NYNOW365, an online directory, has garnered 50,000 unique visitors and generated more than 3.1 million product views in its first four months. The tool is associated with the NY NOW tradeshow, formerly the New York International Gift Fair, underway right now at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York.
“The research we did was showing that there is a dramatic rise in the number of retailers and retail buyers sourcing products and buyers online,” says Charles McCurdy, GLM CEO and chairman. “At the same time, vendors were using the Internet as an additional channel to find buyers for their products. It was an unmet need we could address.”
The web site’s image-based layout, coupled with an ease of connectivity between buyers and sellers, is expected to help exhibitors* attract new customers and track down leads. GLM says NYNOW365 has generated approximately 2,500 leads for participating manufacturers to date.
McCurdy contends the success of the digital tool so far is due to extensive research on market trends, creating an accessible user interface and easy site access for buyers and sellers to display and search available products.
“For a retail buyer to explore the supplier base that the vendors are bringing to market, like at a tradeshow, is very useful,” McCurdy says. “Plus, you’re not limited by having to go booth to booth to view products. You can see the whole array of textiles on one scrollable page on our website.”
The New York-based company will continue to build on NY NOW’s success so far by expanding the online-directory platform to several more tradeshows including the National Stationery Show, the International Contemporary Furniture Fair and the Surf Expo.
“I think we’ve proven that this is a resource that effectively compliments our role as show organizer,” says McCurdy.
GLM produces more than 25 events annually, attracting about 180,000 attendees and 13,000 exhibitors.
For McCurdy, GLM’s next step in developing its suite of digital sourcing tools is to target audiences directly.
“Audience database tools are what we’re looking to expand,” McCurdy says. “We want to see what type of people are looking at what portion of the site and specific content so we can have more effective marketing.”
*Editor's Note: The original version of the story used the word "retailers."