How to Sell Retail – What NOT To Do

People always ask me how to sell retail, but I think the better question is what NOT to do. In this short video, I will share what you shouldn’t do when selling to chain stores.


Hope this helps!

To Your Success,

Karen Waksman, Retail MBA

P.S. Was this video helpful? I’d love any feedback or comments :).

P.S.S. If you’d like to learn exactly how to approach, pitch and sell to retail buyers, check our our Retail MBA Training Program! This is the most comprehensive course available today on the subject of selling to retailers.

How to Sell Retail

Transcript for this Video Listed Here:

How to Sell Retail – What NOT to Do – Hey, everyone. This is Karen Waksman, founder of Retail MBA. And in this particular segment, we’re going to be covering a topic on how to sell retail that comes up all the time in my workshops and classes. People always ask me, “Karen, how do I get a product into a chain store?” And then what I usually say initially before we kind of delve into that is, “Let’s talk about what not to do, because that’s really a better question.” So here’s what happens with chain stores and what most people do to get their products in the store.

So the way it works is most product companies have this great new, interesting product. And they say, “I want to sell it to, I don’t know, Bed, Bath and Beyond,” right? So what they’ll do is, like everybody else, will call the front desk at Bed, Bath and beyond and say, “Hey, I have this great new product. I want to sell it to your store.” So it makes sense, right? You want to just see what their protocol is and stuff like that.

So what they’ll actually do, though, if you call them, they’re going to redirect you to a vendor department. And a vendor department’s really a department that handles all the vendor requests and stuff like that. So they’ll either redirect you to a place on their website or there’s a phone number or something like that. And then at that point, what they’ll have you do is fill out some forms about your company. And they’re going to ask you very, very specific questions about your company. And some chain stores really get elaborate. I mean, they’re going to ask you a lot of stuff.

Here’s the problem with you going and following protocol and submitting your information to the vendor departments. The challenge there is, is that everybody else is doing the same thing. So they’re getting inundated with thousands of submissions, and it’s like, how do you differentiate yourself from everybody else? Plus, you want to get an answer really quickly as to whether or not there’s even a possibility that this chain store is interested in working with you. So what you’d rather do is get answers quickly and then fill out these forms, right? That’s kind of something more logical, and most people don’t even know that there’s options out there and that you don’t have to follow a protocol and then go. And you can actually get your products in stores a lot faster, because to be honest with you, it can take anywhere from three months, six months, even a year sometimes through a vendor department to get a response and stuff like that.

They’ve gotten quicker over the last few years and stuff because they’re in such dire needs of getting new products in the stores, but a lot of times it’s really stressful for the product company, because again, they have to submit this information in every different chain store. It gets really old and exhausting, and then there’s a waiting game. It’s really frustrating.

So my recommendation is to not follow protocol, and my recommendation is actually to follow my program, but most importantly, I recommend that you contact the buyer directly. So I actually have other videos on how to get the buyer’s name and contact information. And obviously, there’s ways to pitch the buyer and to make them more inclined to buy and everything. But please note that there are other ways to go than just doing what everybody else does, which is contacting a vendor department. If you’d like to learn more, you can check out, or you can check out the additional videos that I’m creating about the subject. And anyways, I truly wish you the best, and I hope that provided value. Thank you.