By Alan Wolf, YSN
Contending with impatient customers has become commonplace in today’s inventory-constrained environment.
When the topic came up during the Furniture Roundtable at last month’s virtual Summit, BrandSource member BlvdHome (formerly Boulevard Home Furnishings) mentioned a letter it gives to customers to help preclude any frustration over possible order delays. While the Utah company’s 140,000-square-foot distribution center is stacked to the brim with inventory, CEO Marc Wittwer wanted customers to understand that special orders and some select products may nonetheless be held up due to industry dynamics beyond their control.
BlvdHome graciously shared the letter with Seth Weisblatt, the group’s home furnishings merchandising director, who crafted a generic version for use by all BrandSource furniture dealers. His advice: Feel free to make it your own, and to use it freely.
The letter, which can be mailed, emailed or provided at the time of purchase, appears below and can also be accessed here.
To Our Valued Customer,
First, I would like to thank you for your patronage and support. Choosing your local independent retailer is so important at this time and we do appreciate it.
I wish to alert you to the unprecedented delays that our industry, along with many other businesses, are experiencing due to the impact of COVID-19. Although the world has started to re-open, production and delivery times have not yet returned to normal.
With physical distancing requirements in factories and distribution centers, pre-COVID production levels are not being met. At the same time, demand for home furnishings has increased dramatically. Consumers, confined at home for so long, have gained a renewed appreciation and desire for a beautiful and comfortable living environment.
[STORE NAME] has been extremely aggressive, ordering large quantities of product in anticipation of this challenge. We currently have more product on hand than at any time in our company’s history. [ADD YOUR UNIQUE STORE CLAIM AS TO WHY A CUSTOMER WOULD BUY FROM YOU, HERE], which allows us to provide the greatest in-stock selection and best values, which we pass on to you.
However, in the event that you purchase a product that we do not have in stock, we cannot rely on manufacturers’ delivery estimates.
We know you are eager to enjoy your new purchase, and the last thing we want is to have to notify you of a delay. Unfortunately, these disruptions are beyond our control and the best we can do in those instances is to keep you updated and informed.
We appreciate your patience as we all work through this pandemic and the changes it made in our lives. Stay safe and stay well. As always, we thank you for your business in the past, present and future.
Hat tip to BlvdHome.
BrandSource, a unit of YSN publisher AVB Inc., is a nationwide buying group for independent appliance, furniture, mattress and CE dealers.