Wednesday, May 20, 2015

An Inside Look at How Zootie's Vapors Select Juices for the Shop

People are always asking if we carry this line or that line.  Unfortunately it is not that simple for us to select a line of juice for our shop.  Every day, we get emails and samples from juice makers asking for a spot on our wall.  With over 70 flavors, we have to be very selective and that process takes time.

So for an insiders look at how new juice gets added, let me walk you through the steps we take.

  1. QUALITY. The first and most important factor in selecting a juice line is to make sure that proper safety and quality control is being met.  All of the companies that we select use dedicated clean rooms, high-quality ingredients, and have responsible business practices.
  2. TASTE.  We ask for samples and we personally vape on it for as long as it takes for us to determine if the flavor and quality meets our standards. Sometimes we share these flavors with our customers to get their opinions as well.  We are primarily testing for whether the flavor is good throughout the vape, whether its in a tank or a dripper.  We also make sure that all of the flavors listed are accurate and consistent.
  3. COMPLEXITY.  We don't want to carry any one-note flavors on our shelves.  Sure a delicious strawberry is great, but we want flavors that have inhale, mouth taste and exhale characteristics.  Most all of the juices we carry either have consistent flavor through all three phases or sometimes they change, such is the case with Grand Vapors Velvet Revolver.  It is a delicious red velvet cake inhale that is followed by a sweet icing finish.  This is just one juice example of a flavor that exceeds our expectations.
  4. PRICE POINT.  This one is a bit subjective and normally I wouldn't discuss "profit margins" with customers, but I think we all understand that shops are in business to make money.  Some shops choose to make that money by marking their prices up beyond what we would consider acceptable because of greed or because they have higher expenses to account for.  At Zootie's Vapors, we keep all of our 30ml bottles at an average of $20, regardless of what we pay for that brand.  We know that buying juice is one of the biggest expenses for vapers and we want to make this as affordable as possible, while still being able to stay in business.
  5. CUSTOMER FEEDBACK.  Our biggest determining factor in selecting a juice line and keeping those flavors in stock is our customers.  If you ask for a line that you enjoy, we take that into consideration and will reach out to those companies to constantly bring in new juices.  Obviously we know what juices and flavors are selling best, so we'll continue to reorder and keep those in stock for as long as they are popular.  Occasionally there will be flavors that we like but they may not sell well in the shop.  Those will be rotated out to make room for new lines and flavor profiles as the industry and customer tastes change.
  6. EXCLUSIVITY.  We enjoy having juice on our shelves that you cannot find anywhere else in the area.  Sure, we have brands that you will find in some of the other local shops, but unless they are personal friends of ours, we try not to have the same old same old.  We wanted to introduce new flavors and brands to the vaping community and offer a variety of the profiles and nuances.  We dont just call the distribution company and say, send me bottles.  We hand-pick each and every comany and flavor that is in our shop.  Often times, if you like a particular brand, we have the same, if not better, flavor profile from another company that you havent yet tried.  That's the benefit of having such a huge selection to try before you buy - we're sure you'll walk away with at least one bottle that you'll love!
  7. PERSONAL INTERACTIONS WITH THE JUICE MAKERS.  At Zootie's Vapors, we are very proud to not only carry a huge selection of juices local to Virginia, but also from people that we know personally.  Having a relationship with our vendors is very important to us and the people that represent the brands is hugely important to us.  We want to work with like-minded individuals, those who give back to the vaping community and who exhibit the same level of customer service that we strive for on a daily basis.  We are a "smile and a handshake" kind of company, so when juice makers take time out of their schedule to come see us, follow us on social media and constantly ask how their product is doing in our shop, that means SO much to us.
So hopefully that gives you an idea of the process we go through to select juices, and why we choose not to carry many of the more mainstream brands out there.  We take pride in each and every bottle of juice we sell and we hope that you enjoy them as much as we do.

If you havent had a chance to stop by our shop, please take a day and come see us.  Zootie's Vapors is located at 40602 Charles Town Pike in Paeonian Springs VA.  You can also call us at 571-293-8277 or email if you have any questions.

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