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An Open Letter to Lighting Vendors and Manufacturers

Your company may be one that made the decision to put a link on its website that directs customers to "buy online", thinking that it would increase your sales and market penetration.  Did it occur to your company what effect the decision would have on brick and mortar lighting showrooms that support your lines by displaying and stocking your product?

It is our opinion that your website's "buy online" button does not increase your sales, and here's why.  By the time the customer has reached the item detail page, where the "buy online" link is located, they have probably made the decision to purchase your product (that specific item).  At this point the customer is looking for a place to make their purchase.  The easiest path for the customer to take is "buy online".  Click it's done, and your company made another (wholesale) sale through one of your distributors.  However, your company did not increase sales, you simply directed a customer who had made a purchase decision, through a specific channel of distribution.  

No vendor wants to be the first to blink.  You may agree in principle with the above statement, but don't want to be the first vendor to remove the "buy online" button from your website.  It takes guts to step out from the crowd and be the first, even when it is the right thing to do.

This site, and the people and showrooms who support it, are asking your company to reevaluate the decision to channel online shoppers to "buy online".  Our hope is that you will see the value that brick and mortar lighting showrooms offer customers and you will support us, as we have supported you.

We are asking for two simple things. 1) Remove the link on your website that directs customers to "buy online" and, 2) stop drop-shipping product to customers that are outside a distributor's market area.  Number 2 is a policy that we are seeking all lighting suppliers to adopt.

We acknowledge that there are dozens of major lighting vendors that DO NOT push sales away from brick and mortar showrooms, and to them we say thank you!  We appreciate those vendors' loyalty to us, and we will in turn remain loyal to you.  Look for us at Dallas Market, we will be wearing "support brick and mortar" buttons.Support Brick and Mortar Lighting