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Thread: Being a Cabela's Vendor

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    MOHunter is offline Member Moving Up In The World MOHunter
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    It's been a while since I have written. Developing my product has been a roller coaster ride. For those that have read my previous posts, I developed a product and was successful in getting it into Cabela's last fall. I am writing now to give all you future Cabela vendors a little inside information that I wish I had known last year.

    We got our product into last year's Fall Master catalog. Cabela's started placing small orders about every 2 weeks. We were very excited about being in Cabela's and told everyone we knew. One day my buddy called me to tell me that he couldn't find me in the Master catalog. I told him it was on page so-and-so, so he turned to that page while on the phone. He said, he still didn't see us. I couldn't figure out what was going on. As it turns out, Cabela's had put out an Edition 2 of the master catalog and we weren't in it. I was furious! It wasn't but a few weeks after the release of the so-called Edition 1 that this Edition 2 had come out!! So here we are telling everyone we are in the Fall Master catalog and half the people we tell don't see us in there! I called Cabela's up asking them what was going on and they gave me some BS story about how Edition 2 contained different products. This is really BS because my competitor was in Edition 1 AND Edition 2!

    After the ATA show in Indianapolis, I started calling Cabela's about getting ready for Fall 2003 (I knew the deadline for getting into the Fall catalogs was early in the year). They sent me a Vendor's Agreement which took me SEVERAL days to complete. Additionally, I had to send them samples again.

    About this time, I got a sales group to represent us. They had a good relationship with Cabela's and Bass Pro. One day I got a call from one of the guys in our new sales group. He said that he talked with Cabela's and they said we didn't sell enough product last year and that they were going to drop us.

    It was then that I was informed (by my sales guy, not Cabela's) that each page in the catalog costs Cabela's $30,000. Our product covered approximately 1/8th of a page. So our ad space cost $30,000/8 = $3750. He also told me that their requirement for keeping a product in the magazine was that Cabela's had to make twice the cost of the space. In other words, Cabela's had to make $3750*2=$7500 or the product gets dropped. We were only about 50 units shy from meeting this goal. Again I was furious!

    Again I received an email from my sales guy (not Cabela's) this time saying that if I wanted to stay in the magazine, I had to pay $2500. WHAT?? First of all, I was not $2500 short. Although I was angry, I said I might consider paying them the difference between the required $7500 and what they sold. They came back with $2000 to stay in. This is still more than the amount we were short. I told them to forget about it and that we weren't interested in being in Cabela's.

    Here is the kicker...after telling our sales guy about forgetting Cabela's, I get an email from him that basically said if I wasn't willing to pay Cabela's $2000 to stay in the magazine, then they weren't interested in representing us. Is this wrong or is this wrong??

    In Summary:

    1) Edition 2 came out shortly after Edition 1 - Common sense says that Edition 2 is going to take sales away from Edition 1. ...especially for the products that didn't make it into Edition 2. To add injury to insult, Edition 2 came out within weeks of the release of Edition 1. CUSTOMERS THAT WERE ACTUALLY LOOKING FOR US COULD NOT FIND US!!!!! For crying out loud, when a customer knows you are in the 2002 Fall Master catalog and can't find you, SOMETHING IS WRONG!!! Not only do I lose sales, so did Cabela's! Check this out...I actually had customers go to my website and pay considerably more than what Cabela's was selling it for because they couldn't find it in the Cabela's magazine. Whoever thought of doing an Edition 2 must obviously know NOTHING about sales and marketing!

    2) I had to find out about being dropped by a 3rd party! - Cabela's didn't call me to let me know what was going on. After all the trouble of getting orders to them on time, making sure the product was good, filling out vendor agreements, etc, I had to find out about being dropped by someone else.

    3) Cabela's let me go on thinking everything was hunky dorry. They actually SENT ME A VENDOR'S AGREEMENT and made me go through all the trouble of putting it together and sending samples while the whole time THEY KNEW THEY WERE GOING TO DROP US.

    4) Cabela's wants me to pay more than the amount we were short - OK, so I missed their huge 100% return-on-investement requirement. First of all, I am giving them a HELLOFA good price. They are making a ton of more money per unit than I am. After giving them this great price, they require a 100% return or they drop me?? This is like biting the hand that feeds you! With that said, I might have considered making up the difference but NO way am I going to pay a penny more.

    5) My sales guy wants to drop me because of something between me and Cabela's - Talk about unprofessional. What's next? Uhh, If I don't purchase an ad in PODunk magazine he is going to drop me? If I don't pay $2000 to the Sales Rep Union of America he is going to drop me? You gotta be kidding.

    If you are like I once was...hoping and praying that Cabela's or Bass Pro will pick you up, then forget it. They are bullies. They feed on the fact that they know you need them. They never return phone calls or emails. When you see them at the shows, they walk by displaying attitudes like their crap don't stick. They and this sales group are a bunch of noprofessional dimwits.

    Fellow inventors and product developers beware!

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    Remshot is offline Member Moving Up In The World Remshot
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    MOHunter, I've been following most of your threads on your product and was wondering if you might put a pic up so we could see it. I don't recall having ever seen it. Maybe someone here could suggest a catalog for your product that may work out better for you. After some decent exposure and sales , Cabela's may come to you. Then you can tell 'em to get lost
    Hollowpoints,anything less would
    would be ballistically incorrect .

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    MOHunter, sorry to hear about all the torment! That ain't worth it!

    That's very, very similar to a story told to me by one of my college professors that tried to get a product in Bass Pro. He invented something for fishermen and Bass Pro feigned interest in his product and led him on.

    In the end, he opened the Bass Pro catalogue to find that not only was his product NOT in there, but to add insult to injury, there was an almost identical product bearing Bass Pro's name.

    If you don't mind, PM me your website...I'd like to see what your product is.
    Thank you for reading my post!

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    Yeah. I'd like to know what the product is, too. Unless you mentioned it in a post I missed you've never revealed what it is. Did I miss it? If you don't want to make it public knowledge (and I can't understand why not; after all, you WERE in Cabela's) PM me, too, about your website like Welby asked.
    Romans 8:28

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    MOHunter's Original Post on This Subject

    OK, from my searching, you've not divulged anything about this so called product. As far as not wanting to be a salseman or making this into a classified, as long as you offer JHP members a discount or offer a couple to members for a trial and review there is no problem.

    I can't think of a nicer way to say it but it's about come time to put up or shut up. If this product is real, prove it. This secretive thing is getting a little old.
    Romans 8:28

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    First Step:
    I can see all the secrecy before patented , but with patent pending filed and all is OK there it is hard for someone else to try to steal this product as theirs.
    Second step:
    for me it would have some kind of product review so you know how it work in other areas of the country.
    Third step:
    would be use this review as a good sale pitch to catalog stores as well as retailers around where product would sold.
    I just can not figure out why all the hush, hush if it is in Gabella catalog why the all secrecy , just odd way to make sale I quess .
    Final: Reap the rewards or profit.
    After it is on the Market, any way I can make a sale pitch all means are open to make this sale I will tell it to all let me make my money.

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    MrRee is offline No Longer A Member Kiss The Ring MrRee
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    If I had a product the was once out in a place like Cabellas, And they still sell my competietors product, I have nothing to be secret about.

    If I feel I can be competive & want to sell it I would try to get it out every where I could and build up a name for my brand. Unless of course, the other guy has a better one, and telling everyone here what I make would bring nothing but reviews telling the world, do not buy it because the other guy has a better one. In that case, I don't think I would be here crying that they carry his and not mine.

    I would be trying to sell it here, on ebay, u-bid, sporting goods shops like D&R, sportsmans Guide, Jays, and many others.

    If the product is good, you gotta get the name known so people will ask for it. Then the big vendors will want to carry it.

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    joatmon is offline Member Moving Up In The World joatmon
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    Is it bigger than a bread basket?
    born 200 years too late

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    Bald Eagle is offline No Longer A Member Kiss The Ring Bald Eagle
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    MOHunter - you should try to do business with Walmart or Home Depot once. They are without a doubt the toughest to bargain with. They know they are in demand and put their vendors through the toughest riggors in the business.

    Sorry to hear about your difficulties. Keep your head up and press on. Good things will come.

    Post your website link here and offer some incentive to the JHPers and we'll endorse your product if it measures up.

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    Greg's Avatar
    Greg is offline Member Allowed To Sit On The 1st Rung Greg is an unknown quantity at this point
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    jotmon great post. LOL

    Can it fit in my pocket





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    Both of these sites are where everybody I know orders the stuff we don't want to have to bring across the border. if your interested in expanding into canada. They do have alot of stuff you find in cabellas so they must get some of their stuff from the U.S.
    Hope it helps
    Russell Sports or

    wholesale sports

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    Did I ever tell y'all about......ah, maybe later. Dude, I said it when this all got started and I'll say it again, there's 4000 members on here who would buy your "product", if it was something they were looking for, instead of a competitors knowing you were on this site. Not telling anyone what the heck it was even after it was already "in the catalog" is assinine.
    QUOTE (mudwalker)
    Speaking of humidity, I finally had to leave [Texas] because I couldn't get my hair big enough (bigger, higher, closer to God).

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    When the inventor of a patented hunting related product won't even tell a group of hunters (read: prospective customers) what the product is, it's hard to believe that he'll stay in business for long. When the inventor behaves so strangely, I have to wonder what kind of headaches he gave Cabela's. Maybe they just got fed up. I'd be interested to hear Cabela's side of the story on this.

    As for Cabela's demands for payment for catalog space, get used to it. Supermarkets and other retailers do the same thing, they're called "slotting fees" where the manufacturer of the product pays a specified amount of money for shelf space. They've been a reality for a few years now. They effectively weed out the smaller firms. Eventually, (IMO) two things will probably happen as a result of slotting fees: little fish will sell out the ideas/products to the big fish who can absorb the slotting fees OR eventually the slotting fees will so limit consumer choices that sales will drop and the fees will have to be removed/reduced. It's called capitalism.

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    shrtcirkt is offline Member Allowed To Sit On The 1st Rung shrtcirkt
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    MOHunter;
    I feel yopur pain. We spoke to Cabela's and Bass Pro as well but I diodnt like a lot of the wording in the vendor agreement. They also had a buyback clause added in that I was totaly against. We also had a Rep handling us for Wall-mart and Dicks Sports but the Reps ended up being no better then anyone else and wanted too much of a commision.
    it's very difficult for the little guy to remain competative. If you are not offering a wide product line your a nobody to them.
    Whover said there is no such thing as a stupid question, never heard some of mine.

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    Ok it has something to do with hunting, right? We dont know if it bigger then a bread box. And Cabelas is a pain to deal with. Wow I want one, it sounds like a hot item! Which end of my bow does it go on? What is it

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    This sounds like something personal against Cabelas to me. I seriously doubt if a product ever existed in the first place. You are a very creative writer but I can see through it in a second.

    Enough said!
    SS---->

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    GUNNER5569 is offline Member Allowed To Sit On The 1st Rung GUNNER5569
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    MrRee is offline No Longer A Member Kiss The Ring MrRee
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    So, whats the bottom line???
    If you can't sell it through Cabellas, (on your terms) you will not sell it??

    Last I knew, there were a LOT of other places to sell products like you would find in Cabellas.

    Since you will not even tell the people here what the product is, How can you expect anyone to have sympathy for you?? Did you also keep it a secret from Cabellas?? Maybe Cabellas, like people here, would have to know what it is befor they would have ANY intrest in it!!!!

    Keep your product SECRETE, but go to the dictionary and look between suacide & syphless for sympathy. You sure won't get it by attempting to run down Cabellas here!!

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    As far as I can tell, MOHunter hasn't posted a message since July or August of 2002. In effect, this thread is a dead end one. Add to that the fact that he only has 45 posts.

    Either he's changed his username or left altogether.
    Thank you for reading my post!

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    Bald Eagle is offline No Longer A Member Kiss The Ring Bald Eagle
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    Kind of a stupid thread anyway.

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