The best wholesale hats will be extremely good quality, priced within your budget, and made in a style that will appeal to your customer base. As a fashion retailer, you will have to determine your budget carefully, considering not only the wholesale cost versus the retail cost of the hat but other daily business expenses. Choosing styles will also pose some issues, since you must base your decision not on your own aesthetic preferences but on what your customers would buy.
Before you begin shopping for wholesale hats, determine what your budget will allow. Typically, fashion retailers resell for at least double the wholesale value. In some cases, the market allows for a higher mark up. To the average person, that profit may seem large, but you must calculate several expenses, typically called "overhead." into your costs before you can determine actual profit.
For instance, a brick and mortar shop owner typically pays rent, utilities, and employee wages and benefits. Businesses also must pay a number of taxes, including taxes on sales and taxes on signage. Every expense eats away at the profit from the sale of merchandise. When every other bill has been paid, then the owner pays themselves or, more commonly, puts the profit back into their business through buying equipment or more merchandise.
Although online store owners are typically thought to have less overhead, they still face significant business expenses. Unless they have arranged to ship products directly from the manufacturer to the buyer, they must store their merchandise, which requires purchased or rented space. Often they must also pay for the creation and maintenance of a website and employees to help with business operations.
To determine your budget, calculate all of your business expenses for a month. Include insurance, rent, utilities and anything else that you use to run your business. You will have to make that amount of money, plus the wholesale cost of product, simply to break even. Next, calculate how much inventory you need to sell on a daily basis to make that much money plus what you would like to pay yourself. This is your daily sales goal.
You will have to purchase wholesale hats which can be purchased and resold for a profit which can pay your bills and pay you while maintaining a competitive market price. If you are unsure about the market price, look at other online retailers and shops to find out what similar hats are selling for. Unless your wholesale hats are a specialty item, they should be priced about the same. Price them too high and you may not sell any at all.
The quality of the wholesale hats you purchase is imperative. Even if you are marketing to a trendy, budget conscious group, customers will expect the hats to resist fraying, tearing, or wearing too quickly. Your customers will respond to you, not the manufacturer, if they are unhappy with the quality.
The best way to purchase wholesale hats is to see them in person. That way, you can check the seams, fabric, and lining for signs of poor workmanship. If you must purchase online, find out if the manufacturer will send you a sample or grant you a generous return policy for your order if you are unhappy with the quality. The best manufacturers will guarantee their work.
Choosing styles, colors, and fabrics may prove to be the hardest decision you make. Basically, you want products that sell well to your customers. You may need to do research through fashion magazines that are marketed towards the age and style of your customer base to find out what the latest trends and classic styles are.
Some shop keepers find that choosing a niche, whether it is a style, theme, or other characteristic, helps them choose their products. For instance, you could focus on free trade fashion or handmade styles only. A good niche will not only help you in your decision making, but also encourage customers to return to you for that type of product.
If you have a brick and mortar store, you have the advantage of customers being able to view your product for themselves. If you have an online store, you will need specifications and photos of the hats so that your online customers will have all the information they need to make a purchase.