Hi Johnny Boy,My employee is off working. I've got things rolling along and I need something to do. Is anyone building up their business that wants some marketing/sales help? Anyone need some ideas? Anyone need some resources?
Let me know. No charge. Just looking to help if you're looking for it but don't want to put up a post about it. I've got nothing to do for most of the day for a couple of weeks and I'd like to do something productive to keep my mind going so I don't pick up any wasteful habits with my free time.
I'd love to have you take a look at our website (www.towelsdirect.ca) and let me know what you think but we're in the process of changing up a whole bunch of stuff at the moment and our new website rollout won't be for around 3-4 weeks. We are a wholesale textile distributor, based out of Vancouver, Canada, and sell towels, linens, bedding, bathrobes, and other products. Our customers include hotels, vacation rental owners and property managers, gyms, salons, spas, etc... We also do a lot of custom embroidered products.
Our main market is wholesale, and we have a good mix of smaller wholesale (AirBNB owners, smaller lodges, mom and pop salons, gyms etc) as well as what we call our private banking clients (hotel groups, vacation rental property management companies, boutique hotels and high end resorts). For the larger clients, who bring in the majority of our income (their annual linen budgets average $40,000 to $100,000), my husband and I both do direct sales (call, email, set up meetings, follow up) and have done pretty well there, although it does require travel for meetings, and it's harder to do indirect marketing to these clients because they usually have well established vendor relationships and they haven't heard of us until we call them. However, when we land a new customer in this range, they are usually pretty loyal as they are used to getting average customer service and slow lead times.
For the smaller wholesale market, these guys find us through our website or word of mouth, and come to us looking for what they need. As our website has gotten more traction since we re-did it last year, we've gotten a lot more of these types of clients and while they're definitely profitable, they can require the same amount of time input as a client that is 10X larger. Because we know there is market need, we want to put more focus on growing with these customers and to be able to do that without just making a bunch more work for ourselves, we are working on simplifying our ordering process and adding an online eCommerce store for wholesale customers. Up until now you could purchase a few of our products for retail pricing on our website, but to order at wholesale pricing you had to contact us directly via phone or email, which was great until we got busier.
Sorry for the long back story, but hopefully it gives you some context. Mostly what I'd love your feedback on right now, since our website is still under development, is how to best reach these smaller wholesale customers en masse once our online store is up and running. We get a fair amount of organic search traffic, and plan on improving our SEO by adding some more content (blog posts about choosing towels, linens, thread count, etc) as well as having a go at email marketing campaigns (we were looking at using MailChimp). Any advice here? Again the customers we are going after I would say a decent amount are using Google to find products similar to ours, and others might not be as they're used to purchasing sheets and such from Amazon or even department stores.