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The Base
31-12-2009, 17:50
This is the number 1 business flaw.

You go to a GW store because you want a model right away. You get to the store and find they don't have it. You are the clerk about it and he says "Well you can't get those in stores any more. However I could place an order for you, it will be here in 2 or 3 weeks".

So why can't I get that in store?

Not enough display space? I've never been in a GW store that used even 10% of their possible space.

Not popular enough to take the risk on stocking? Well I am here looking for at least 1 unit. Is it really that much of risk to make sure your own stores has 1 unit of every item? They are bound to sell eventually and GW clearly doesn't require case shipments so they could order at the unit level. Not to mention you are way more likely to sell something if you have it in stock.

So when all is said and done most of the time I just do an online order from a discounter because they get it to me faster. Oddly these shops have more confidence in stocking the products that GW does.

puppetmaster24
31-12-2009, 17:55
well you can get it deliverd to the store for free and it will be there in about a week.

Reinholt
31-12-2009, 18:01
I think the point is that if you go to the store, you don't want it in a week, you want it now.

If someone wanted it in a week, they could have ordered online and skipped the store in the first place!

Wintermute
31-12-2009, 18:33
This is the number 1 business flaw.

You go to a GW store because you want a model right away. You get to the store and find they don't have it. You are the clerk about it and he says "Well you can't get those in stores any more. However I could place an order for you, it will be here in 2 or 3 weeks".

So why can't I get that in store?.

Simple.

GW cannot afford to keep stocks of every model it produces and supply them to all of its outlets and to indie stores. Not every item sells well. Therefore, it does not make good business sense to have to produce and store the large quantities of models required to supply and stock its outlets with minis which do not sell.

It is more sensible to maintain large stocks of items which do sell and supply them to the retail outlets leaving the items which do not see to be made available via Direct Sales which requires smaller stock levels to be maintained.

yabbadabba
31-12-2009, 18:38
Simple.
GW cannot afford to keep stocks of every model it produces and supply them to all of its outlets and to indie stores. Not every item sells well. Therefore, it does not make good business sense to have to produce and store the large quantities of models required to supply and stock its outlets with minis which do not sell.
It is more sensible to maintain large stocks of items which do sell and supply them to the retail outlets leaving the items which do not see to be made available via Direct Sales which requires smaller stock levels to be maintained.

In addition, most online discounters (without B+M stores) aren't daft enough to carry anything but the very, very fastest selling stock, and will order your models direct from GW before forwarding them onto you. So if you are using a discounter, time isn't an issue, is it?

Its certainly not a "number 1 business flaw".

The Base
31-12-2009, 19:02
Simple.

GW cannot afford to keep stocks of every model it produces and supply them to all of its outlets and to indie stores. Not every item sells well. Therefore, it does not make good business sense to have to produce and store the large quantities of models required to supply and stock its outlets with minis which do not sell.

It is more sensible to maintain large stocks of items which do sell and supply them to the retail outlets leaving the items which do not see to be made available via Direct Sales which requires smaller stock levels to be maintained.

First off this doesn't relate to indie stores because they manage themselves.

I am not talking about stocking large amount, I am talking about stocking at least 1 unit. Since GW does its ordering by unit anyways there is little difference between stocking 1 unit and ordering 1 unit. Except for the fact that the one in the store can be sold more readily.

I'd imagine no production run is so small that they couldn't provide 1 to every store, in fact I'd imagine that every store sells at least 1 of everything each year. Also not having the item in the store gives people less reason to you know... go to the store.

When I was working retail we had a saying "You can sell it if it's in the back room". Fact is you can sell it, it just takes someone already knowing about it to ask you, clearly not as good as putting it right in their face. GW takes this to the next level. It's not in the back, it's 1000 miles away in a warehouse.

Also to anyone saying that online retailers don't have stock. I have gotten orders from online retailers faster than I have gotten orders from stores. Unless they state it's not in stock, it probably is. Hell some of them still have older versions of models in stock.

Brandir
31-12-2009, 19:27
... Not enough display space? I've never been in a GW store that used even 10% of their possible space ...

Not sure which GW shops you have been in but I would suggest that most make great use of available display space. For example, GW Trafford Centre has virtually no room to move. GW Preston, Shrewsbury, Carlisle and Belfast are similarly packed, with every space on the walls covered in GW stock.

Wintermute
31-12-2009, 19:31
First off this doesn't relate to indie stores because they manage themselves.

Yes it does.

Indie stores cannot order Direct Sale items to sell in-store. In addition GW does not tell the Indies what they can actually order, unless they ask. All the Indie stores are told is what the top 100 bet selling items are, and they should stock them.


I am not talking about stocking large amount, I am talking about stocking at least 1 unit. Since GW does its ordering by unit anyways there is little difference between stocking 1 unit and ordering 1 unit. Except for the fact that the one in the store can be sold more readily.
But GW doesn't supply its products to stores in single units does it? Blisters are supplied in packs of two.


I'd imagine no production run is so small that they couldn't provide 1 to every store,
You would be wrong. But its not just a matter of producing one item for every store, its the matter of maintaining sufficient stock to resupply the store when required within a matter of days and to meet demand. If demand is low, then manufacturing enough product for every store is not good business.

RevEv
31-12-2009, 19:32
Having worked in a store I can support Wintermute in what he says.

Not all models sell well. If GW were to keep all that they make in stock, even just one model, they would have little room for the more successful items that do sell well. Contrary to popular opinion GW keep a close eye on what sells well in each store - far easier now with computerised sales tills than the old version of eyes on - hence some stores hold models that others don't (I managed to pick Canis Wolfborn up today in store having been told in another that he was MO only).

On the flip side if you order in store it can be sent direct to your house, and I think it's post free.

yabbadabba
31-12-2009, 19:38
Ask yourself a question "The Base" - why would GW do this? If it made financial sense to keep all these products instore, then why not? Exclude all the daft conspiracy theories on this site and you will find that what Winternute and others have said makes sense.

The Base
31-12-2009, 20:03
OK wasn't talking about "Direct only" items. I was talking about the items they just don't have but are part of the normal line up.

There were 2 stores in my general area, both with about the same stock.

A good example would the older Imperial Guard range. They would never have sentinels, I would have got 9 of these guys at least just on impulse buys over the years, but they just didn't stock them. They'd rarely have Cadian officer or special weapons blisters, I think I found one officers blister in 3 years. They wouldn't have Vostroyan squads, oddly they would sometimes have the weapon teams. I never recall seeing a hell hound or demolisher, etc.

In my example above you are talking about half of the range MIA. However the redid the models, put them in stores, now they are all top sellers... hum....

Now I fully understand retail and I know that managers don't want to be caught with cases of product they can't sell. However I am not talking about cases of product here, I am talking about a single unit. What is the difference between the store stocking a single unit and them ordering a single unit when I want it? Pretty much nothing except I am far more likely to buy it if it is stocked.

If you think resupply is a problem you are greatly misinformed, it is a blessing because it means you sold the product.

Out of the 5 GW corporate stores I have been in, none of them were even remotely pressed for space. They have the room to stock whatever they want.

The point I am making here is you can't sell something successfully if you don't regularly have it in stock. GW could stock 1 of every item at minimal cost/risk to themselves, they just choose not to.

RevEv
31-12-2009, 20:12
The problem you have highlighted in your post, base, is not that you are looking for current models that are not stocked, but rather you are looking for collector models or splash release models that will not be stocked.

In the eyes of the GW hierarchy Cadian Officers and the older sentinels are not current models. They have been superseded by the newer plastic models. I have never had a problem getting those in any store I have visited.

nagebenfro
31-12-2009, 20:33
Part of the reason for a transition away from blisters, at least, will be to reduce stock loss though theft. GW Aberdeen certainly seldom has availability problems as far as I've noticed, although quite a few models do seem to be moving to mail order only.

yabbadabba
31-12-2009, 20:34
Sorry mate I disagree. There is a lot more to this than you are attributing. For a start most companies do not want to carry slow selling stock. It is unprofitable. So they will get rid of those lines asap especially if they can fill that space with a faster selling line, but in the end they will still get rid of it. We are lucky with GW that they do have a mail order service to back that up.

Secondly, while you might look at it being a problem for GW stores, in Europe GW have to offer the same range for Indies and GW stores. By making some of those lines Direct only they cut back on unnecessary investment in a slow moving line, which will be far more profitable for the company through mail order.

Some lines will be more profitable through stores and Indies because of the rate of sale vs cost will be weighed in the rate of sale. Leman Russ tanks for example. Other lines will have a low rate of sale, but better cost if sold direct and not through stores where additional costs are incurred.

Finally, while its not helpful for impromptu purchases, if you are planning your purchases even a little, waiting a week for a product shouldn't be too much of a problem. There are some products mate that even on a shelf in a store will never make you any profit.

Bookwrak
31-12-2009, 21:08
Not sure which GW shops you have been in but I would suggest that most make great use of available display space. For example, GW Trafford Centre has virtually no room to move. GW Preston, Shrewsbury, Carlisle and Belfast are similarly packed, with every space on the walls covered in GW stock.

Indeed, how many GW stores have you actually been in? There are several around the DC area, and the only one I've been to that doesn't seem to use every bit of available space is the Glenbury battle bunker, which has a pretty tightly filled stock area, and then a large number of gaming tables.

brawnyman1989
31-12-2009, 22:16
I agree with Wintermute. The Chicago Battle Bunker, had pretty much one of everything. They had warmaster, bfg, all the blisters imaginable, etc. They even had pretty much one of forgeworld piece in their backroom. However, they had to get rid of it, because it was taking up space and wasn't selling so well.

Reinholt
01-01-2010, 01:26
My thoughts in full:

I agree GW should not stock their entire product range in the stores; many items are not fast sellers, and they will sit on the wall, silently, for ages. It is better to have items that are mail order only rather than items on the wall if those items do not sell within a reasonable timeframe. Inventory turnover is important, and you can manufacture smaller runs and hold them in a central warehouse rather than having to over-produce, as was stated above.

Conversely, for items GW does sell in stores, they should always have enough on hand to make an actual unit. I can't tell you how many times I've seen weird things like 3 wraithguard on the wall at a store (and not because they sold two, as it was the same right after they got the order the next week). GW's ordering / stocking system for stores, at least in the states, is relatively screwed up. I've witnessed the store I frequent getting consistently weird quantities of things they do not need, and being horribly understocked on things they do need... and when I asked around, the same was true of every other store I could find.

Thus, my suspicion is that the intent is correct (don't stock stuff that doesn't move off the shelves), but the execution is poor enough that it also hinders selling stuff that does move off the shelves.

Duke Georgal
01-01-2010, 03:03
1) In general at a retail level, If an item does not sell (or "turn") four times per year, you should not stock it.

2) GW do not want to overwhelm newbies with all the clutter that is available. They want to sell some boxes and get you started.

3) I do not know UK tax law, but in the US you pay taxes on your unsold stock. If you cannot turn it, you dump it in January pre-inventory and do not reorder.

4) Stocking everything GW offers would never be practical. Slow moving blisters would fade on the shelves and detract from the store.

Occulto
01-01-2010, 03:37
Not popular enough to take the risk on stocking? Well I am here looking for at least 1 unit. Is it really that much of risk to make sure your own stores has 1 unit of every item? They are bound to sell eventually and GW clearly doesn't require case shipments so they could order at the unit level. Not to mention you are way more likely to sell something if you have it in stock.

So what would happen if they did have at least one unit, and someone bought it the day before you walked in? :p

What happens if they have at least one unit and you want to buy three of them? Should they always carry three just in case someone like you walks in the door? (Even though that might happen once a year)

Companies don't make these kind of decisions just because some evil marketing guy wants to screw over their customers. They look at stock that sits there gathering dust, and decide it's better to replace it with stuff that actually sells.

Dark Eldar got sent to Direct Only for that reason.

doombanner
01-01-2010, 05:37
Having worked in a store I can support Wintermute in what he says.

Not all models sell well. If GW were to keep all that they make in stock, even just one model, they would have little room for the more successful items that do sell well. Contrary to popular opinion GW keep a close eye on what sells well in each store - far easier now with computerised sales tills than the old version of eyes on - hence some stores hold models that others don't (I managed to pick Canis Wolfborn up today in store having been told in another that he was MO only).

If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

~Doom Banner

doombanner
01-01-2010, 05:40
Part of the reason for a transition away from blisters, at least, will be to reduce stock loss though theft.

If this is the case, they shouldn't have repackaged the Avatar, the metal Weraithlord and metal War-walkers in blisters... :wtf:

They do it to save money, make no bones about it.

~Doom Banner

Nephilim of Sin
01-01-2010, 06:40
If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

~Doom Banner

I didn't know Reaper had a store, but I can tell who why that is the case in my area, in the one place that sells them;

Because they don't sell. They other place that did sell Reaper eventually sold them all at discount to make room for other stuff, because they had so much. The ones that do sell at the place that stocks them get reordered. Which means they have a huge selection of Reaper minis.

Of course, my LGS is limiting it's Fantasy stock once it gets rid of the slow-sellers, but there obviously was a large selection since they weren't selling.

Duke Georgal
01-01-2010, 07:45
If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

Umm... Maybe because Reaper only has one store, and it is in the Warehouse!

Do you live in Denton, Texas?

yabbadabba
01-01-2010, 10:18
If this is the case, they shouldn't have repackaged the Avatar, the metal Weraithlord and metal War-walkers in blisters... :wtf:
They do it to save money, make no bones about it.
~Doom Banner

1) Companies experiment with packaging all the time. The move away from blisters was made some time ago, so why not go back and revisit it? Also, I thought the Wraithlord was plastic only now?
2) Of course they do it for money, why be in business otherwise?

IJW
01-01-2010, 10:49
Yep, the metal Wraithlord was discontinued when the 4th ed. Eldar codex came out and the new plastic model replaced the old one.

rich1231
01-01-2010, 12:57
Its business suicide to carry slow moving items in expensive retail space.

Thats all that should be needed to explain this.

Dai-Mongar
01-01-2010, 13:03
If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

~Doom Banner

As mentioned, they only have the one store in Texas, which is their warehouse. I don't think you'd find any other store that carried the entirety of Reaper's lines. Much of their older stock is only available through the online store or in that one store.
Personally, I think if you don't want to wait a week to get your minis via online store, you probably don't need to be buying them. It's just impulse spending.

marv335
01-01-2010, 14:07
If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

~Doom Banner

By the same token, and to keep things fair, If I go to the shop in warhammer world I can have as many of any model I want in the range.
If it's not on the shelf, they'll cast it for me while I wait, I've had it done for me before.
Ordered some stuff (necromunda scavvie gang as it happens), it wasn't available.
Went to Bugmans, had lunch, wandered back to the counter, picked up my (still warm) models.
When Reaper have hundreds of stores all over the world, all of which carry the entire range, then it's a fair comparison.

RevEv
01-01-2010, 16:33
If this is the case, why does Reaper have no problem having thousands of individuals models, that are almost always in stock, all the time?

~Doom Banner

Sorry - who the heck are Reaper? I have never come across any of their stores around the UK, and I travel a fair deal in my job. They have no footprint in the high street and really cannot be compared to GW and the stock issues highlighted by the OP.

Like for like, if they are the same Reaper that trades on this web address http://www.reapergames.com/, I would not even give them shelf space as many of their models seem to be inferior copies of GW ideas.

If you wish to compare GW and Reaper then GW will win hands down. Online you can get all of the GW line, which is far more extensive than Reaper.

blongbling
02-01-2010, 16:23
the reason GW started phasing out blisters was nothing to do with theft, in all my years at GW i never saw a single report on shrinkage in its retail chain and i saw reports from all sectors of the business. Anyway the reason was simple, 80% of the product in the stores was responsible for 20% of sales so they decided to concentrate on keeping more of the 20% of stock in the stores that makes thm 80% of the sales.

This was then complimented by the web store opening allowing the stores to offer the itmes on the terminals in store without needing to have the stock there.

Ben
03-01-2010, 00:53
The problem I have is unless you hit the store after the delivery they're out of blisters they should be stocking, like Space Marine Librarians. I had to wait three weeks for that to turn up.

To be fair, it's why I pick things up on ebay when I need GW stuff, though I'm mostly doing historicals now.

vladsimpaler
03-01-2010, 02:30
Ask yourself a question "The Base" - why would GW do this? If it made financial sense to keep all these products instore, then why not? Exclude all the daft conspiracy theories on this site and you will find that what Winternute and others have said makes sense.

In layman's terms: Disregard everything except for what I agree with. :angel:

Pavic
03-01-2010, 02:46
Sorry - who the heck are Reaper?

Reaper is the US company that manufactures several miniature lines, though I would say that their primary focus is on miniatures for RPGs. The link you noted is only one of the lines they manufacture. Check out www.reapermini.com to see all of their ranges. Some of their models are of very high quality, and in the States, they regularly take the place of characters in many WHF armies.

Hellebore
03-01-2010, 02:47
I think that GW stores specifically are a little different. They are for all intents and purposes a factory outlet. It makes sense that a retail outlet not stock slow moving lines, but does it make sense for a factory outlet not to have in stock all the products their company sells? After all, the games they push use those models.

It would seem strange to go to a Coca Cola shop and not find every Coca Cola product available there.

It makes sense for a hobby shop to be that selective, after all there could be products from competing manufactuers that sell better so its in the interest of the shop not to stock slow moving product.

But a GW store is only supporting one company. It strikes me as very odd to spend money making products and then make them hard to get a hold of, especially from their flagship salespoint. It's almost cannibalistic sales practices, pushing popular items at the cost of unpopular ones. That could easily lead to skewed sales results.

Not that I'm saying they shouldn't do just that, but it seems odd that a company retail outlet only interested in selling its own products doesn't stock it's own products.

Hellebore

Bookwrak
03-01-2010, 03:19
Not that I'm saying they shouldn't do just that, but it seems odd that a company retail outlet only interested in selling its own products doesn't stock it's own products.

Hellebore
I really don't see anything odd at all. Most GW stores are in retail locations, so space is going to be something at a premium, and as clearly explained, you don't fill space with non-moving merchandise, you fill it with stuff that sells. If my local GWs wanted to stock more items, in order to have space they'd have to either drop some of the better selling stuff, or take out some of the table space. Then you have the fact that GW stores have computer terminals you can order anything in the catalog from, so they can still sell you even the stuff that doesn't move fast enough to be worth keeping in the store, and give you another chance for impulse buys when you return to pick your stuff up.

Kelkyen
03-01-2010, 07:37
It strikes me as very odd to spend money making products and then make them hard to get a hold of, especially from their flagship salespoint.

You can stock $1000 worth of product that sells over a year, or $1000 of product that will roll over in a week.

Would you rather make $52,000 or $1000?

Also, you have to buy stuff in multiple quantities, of 2 or more. So to even stock the $1000 worth of product, it's a $2000 investment.

Dai-Mongar
03-01-2010, 08:48
I would think most experienced gamers know that ordering online is easier and often cheaper than buying in GW stores, which by all accounts are primarily just recruiting centres. Even if I had a GW store in my city, I probably wouldn't visit it more than a couple of times a year for buying minis.

Shipmonkey
03-01-2010, 09:50
If this is the case, they shouldn't have repackaged the Avatar, the metal Weraithlord and metal War-walkers in blisters... :

The metal Wraithlords and Warwalkers were both in boxes before they switched to the plastics.

yabbadabba
03-01-2010, 10:21
In layman's terms: Disregard everything except for what I agree with. :angel: Its the new year, do yourself a favour mate. Try and contribute something worthwhile to a thread for a change.

When you put together the big picture around GW you can see why this stock holding reduction and increased use of the webstore makes sense for GW the business. It does cut down on impulse buys for vets, but as GW have never stocked their entire range in their stores anyway, this isn't something new. Its a small shift in shopping patterns and as it now seems that many vets now buy online from discounters, the loss to GW will be very marginal anyway.

The Base
03-01-2010, 10:41
I think that GW stores specifically are a little different. They are for all intents and purposes a factory outlet. It makes sense that a retail outlet not stock slow moving lines, but does it make sense for a factory outlet not to have in stock all the products their company sells? After all, the games they push use those models.

It would seem strange to go to a Coca Cola shop and not find every Coca Cola product available there.

It makes sense for a hobby shop to be that selective, after all there could be products from competing manufactuers that sell better so its in the interest of the shop not to stock slow moving product.

But a GW store is only supporting one company. It strikes me as very odd to spend money making products and then make them hard to get a hold of, especially from their flagship salespoint. It's almost cannibalistic sales practices, pushing popular items at the cost of unpopular ones. That could easily lead to skewed sales results.

Not that I'm saying they shouldn't do just that, but it seems odd that a company retail outlet only interested in selling its own products doesn't stock it's own products.

Hellebore

This is mostly what I am getting at.

Saying that it makes sense to remove slow moving product and replace it with faster moving product makes retail sense. However in the case of GW stores it's removing the product and replacing it with nothing.

It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy like say.... pepsi. That would be the good retail choice, but since coke has a vested interest in only selling coke products it doesn't make over all business sense.

To make this very simple, if you aren't willing to sell your own product you can't expect anyone will ever be willing to buy it.

The Base
03-01-2010, 10:42
You can stock $1000 worth of product that sells over a year, or $1000 of product that will roll over in a week.

Would you rather make $52,000 or $1000?

Also, you have to buy stuff in multiple quantities, of 2 or more. So to even stock the $1000 worth of product, it's a $2000 investment.

Or since you have the room you could do both and make $53,000

Enazel
03-01-2010, 10:51
But that's the point The Base, most Games Worksho Don't have the space for stocking every single GW Figure going. They stock what sells and have the ability to order in everything else within a week.

yabbadabba
03-01-2010, 10:57
It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy like say.... pepsi. That would be the good retail choice, but since coke has a vested interest in only selling coke products it doesn't make over all business sense. But if your research says that the majority of what you sell in your stores is Coke, Diet Coke and that the small minority of customers who buy cherry coke are happy to swap to coke, buy their cherry coke online or often but their cherry coke elsewhere becuase it is cheaper, why stock it when you can stock more Coke and make more money?


To make this very simple, if you aren't willing to sell your own product you can't expect anyone will ever be willing to buy it. But GW are not following this. They just have different channels for different products. This hasn't harmed FW.


Or since you have the room you could do both and make $53,000 Again that doesn't work over here in Europe, becuase of the way GW has to equate Indies and their own retail stores. For a tiny global company it makes sense to have the same offer across the globe with small variations for local markets e.g. best selling lines reflecting local choices.

It doesnt change the fact that you are not happy with not being able to walk into a GW store and buy whatever you want there and then - but thats the way things are in retail now.

Dai-Mongar
03-01-2010, 12:01
This is mostly what I am getting at.

Saying that it makes sense to remove slow moving product and replace it with faster moving product makes retail sense. However in the case of GW stores it's removing the product and replacing it with nothing.

It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy like say.... pepsi. That would be the good retail choice, but since coke has a vested interest in only selling coke products it doesn't make over all business sense.

To make this very simple, if you aren't willing to sell your own product you can't expect anyone will ever be willing to buy it.

I think you're missing the point of GW stores. They're there to get a main-street presence for the brand, draw in new customers and provide a place for players to congregate (while they buy more stuff).
Mostly, I just don't see the need for GW to stock every single figure. They can get it shipped in for you, you only have to wait a week or two (less if you just buy online). So this really is a non-issue as far as I'm concerned.

IJW
03-01-2010, 12:22
It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy
If Coke had thousand upon thousand of different product lines (some of which are old and sell in small quantities) you might have a point. However they don't.

Regarding small quantities, let's take a hypothetical situation and say that the global market for Urien Rakarth (DE character) is 300 models over five years. In the UK alone, stocking that model in each GW store would require 400+ models. I don't remember the number of GW stores worldwide but at a minimum order of two blisters per store you could easily end up having to produce 3-4 times as many items as you can actually sell.

Most of them will sit on the shelves for years and years (you've made more than you can sell already) getting dusty and taking up space that could be used for something that will sell. The other problem is that if you get a run on the model in a specific geographic area, you either need to make even more copies of the model to replace the stock in that area, or go through the logistical and economic nightmare of pulling comparatively low value items from some retail stores to redistribute to other stores.

Now, that's an extreme example, but for metal HQs for the slower selling races I suspect that the numbers aren't actually that far off, especially for older special characters that still have limits like only being included in 2K or bigger armies...


To make this very simple, if you aren't willing to sell your own product you can't expect anyone will ever be willing to buy it.
As several people have already pointed out, GW DO sell all of their current products, but not necessarily off-the-shelf through the retail channel.

Here's an experiment for you to try. Go to a model train shop and see if they stock every different wagon or item from the brands that they stock.

Guess what. They don't.

simonr1978
03-01-2010, 13:45
To make this very simple, if you aren't willing to sell your own product you can't expect anyone will ever be willing to buy it.

And yet Lego, who have their own retail stores and who don't stock their entire product range in them don't seem to have too many problems persuading people to buy their products.

Wintertooth
03-01-2010, 13:52
Regarding small quantities, let's take a hypothetical situation and say that the global market for Urien Rakarth (DE character) is 300 models over five years. In the UK alone, stocking that model in each GW store would require 400+ models. I don't remember the number of GW stores worldwide but at a minimum order of two blisters per store you could easily end up having to produce 3-4 times as many items as you can actually sell.

Most of them will sit on the shelves for years and years (you've made more than you can sell already) getting dusty and taking up space that could be used for something that will sell. The other problem is that if you get a run on the model in a specific geographic area, you either need to make even more copies of the model to replace the stock in that area, or go through the logistical and economic nightmare of pulling comparatively low value items from some retail stores to redistribute to other stores.

Not to mention the knock-on effects: all that space occupied by Urien Rakarth and chums would be space that isn't filled with Space Marines and Black Reach boxes, so they would have to spend more on distribution to keep the supply flowing. And all that capital invested in a couple of blisters multiplied by 300 stores multiplied by several thousand mail order-only products would be money they couldn't spend on tooling, opening new stores, etc.

vladsimpaler
03-01-2010, 17:13
Its the new year, do yourself a favour mate. Try and contribute something worthwhile to a thread for a change.

I already DO contribute worthwhile things to threads even if YOU don't think so.

I'm just saying that it's odd that everything that you don't agree with is automatically a conspiracy theory.

For what it's worth, I agree with the idea that GW can't really stock everything in their stores. The store near my house is waaaay too small to stock the literal thousands of products that GW has.

It's a double edged sword though, a damned if you do damned if you don't. My friend went into the store near my house and wanted to buy a Phoenix Lord. Tough luck, he needs to buy it online. He never did.

There is no real right or wrong answer to this thread, imho.

yabbadabba
03-01-2010, 17:37
I'm just saying that it's odd that everything that you don't agree with is automatically a conspiracy theory. You are really grasping at straws mate. That is utter rubbish. Other GW Discussion is often filled with tabloid heading style comments devoid of any fact or forethought. I am making a simple request that people back up what they are posting with some sort of logical, supported argument other than "OOO! The Evil Empire have done something therefore it must be evil. BOOOOO!" tripe that crops up. Your reply post to mine was a classic example. Easier to have a pop and put someone/something down than try and explain your position clearly and with evidence.

As for the second part of your post, yes you are right. In this day and age Retail is definitely a damned if you do, damned if you dont. Thats why most retail businesses on the high street appeal to the masses and fail to properly cater for the few, willing to lose that extra 3-5% of sales to cut down on stockholdings and costs. Hence the big rise in online specialists and massive expansion in online stores. There is one right answer to this thread though, and that is whatever pleases the investors, because that is what the GW board is there to do.

Trogdor
03-01-2010, 19:28
I think it is unrealistic to expect all GW stores to carry the entire range of Citadel miniatures, particularly when certain lines do not sell well and space is at a premium.

Arador
03-01-2010, 21:22
Here's an experiment for you to try. Go to a model train shop and see if they stock every different wagon or item from the brands that they stock.

Guess what. They don't.

Are there even model train shops in existence anymore? I thought that hobby's pretty much undergoing a slow, lingering death.

Griefbringer
03-01-2010, 21:35
At least hereabouts there is one model store specialising in model trains, though they also stock plastic models.

Bookwrak
03-01-2010, 21:41
Or since you have the room you could do both and make $53,000

At this point, I'm going to have to be blunt and ask, are you actually thinking when you post? Where is this weird assumption that, 'you have room' coming from? If you have room for more product, you're using it to sell product that makes money, not cluttering it up with stuff that's going to linger.

It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy like say....

It's baffling that you can come so close to understanding how the real world actually works, and then completely fail to get the point. Let me rephrase it for you, and see if you can understand:


It's like saying the Coke store should remove diet vanilla cherry caffeine free coke because no one buys that crap, and they could use that space for something people do buy like say.... cherry coke.

Comprende?

Reinholt
03-01-2010, 23:26
The decision by GW not to stock all of their product is, fundamentally, a good one. They do not have the store space nor the inventory turnover to justify carrying all of it. The DE character example above from IJW is a good explanation of why. At some point, economics turn against you with slow product turnover.

Now, asking "What products should be stocked in store in terms of profit?" and "If they can't sell enough to make it worth stocking, should they make it at all?" are both relevant business questions, but stating GW should stock things they would have to carry at a loss is not sound business.

The Base
04-01-2010, 00:34
At this point, I'm going to have to be blunt and ask, are you actually thinking when you post? Where is this weird assumption that, 'you have room' coming from? If you have room for more product, you're using it to sell product that makes money, not cluttering it up with stuff that's going to linger.


It's baffling that you can come so close to understanding how the real world actually works, and then completely fail to get the point. Let me rephrase it for you, and see if you can understand:


Comprende?


But see they already have cherry coke.

Raellos
04-01-2010, 01:35
Are there even model train shops in existence anymore? I thought that hobby's pretty much undergoing a slow, lingering death.

Well if it's dying, it has and will be lingering for a very long time, I think. The model train store is a good example. They had a range of essentials on shelf; track, scenery making items, scenery and trackside kits; but with a limited range of trains and rolling stock to the most popular items, or items from the most popular timeframe and railway (though their British range was unfortunately suffering a bit, they had an excellent diorama with all of the German stock they had on hand, and the American and Australian stuff had a fairly impressive showing).

The thing is, even having something on stock that sells little costs the store money. That is space that could be filled by more fast moving stock. All of the GW stores I have been to are short on space.

Is it really not enough that they have a range of choices for each FOC slot of every army on hand, and anything else will be with you within a week? They are not prepaints, it's going to take you time to paint the model anyway. And if you are ordering for a tournament, and are rushed then you probably should have organised it a little better anyway.

Occulto
04-01-2010, 01:59
The thing is, even having something on stock that sells little costs the store money. That is space that could be filled by more fast moving stock. All of the GW stores I have been to are short on space.

Pretty much.

I'd like to see pictures of these GWs that only use 10% of their available space. :p

RevEv
04-01-2010, 07:56
The best analogy I've seen on this topic so far has to be Lego shops, which also goes a long way to answering the OP's rant.

When I went to the Lego shop in Bluwater in November I couldn't get the model I wanted since the pre-Christmas rush had stripped the store already. Did I rant and rave about not being able to get the product in store? No! I went online to see if I could get it there, but to no avail. At least I know if I can't get a GW product in store I can order it there and then AND get it posted to my home.

GW stock as much as they can in their stores but this has to be tempered by the economic necessity that the stores have to have a turnover of stock. Holding less popular lines 'just in case' prevents them putting the items that sell on the shelf. It could be argued that less popular lines could be held in stock rooms, but as GW stock rooms tend to be tiny that is impractical. GW have made an informed decision that their shop front, as in their stores, will hold what sells whilst less popular lines remain in store but available online. This is standard business practise - I doubt your FLGS would do differently.

Live with it and stop pillorying GW for following sound and established business practise.

LiamTaylor
04-01-2010, 08:20
Not sure which GW shops you have been in but I would suggest that most make great use of available display space. For example, GW Trafford Centre has virtually no room to move. GW Preston, Shrewsbury, Carlisle and Belfast are similarly packed, with every space on the walls covered in GW stock.

Sorry this is a bit late but never mind

On the topic of GW Trafford Centre, it has virtually no room to move basically because it consists of a 4 x 4 table, two painting tables and enough room to wal around them, heck I could set up a larger store in my front room, I dont think they could fail to make use of the display space unless they tried very very hard

A good example is GW durham, I live nearby and went into the shop less than a wee after the new skaven were out, they had about 10 copies of the book, a few battalions, a few boxes of clanrats and a doomwheel plus a couple of copies of the new special characters and one of the really really old packaged warlords (from when the blisters were still bright red).
This was a week after release and basically nothing much except the brand new stuff, whilst a good majority of wall space was taken up with the top 10 christmas sellers (which were also elsewhere in store)

kris.sherriff
04-01-2010, 09:45
But see they already have cherry coke.

OK, how about looking at it this way. We all agree that space is finite and that no store can stock an infinite amount of stock.

Lets scale this down a bit and continue with the Coke example.
Coke make Coke, Diet Coke, Coke Zero, Cheery Coke and Vanilla Coke.

In my shop I have Shelf space for 5 cans.
out of 100 people who come in to my shop 60 would like to buy Coke, 25 want Diet Coke, 7 want Coke Zero, 6 Cheery Coke and 2 want Vanilla Coke.

I have room to stock at least one of everything but why would I?

Kris

Baragash
04-01-2010, 10:01
And all that capital invested in a couple of blisters multiplied by 300 stores multiplied by several thousand mail order-only products would be money they couldn't spend on tooling, opening new stores, etc.

Bingo-ish.

Maintaining an efficient Working Capital Cycle is the key to staying in business. This means amongst other things minimising you're inventory cycle by balancing your stock holding towards the lines that sell quickly.

Col. Frost
04-01-2010, 10:33
The reason why GW don't stock the entire range is the same reason your local supermarket dosn't stock every available Heinz brand in all its variant sizes.

Basically, retail works by stocking what sells. If i held a line that sold only a few items a year, i would consider dumping that line and expanding my stock holding on faster selling lines, more stock on shelves means i replenish less often and can keep those lines available 24-7.

Good business sense is what GW have in this case. Can't get that rarely sold blister in your local store? well, you can order it instore for next week or there is the online direct to your door option as well.

Duke Georgal
04-01-2010, 10:40
OK, the coke example is not working.

Here we go - Chevrolet! Yay!

All GM dealers have large areas to stock parts. I have a 2008 corvette. Not the most popular model in the GM line. I needed a passenger side interior door handle because mine broke. They did not have one in stock and it needed to be ordered for my car to be repaired.

Why would they keep one in stock? They might sell one per year. They might not. Are they going to go through the work to establish a bin location, stock quantities, inventory sheet, and accounting procedures for a part they might not even sell? Never.

Now Chevrolet dealers are similar to GW, kind of, well for this example anyway. They know there are 350 owners of late model corvettes in this area. The interior passenger side door handle rarely gets used, so it very rarely breaks. Even is it has a 1% failure rate (ungodly high) under warranty, that would still be only about one per year. Not enough to justify stocking the item.

Now GW knows they have 50 players with dark elf armies, of them, 1% might buy a specific special character model. Don't stock it.

Understand now?

Crube
04-01-2010, 13:26
I've just been through and deleted a load of off topic posts. Please try and keep this thread on topic


Crube
The Warseer Inquisition

The Base
04-01-2010, 20:14
OK, how about looking at it this way. We all agree that space is finite and that no store can stock an infinite amount of stock.

Lets scale this down a bit and continue with the Coke example.
Coke make Coke, Diet Coke, Coke Zero, Cheery Coke and Vanilla Coke.

In my shop I have Shelf space for 5 cans.
out of 100 people who come in to my shop 60 would like to buy Coke, 25 want Diet Coke, 7 want Coke Zero, 6 Cheery Coke and 2 want Vanilla Coke.

I have room to stock at least one of everything but why would I?

Kris

I already made the point that all 5 of the GW stores I have been in have had tons of space. With out fail they all used only the outer wall for stock and in 4/5 cases the outer wall was not fulled used by an stretch of the imagination.

rich1231
04-01-2010, 20:49
Base,

GW stores I have been to are all jam packed with stock..

Where are you based?

IJW
04-01-2010, 21:06
Presumably in the US, but even then it sounds odd - I thought a lot of the US GW stores were in malls?

Shipmonkey
04-01-2010, 21:56
I already made the point that all 5 of the GW stores I have been in have had tons of space. With out fail they all used only the outer wall for stock and in 4/5 cases the outer wall was not fulled used by an stretch of the imagination.

You need to stop thinking about this in terms of space, which is a secondary concern. As others have pointed out, working capital is much more important. If you only have a finite about on money to spend on product, you don't stock the shelves with product that isn't going to move. All that unsellable product is money that isn't working to grow your business.

As it applies to GW, the other issue is that most those products they don't keep in stock are blisters. Blisters make for a very unattractive display, which is a great reason to keep the numbers of them in the store down. And second, blisters have a very high rate of shrinkage. So why keep something in stock that likely won't sell quickly and has a chance of disappearing?

Crazy Harborc
05-01-2010, 01:44
GW can and does make good, correct decisions....This (topic) is one of them, IMHO. Inventory control isn't just a space to display/store it problem.

THAT said.....GW did(does??) allow customers to order direct only items be sent to the local GW store for pickup/purchase.

By the by....I will NOT buy direct only items "direct" from GW. I won't play shipping twice to the manufacturer of a product....not just GW's. Suggested Retail Prices do include charges added into the calculation/total of SRPs.Since ALL GW prices are full price prices, no discounts, BUT add-ins for shipping are included. NOT going to get my money, not without discounts.

Wintertooth
05-01-2010, 07:44
THAT said.....GW did(does??) allow customers to order direct only items be sent to the local GW store for pickup/purchase.

By the by....I will NOT buy direct only items "direct" from GW. I won't play shipping twice to the manufacturer of a product....not just GW's. Suggested Retail Prices do include charges added into the calculation/total of SRPs.Since ALL GW prices are full price prices, no discounts, BUT add-ins for shipping are included. NOT going to get my money, not without discounts.

They still have free shipping to store. They've also had free shipping to your home on all but the smallest orders for months now ("free shipping ONLY in June... July... August..." and counting).

Anything I have to get direct from GW (i.e. collectors models) rather than a discounter, I can get cheaper delivered to the door from their web site than I could even if they had it stocked at the local store - no shipping charge, no travel expenses.

yabbadabba
06-01-2010, 16:04
GW can and does make good, correct decisions.... *staggers* you feeling alright mate - thats uncharateristically charitable of you lol :D:D

Crazy Harborc
07-01-2010, 00:56
Hey, once in a while GW the company, does manage to get it right! Even GW can make good/correct decisions.:eek:

yabbadabba
07-01-2010, 00:58
Hey, once in a while GW the company, does manage to get it right! Even GW can make good/correct decisions.:eek:Its a bit of luck I am lying down :D

Crazy Harborc
07-01-2010, 01:04
Its a bit of luck I am lying down :D

LOL,LOL I got it.....took a minute, but I got it. I must be getting old(er)

yabbadabba
07-01-2010, 01:10
LOL,LOL I got it.....took a minute, but I got it. I must be getting old(er) I might have to sig your positivity
mate, so it can back and haunt you again and again :evilgrin:

Crazy Harborc
07-01-2010, 01:14
[QUOTE=yabbadabba;4272697]I might have to sig your positivity
mate, so it can back and haunt you again and again :evilgrin:[/QU

It's fine with me. And in reply....as "someone" in my mind said...Um his avitar is still in diapers.:D

yabbadabba
07-01-2010, 08:28
[QUOTE=yabbadabba;4272697]I might have to sig your positivity
mate, so it can back and haunt you again and again :evilgrin:[/QU

It's fine with me. And in reply....as "someone" in my mind said...Um his avitar is still in diapers.:DTrue but they are Hulkster diapers :D

blongbling
07-01-2010, 09:15
Hey, once in a while GW the company, does manage to get it right! Even GW can make good/correct decisions.:eek:

even a blind man can find the hole once in a while!

Corrode
07-01-2010, 14:59
As it applies to GW, the other issue is that most those products they don't keep in stock are blisters. Blisters make for a very unattractive display, which is a great reason to keep the numbers of them in the store down. And second, blisters have a very high rate of shrinkage. So why keep something in stock that likely won't sell quickly and has a chance of disappearing?

In addition, I'm sure everyone's seen the racks of blisters where something hasn't sold since 6th edition and is still in the old-style bright red blister. For that item not to have sold it must have been on the shelf for what, 3 years now? I wasn't around when the changeover occurred, how long ago was it? Why would you deliberately want to keep something in stock for 3 years 'just in case' someone decides that one day they want one when you can instead have a 'direct order' point in the store.


They still have free shipping to store. They've also had free shipping to your home on all but the smallest orders for months now ("free shipping ONLY in June... July... August..." and counting).

I imagine they're making money hand over fist from that little promotion.

Sai-Lauren
07-01-2010, 16:18
Kind of in the middle on this - I agree that stock sat in the stock room not selling is money that's sat doing nothing.

But to not have at least a small number of all models available in store for the current release - like when I was after a Ragnar Blackmane figure about three weeks after the Space Wolves codex came out - is a little unbelievable.

As for increasing the availability of the popular lines at the expense of the unpopular ones, surely it's better in the long run to work out why the unpopular lines aren't selling and bring them up to the same level as the popular ones (whilst maintaining their sales and popularity) - not put all your efforts into supporting one or two lines, which increases your exposure to the risk of one of the lines suddenly becoming unpopular (as happened with LoTR post movie bubble, and the Black Templars once the uber-munchkin Armageddon codex got replaced by something more sensible).

Reinholt
07-01-2010, 17:20
There is always a delicate balance with regards to that, however.

Or, to put it another way, sometimes things are unpopular because they suck. There are products that customers won't like, and trying to convince them to like them is similar to throwing money down a hole. There are ideas that won't fly, and projects that will require herculean efforts to even become "average"; sometimes the best strategy is to abandon these things.

I actually think GW, in the past, has not been disciplined enough about cutting the losers and riding the winners, but this is a common flaw for many companies (not just GW), so I'm not sure it really is a criticism so much as a "that's just how humans work" kind of statement.

Conversely, a certain level of variety is needed for games, and GW does need to avoid things like marine over-spam leading to 40k burnout... but trying to strong arm people into playing other races they don't like is not the answer. It takes major effort to create seriously good products, and they just have to be disciplined about doing that.

No matter the strategy, though, keeping around models that don't sell is definitely bad tactics at the retail level, so I applaud not stocking stuff that ultimately causes a loss.

gwarsh41
07-01-2010, 18:03
Simple.

GW cannot afford to keep stocks of every model it produces and supply them to all of its outlets and to indie stores. Not every item sells well. Therefore, it does not make good business sense to have to produce and store the large quantities of models required to supply and stock its outlets with minis which do not sell.

It is more sensible to maintain large stocks of items which do sell and supply them to the retail outlets leaving the items which do not see to be made available via Direct Sales which requires smaller stock levels to be maintained.

Agreed.
Although I dont like it one bit. No store around here has daemons because I am literally the only person who plays them in town.

tu33y
11-01-2010, 08:24
This is the number 1 business flaw.

You go to a GW store because you want a model right away. You get to the store and find they don't have it. You are the clerk about it and he says "Well you can't get those in stores any more. However I could place an order for you, it will be here in 2 or 3 weeks".

So why can't I get that in store?

Not enough display space? I've never been in a GW store that used even 10% of their possible space.

.

i TOTALLY agree. and to be honest my main local store is the WORLD HQ, lenton, where they make the stuff. time and time again they have sold out of really a basic item... example from my own experience is chimeras and valkyries. many of you will say its difficult on busy day etc but there is no excuse whatsover to not have stock in store when the international wharehouse is open and within walking distance.

on a similar vien (but not as worthy- i KNOW this was my own petulance!!) i tried to order a vulture gunship from lenton and was told 3-4 weeks! now i know it will be cast to order and everything... but i want it now! and to be honest if i only had to pay a deposit rather than the full amount i would be happier.
i know this is a rant and goes against or driveto make this less "whineseer" but im glad someone else has noticed the stock issues

blongbling
11-01-2010, 10:10
i TOTALLY agree. and to be honest my main local store is the WORLD HQ, lenton, where they make the stuff. time and time again they have sold out of really a basic item... example from my own experience is chimeras and valkyries. many of you will say its difficult on busy day etc but there is no excuse whatsover to not have stock in store when the international wharehouse is open and within walking distance.

on a similar vien (but not as worthy- i KNOW this was my own petulance!!) i tried to order a vulture gunship from lenton and was told 3-4 weeks! now i know it will be cast to order and everything... but i want it now! and to be honest if i only had to pay a deposit rather than the full amount i would be happier.
i know this is a rant and goes against or driveto make this less "whineseer" but im glad someone else has noticed the stock issues

why does the location of the warehouse matter? You cant just "pop" into the warehouse and pick up stock, it has to be ordered like all the stores.

IJW
11-01-2010, 11:51
i tried to order a vulture gunship from lenton and was told 3-4 weeks! now i know it will be cast to order and everything... but i want it now!
That's Forgeworld, not the main warehouse. At least FW no longer have the 2-3 month waiting list that they had when Apocalypse hit them...

EDIT - how did you know that the main warehouse actually had any Chimeras and Valks in stock? They were flying off the shelves when the new IG codex came out, and setting up a plastics production line to bang out a couple of dozen sets just for the WH store would be totally insane from an efficiency point of view.

Baragash
11-01-2010, 11:58
i TOTALLY agree. and to be honest my main local store is the WORLD HQ, lenton, where they make the stuff. time and time again they have sold out of really a basic item... example from my own experience is chimeras and valkyries. many of you will say its difficult on busy day etc but there is no excuse whatsover to not have stock in store when the international wharehouse is open and within walking distance.

on a similar vien (but not as worthy- i KNOW this was my own petulance!!) i tried to order a vulture gunship from lenton and was told 3-4 weeks! now i know it will be cast to order and everything... but i want it now! and to be honest if i only had to pay a deposit rather than the full amount i would be happier.
i know this is a rant and goes against or driveto make this less "whineseer" but im glad someone else has noticed the stock issues

Stock that should be on the shelves but isn't is a replenishment issue, and somewhat separate from whether or not they hold the product at all.

Steel Legion for Life
14-01-2010, 01:02
I remember running GW Bath and one of the weird stock issues we had was every week for 3 months 6 BOXES (36 pots) of tentacle pink paint would show up.

I think in my 6 month tour there, we probably sold two pots, and had a zillion pots of it lying around upstairs, waiting for the release of, I don't know, a shaved slaanesh War Mammoth from FW.

eriochrome
18-01-2010, 16:40
The local GWs by me have more stock of GW than any place else and no where to put more other than replace all the community elements(gaming tables, painting area, etc) with racks. Often stock is sitting on and under the gaming tables when major new releases hit.

I personally would like them to have bigger stores with the same amount of stock since often if you want to to browse you were constantly running into people trying to use the tables.

It is totally not practical to stock everything GW makes even for the main lines in the normal stores. What is the catalog 300 pages long so now that is probably 1000 catalog items since the metal blisters are now split by exactly which sculpt it is. I do not tell me which sculpt does not matter since we all know that people are not just looking for a librarian, but this librarian with the helmet and sword not the one with the staff.

So you are at 30K in stock just to have 1 of each item which is total insufficent for well selling things that you might want several off (5K worth that you want 3). So you now have like 40K of stock where maybe 15K is really what sells. So all of your inventory costs are like 3 times what they really need to be.

Would it be great if I could walk into any GW store and get not just any core product but all the specialist ones right there. Sure. You would totally say, great customer service but if you had other options to buy the common stuff cheaper you would probably still use them.

Wintermute
19-01-2010, 08:08
I think this thread has run its course.

Thread Closed

Wintermute