Join The Club: Is The Club Channel A Good Fit For Your Brand?

WeStock Team
March 16, 2023

One question on the mind of CPG founders and execs everywhere is how do we build and grow. Between traditional retail and DTC there are a lot of options to consider and you don’t always want to put your eggs in one basket. One channel that can get overlooked is the Club Channel.

What is the Club Channel?

Clubs are typically membership based (price of membership depends on the store) and they work differently than traditional retail. Unlike stores like Kroger or small local shops that cater to everyday people buying groceries for the week or so, Club stores or warehouse clubs, sell in bulk. The stores offer discounted rates on bulk items so instead of buying one jar of Pasta sauce at Whole Foods for $6.99 each you could get 4 for $22, as an example. They aren’t always huge discounts but for some families or even business owners it makes more sense to buy in bulk.

What Club Stores Are There?

There are many warehouse clubs around the country with Costco, Sam’s Club and Bj’s being the most well known. But it doesn’t hurt to look locally too, maybe your city doesn’t have a Costco but it has a different club store you could pursue.

Am I Too Small?

Emerging brands don’t worry this one’s for you too. There is a misconception that to land a place on the shelf at one of these club stores, you have to be a giant brand with a ton of money and household recognition. While you’ll of course see the big guys at your local club store, the Jif Peanut Butter may be next to a regional jam company or the Oscar Meyer Hot Dogs may be kitty-corner to a gourmet sausage company from Wyoming. Because many of these stores buy regionally, many buyers are on the lookout for the next best thing and shoppers, while they still buy the store brands like Kirkland or the big-name brands, are often on the lookout to discover new products as they stroll down the aisles looking for samples. Use being a smaller brand to your advantage, you are exciting, fresh, and new!

Is The Club Channel Right For Me?

There is no clear yes or no answer here and a lot of it will come down to your specific goals. But, if you are looking to reach a new audience, provide your existing customer base with a deal and larger quantity of product, it could be a great path for you to look into. You can find our blog on getting into Costco specifically, here.

Has the club channel worked for your brand? We’d love to hear what helped you find success there (or the opposite) send us your thoughts here.

WeStock Team

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