preloader

Market Season is Here: 10 Tips for Buyers and What to Expect

Written by Katelyn Madsen

What to Expect: 

Throughout the year, but especially in the month of July, buildings and market centers across the United States overflow with wholesale activity. Floors upon floors of booths and displays exhibit diverse products, ranging from trendy apparel and unique gifts to stylish housewares, jewelry, yummy food, and festive holiday offerings. From discovering unique items that will set your store apart to connecting with fellow industry professionals, each market offers a wealth of products and experiences. Market week is an immersive experience, a sensory overload of colors, textures, and trends, where retail buyers have the opportunity to discover the latest and greatest products for their stores. 

With so much to see and do, navigating this vibrant landscape can be a bit overwhelming. That is why the AGM has compiled a list of 10 tips to help guide you on your journey to the markets. 

Some Markets to Attend This Summer:

Atlanta Market (ANDMORE) : July 16 – 22, 2024

  • Held at AmericasMart Atlanta in Downtown Atlanta, Georgia
  • 7.7 million square foot campus
  • 6000+ brands in various categories
  • Combined 51 floors of shoppable space between 3 buildings
Atlanta Market Floorplan - www.atlantamarket.com
Atlanta Market Floorplan

Dallas Mens Show : July 27 – 29, 2024

  • Held at the Dallas Market Center in Dallas, Texas
  • 700+ brands in men’s apparel, accessories, and footwear
  • Combined 22 floors of shoppable space between 4 buildings
Dallas Men's Show Floorplan- www.dallasmarketcenter.com

 

Las Vegas Market (ANDMORE) : July 28 – August 1, 2024

  • “The sourcing destination on the West Coast”
  • Held at The Expo at World Market Center in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • 3500+ brands in various categories
  • Combined 37 floors of shoppable space between 3 buildings
Las Vegas Market Floorplan- www.lasvegasmarket.com

 

PGA Buying Summit : July 29 – 31, 2024

  • 150+ top and emerging golf brands
  • Held at the Omni PGA Frisco Resort in Frisco, Texas

Fun fact: AGM will have a table in the exhibitor area!

Tips for a Successful Market:

Market week is often a frenzy for retailers, so here are a few tips to help streamline your market experience:

1. Plan Ahead

Most markets will have a building layout if not a virtual tour of the interior. Research where your desired product categories will be and try to plan out your route. 

2. Know Your Numbers 

Before attending, determine your open-to-buy. Know your bestsellers and underperformers, the budget you are working with, and the space available in your inventory storage. Be aware of these factors so that you can make informed purchasing decisions that will enrich your shop.

3. Set Goals

Define your goals for attending the market, such as key product categories and trends to prioritize on your trip. Think of it like a shopping list so that you don’t over-buy or go too far outside of your best-selling product categories.

4. Wear Comfortable Shoes and Attire

Shopping involves a lot of walking, so wear comfortable shoes and attire that can withstand the long hours. While it’s tempting to dress to impress, the reality is that you will be walking for miles. 

5. Only Bring Essentials

Bring a lightweight bag and only fill it with what is necessary, such as:

  • Business cards
  • Notepad and pen
  • Lightweight refillable water bottle
  • Portable phone charger
  • High-protein snacks

6. Take Notes and Photos

Use a physical or digital notepad to record details about products and exhibitors. Take lots of detailed notes so you remember what you liked and who to contact. This also applies to taking photos, as pictures can be some of the clearest notes to reference when making purchasing decisions.

Tip: Use either the Notes app on your phone or the Google Docs app to keep both notes and photos in the same place. You can share these notes with other members of your buying party as well. Make sure to include why you liked the item, such as “unique,” “nice texture,” or “high quality.”

ANDMORE Market Tip: For those attending any of the ANDMORE Markets, download the @Market App to plan out your trip, organize content, have turn-by-turn navigation, and easily scan and share notes and photos. 

Tip: If you are in too much of a rush to take written notes, take photos of the brand signs as soon as you enter a section. That way, you will know that all of the following photos will be from that brand, giving you ease of organization and clarity. 

7. Keep a Schedule

Keep an eye on the clock and try to hit as many spots as you can, purchasing along the way. When scheduling, leave time for travel between appointments and for exploring the show floor.

If there are products that you are unsure of, highlight where they are and come back to them at the end if you have time. Keeping this in the back of your mind may help you to not to spend too much time in one spot.

8. Network and Connect

Utilize networking opportunities to meet fellow buyers and exhibitors. Attend seminars and social events to build relationships, gain insights, and broaden your network. Remember to take the opportunity to connect with retail community members you rarely see in-person.

9. Compare and Evaluate

Before buying, compare similar products from various exhibitors. Consider quality, pricing, order quantities, delivery timelines, and terms to make informed purchases. Make sure to remain open minded to explore new vendors and opportunities!

10. Keep a Good Attitude

After a long day of walking and talking, it’s normal to be tired. Even still, remember that this is a unique opportunity to not only grow your shop, but to be a light to others that are feeling tired as well. Being courteous and respectful to those around you and keeping a positive mindset will make for a more enjoyable trip for you and others. 

Tip: Stay hydrated and fed! : )  

 

Justine Gray, AGM’s Director of Membership and Education, recapped her market experience well: 

“Market week is an exhilarating whirlwind, so don’t forget to slow down and soak it all in. While you may feel compelled to book every hour of your day with appointments, leaving time in your schedule to explore the show floor can be very rewarding. I always look forward to time at market to reconnect with members of our community we don’t get to see often enough!”

 

Conclusion

As the summer market season approaches, the possibilities for your pro shop are endless. With these tips in mind, you’re well-equipped to navigate the bustling showrooms, discover exciting new products, and create valuable connections. Whether you’re a seasoned market veteran or a first-time attendee, remember to stay organized, trust your instincts, and have fun! Happy shopping!

 

To join a merchandiser community and gain weekly educational opportunities and resources, sign up to become a member of the AGM.

Effective Merchandise Management: A Peek into Kelly Anderson’s Strategy

Kelly Anderson leverages simple tools and keen observation to optimize merchandise management in her pro [...]

Path to Platinum: Submit an Award-Winning Application Today!

Don't miss the chance to showcase your golf shop's excellence – follow this guide to [...]

Embracing Emerging Brands in Pro Shops

Emerging brands play a vital role in keeping pro shop offerings fresh and dynamic.

Crystal-Clear Quality: Inside Sterling Cut Glass

With a reputation for exquisite craftsmanship and design, Sterling Cut Glass has become a symbol [...]

Finding Balance: Count and Fill vs. Fashion Groups in Your Golf Shop

In the world of golf retail, balancing core essentials with seasonal fashion deliveries is crucial [...]

Market Season is Here: 10 Tips for Buyers and What to Expect

Written by Katelyn Madsen What to Expect:  Throughout the year, but especially in the month [...]

#1 Tool to Increase Clarity by Dr. Heather Penny

Discover Dr. Heather Penny's #1 tool to increase clarity, and how taking a break can [...]

PRG Golf: Leading the Way in Bespoke Golf Accessories

PRG Golf shares the secrets to their success, showcasing their commitment to quality and innovation [...]