When you start wholesaling your fashion brand it is important to know two things so that you are not competing with the stores that place order for your product:
- What is the correct season to take orders for (wholesale order timeline).
- When your client will take delivery because this is when you can start offering that product in your retail shop too.
Let’s look into the correct season first. Typically stores place order for product 3-6 month in advance of when they want the product in their store. Once the product is in the store they want it to be relevant to the upcoming season for another 2-3 months. This means that they will order for Spring 4-6 months before Spring actually arrives. In the kids market Spring ordering starts in the Fall and ends in January. You will need to have Spring orders ready to ship January to March with the bulk in Jan/Feb. So if you are trying to sell a Spring collection in the spring and you are not getting orders it is because you are wholesaling the wrong season. In Spring you should actually be trying to take wholesale orders on your Fall line. (Accessories have a different schedule as they fall into a gift market category but can also fall into the clothing schedule too.)
Once your orders start shipping you can then offer your line retail in your own shop. Shops want to offer something new to their shoppers. If you have already been selling it for 6 month it is less appealing to a store to purchase it from you. There are exceptions to this. I have had many stores place immediate orders for product I have listed in my Etsy shop. Those orders are nice but they are few so if you really want to expand wholesale you need to get on the wholesale schedule and market your line to a broader spectrum of retail buyers.
Have a specific wholesale question? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org