Shopping Carts….What’s the Big Deal?

October 7th, 2013

If you are going to source shopping carts or baskets do you know the pieces of information to make a quick and successful result?

Today’s post is by Mark Davis; Sr. Vice President and COO at SafeSourcing

Shopping carts and baskets seem like such a basic thing to source and yet because so many retailers have not changed their supplier in years, looking at new sources can be more complex than thought.  All of the details below will eventually come up and be addressed, but getting in front of them at the beginning can make the difference for the level of success achieved from the event and in having the proper information to decide whether to stay with an incumbent vendor or go with someone new.   Today we will look at a few of things to have prepared when starting a sourcing project for shopping carts.

Have the Art Handy – The first thing we run into when helping our customers run an event for carts or plastic bags or marketing material is that finding the original artwork that was provided to the incumbent vendors becomes a much bigger task than it should be.  Many times because of the long-standing relationships built with incumbents, details like the original artwork get held by the incumbent and forgotten by the customer.  This gets especially tricky if the original sourcing resource is no longer with the company.  Finding it in-house or requesting it from your incumbent is the first place to start.  Every other supplier will want to review the file and if a change is made it will be required for the work to be done.  Make sure that new artwork setup fees are either waived for a transfer of business by the new vendor or at least accounted for in a decision to switch vendors.

Stop the Thief – Shopping carts and baskets are coming with more and more options.  Anti-theft bars, drink holders, and improved child seats are all options which will need to be considered when the sourcing project begins.  Changes in business and culture may demand that you begin considering options like anti-theft bars that can be attached to the cart or specially made wheels that lock up when outside the range of the store.  Even if your company has no intention of changing anything about the current specification, now is the time when the suppliers are engaged for the opportunity for the business to understand wheat new options are available.  Many times they can provide migration paths for credit on your old carts while new carts come in to replace them.  This allows companies to upgrade their carts without absorbing the entire loss of the existing fleet.

Include the fees – New contracts and agreements are always great times to go back and investigate the past invoices and agreements that have been put in place and if necessary request that your incumbent provide you a detailed itemized breakdown of the fees they are charging you that are usually lumped into one line item on an invoice that read “Shopping Cart A – Qty-50 – Price $X,XXXXX”.   The longer the relationship has been in place the more important it is to see how that details behind that price are put together.  By understanding these extra fees you can begin to lay out a project that collects them from all suppliers in the same way and also provides you the leverage to have some of those fees eliminated or reduced in order to gain or keep the business.

Whether you are sourcing shopping carts for the first time or for the dozenth, being prepared with details about your current landscape and where you want to head are very important to establish early.  For more information on how SafeSourcing can assist with structuring one of these projects or on our “Risk Free” trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.  We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.

We look forward to your comments.

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