One of the founding principles of Quality Garden Tools was that we would always supply our products at below the manufacturers recommended retail price (rrp). This principle is still core to our success, we are not always the cheapest supplier in the country for everything we sell, but I hope that customers who buy from us know that they are getting a ‘good deal’.
Over the last 8 months we have seen our suppliers rapidly increase the prices we pay (in the case of one manufacturer 3 times!). This has meant that our margins have reduced to the point that on some products we make no money at all.
Most of our suppliers blame the increase in energy prices, a steep rise in the price of raw materials (including steel), currency changes and increased transport costs. We have spent our time trying to explain to them that many gardeners and landscapers have also been feeling the pinch and urging manufacturers to keep price rises to a minimum. I am sad to report that we have failed in this task and we now find almost every manufacturer presenting us (and all other garden and tool suppliers) with increases from 10% to 50%. What this means for Quality Garden Tools customers is a gradual price rise over the next month to reflect these changes.
Delivery costs have also risen to eye-watering levels. We are keeping our delivery charge at £3.95 for orders under £100 and free thereafter (£5.00 supplement for wheelbarrows). This is painful because our average delivery cost is now £8.00 per order!
We have always offered an ‘equal opportunity delivery’ policy, meaning a flat delivery cost across the whole of the UK. This is now presenting problems as due to the increase in fuel costs, some carriers are refusing to deliver to any area of the country which involves a water crossing. This is particularly hard on our customers in Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands, the Scottish Isles, etc.
Let’s all hope that these problems are temporary and we will soon have much better news, maybe even price pruning! Please also remember that every single product at Quality Garden Tools is still sold at below the rrp and that will continue for years to come.
If you wish to give us your views on the price increases please email The Fat Gardener at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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