How To Save A Small eCommerce Business From Being Killed By The Mega Retailers


By Brad Beiermann


Remember the last time you bought an electronic item such as a DVD player or VCR? Where did you go to buy it? If you are like most consumers, you wanted the best possible price. You might have also been brand conscious by purchasing an item with a recognized manufacturer's name synonymous with quality. Like most consumers, you probably did not want to wait forever to get it. You might have hopped in the car and headed to the local mega retailer and bought the item.


Everyone loves great deal. A good brand with quality. A low price...and the ability to take it home right now! Does this sound like you or a least someone you know? Trust is important to us as consumers. We want to make sure no one takes us for a rip-off ride. We want to avoid the embarrassment and not look like the dumb shopper that bought a piece of junk for a high price. As a result, we have conditioned ourselves to certain buying habits. One of those habits is shopping for a name brand that is well known and trusted. Consequently, many folks start their own online e-commerce retail sites feeling these are often the types of product they need to carry. They think the well know brands can inherently bring some of the consumer trust (and sales) to their product offerings. While that might be true to a certain extent, this does not always result in a stable online business with healthy margins. Thus, they have fallen victim to the "brand name myth" in online retail.


The Brand Name Myth Unveiled

What is the brand name myth? We have already started to describe it, but here is a brief description of the brand name myth -- There are countless start-up online retail businesses who have been led to believe they should sell big brand name products as a core product offering for their retail website. After all, most consumers are familiar with big brand names (i.e. Kodak, Adidas, Sony...etc.) and have grown to trust and follow their favorite brand name products. In fact some of the largest and most successful retail businesses in the world sell the big brands. So, the popular way of thinking suggests that big brand name products are what a new online business should sell. Why? Again, the big brand name products are popular, well known, trusted and carry a name of quality. Unfortunately, this has often resulted in a losing battle for numerous small online businesses. How? In a few words...intense competition, brutal price wars and extreme market saturation. These businesses basically entered into the commodity business without knowing what hit them! Many of them are no longer in business. Would you like to avoid this situation?...Certainly!


Press Release Paralysis

There is one other limiting factor about big brand name products you should know about. The ability to press release a business is greatly limited with big brand name products. That's right. Suppose a small start-up online business plans on selling the latest big brand name cameras as part of their online store. They would like to advertise their new product offering to the world, and get the word out about the their online business. A press release is great way of doing this without spending a bunch of money. However, they quickly find no editor willing to publish their press release. There might be a couple of reasons for the rejection:


1) The camera manufacturer might not allow press releases of their licensed name by other parties, or if they do allow a release


2) The product has already been press released many times by other companies. As a result, the product press release is no longer news worthy.


Being the smart online business owner, do you want to avoid these situations?...If so, let's look at how to get started on the right foot.


How Can I Avoid The Brand Name Myth?

The Internet retail world presents a much different level of retail challenge versus the traditional brick and mortar retail business. Customers can do comparative shopping on the internet with just a few clicks of the mouse rather than driving around from store to store in their car. So, this means within seconds they can be at a competing retail site looking for similar products at a cheaper price. As an Internet retailer, you want a business that gives you some immunity to these scenarios.


Fortunately, there are many techniques and best practices that can be used to keep consumers on your site. One of these best practices involves creating a niche business. You can get the benefits of a niche business by carrying things that are unique to the marketplace. Having an online business with the "You can only find it here" advantage gives you some immunity to the competition. Selling the big brand names you find at mega retailers does not provide you with the business uniqueness you need. You can do this by creating your own product. However, not everybody wants to go down that path. Rather, another option would be finding a wholesale drop shipper with a unique product offering that has not saturated the market. Where can you find a wholesale drop shipper of unique products that are simply not found at all the mega retailers? The Hienote Drop Ship List Directory is a great starting place. At Hienote Inc., our focus has been on finding wholesalers with unique products that can be drop shipped in single item quantities. We offer an online directory of the drop shippers, found by our research staff. The drop shippers in the directory is always changing as we add new one every week. You can get immediate access to the products that can help you carve a niche for your online business. In niche marketing, you focus on traits that make your business unique. Likewise, we have placed a similar focus on creating a directory of drop shippers with unique, unusual and fresh product offerings.


By avoiding the commodity big brand names, you can be in a position to do as many product press releases as you want. This will allow you to get more focused buyers to your site and can result in more sales. Getting free publicity for your products is one of the key ways to getting the needed advertising without spending any money upfront. With brand name items you simply cannot do this, which severely paralyzes your marketing efforts. This is why many online business experts have recommend selling niche based products vs. the commodity big brand name products.


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