Gifts Today magazine

Q&A with Suzanne Chapman

We caught up with Suzanne to learn more about her freelance buying service

Suzanne, tell us a little bit about your new business
It’s a freelance buying service, launched with one goal in mind - to add commercial value to businesses by sourcing and delivering a range of products to help drive sales. My clients get the opportunity to work with a leading retail buyer on specific projects. I worked in the textile and clothing industry for 11 years, before moving into Buying for one of the largest Garden Centre chains in the UK for 10 years. I’m also a member of the GA, a wonderful association that has a wealth of connections and knowledge - their support has been amazing since I joined this year.

What is so unique about your new business venture?
Not all retailers want, or can afford, to have a full time in-house buyer. My service means that retailers can have as little, or as much involvement from me, based on what suits them. I can help with all aspects of the buying process, from the initial sourcing of product and negotiations, to just simply giving advice. I also work with suppliers, to share my experience and knowledge of what sells at what time of year, and highlight where they may have opportunities to add to their ranges. The product areas I specialise in are gifting, home fragrance, and home décor, but have worked across other sectors as well.

What other key services do you offer?
I can complete a full SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis of their business, from both a buyer’s and a customer’s point of view. We have also built a couple of websites for smaller retailers who wanted to reach a wider customer base.

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