If last year’s word was “unprecedented,” this year’s word is “unpredictable.” If you’ve done any renovations to your home, purchased new furniture or ordered items online lately, you’ve most likely had at least one item that has been put on backorder, been delayed or had a price increase. Which should make this letter unsurprising!
Promotional products manufacturers experience the same problems as retail product manufacturers. Delays are common these days with a wide variety of items you purchase for your personal use. Reasons for those delays are varied, but include companies working with less staff per shift due to 6 ft. distancing requirements; trouble hiring; delays in acquiring parts and/or stock, etc. The same is true for our suppliers. After reading industry articles about shipping delays and listening to suppliers explain the other challenges they are facing, I thought it wise to write you with a few suggestions about future ordering.
As you may know, Ohio is scheduled to cancel most health orders associated with Covid-19 on June 2. Per Governor DeWine’s announcement, this includes “facial covering protocols, social distancing guidelines, and capacity restrictions for indoor and outdoor events.” I suspect a number of events will be added to summer calendars rapidly.
Early planning and ordering is highly suggested. Many suppliers are not allowing rush orders at all. Average production times have increased to 10-14 working days with some suppliers currently working on 20-30 day lead time on in-the-States production. As you can see, suppliers are very busy!
As always, we will do our best to meet your event dates, but our fabulous Teresa has been so busy quoting and ordering lately, that our multi-talented Cindy has been stepping up to the plate to assist. Please allow additional breathing room of 2-3 business days for quoting.
FedEx and UPS have been working pretty hard over the last 15 months to shoulder a dramatic increase in deliveries. One FedEx representative said during the last year they experienced 3-5 years growth in 3-5 months, and they were still struggling to scale up to handle millions of additional packages. We have had a few orders experience delays in delivery recently. UPS and FedEx are still not guaranteeing delivery, so it is best to plan some additional days just in case.
Thank you for continuing to trust us with your promotional product orders and know we will continue to do everything we can to provide you with quality products in a timely manner. Please reach out to me with any questions! May the rest of 2021 bring you health and happiness.
We’re back with an update on tariffs for Chinese-made promotional products! As you most likely know, many of the promotional products sold in the US are Chinese-made, so we’re working to keep you in-the-know so you can determine the impact it may have for your business.
In May, tariffs on approximately $200 billion worth of Chinese imports increased from the current 10% to 25%, but the government delayed the start of the tariff to June 1, 2019. This allowed any boats that had already left China for the United States to arrive prior to the tax being implemented. Tariffs may be added to almost all of the rest of Chinese imports, but the decision on that will most likely be delayed for 30-45 days. This allows for President Trump to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping in June to work toward a resolution.
In general, suppliers are not increasing prices on their current stock but waiting until a new shipment arrives from China that is definitely under the new tariff and then increasing prices based off the tariff in place at the time. Even then, the price of products will increase based off how much of the product is made in China and, therefore, subject to the tariff. Suppliers are also working with their Chinese factories to help absorb some of the additional costs. Based on current estimates, pricing increases could range from 3% up to the full 25%.
A few things to keep in mind – if you are looking for pricing stability, consider Made in USA products where available. We are working on adding a Made in USA product list to our website. Remember, tariffs are on ALL products coming from China, not just promotional items. This means you will also begin to see prices rising for retail products we use every day such as apparel, food and more.
Talks of tariffs on products made in Mexico were briefly discussed until an agreement was reached within days between the US and Mexico.
We will continue to update you on tariffs as more information becomes available. If you have any questions, please contact me at 419-358-0700 or email@example.com.
People ask us all the time what promotional product would be best to use for their business. Ahh…is this a question you’ve wanted to ask, too? Well, here’s the answer……drum roll, please! It’s different for every business. Ugh! Not what you wanted to hear, right? Did you think the answer would be easy? Sorry! It isn’t. But, here’s a tried and true way to determine what the answer is for YOUR business. Think about finding your company’s perfect promotional product like you would think about finding the perfect home for your family. It’s all about location, location, location! You can find the prettiest home, with all the rooms you want, beautiful landscape and it’s even got stainless steel appliances and granite countertops! BUT, if it isn’t in the school system you want or near your job, it isn’t the perfect home for you because the location isn’t right. The same is true of a promotional product. It might be on sale or a really pretty color or you just personally want one of those products for yourself. But, is that the best product for your business? Think about your ideal or perfect client. Where do you think they might be when they think of needing someone in your industry? If the product you’re considering purchasing can't be used where your customers and potential customers are going to be when they decide they need a business like yours, then it isn’t the perfect one for you. Here’s an example: For a bank, one perfect client would be someone looking to purchase a new car. Many people will need to acquire a loan from a bank to be able to purchase that new ride. Where do you think people are – physically – when they determine they need the assistance of a lender? Well, they may be in their current car so consider products like an air freshener, a plastic folder to hold their car insurance papers or a coffee tumbler. They may also be at the mechanics, so a wall calendar with your logo would be easy for all customers to see. Does having a promotional product with your company name on it, in the right location, at the right time, guarantee your company will get their business? Well, consider these statistics: - 83% of people like receiving promotional products - 47% keep promotional products for over 1 year - 88% recall the name of the advertiser on the product - 85% do business with the advertiser I’d say those are pretty good odds in your favor! If you still can’t determine what products would be best for you, give us a call at 419-358-0700 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be happy to help!