Success in business is all about pursuing opportunities, but some opportunities aren’t so easy to take advantage of. Promotional products distributors know this problem well. If you sell promotional products, you likely work with customers who regularly use uniforms. But because of the high cost and complexity of broad uniform sales, you may not think it’s worthwhile to start selling them gear. By adopting online sales with automatic shipping, you can get involved in the uniform market while facing little increase in cost or hassle.

The Potential & Pitfalls of Uniform Sales

As a distributor of promotional products, odds are you work with a wide range of clients who either wear uniforms themselves or have employees who do. Such clients range from hospitals and clinics to restaurants and hotels to schools and universities to retail stores and dealerships. In every case, your clients benefit from the visibility and convenience of uniforms; in many, quality uniforms also play a critical role in sanitation and safety.

While these potential customers may seem to provide a great opportunity, you’re probably aware of the many barriers to selling uniforms. If you offer your clients an employee purchase program or other arrangement for coordinating uniform sales, you’ll have to deal with:

  • High Volume– When employees each order their uniforms individually, you’ll receive dozens or even hundreds of orders on a daily basis. Processing these demands not only takes up your time, but increases the chance that you’ll get an order wrong.
  • Shipping Issues– In addition to recording uniform orders and selecting the gear to fill them, you have to coordinate carrier services to get the orders to their destinations. But arranging for deliveries can be difficult, especially if you have large numbers of orders coming from different locations. There is thus a high risk that you will frequently fail to send something out or will send it to the wrong address.
  • Customization Concerns– Clients aren’t always happy with standard uniforms, and may want logos, names, and other details embroidered on the gear. This gives you yet another element to keep track of and takes up time you could have spent on other activities.

Ecommerce offers a convenient solution to these uniform sales issues. By organizing sales through your website, you allow clients to order uniforms in any volume without giving you more administrative tasks to handle. You can set up your website so that customers can select how they want their uniforms embroidered or otherwise customized; this makes it easier to keep track of how you’re changing the gear for each individual client. Finally, by making the right arrangements with your carriers, you can have them ship uniforms automatically whenever an order is placed on your website. In this way, you can expand from promotional products into uniforms affordably and efficiently.