UPCOMING JANUARY – APRIL 2023 TRADE SHOWS
TRADER'S FORUM MAGAZINE
January - April 2023 issue
WHY VISIT THE TRADER’S FORUM SHOW
Great Canadian Dollar Stores
Q: Despite living in Victoria, BC you make it a priority to attend the Trader’s Forum Show in Toronto. Could you explain your reasoning?
A: We started in 2004 with 2 stores, opening 7 more by 2014. Dealing with local sales reps and on-line companies definitely helped with our growth, but Trader’s Forum was the best investment for our family stores.
The good investment of attending the Trader’s Forum Shows 3 times a year excelled our growth. The distance between Victoria, BC. To Toronto is roughly 3384 km – a small price to pay for great deals. You must work hard when at the show searching for best deals and asking a lot of questions. Some of the best deals at the shows were found on the bottom shelves that people ignore.
When choosing an item for my store(s) I always think of my 3 P’s, which are Price, Place and Package.
I believe that many companies fail due to internal problems and lack of planning not the challenges in the marketplace. I feel the right decision for your business, money, and time is trying the Trader’s Forum Shows. See you there and say hi!
Q: What are the main challenges that you are facing in business post pandemic?
A: The 2020-2021 fiscal year was terrible for a lot of companies. Some store’s revenue and numbers of transactions had slowed by as much as 75%. Covid-19 did not help with store traffic nor the overall economic environment. Stores were hit with the highest running costs, inventory shortages, cost of helium and freight along with a crippling lack of labor.
We were able to persevere by having a concrete plan in place. Writing down our goals and having weekly progress reports to make sure we were staying on track.
I believe we did a great job of offering our customers amazing value for their money as well as selection of products not available at every store.
Q: With obvious time limitations, how do you choose which vendors to visit at the show?
A: This one is easy. I choose my vendors like my customers choose me. Well presented products with great prices. I will give you 5 minutes in your booth. In return, I ask that you entice me with your best offerings right away. Time is very limited and if you’re not prepared with your presentation, I will move on.
Q: How can a new company get your attention?
A: New and Old vendors – it’s all about show deals. Also, I don’t understand why some companies don’t follow up with their stores to see how their products are selling.
In the August 2022 show, I ordered $24,000 worth of goods from one supplier. I have not heard back from them to see if their product have moved.
MacRae Home Hardware
North Sydney, NS
Q: Which products do you normally buy at the show?
A: When I first started going to the Traders Forum Show I was focused on finding better deals on tools and seasonal items for my Hardware store. From my very first show I was pleasantly surprised by the deals that I found and the different category offerings that were available. Over the years my store has transitioned from being just a hardware store to one that caters to a wider range of customers. One of the things that we hear from our customers is that they love shopping at out store because they never know what they are going to find. For this reason, there are few categories that we don’t purchase from.
When there is a great deal whether it be home décor items, hardware, pet supplies, clothing, confectionary, bedding, toys, etc. If we feel that it is something that our customers will get excited about – we buy it and find room to display it.
Q: How can hardware store owners benefit from visiting the Trader’s Forum Show (TFS)?
A: The main reason I started attending the Trader’s Forum Show was to find opportunity buys. I was looking for items that I could display in my store at a discount price for my customers.
My store is located in a price sensitive area and the deals that I get at the Trader’s Forum Show allow me to provide goods to my customers at a price that always leaves them smiling and allows me to maintain a great margin. There are so many good deals at the show covering a wide range of categories. It seems regardless of which product category you are looking to buy for, you can always find a vendor offering a good deal. As a retailer I am always looking to improve margin and increase the average basket value. The deals that I find allow me to provide more impulse items to my customers which increases the amount spent while still allowing for a healthy margin.
Q: What is the main difference between TFS and other shows that you visit?
The main difference between the Trader’s Forum Show and other buying shows that I attend is that the best deals are always presented to you. At other shows you can shop an entire booth and not find the best deal.
Most times you must ask if there are products that they are clearing or have on special. At the Trader’s Forum Show the Vendors have a different approach in that they present the best deals to the buyer. This makes it easy for the buyer to make decisions on purchasing. I also feel that I have been able to build real relationships with the Vendors at the Traders Forum Show. Many of the Vendors at the show have become true friends, that show real interest in ensuring the success of my business. They stay in contact with me throughout the year offering deals as new product comes into their warehouses, allowing me to have a constant flow of different offerings for my customers.
Q: What product categories can be expanded and/or are currently missing at the show?
The Toronto show has been great and well represented. I’m not sure there are any categories that aren’t there. For us more Home Décor is always a plus.
Pelican Place Pharmacy
Sylvan Lake, AB
Q: What is the importance of having a front store at your pharmacy?
A: Variety of front store products can drive traffic to your store, creating an extra avenue to generate income.
Q: What are your three best selling categories at your store?
A: I feel like this strongly depends on the location of your store. For us, greeting cards and giftware are by far the best sellers, apart from medication.
Q: What products are you looking to buy when you visit the Trader’s Forum Show?
A: I look for giftware and everything that is unique. We have a lot of competition from convenience stores and big box stores, and I am constantly looking to stand out. As an example, we recently tried selling winter and Christmas blankets for the first time and they have been doing well.
Q: What are the benefits for pharmacies to attend the Trader’s Forum Shows?
A: Shows can help expand your front store business and provide you with new opportunities. They provide a chance to differentiate yourself from other pharmacies and stores in your area.
I also find that dealing with suppliers directly can be very beneficial as it allows you to form relationships and get better deals.
DISCOVER SPECIALS AND DEALS AVAILABLE AT THE UPCOMING SHOWS
1 Website • 100+ Suppliers • 1000+ Buyers
Due to the impact of Covid-19 and government regulations Trader’s Forum Marketplace will run in conjunction with the physical shows.
Trader’s Forum Marketplace is a unique platform specially designed for our industry. Taking orders, setting up appointments and a convenient way for the buyers to see 1000’s of products from multiple suppliers has never been easier.
The marketplace allows for hybrid trade shows – Virtual show capability during the physical events for those buyers that can’t attend.
This is a secure platform, only accessible by registered buyers, who have been verified by the suppliers.
Extremely user friendly. Highly effective. An essential part of the new standard in the industry.
June – August
- Father’s Day is Sunday, June 16.
- Create and decorate a “Dad” section.
- Feature a wedding endcap, bridal shower and baby endcaps early in the summer.
- Stock up on fireworks, flags, red and white balloons, cups napkins and other party accessories for Canada Day – July 1st.
- Stock up on items for Canada’s 150 years celebration.
- Start pre- booking for upcoming Valentine’s Day, Easter and Spring
- Start building your back to school section at the end of July. Include stationery, backpacks, lunch snacks, etc.
May – Mother’s Day:
- Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 12
- Make and display Gift Baskets on May 1st, include picture frames.
- All cottage and camping gear should be out at the beginning of the month.
- Display an endcap of fireworks for Victoria Day, May 20
- Have teacher thank you cards and gifts on display throughout the month.