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
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
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
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.