opinion

Sex University: Sex Education At Williams Trading Company

Sex University: Sex Education At Williams Trading Company
Erin Viereck

Sexual health and wellness is important for our overall happiness. Our sexuality is more than just the sex we have; it’s part of who we are. Simply put, sexuality is connected to our senses. We see a beautiful woman in lingerie, we are attracted to the scent of a musky pheromone that drives us wild, we taste our partner drizzled in edible massage oil, we hear sultry music or deep pulsing bass; we shiver under a scintillating touch. We are all sexual beings, arousal driven and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Toys have been a growing segment in the adult industry for several years now, with sales topping $15 billion. A large part of that is because the adult novelty industry is actively rebranding itself into a broader sexual health and wellness category because today’s adult retail customer is more diverse. Whether it’s by age or income, we believe it’s due to added mainstream exposure. This logic carries over to our adult ecommerce customers as we see more are including a sexual health and wellness category for their customers.

Excellent retail management practice includes consistent training and, thus, engaged employees will make the difference on the top line, the bottom line, and everything in between.

Pop culture hits like “Sex and the City” and “Fifty Shades of Grey” helped ignite a more open conversation about sex and pleasure, making vibrators a part of our cultural zeitgeist. As consumers, we are making the connection between sexual health and adult novelties. The consumer demand for adult products is unparalleled from decades past and, like with any consumer demand, the need for retail education comes with it.

An adult retailer can’t effectively merchandise, demonstrate and sell a product if they are not perceived as experts in their field. An educated adult retailer answers their customers’ questions, qualms their fears, satisfies their curiosity and makes them feel empowered for taking charge of their sexuality and improving their overall happiness.

Excellent retail management practice includes consistent training and, thus, engaged employees will make the difference on the top line, the bottom line, and everything in between. Even though some people may be naturally adept at maneuvering through the kaleidoscope of adult products, features and manufacturers most are not and they need training. Without the proper training, sales and profits will not meet expectations, employee turnover will go up, store appearance will suffer, customers will be dissatisfied and the downward spiral will continue. It’s a no-win situation.

Williams Trading Co. is a full-line adult wholesale distributor with more than 40 years of excellence in the industry, carrying more than 20,000 different items; with new products added weekly. We recognize the need to support our retailers with up-to-date, convenient e-learning opportunities to share with their employees and ultimately with consumers. Employee training, statistically, improves retail sales almost immediately upon implementation. When our retailers drive sales, we all benefit — which is why we provide Williams Trading University (WTU), the adult industry’s only sexual health and wellness product education and offer it to our retailers as an added value for doing business with Williams Trading Co at no charge.

Currently, the WTU catalog includes 64 courses and, on average, we develop three to four new modules per month. Williams Trading supports WTU learners with a weekly Cyberscholar email blast notifying them of course availability, product raffles and contests that are exclusively available to them.

Upon completing a course, the user takes a quiz certifying their newfound knowledge and is rewarded with a downloadable certificate. Select participating vendors make free premiums, samples and special offers available to retailers. This feature is an added benefit to the retailer as their employees can try a product, become a consumer and ultimately recommend it to their customers. WTU has awarded 22,000 course certifications across the domestic U.S., Puerto Rico and Canada to date.

WTU monthly prize drawings are often in sync when a manufacturer is running a Williams Trading inventory sale. Adult retailers receive double the support — a product sale and free product training with prize incentives — at the same time. This double-whammy approach has significantly lifted sales on the retail floor according to our customers.

“Eighty-four percent of our top retail accounts have experienced a lift in sales on the retail floor WITHOUT an additional price off or sale incentive,” says Scott D., Williams Trading Co.’s director of sales and marketing. “WTU continues to receive industry accolades and retailer testimonials supporting our commitment to retailer education.”

At Williams Trading, we know sex in America is alive and well. And, with the sexual health and wellness category gaining traction, sex toys have transformed into sophisticated and well-designed gadgets that take their inspiration from Apple not Hustler. So, with all of the new products entering the marketplace with specific forms, features and functions, we need a “best place” to teach a captive audience how to get everything from an adult toy that the manufacturer promises. Williams Trading University is just that — the best place to find out the latest buzz in the sex toy/romance enhancement industry.

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