I love a good Line Sheet. I’m one of those people that is positively spellbound by neatness and organization, because to be honest, my life is often times more messy and a lot less organized than I would prefer. They say a terrible mess is the sign of a life well lived. In that case consider me to be living life to the fullest!
The one place where I absolutely insist on top-notch organization and neatness is my business. When everything else is a mess, I can always retreat to my studio and spend a little time in Zelma Rose land, where everything has it’s place. I insist on spreading this message of cool, calm, and collected in the way I practice business. I want customers to know I am on top of their order, concerns, questions, and most importantly I want them to know that I KNOW my business.
It has been essential to communicate a message of organization and business savvy, especially when working with retailers and sending out wholesale orders. I recently took a course about preparing your business for wholesale called Retail Readiness. Instructor and all around retail rock star Rena Tom said something that really stuck with me. ”Make it EASY, really EASY for retailers to work with you.” Sounds obvious, but with this simple statement comes a long list of to-dos in order to make it truly easy for a retailer to order and re-order your product.
Outside of precise inventory management and maintaining clear and consistent communication with retailers, I have found that the single most important tool in making it easy for retailers to work with Zelma Rose is the Line Sheet.
Let’s get the groans out of the way. Arghhhhhh. Yes, you must have a Line Sheet, and yes, it has to be accurate, easy to read and professional looking. If not, guess what? You will not be easy to work with. But, take a deep breath! If you don’t know already, Stitch Labs knows a good line sheet and they are here yet again to save the day! With one click, yes, ONE click, you can create the perfect Line Sheet. I’m not making this up. Here’s a screen shot of the button:
Once inside your Inventory, you can choose a Product Family and then easily download a Line Sheet from that family. I like to customize my Line Sheets to include the item ID, SKU, Category, Option List, Product Photos, and Wholesale Price. Stitch offers a handful of other custom features to tailor your Line Sheet to meet the needs of each of your retailers. I love that I can change it up to include as much or as little info as necessary! This is by far my favorite Line Sheet feature. Customization really helps to personalize your inventory information and present what will be most relevant to each individual retailer.
I recently participated in a group gallery show, which was a first, as my jewelry and accessories do not normally appear at art galleries. I had an idea of what items the gallery owner might be interested in including in the show before my interview, so I created some Line Sheets of the appropriate Product Families to bring along. Because this was not a retail client, and a one time event, I knew I only needed to include a small number of details on the Line Sheets. I decided to include the Category List, Images, and Retail Price. When I pulled out my Line Sheets to show the gallery owner what other options were available she said, “Wow, nice Line Sheets. I can actually see the pictures!” Zelma Rose for the win!
Besides customizing the product information, you can also add your shop logo to your Stitch Labs Line Sheets, which helps retailers keep all your information organized. I have gotten great feedback from retailers that my Line Sheets are easy to read and this is not always the case. Many Line Sheets have teeny tiny photos, small text, and do not include company information, making it difficult for retailers to order and re-order your products. I have included a screen shot of part of one of my line sheets below.
I also appreciate that the Stitch Labs Line Sheet format is clean, simple, easy to read, and does not distract from my product.
Taking your small business to the next step and selling wholesale is a big deal. It means growth for not only your business, but also for you as a business person. Organization and confidence are paramount when presenting your brand and business to retailers and wholesale clients. And remember, make it easy for YOU and retailers to place and fulfill orders. So, go ahead, tackle those Line Sheets and get your game on! Stitch has got your back!
What are your questions and concerns about Line Sheets? Thoughts about going wholesale? Lay it on me.