Should Shoppers Buy Their Health and Beauty Products Online?

The internet has revolutionised the way people shop, the convenience that people have with being able to choose a time suited to them to shop for their essentials has reached a point where many people don’t even consider going to their local high street for their shopping. If those people choose to shop at 3am in the morning that’s fine for the web site, unlike a staffed shop, it never sleeps.

The question is whether buying general products online is fine for all consumers. For people simply browsing for a new item then online shopping can take some getting used to. The casual walk around a shop, passively picking up items, is not an experience that is simple or easy to simulate online. If the site does not completely display the details about the product that the shopper is after then it can be very difficult to find that information out. They will sometimes have to try another site on the off chance that they will have the section of information the consumer requires. In a shop, the customer can just pick up the product and read the manufactures description on the back, perhaps even asking a member of staff for some advice from the health and beauty retailer. This interaction with others is a key difference with online shopping, although some ecommerce sites now try and supply an interactive chat service for people wanting to talk to a real person.

Perhaps it is the thought that their goods will not turn up properly and promptly that stops some from venturing into the exciting world of online shopping. One of the key points to keep in mind is that the shopper should be aware who they are buying products from; if they stay with ‘big brand’ retailers then there is generally nothing to worry about. The payment processes will be secure and the products, for example perfume or aftershave, will be as described. If the user chooses to buy from an unknown source or perhaps even a private individual selling through another site then the goods quality, or even existence, cannot be easily verified.

Consumers seem to be moving online for many parts of their life, the convenience of being able to order a new cooker while travelling on the train, or do the ‘weekly shop’ while sat at their desk during their lunch break is an extremely temping one. But consumers looking for health and beauty products online should know that there are many deals to be had.

Display Stands – An Inexpensive Way to Promote Your Products

An interesting and inexpensive way to attract and hold the interest of potential customers is an attractive display stand. Attractively displayed products are the first line of promotion when the customer walks into your shop or may be even before that. Many varieties of such stands are available to suit the needs and budgets of every business.

Those kinds of displays are an integral part of shops and trade show exhibits. A well designed and attractive they not only enhance the shopping experience but also make it easier to bring in potential customers. In fact this is the one thing that differentiates real shopping from online shopping.

A shopkeeper may decide to use simple display stands or even opt for elaborate ones. It is common place to opt for highly decorative and attractive displays on special occasions. The one thing that needs to be kept in mind is that the display should not distract from the displayed. A display stand is supposed to bring the product to the fore and not overshadow it.

Different types of stands can be used to display the products around the shop available in many styles sizes and shapes; they should not hinder the visual appeal of the products. When used creatively display stands can position the product uniquely. This does not mean that you can not opt for a fancy display, but it should be kept to the minimum.

These stands can be bought off the shelf or made to order. You can choose the design, material, color and even texture to suit your products. Different styles of stands are essential for different products. A jewellery shop cannot possibly use stands that are used by a shoe shop. They have to be customized to be able to display the chosen product with maximum advantage.

It is essential to choose stands that are durable as they are expected to last for years. Most businesses can not afford to change them frequently. This may not be the case for big businesses or chain stores. Consider your budget before you choose your stands. They can be inexpensive and yet very practical.

Since space is always at a premium a display stand should be able to make optimum use of it, so that maximum products may be displayed in an uncluttered and attractive manner.

The display stand should suit the nature of your business. You may want stands that allow easy access to the products or ones that hinder it. Shops selling general products like books, toys, groceries, household items etc. need display stands that let the customer handle the product personally whereas this may not be advisable for shops selling expensive items like jewelry and curios.

How to Choose the Right Manufacturer For Your Products

A company has a great product in mind and has probably designed a prototype. However, if producing it in bulk is too complicated and costly, it is probably about time to work with a manufacturer.

It can be a daunting task to choose the right manufacturer. Most of the manufacturers will probably turn down a company whose production requirements are not big enough to bother with. On the other hand, others may not provide the quality that a company needs. The following are tips on how to choose the best manufacturer to work with.

Search for manufacturers that is ideal for the company.

As a start, the company should decide on whether they want to work with a US-based manufacturer or outsource the job overseas like in China or other countries. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. In general, products made in the US have better quality, making them sell better to discerning customers, while products made overseas cost cheaper when it comes to labor and parts, though shipping fees can add up. The target audience should also be considered in determining whether quality or price is given more priority. Once a decision has been made, the company can go over the website of the manufacturer to know more about their criteria and qualifications. When it comes to overseas manufacturers, a company can visit an international sourcing site. They can check the references and images of products made by the manufacturer. This way, they can determine if the quality of the supplier meets their standards.

Be ready

If a company wants a manufacturer to take them seriously, they should do extensive research prior to meeting with them. It would be best to create their own prototype or hire someone to do it, but if it is quite complicated, they could ask the help of a product engineer, and ask whether the product can be mass-produced before making the prototype. They should have an estimated budget plus a business plan, which includes the product goals and manufacturing requirements. They should keep in mind that the company is not just deciding on a manufacturer, but the latter is also deciding on the company. When the manufacturer thinks that the company’s idea is not feasible, there will be no meeting in the first place.

Inspect the facility

Prior to making a commitment or signing a contract with the manufacturer, the company should inspect their facility to check out their factory and showroom. This way, they can have an idea of the supplier’s capabilities, plus how well they understand the company’s product and needs. Before making a final decision, the company should visit a number of manufacturers. Since the quality of the product will ultimately depend on the chosen manufacturer, the company will want to make sure that this supplier can be trusted.

How to Import Any Product in 7 Simple Steps

So you’re looking into learning how to import to Australia? Importing is a great business to get into and can also be very lucrative so it’s a subject that’s well worth learning about.

If you want to gain a competitive advantage over your competition, importing is definitely the way to go. Through not having to purchase through a local wholesaler (who is importing the products themselves, then adding their mark up) you’ll dramatically increase your profit margins plus have access to a much larger range of products overseas.

Other bonuses include:

  1. Lower product costs in many overseas countries. Due to much cheaper labour costs in many Asian countries, their manufacturing costs are less than for an Australian manufacturer.
  2. Obtaining a premium quality item not available anywhere else in the world – eg. Japan has a good reputation for supplying quality electronics, & Italy makes fine leather handbags.

It’s really not that difficult to start your own profitable importing business. Don’t let a fear of the unknown put you off (like I did at first), just bite the bullet and get started!

Step #1 – Research a Potential Niche

Skip this step, and you risk importing products that you can’t sell! Something I’m sure you don’t want to do. Before you do anything, take the time to research your market to find out things like if there’s enough customer demand for your products & learn who your competition is.

Step #2 – Find A Reputable Supplier

Overseas suppliers can be sourced online or through contacts in local trade organisations. Whatever you do though, make sure you do some background checks on any potential supplier first to make sure they really are who they say! Most overseas companies are genuine, but unfortunately there are some scammers there too.

Step #3 – Are There Any Special Regulations For Your Goods?

Australian Customs do place some restrictions on the importation of certain products into the country. While most general products aren’t restricted it’s a very good idea to check with Customs first. It’s much easier to find out beforehand than once your goods have already landed and Customs have contacted you with a problem!

Step #4 – Arrange For Freight to Australia

The 4 freight methods you can choose from are sea freight, air freight, the postal system or international courier. There are pros and cons for each method so it really just boils down to whatever will work best for your particular shipment.

A reputable international freight company should be able to advise you on what is the most cost efficient freight option for your goods.

Step #5 – Organise Payment For Your Products

If you haven’t already received one, ask for an invoice from your supplier, & organise payment through your bank as soon as you’re ready. Pay for you goods using a secure payment method – not cash in advance.

Step #6 – Customs Clearance

Once your goods arrive in Australia, Customs will require you to fill in an import declaration form so they can clear your products. There’ll also be some stamp duty and taxes to pay before they’ll release your goods to you.

Step #7 – Sell Your Goods For An Impressive Profit & Repeat the Process Again!

Importing may seem to be a very daunting process, but in reality, it’s actually quite simple and you definitely don’t need a big budget to get started (I started with less than $500). With a bit of insider knowledge and some basic research anyone can start importing to Australia, no matter who you are!