If prospective entrepreneurs have any illusions about the glamour of owning or running a catalog business, reading the findings of Catalog Age’s exclusive Benchmark Report on Critical Issues & Trends is sure to demolish them.
Costs, costs, and more costs weighed heavily on respondents’ minds. A whopping 88% cited the need to cut costs without reducing offerings and services as a top concern. Rising distribution costs and rising package-delivery costs were other worrisome issues, cited by 59% and 58% of respondents respectively.
Looking at financial perfomance against expectations, it’s clear why costs keep mailers awake at night. Twenty-four percent of respondents missed their profitability goals by more than 10% last year; another 29% fell short by 1%-10%. Similarly, 21% fell more than 10% short of their revenue expectations, and 38% missed sales goals by 1%-10%.