Australian Newsagency Blog

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Interest on trade shows falling?

Mark Fletcher
July 9th, 2018 · 11 Comments

Based on the deals being put about to full trade show hall booth space over the next couple of months it appears as if trade shows are not as popular with suppliers as they used to be. Discounts as high as 75% are being offered.

Fom a retailer perspective, the local Australian trade shows are not as popular as they used to be because of the sameness across suppliers.  Online is a factor too with buying direct from overseas easier and faster than ever.

The other factor is local competition. Retailers who want unique products can feel they are less likely to find this at a trade show attended by any retailer.

I think we are at a point in time when trade shows can be reinvented, to match the needs of retailers today: easier ordering, shorter lead times, more efficient for suppliers, smarter geographic quarantining and integrated supply from a data perspective. We also need fewer trade shows, to reduce the costs for suppliers as these costs end up being met by retailers.


Category: Newsagency management

11 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Colin // Jul 9, 2018 at 8:59 AM

    From SA perspective the shows are badly located, lack focus and hence over priced for retailers and visitors. Their location panders to metropolitans on a day out. Get the sites together next to an airport.

    Too many suppliers are sales focused. They are not building their branding, spreading the word and building loyalty. I don’t want to be “served” by a drafted in casual whose first words are “let me get my ipad”

    Why are they discounting stands when competing fairs are being launched in the same week. , because the organisers have a cosy self serving approach that favours repeat over innovation.


  • 2 Mark Fletcher // Jul 9, 2018 at 9:07 AM

    Colin they need to be in an appropriately resourced venue. Governments determine that with infrastructure spend. What we need is one location and one, maybe two, trade show(s) a year. This will also encourage intern national exhibitors.


  • 3 Colin // Jul 9, 2018 at 9:25 AM


    My wife will visit Melbourne next month. The trip will probably cost around $2000 in total. She will visit at 5 sites over 4 days and sadly not have time to see some suppliers who have set up in yet more locations such as hotels. All this and the main event is discounting to get exhibitors tells you something.


  • 4 Mark Fletcher // Jul 9, 2018 at 9:29 AM

    The discount I refer to in the post is not Melbourne.

    For $2K maybe consider an overseas fair. I am in Atlanta at the end of this week. One location. Three multi-story buildings. Efficient to do.


  • 5 Ken Wilson // Jul 9, 2018 at 8:58 PM

    Does anybody else think that a one location retailer from SA would benefit from the Atlanta Fair?


  • 6 Colin // Jul 9, 2018 at 9:13 PM

    Ken … what has one location retailer got to do with Atlanta ? Same question would apply to Melbourne and Sydney ?

    FYI – we attended Birmingham for 3 days a couple of years back. Far more productive than attending several of the Sydney / Melbourne fairs.


  • 7 Jon // Jul 10, 2018 at 1:20 AM

    Colin me too I attend Birmingham Spring fair every 2 years.


  • 8 James // Jul 10, 2018 at 9:45 AM

    Thats a great idea. The local trade shows are pretty much the same companies with the same product range. So what sort of orders do you guys have to place to get those suppliers engaged and how do you go for things like credit etc, what about delivery lead times? Marks right, the cost of overseas travel at the moment would make the investment way more worth while.


  • 9 Ken Wilson // Jul 11, 2018 at 11:50 PM

    James, looks like there was no benefit out of Birmingham apart from a tax deductible overseas trip… Better to go to Hawaii


  • 10 Mark Fletcher // Jul 12, 2018 at 1:52 PM

    James the minimum spend varies by supplier. I have seen it as low as a few hundred dollars.


  • 11 Factory Worker // Jul 15, 2018 at 7:18 PM

    Did anyone attend the VANA / GNS fair at the showrounds yesterday?

    Would be interested to know what others thought of it.


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