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  1. Linegear Japan

    Linegear Japan X-Metal Professional Platinum Forum Sponsor Premium Member

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    Dear all valuable friends holder of X-Metal et al,

    Recently, we have a deep thought and come up with a freedom of discussion process before we close deal and proceed or cancel our purpose to have an unofficial representative in the US.

    Please kindly express your opinion to a max of 3 points each for Pro & Con so to easily read and digest or one point each.

    We decided to have the customers/old friends spoken and we will decide the best possible way. See content below:

    ----------------------Linegear US Resellers-----------------------

    We are working with a few notable and respectable professional X-Metal experts in the US who are already providing services (other area) to X-Metal and other Oak.

    We decided to start discussing with them, one for East Coast, one for middle of US, one for California. Our concept is a respectable/trustworthy professional who can help other users to have their x-metal item fixed, add new lenses, new rubber colors.

    Why three and not one exclusive? We are thinking of fan based or friends based or a local store where people can just drive to get the item, because let's say Person A has helped a few dozen other, while Person B also did the same. And from customer perspective, they have alternative to choose based on friendship or availability. The good news for customer is to pay less shipping fee from Japan, and to buy locally. (*We have a few re-sellers each in Indonesia, the Philippines, Brazil, Thailand, Singapore... who cater to a few dozen customers each in different biggest cities)

    Mr. Daisuke Orimoto (owner) still like to keep his website "busy" or to receive "thank you" note from old friends (whom he has helped in the last 8 years) say thank to his lenses and rubbers.

    It was always more than business, it is about people, we do more and go to a great lenses to make customer 100% happy and we refine item just like our own, and we have some message that keep us smile.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Thank you for any thought you have.

    Other Q to help you think:
    1. How do you prefer to purchase from our web, eBay, or a re-seller?
    2. What make you buy from eBay? Is it because of rating?
    3. What make you buy from our Linegear web with apparently 10% lower cause we don't pay to eBay listing?
    Linegear US Reseller - discussion and express opinion - World Time Zone map.jpg Linegear US Reseller - discussion and express opinion - icon_sr.jpg
     
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  2. MJLSr

    MJLSr Oakley Expert

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    As a forum member and business person who does NOT use LINEGEAR products at this time (I am all OEM or bust). I can say that I believe many/most would benefit from the distribution method you have described above. Saving shipping is one part, inventory is another, and putting your parts with folks who can put all the pieces together in addition to providing other services such as tune-up, refinishing, lens cutting, anodizing, plating, etc... that is logical and sensible.

    You mention the website. Would that existing website be expanded to support these new value-added resellers? How would you keep the presentation and order execution consistent? It would be most beneficial; if these resellers could have their own local inventory and be able to sell at or below the LINEGEAR and LINEGEAR eBay sites to keep the 'local' (CONUS) competition fair in regards to pricing, with the partners/resellers who sell the most gaining an edge in inventory only, which could become a big edge. One example may be that the folks who do the most work and sales get the most inventory, so if the others run out the one with the bigger inventory may still be able to help.

    Answering your ?s':

    1. How do you prefer to purchase from our web, eBay, or a re-seller?
    Whichever one is cheaper, shipped, unless there is a delay in shipping (say from Japan?)

    2. What make you buy from eBay? Is it because of rating?
    Probably more of the built in protections?

    3. What make you buy from our Linegear web with apparently 10% lower cause we don't pay to eBay listing?
    I cannot speak to this personally but aside from saving a dollar or three there are also the protections for Buyer and Seller mentioned in the last question. The other big push would be if there were things on your site that were not on eBay, if LINEGEAR pulled that back a bit. There could also be more traffic directed to the site say if LINEGEAR offered 10% off with some reassurances (I am sure they are, just saying). And also have the partner/resellers able to offer a slightly greater discount - 15%? - People could apply a code for their partner/rep/vendor and that individual/company would get the order to fulfill. LINEGEAR can keep the image and content in their domain under their administrative control while extending a consistent, discounted, well organized platform to support their partners/resellers.

    So I guess it sounds good in theory, but only if there is some consistency and redundancy with regards to partner distribution. Otherwise it would further confuse the LINEGEAR offerings and could lead to selective service/availability, bidding wars, and other undesirable things.
    .
     
  3. Lexkempo

    Lexkempo Frog Fanatic

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    Maybe @THE X-MAN can become an Authorized Retailer?

    A One stop shop?
     
  4. CarGuy

    CarGuy Oakley Expert Premium Member Lifetime Member

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    As someone who makes a living in the ecommerce fulfillment business I know that dividing the US into regions makes zero sense.
    Before ecommerce we bought our goodies at brick and mortar stores and it made sense to have regional distribution models to get products closer to consumers while lowering the costs of truckload and less than truckload shipments. Additionally people were accustomed to shopping in stores exclusively.
    Not so now. The Internet was obviously a game changer and as luck would have it your products are light enough that they should ship via first class mail at a very reasonable expense across the US in a very reasonable time frame. So a regional distribution model has little value and the winner in this model is LineGear because you sell 3 times the inventory.
    The US is simply too large for people to drive to one of these 3 resellers to pick up a set of rubbers.
    1. How do you prefer to purchase from our web, eBay, or a re-seller?
    I prefer to buy where the price is cheapest and the service time is fastest. Having inventory in the US helps achieve our desire for virtually immediate gratification.
    2. What make you buy from eBay? Is it because of rating?
    I buy on eBay for the ease of using PayPal and price. Of course seller rating is a consideration.
    3. What make you buy from our Linegear web with apparently 10% lower cause we don't pay to eBay listing?
    The lower price obviously.
    In a situation where there is price parity between the manufacturer and an independent retailer the manufacturer gets the sale. Consumers get a warm fuzzy feeling when they buy from the manufacturer and they generally do get better customer service with issues because no one cares more about a brand than the brand owner. Additionally if product needs to be thrown at a deal to satisfy a customer the manufacturer will be inclined to do it faster because again it is his brand that is being protected and the cost of the items is lower. To the manufacturer it is the cost of the item manufactured to the retailer it is is his higher wholesale cost.
    Having 3 regional resellers does not make the US Internet pie larger, it makes the slices of the pie smaller.
    That would be an optimal situation but I don't believe that would be of interest to him. He's a guy who enjoys interacting with his son. I doubt that he would want to have this venture chew up the bandwidth remaining after his day job ends and he puts his X Man hat on. And I know that he enjoys the hands on experience of revitalizing a pair more than he would conducting a business transaction selling a piece of inventory. Lastly I'm sure that the profit margins are vastly different between reselling a pair of rubbers and doing a blast and a tune-up.
    It would be nice though!
     
    Last edited: 3/10/15
  5. THE X-MAN

    THE X-MAN Forum Sponsor Gold Forum Sponsor Premium Member Lifetime Member

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    Im just not set up to distribute,I'd like to stick with what I know .I would like to keep more stock on my shelf as far as lenses and rubber go ,but with all the different colors and models that's a lot of money to keep in inventory hoping one day somebody will buy it .if somebody wants lenses or rubber i send them to linegear exclusively .
     
    Last edited: 3/11/15
    Ry.1982, CarGuy and joecool862 like this.
  6. THE X-MAN

    THE X-MAN Forum Sponsor Gold Forum Sponsor Premium Member Lifetime Member

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    distribution is what car guy does for a living and he's been very successful at it ,if linegear was my company I would let him be the distributor in this country .it's not rocket science .
     
    IUSTEVE and CarGuy like this.
  7. Ry.1982

    Ry.1982 Oakley Collector Premium Member

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    This...
     
    CarGuy likes this.
  8. OakleyFreak

    OakleyFreak RIP RoTors

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    Frankly
    You can keep the Linegear web site
    Just point the sales to the USA distributor
    As Carguy pointed out
    USA distributor with in hand stock, will get product to customers faster.
    That's what I feel the end game should be.
    I think most customers will be willing to wait a few days for product vs the weeks it can take for over seas shipping.
    So once again one distributor willing to keep stock in USA should be sufficient.
     
  9. ucdavis4PT0gpa

    ucdavis4PT0gpa THE BEST IS YET TO COME

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    I mean frankly as far as the USA is concerned? I'm not sure its necessary to have a stateside based distributor.

    Generally speaking I find delivery times to be about a calender week-now granted I'm in California which is closer to Japan so it might be closer to 10 calender days to the East Coast. But even at that? Domestic shippers that use UPS or FedEx Home delivery generally take a calender week and USPS First Class is being throttled to the point that takes 4-5 business days (and I've had it take a solid calender week).

    So unless you'd be committing to USPS 2-Day Priority (which for a padded flat rate envelope would be $6.10 per shipment) you wouldn't be saving people much in terms of delivery times.

    Now, if you do Priority then I'd say okay--- for basically the same price as what we're paying for shipping from Japan with 7-10 day delivery time, we'd get 2 day delivery time. But I would keep it at that- have someone in America who you ship product to in quantity and they can fulfill from here. I wouldn't have someone doing customs etc as I already think most of your customers are savvy and do it themselves (and some like myself LIKE the customization process).
     
    joecool862 likes this.
  10. Linegear Japan

    Linegear Japan X-Metal Professional Platinum Forum Sponsor Premium Member

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    Dear all,

    Thank you very much. It is kind of overwhelmed with a lot of positive response; as well as information overload :D as you know it is not our native language and these are very long for us. Please kindly understand our limit and possibly use easy to catch/understand words. Please feel free to keep expressing view here, or send us a private message.

    We will response at a time when we get a little free.

    Linegear
     
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