Skip to Content

Walmart

11 replies [Last post]
boardgameguru
Offline
Joined: 05/11/2009

So someone gave me a great idea other day and it involved emailing Walmart to ask how to contact buyers for products to test in stores. This would bypasse trying to get a big publisher to give me royalties.
I could also do this for Toys R US

However very disappointed to not get a reply from two emails I sent via online form on the Walmart website however I am not in USA and this seems a problem now and again for people to contact reply.

This also involves me moving to China to get the games I invented in the 80s made cheaply.

How China can make games cheaper than USA print firms has always baffled me.
Perhaps someone can explain that?
Regards

guildofblades
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
Lol. Getting a product

Lol.

Getting a product stocked in Walmart, even on a limited test basis, involved literally moving someone down to Arkansas and going through several steps of presentations to the specific buyer who handles your particular category of goods. Then, more often than not, Walmart will tell you how you have to change your product to fit their ideal format and price structure for it, including pretty much telling you where you should be producing it.

If you get past that step, very often they'll be asking you such pertinent details such as how you plan to fund the network of local distributors who will be responsible for manually stocking (effectively on consignment) your product into each of their stores in the manner, method and quantity of their chosing. They will want to make sure that your company is EDI compatible and that you will have 1 or more full time persons utilizing the EDI system to help coordinate your distribution network to insure the timely delivery and placement of restocks. Getting EDI compatible, mind you, is a multi hundred thousand dollar affair, at the very least.

Once you can prove to them you are capable of all of that, then they'll want to take about how many hundreds of thousands in co-op advertising money you are ready to give them, up front, so they can include a blurb about your product into their community mailers. If you toss a number up in front of them that satisfies them, then and only then will they take some time to consider how wide of a "test launch" they'll want to try your product out for (ala, 200 stores, 1000 or all 5500+) and how many they'll order in advance and how long you have to prep and get them that initial order, stocked into their stores. Of course, that is also about the time that you also get to find out if they will offer to pay you 30 days, 60 days, 90 days or even 180 days _after_ items are sold (not simply delivered) at checkout. Also keep in mind, anything not sold is not paid for and items stolen are simply your lose and if the test should fail, you will be responsible for the timely removal of the items your have on display or they'll be tossed.

No wait. That was pretty much Meijer's terms. Yeah, we had them "interested" in carrying our one collectible game back around 2002 or so. Their terms were simply a bit too risky for us to go borrow the necessary money needed to produce the kinds of quantities they wanted.

Walmart's terms would almost certain be worse.

But yep, if success, you could bypass one of those big publishers and effectively become one yourself. It only takes a handful of titles sold chain wide in Walmart and a few other like chains before your are turning some fairly impressive dollars.

Thanks,
Ryan S. Johnson
Guild of Blades Retail Group - http://www.gobretail.com
Guild of Blades Publishing Group - http://www.guildofblades.com
1483 Online - http://www.1483online.com

metzgerism
metzgerism's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/19/2009
Unless your name is Hasbro...

...you're likely never going to sell a game to Walmart.

boardgameguru
Offline
Joined: 05/11/2009
Illuminati

Looks like they are worse than the Illuminati

SO let me oncentrate then on TOYS R US and perhaps suggest a few more good biggies to me
Thanks

guildofblades wrote:
Lol.

Getting a product stocked in Walmart, even on a limited test basis, involved literally moving someone down to Arkansas and going through several steps of presentations to the specific buyer who handles your particular category of goods. Then, more often than not, Walmart will tell you how you have to change your product to fit their ideal format and price structure for it, including pretty much telling you where you should be producing it.

If you get past that step, very often they'll be asking you such pertinent details such as how you plan to fund the network of local distributors who will be responsible for manually stocking (effectively on consignment) your product into each of their stores in the manner, method and quantity of their chosing. They will want to make sure that your company is EDI compatible and that you will have 1 or more full time persons utilizing the EDI system to help coordinate your distribution network to insure the timely delivery and placement of restocks. Getting EDI compatible, mind you, is a multi hundred thousand dollar affair, at the very least.

Once you can prove to them you are capable of all of that, then they'll want to take about how many hundreds of thousands in co-op advertising money you are ready to give them, up front, so they can include a blurb about your product into their community mailers. If you toss a number up in front of them that satisfies them, then and only then will they take some time to consider how wide of a "test launch" they'll want to try your product out for (ala, 200 stores, 1000 or all 5500+) and how many they'll order in advance and how long you have to prep and get them that initial order, stocked into their stores. Of course, that is also about the time that you also get to find out if they will offer to pay you 30 days, 60 days, 90 days or even 180 days _after_ items are sold (not simply delivered) at checkout. Also keep in mind, anything not sold is not paid for and items stolen are simply your lose and if the test should fail, you will be responsible for the timely removal of the items your have on display or they'll be tossed.

No wait. That was pretty much Meijer's terms. Yeah, we had them "interested" in carrying our one collectible game back around 2002 or so. Their terms were simply a bit too risky for us to go borrow the necessary money needed to produce the kinds of quantities they wanted.

Walmart's terms would almost certain be worse.

But yep, if success, you could bypass one of those big publishers and effectively become one yourself. It only takes a handful of titles sold chain wide in Walmart and a few other like chains before your are turning some fairly impressive dollars.

Thanks,
Ryan S. Johnson
Guild of Blades Retail Group - http://www.gobretail.com
Guild of Blades Publishing Group - http://www.guildofblades.com
1483 Online - http://www.1483online.com

Dralius
Dralius's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/26/2008
boardgameguru wrote:How

boardgameguru wrote:

How China can make games cheaper than USA print firms has always baffled me.

Perhaps someone can explain that?
Regards

Most of the cost of manufacturing anything is the Labor. Since the average worker makes so much less than we do** they can sell for less. This goes for the entire supply chain so they also buy all the material for less.

**According to the CIA world fact book China’s GDP is $6,600 USD compared to US at $46,400 USD.

BTW- You don't need to move to china to do business with them. If you want someone to oversee the process so that things are done right there are people you can hire for that. Paying someone who has experience working in china will be must less expensive and inconvenient that moving to the other side of the world.

boardgameguru
Offline
Joined: 05/11/2009
Yes

Yes but
I like China much better than UK

I like asian ladies

I can sell all that other stuff they make
I can source new toys and games there not seen in Western countries

SiddGames
SiddGames's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/02/2008
Local Wal-mart

You know, I can't remember where I read it, but I thought I saw someone successfully contact their local Wal-mart and get one of their products on the shelves of just that one store on a trial basis. But, perhaps I am misremembering, or it wasn't a verifiable story. Still, might not hurt to make a call?

scifiantihero
Offline
Joined: 07/08/2009
Anyway . . .

. . . if you have a product that walmart would say yes to, wouldn't any number of game manufacturers (and us game buyers) also be saying yes to it?

(I.E: What is it?)

:D

guildofblades
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
For most game manufacturers

For most game manufacturers its not really an issue of finding a product that Walmart would say yes to. (I mean, yeah, if you want to sell through Walmart, that is sort of necessary). Its rather that most game manufacturers are nowhere near capitalized well enough to sign up to sell things at the terms Walmart would demand.

I've never tried to sell anything to Walmart directly. But did have a tentative agreement from Meijer to test market one of our products a bunch of years ago. Opening test order of 25,000 units of 2 different SKUs. But after seeing everything they would require and what we would have to do to meet those requirements we ultimately decided there was too much risk involved. Other major chains from Target, Toys R Us and others all have similar requirements, though Walmart is generally considered to be the worst.

At a ballpark, not counting production costs, you will need an EDI compatible system and perhaps about $250K to think about such as a direct relationship. And that had better be money you can flush down the drain if things go south. The largest stumbling block, for us at least, has been the possibility of internalizing the EDI system. Without EDI you would need a distributor with EDI to act as middle man for you.

Thanks,
Ryan S. Johnson
Guild of Blades Retail Group - http://www.gobretail.com
Guild of Blades Publishing Group - http://www.guildofblades.com
1483 Online - http://www.1483online.com

Thanks,
Ryan S. Johnson
Guild of Blades Retail Group - http://www.gobretail.com
Guild of Blades Publishing Group - http://www.guildofblades.com
1483 Online - http://www.1483online.com

boardgameguru
Offline
Joined: 05/11/2009
I would say

I would say put flyers in Walmart toy sections with order website on

Much less cost and hassle

Dralius
Dralius's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/26/2008
boardgameguru wrote:I would

boardgameguru wrote:
I would say put flyers in Walmart toy sections with order website on

Much less cost and hassle

And probably with little effect. I worked in retail for 10 years and when we found such materials we just threw them out.

scifiantihero
Offline
Joined: 07/08/2009
You could always . . .

. . . bring a razorblade and cut a slit in the back of the shrink wrap on every game. Then stick a flyer for awesome games in there.

Maybe some kind of portable heater to melt it all back together afterward.

:P

Syndicate content


forum | by Dr. Radut