When More Isn’t Better: The Value of Curating Your Inventory
curating inventory

Reducing the number of appliances you offer might seem counterintuitive. With big box stores and online retailers serving up an overwhelming array of choices, it’s easy to believe that presenting customers with more options is the only way to compete.

But what if the opposite was true? In our experience, dealers who embrace a curated inventory can enhance the customer experience, streamline business operations, and increase profitability.

Compare Your Available Inventory To Sales Data

You probably have upwards of 300 dishwasher models featured on your website. However, sales data will likely show that less than 100 models account for most of your sales. 

All those dishwashers you rarely sell have become a barrier to your growth. Luxury fashion brands, high-end automotive companies, and gourmet restaurants have long embraced the “less is more” philosophy. By limiting choices, they enhance the perceived value of their offerings and create a more manageable, focused inventory.

Curating Inventory: A Strategic Approach

Curating your inventory is a deliberate and strategic approach that involves analyzing sales data, understanding customer preferences, and aligning your product offerings accordingly. By narrowing your offerings, you simplify the decision-making process for consumers. They are able to compare and choose their best option without being overwhelmed by a sea of choices.

Online wholesaler Faire.com sums up the impact of product curation this way: “When you offer a selection of curated products in your shop, you tell a story about your business and differentiate yourself from other retailers, inviting your customers to explore an assortment that is aligned with their values.”

Improving Margins and Customer Satisfaction

When customers have too many options, decision fatigue sets in. That often leads to dissatisfaction or indecision. By curating your inventory, you guide customers toward their best options, improving their shopping experience. This approach can increase your margins – leading to greater profitability – and your sales team can become experts on these products, leading to more confident and effective selling.

Popular grocery chain Trader Joe’s is a great example of a retailer who has embraced a philosophy of less is more. According to Retail Dogma, Trader Joe’s has been able to “target a narrow market segment, and yet still become a multi-billion dollar business, because they serve this segment exceptionally well with a highly relevant product assortment, which allowed them to become the leader in that space.”

A Win-Win for Everyone

Curating inventory requires a thorough and ongoing analysis of what sells and what doesn’t. It also requires regular conversations with your sales team to ensure everyone is aligned on which models are the most profitable and appealing to your target market. Dealers who have adopted this approach report increased margins, sometimes adding significant revenue to their annual earnings.

While it may seem risky to reduce the number of brands and models you offer, the benefits of a curated inventory are substantial. By offering fewer products, you can focus on a better customer experience, streamline operations, and improve profitability. As an independent dealer looking to grow your business, sometimes less truly is more.