Club Management Focus: Spring 2017

Welcome to the Bridge Warehouse

Our shop is changing, and it’s not just the name which is new.

Whilst the EBU Shop has been profitable in recent years, we have been conscious that it could have been doing better, and that we needed to be proactive to ensure the long term future of the shop. Not only is the shop is an important service to the membership, but it provides a key source of revenue.

Graham Smith, one of the EBU directors, recently headed a comprehensive review of the shop and made some interesting discoveries, which in turn has prompted some changes which we hope will be to the benefit of all members.

One statistic which was relevant was that less than half of affiliated clubs made a purchase from our shop in the previous nine months. There were very few individual members making ‘personal’ purchases, and little business from outside the EBU. We therefore needed to do something to encourage more people to use the shop.

A new, lower, 'headline price'

One thing which became clear was that some of our prices appeared to be uncompetitive. But appearances can be deceptive. Many of those looking at the price were comparing the pre-discounted price, forgetting – or not realising – that clubs and members received a significant discount off these prices. They then shopped elsewhere, and that didn’t help anyone (except the other retailer).

It was therefore apparent that we should make a simple change – display our discounted prices as our standard, ‘headline’ price. There is then no need for you to get out a calculator when comparing our prices to the competitor – it will be clear to everyone that in most instances our prices are the lowest around.

In instances when a product may not be as cheap, we will also continue to reiterate our commitment that we will match competitors’ prices where possible.

These prices will be displayed on the shop from midday on 24th May

Please note that an annual price increase will be introduced at this time, so if the new price doesn’t quite tally with what you expected then it is due to that, and not an error in calculating them.

This simple change also means that the checkout process through our online shop can be easier as there is no need to log-in* when making a purchase to ensure you are paying the lowest price**. You will be anyway. We hope that this will enable more of you to shop online and take advantage of our 24-hour option.

* - but you may still wish to log-in as some details, like your address, can be filled in automatically.
** - EBTA members should still log-in to ensure they receive their additional discount on specific teaching books.

We hope that this will increase the number of clubs who purchase from us, saving them money and keeping the cash circulating within the EBU. Everyone benefits.

All profit from sales in the shop is reinvested by the EBU in activities and services for its members and affiliated clubs.

Encouraging purchases by unaffiliated clubs

By having the old ‘discounted’ price as our new ‘standard’ price, we also hope to encourage more sales to clubs which are not affiliated. Unaffiliated clubs must buy their cards and bidding boxes from somewhere – we hope that by enabling them to pay a lower price we can encourage them to shop with us, rather than elsewhere.

This is a large, untapped market which we hope will generate extra revenue for the shop, and therefore increased profits which can be reinvested in providing activities and services for you and your members.

The more sales we can make to unaffiliated clubs, the more we all benefit.

A New Name

To make it clear that the shop is open to all – and not just to EBU members – we have renamed it. The name ‘EBU Shop’ will no longer be used. Instead all are welcome to purchase from The Bridge Warehouse – the first and only choice for bridge players.

Benefits to affiliated clubs

Although unaffiliated clubs will now be able to pay the lower prices – and I hope you can see why that can be a good thing – there will still be benefits to affiliated clubs.

We will intermittently have special offers which are available only to affiliated clubs and/or members. These may be a price reduction on key items, free delivery, etc. Just keep an eye on the website and your inbox for a notification of when we are having exclusive offers.

We also offer 30 days credit on orders placed by affiliated clubs. This will not be offered to unaffiliated clubs, and they must pay at the time of the order.

Support bridge in England - shop at The Bridge Warehouse

We hope that these changes will help our shop meet its core functions of providing bridge supplies to the widest number of members at the lowest possible prices.

We also hope that The Bridge Warehouse can be a source of revenue from all bridge players in the country which generates profits that the EBU can reinvest in supporting bridge in England.

If everyone shops at The Bridge Warehouse we will all be better off, so please support it.