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What Does It Mean When a SuperZoo Vendor Says They Sold Their Booth?

Members of the PETS+ Facebook Community explain and share the ins and outs of buying vendor booths at trade shows.

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question: I heard a lot of SuperZoo vendors say that they sold their booth to someone. What does that mean? — Angie Scavone, Sniffany’s Pet Boutique, Albany, OR
  • A buyer pays a discounted price for the contents of the booth so the vendor doesn’t have to pack up the product and remove it themselves after the show ends. — Frank Frattini, The Hungry Puppy, Farmingdale, NJ
  • I buy booths frequently at our Northwest shows. They quote you a total price of what they have in inventory and then deeply discount. I set everything up before the show, usually, unless I get offered one that hasn’t sold yet. Then you haul it away after the show. Yes, I bring a trailer, and yes, you have to be willing to stay until the very end. Animal Supply Company has offered to ship my large booth buys for a fee to make things easier on me. — Jennifer Lloyd Flanagan, Nature’s Pet Market, Sherwood, OR
  • It works great for the area stores that can bring in labor to help do the physical work, but we figured out a long time ago that the hassle wasn’t worth it if your store isn’t close. Now, if you are just taking a handful of items, then it’s a deal, but don’t be fooled: It is hard work to pack up an entire booth, so make sure the discount makes financial sense. — Melissa Sturm, Agri Feed Pet Supply, Knoxville, TN
  • I’ve bought a booth or two now and again, but I rarely want the contents of everything they show so I have to look at it carefully. Especially food and treat manufacturers. It has to be a steep discount in those cases. There are vendors that will let you piece-purchase and those that will let you buy a half or third of the booth. It never hurts to ask. I always drive to SuperZoo, so bringing stuff back is easy for me, and I have brought a trailer when I knew I was going to buy grooming tables/tubs. I also have a distributor who will bring things back for me as well. — Lorin Grow, Furry Face, Redlands, CA
  • That is exactly the reason I don’t buy booths. It’s a PIA for my buyers to catalog product in our POS system that we don’t normally carry. — Frank Frattini
  • Yes! And worse, it’s our endorsement of a product I wouldn’t normally carry just so I can sell it off. Then, customers want to know when we’re going to get more. I only did that once with a treat booth. That cured me of ever doing it again! — Lorin Grow
  • I use the booth to gauge what my customers want. The hot sellers are what I reorder. The onsies or twosies, I discount for trial. It’s a huge margin, so I don’t complain. — Jennifer Lloyd Flanagan
  • We love buying booths and do it whenever we are driving and when the booth is a good fit for us. We never do food, and rarely treats. Toys are always good, and aquatic and reptile products are usually a great deal. We sometimes use it as an opportunity to bring in a new line of products. It is a lot of extra work, so as we get older, LOL, it has to be a really good deal. I have occasionally had vendors give me entire booths as well. — Rachael Gregoire Creech, Adventure Pets, Mandeville, LA

EDITOR’S NOTE: Want to ask a question of the PETS+ community? Or share your expertise? Join the PETS+ community on Facebook.

Since launching in 2017, PETS+ has won 16 major international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact PETS+'s editors at editor@petsplusmag.com.

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