How a simple tablet is changing wholesale shopping
When they came out, iPads were seen as a toy for sending email, checking Facebook, and online shopping. Now though, they are making their way into the retail space—and changing things in big ways. You can pay for your apples with a credit card at a Farmer’s Market thanks to POS systems like the Square. And, since last March, you can use an iPad in the Melrose showroom when you’re shopping at the show.
“We’ve been looking for a way to show merchandise on a tablet in the showroom for years, but until recently, the technology hasn’t been there,” explains our vice president of sales and marketing, Brad Gullion. “We saw some major benefits to our customers when we started using iPads with the RepZio system.”
The RepZio system, which is an iPad based point-of-sale system that functions similarly to online shopping, allows reps to help retailers build their orders on the iPad and view pictures of product in their cart as they go. When the order is placed, a tear sheet—with those trusty pictures—is emailed to the retailer so that they can review it anytime during, or after, the show.
Brad explains, “Retailers can see previous orders, order by category (stems, home decor, ornaments, etc.) and by Look (i.e. all the pieces that make a fully decorated tree), or even flip through an online catalog and add items to their cart as they go.” Essentially, reps can bring the entire Melrose collection to the retailer’s fingertips, no matter where they are.
Videos are also integrated into the system. As retailers walk the showroom with their rep they will notice QR codes near product arrangements. By scanning these codes retailers can watch the arrangement being created as they look at the finished piece in the showroom.
“We’re getting a great reaction from our customers and from our reps—some of our reps are even replacing their mobile showrooms with an iPad and a few key samples, to make customer visits even better,” finishes Brad.
Have you used our iPads in the showroom or to place an order with your rep? How did it work for you? We’d like to hear your story—leave us a comment in the comment section below.
Brad Gullion is the Vice President Sales and Marketing at Melrose International. He’s committed to bringing Melrose customers the best buying experience possible through listening to their feedback, implementing new technology, and getting ahead of industry trends. Before joining Melrose Brad was Vice President at Ohio Wholesale. Brad lives in Chicago, IL with his wife and in his free time he enjoys biking and sampling Chicago’s finest fare.