Why Your Homewares and Furnishings Store Really Needs to Sell Customer Returns

If you run a homewares and furnishings store, you’ll know how important it is to stock lots of top-quality products. You’ll also know how important it is to offer these products to your customers at the best possible price.

The homewares and furnishings retail landscape has changed considerably over the last twenty years. Whereas it used to be the case that your main competition came from other stores – in particular, department stores which had the floorspace capacity to display what can often be quite large and bulky items – nowadays you also have the Internet to compete with, in particular e-commerce giants such as eBay and Amazon and their hundreds and thousands of independent sellers.

Not running bricks and mortar operation with all its various overheads means online sellers are at an advantage. Obviously, for many, the attraction of going to a homewares and furnishings store and seeing the products on offer is still preferable to trawling through a bunch of tiny jpegs on a website, but there’s no denying profits have been eaten into thanks to the emergence of this market.

And then there’s the fact that what was once cheap wholesale merchandise from traditional sources has started to align with retail prices, meaning there’s less of an opportunity to make a decent profit on the products you buy wholesale. Can this double whammy be combatted? Is it still possible to run a bricks and mortar homewares and furnishings store, source top quality stock at a competitive price and still turn a profit in this day and age?

The answer’s yes. It is still possible by switching to buying customer returns from an online liquidation marketplace.

What Are Customer Returns?

A liquidation marketplace such as Direct Liquidation sells a huge range of customer returns to suit all types of retail businesses including homewares and furnishings stores. But what, exactly, are customer returns?

The term ‘customer returns’ refers to merchandise customers have returned to stores that big retailers such as Walmart, Costco or Target then pass on to a liquidator, usually because they wish to free up space on their store shelves, and also because customer returns are no longer classed as ‘new’ items. With only a limited amount of space in both their stores and warehouses, retailers simply do not have space or the time to sell these items at a discount, hence why they work with liquidators who provide them with an online platform to sell on these customer returns quickly and efficiently.

wholesale pallets

Customer returns are usually classified either ‘as new’, ‘slightly damaged’, ‘visibly damaged’ or ‘tested not working’ when the retailers pass them on to a liquidation business. This means that mixed customer return pallets of homewares and furnishings from a liquidator will contain plenty of merchandise that can be sold on to customers at various price points. The ‘tested not working’ goods can even be used for repairs and spares to bring products up to spec – a particularly useful addition to those specializing in lighting, for example, where broken parts can be swapped out.

Accessing a Huge Range of Merchandise

Go to a liquidator’s site and you’ll find its virtual shelves full of pallets of tested and untested customer returns that will suit any homewares and furnishings retail business. If you’re on the lookout for cheap wholesale merchandise, you’ll find it in abundance on an online liquidation marketplace.

Lighting, soft furnishings, kitchenware, storage solutions, cleaning products and cleaning accessories, electrical appliances, decorating supplies – whatever you’re on the hunt for to sell through to your customers, you’ll find it on a site such as Direct Liquidation.

And because liquidation business works in partnership with big-name retailers such as Walmart, the merchandise that can be found on their site ranges from budget lines to high-end products from homewares and furnishings specialists such as Turbo Scrub, Ikea, Better Homes and Gardens and Mainstays.

This means you’ll be able to cater to customers from all income streams; from families on a tight budget to big spenders, a liquidator can supply you with the goods you need to satisfy the needs of the widest possible range of people – which is what you need to hear in today’s ultra-challenging retail environment.

Buying Homewares and Furnishings from a Liquidation Marketplace

There are several ways of buying returns pallets from a liquidator’s site. After you’ve identified a pallet of tested or untested returns that you think will make your homewares and furnishings business a healthy return, you can set up a live alert that will notify you when that particular pallet is coming up for auction. Then you can enter as many bids as you like (don’t forget to check shipping and handling costs before bidding on a pallet of goods) and, if you’re successful, the liquidator will deliver the goods you’ve purchased to an address of your choice.

If bidding in an online auction is not for you, you have the choice to buy the merchandise at a fixed price using the site’s ‘buy it now’ function, or, if you’re a haggler, you can approach the liquidator and negotiate your own price. This is a particularly popular option with some returning customers who buy from an online liquidation marketplace regularly. Liquidators value customer loyalty just the same as you do, after all.

Whichever method you choose to purchase customer returns wholesale through a liquidator, you can rest assured that they will be as described on the site, will be dispatched to your business in as little time as is possible and will come with the liquidator’s 90-day warranty. And in the unlikely event that you encounter any problems, they can be addressed to a liquidator’s customer service team who will bend over backward to sort out any problems.

Staying Competitive and Making a Profit on Your Customer Returns Purchases

As we said at the beginning of our article, competition has never been fiercer in the homewares and furnishings retail sector, with online competition snapping at the heels of stores and wholesalers unable to supply the merchandise you need at a low enough price to maintain healthy profit margins.

Thankfully, an online liquidation marketplace working in partnership with some of America’s largest retailers has the solution. They can supply your business with all the liquidated stock your business needs and your customers want, and they can supply them at prices you’ll struggle to find elsewhere.

The top-quality merchandise and the prices liquidators are able to offer your business will help you stay one step ahead of the competition and keep your customers coming back for more. Looking for reliable online wholesale suppliers of affordable, premium-quality homewares and furnishings? Then look no further than a liquidation marketplace.

Direct Liquidation is a goTRG company.

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