Ricki Rubin has over ten times of buying experience for Gump’s, Wendy Foster, Restoration Hardware, and Macy’s. Moment she will partake with us her point of view on the buyer/ dealer relationship, and tips on getting your product into retail stores.
Hi, Ricki. Welcome. Ricki, what’s your main responsibility as a buyer?
Ricki My main responsibility is to establish a strong multifariousness that is compelling, new, and fresh, according to open to buy guidelines and seasonal deadlines and conditions.
Rachel What are open-to- buy guidelines? What does that mean?
We plan our damage inflow, how important we are going to spend. We plan how important we anticipate to do in deals, and how important we anticipate marking down, grounded on hand deals or trade abatements or cheapie markdowns-when a product goes to concurrence-because we eventually.
As buyers, manage a business. So it’s basically a business plan, and it flows, and every month end, the figures roll. However, it affects do we bring in further bills the coming month, If we yield advanced deals. It really helps us as the matrix to make the business.
Rachel If you are going from month to month, and you are looking at how important plutocrat you have to spend, how do you decide what you are going to bring in?
Ricki It all depends. Every store is different. However, and I suppose about my gests at Restoration Hardware and Gump’s, it’s about a theme in the store, If I suppose about a home store.
We’ve a set bottom installation date. We work with our visual directors, and make a theme and an overall color scheme and story, that commences at a certain point in time and elapses for, generally, six weeks. And not every item in a store falls into a theme, but it’s really a chart to produce a point of view in the store and keep effects harmonious.
Rachel Can you give an illustration of that? Is that seasonal. or vacation?
Ricki For illustration, at Gump’s, we did this rising Jaipur theme in the store. It started in July, and it was each about India, and we had a certain color palette, a lot of jewel tones, a lot of golds. Still, the store is not fully eccentric on that installation because there is other effects going on in this particular business and at Restoration Hardware. Must read about ross store!
That store, when I was there, we surely followed along a gyration or a bottom set. So perhaps our color scheme was a lot of blues and a lot of yellows for summer, and we plant a lot of products that fit within that world.
Rachel As you are bringing these effects in and you are going through the six week gyration, how can notoriety who is trying to vend into your store be apprehensive of that?
Is that commodity that you are veritably-that information commodity you are veritably forthright with? Do you know what is coming up for an entire time? How far in advance do they plan these installations?
Ricki Well, it surely depends on the store, and not every store, again, operates on an installation timetable. Because I also do apparel and vesture, we do not follow that meter. It’s just aware, depending on the type of product that the wholesaler or the proprietor of the business, what kind of product and how that would restate into what a certain retailer is doing.
When it comes to apparel and baby, which I also have done and presently do, we principally go off a color palette and a seasonal inflow. Right now I am looking at Spring products. I see trends in the business and also I go later, explosively, certain merchandisers or contrivers that are compelling.
Rachel What is the stylish way for notoriety who wants to get their product line in front of you-I am saying you, but I mean, in front of buyers. What’s the stylish approach that they should take grounded on everything that you’ve told us and have endured?
Ricki If it’s notoriety that is new and has developed their own product, I suppose that knowledge is power. The most important thing is, of course, to establish, roughly, what’s their cost price. What are the confines? What’s the noncommercial price? What is the lead time to produce this product and deliver it in store? The buyer wants to feel secure, knowing they can count on that because we plan fiscally, which is established on the theme; there is so important in fiscal planning.
And I suppose that it’s also important to reveal terms. How do I bear getting paid? Can I do in that 30? Or do I always bear cash on delivery because I am veritably new and I am just getting established? But utmost critical is to understand when you can deliver, and how important your product costs.
Rachel What’s the stylish form of communication to get a buyer’s attention? And who is responsible for paying for samples? Obviously, they shoot a sample. How frequently should they follow up with you? What is the stylish way to approach you from a communication viewpoint?
Ricki I can say the first thing not to do is Mondays when the buyers are getting back from their weekend, and reviewing the week prior, which is the financial week that ends on Saturday.
There is a lot of analysis going on and a lot of catch over, and that is critical time for reporting and assessing business, and also that helps lead to making opinions. So I would just avoid the Monday, and let the buyer get a sense of what is passing in his or her business.