Do you want to cater to big box retailers or is the focus on premium grocery? Farmer’s markets or boutiques? Your own cafés, multi-roasters, or restaurants? As they say, you are the company you keep.
Once you figure out where you want your coffee bags to retail, think about who shops there. How old are they and what do they like? What kind of people frequent these establishments and how do they spend their money? Is it a place where customers would buy a $6 latte or are they looking for a $1.50 hot dog and drink combo? Knowing their behaviors will help you find places to sell your product to align with your goals. Premium stores can get you a higher retail price, but odds are the volume you sell will be lower. On the other hand, big box stores will get you the volume, but your profit margins will be lower.
You are unique and so is your coffee! Your coffee packaging already looks amazing, so wherever you decide to retail, take note of what coffees are offered there and take advantage of gaps or opportunities you see. Leverage your coffee portfolio, whether it be by roast or origin to help you breakout and create a space all for yourself!
If you work with a distributor, they will negotiate with you to buy your retail coffee bags in bulk at a lower price and market it up to the retail establishments. They will be responsible for store delivery and possibly shelving. They have a larger network and can get you into stores quicker. They are also more demanding as their goal is always to sell as much as possible. When they hit a nice groove and start selling large quantities, you will need to evaluate your production capabilities. Selling directly to retail establishments gets you a higher price point but will require you to do more (delivery and/or shelving). It all depends on how you are most comfortable growing your business.
Direct to Consumer:
Direct to consumer sales enable you to control your brand and customer experience, build a loyal customer base, and charge a higher price point.
Sales can be made at your cafés or own establishments, through your mobile app or website, or at online marketplace platforms. Once you decide to go directly to your customers, you will be required to have a plan for fulfillment and part of your business will quickly morph into a logistics operation.
There is a lot to consider when determining where your coffee will be sold. Think about what you and your team are ready for and sort out your priorities. Is it profitability via volume, or profitability via premium? The path you choose will also dictate your production needs. Don’t be afraid to fail and be flexible. Keep track of both your success and failures and be vigilant in learning as you develop your retail sales strategy. No matter what, you are never alone, and Team Savor Brands is here to help you trailblaze your own path to success!