.

    As far as I know, threre has never been any truth to any of these rumors.
  39. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    That is a good one. I haven't heard that before.

    The man that owns BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC. has advanced from the second richest man in the world to the number one spot.

    I think I would laff out load if a sales rep told me that one.
  40. Fake Zorro

    Fake Zorro In Corner

    No that man is a Mexican tel/cell phone provider. Think ATT owned by one man. Warren is the richest in America.

    Lets count the distributors LJ has bought.

    Eastern Molding
    Miami Artistic
    Another big gun down south I forget the name.

  41. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Straight from WIKI

    # Name Net worth (USD) Citizenship Residence Sources of wealth
    1Buffett, WarrenWarren Buffett$62.0 billion [​IMG] United States United States[​IMG] United StatesBerkshire Hathaway
    2Slim Helú, CarlosCarlos Slim Helú$60.0 billion [​IMG] Mexico[​IMG] MexicoTelmex, América Móvil
    3Gates, BillBill Gates$58.0 billion [​IMG] United States[​IMG] United StatesMicrosoft
    4Mittal, LakshmiLakshmi Mittal$45.0 billion India United KingdomArcelor Mittal
    5Ambani, MukeshMukesh Ambani$43.0 billion India IndiaReliance Industries
    6Ambani, AnilAnil Ambani$42.0 billion India IndiaAnil Dhirubhai Ambani Group
    7Kamprad, IngvarIngvar Kamprad and family$31.0 billion Sweden SwitzerlandIKEA
    8Pal Singh, KushalKushal Pal Singh$30.0 billion India IndiaDLF Group
    9Deripaska, OlegOleg Deripaska$28.0 billion Russia RussiaRusal
    10Albrecht, KarlKarl Albrecht$27.0 billion Germany GermanyALDI, Trader Joe's

    I didn't know that the guy that owns Trader Joes is the 10th richest in the world. Who'd a thunk it.
  42. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Did we hijack this thread?
  43. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    At one point a while back a sales rep came in and told me that a Chinese company purchased Joann's lock, stock and barrel. Then I came here and found out Warren Buffet purchased Joann's so that he can supply them for free from Larson Juhl and make extra profit. Therefore, Warren Buffet is Chinese.
  44. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner


    Have some new method of making profit!!!!!

    ……..or how do you explain that by given something away for free you can generate more profit!!!!!

    If you have figured out some new method of making profit………what are you doing posting on a board like this………you should be at Harvard or Boston College helping others with their business studies…..

    I really am curious as to your methodology on profit……..I’m also sure Warren Buffet would like to have you as a consultant…..that’s of course if you can validate your profit claim…..
  45. Bob Carter

    Bob Carter SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Hey Dermot-I'm sure that you have heard the old wag about "We lose a little on every sale, but make up for it with volume". Well, a bunch of bright guys created a model where those parallel tracks actually cross

    So, while in jest, johnny could be correct

    But, I think he is just having some fun

    I remember all the folks that thought Sam Walton was just plain nuts
  46. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    All you need is a bigger truck.
  47. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner

    Guys Johnny said “free”………..I know of no business model that allows you to give away something free and make a profit…

    Bob….I understand the volume model and what you are saying, I have worked it in some format most of my business life………..it still wont allow for a business to give product away for free….

    Not everyone thought Sam Walton was a nut…..we have Tesco in this part of the world (and also US side these days)…..they worked Sam’s model and are now just behind Wal Mart worldwide………….

    I can also remember on training 25 years ago in the US having a look at Sam Walton’s business model…….unfortuantly my business skill in those were not good enough to grasp the significance of what I was looking at and I would concede that a business opportunity passed me by….

    Jerry…….bigger truck bigger overhead!!!!

    I hope Johnny was pulling our legs………..if not I want to know his business model……..I still have 2 to 3 business cycles (10 to 15 years) to put it into action…. :)
  48. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God


    You don't remember the story I told about two guys selling watermelons at a Flea Market?

    They ended up selling them at cost and at the end of the day, one guy said to the other, "Next week we need a bigger truck".

    Johnny was repeating a lame story that he had heard probably from a sales rep.
  49. Fake Zorro

    Fake Zorro In Corner

    "Straight from WIKI

    # Name Net worth (USD) Citizenship Residence Sources of wealth
    1▲Buffett, WarrenWarren Buffett$62.0 billion ▲ United States United States United StatesBerkshire Hathaway
    2▲Slim Helú, CarlosCarlos Slim Helú$60.0 billion ▲ Mexico MexicoTelmex, América Móvil"

    My bad, must have been yesterdays news. Remember if it's on the web it must be true. Do you think Warren spoofed the wiki.
  50. Dermot.

    Dermot. In Corner

    Guy's I have it now...........I guess I took Johnny up wrong.....

    Jerry.....Yes I do remember your story about the melons.....now....
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