Alex Blaker, from Hackensack, NJ. has built a Technology Supplying empire.

In the ever-evolving and competitive landscape of media, technology, and consumer goods, in order to succeed and provide customers with innovative and cutting-edge products isn’t an easy business.  Today more than ever, information is key and asking the right questions is, as you can imagine, critical.  Here at Club Culture we love to have conversations with people in the community.  Through these conversations we like to share what we learn and tell the story of those living interesting ones…

Let’s start with where it started, we crossed paths at a coffee shop in Hackensack, NJ…

I originally crossed paths with Alex Blaker, a fellow coffee lover, at Ground Connection Coffee in Hackensack, New Jersey and through a coincidence of both ordering the same drink, a Cortado, we struck up a conversation.  Isn’t coffee great for that?  We started chatting about coffee, community, and starting a business and come to find out – beyond having the same coffee drink in common – we also both were able to connect about our entrepreneurial endeavors.   Here’s his story…it’s an interesting one…

What Tech Supplier & Alex Blaker do best…

Alex Blaker Tech Suppliers, Hackensack NJ

Coffee with Alex Blaker, Tech Supplier, Hackensack NJ

Alex Blaker launched Tech Supplier, based in Hackensack, NJ to provide the masses in underserved markets outside of the United States with the latest generation of cell-phones.  If you didn’t know this was a job, don’t feel bad, neither did I.  Since his launch of Tech Supplier in 2009, Alex Blaker has grown his operations to serve additional electronics beyond cell phones.

When I asked Alex about what he does best and how Tech Supplier has been so successful he humbly responded with “hard work” but after further conversation it’s clear that Tech Supplier does an incredible job of relationship building.  Through a decade of trusted experience, Tech Supplier has established lasting relationships directly with manufacturers and retailers to provide refurbished products to those in need.

If you’re interested in starting your own e-commerce business…

If you’re interested in launching your own e-commerce company, there’s no better time than the present. eMarketer ran their projects and estimates that retail e-commerce sales will increase to $4.058 trillion in 2020!  To put that number into perspective, worldwide retail sales hit around $1.915 in 2016.  So, as you can see, there’s a lot of growth and a lot of sales up for grabs!

One quick note about e-commerce business, be prepared for returns.  In fact, plan for returns and don’t be surprised when it happens.  Online stores know they need to compete for your sales and offer some really incredible return policies.  This typically only applies to non-perishable products.

Companies like Amazon, Zappos, and ASOS offer incredible return policies.  And the returns often times make sense, a lot of customers don’t know if they’re going to like the new pair suede Chelsea boots they got from ASOS until they try them on?  Can I pull these off – is this color of tan suede a good luck for my wardrobe, maybe I should go with the Jodphur black leather kicks that that one Justin Theroux guy wears, his style is a nice combination of Hollywood biker and modern style, why not right?  Yea, you probably had an internal conversation like that if you shopped from ASOS. Or of course, probably not – because that internal monologue is, well, a lot.

Alex Blaker Tech Hackensack NJ

Alex Blaker Tech Hackensack NJ

So yes, returns are quite common, in the Tech space.  Alex Blaker told me about how most of his returns were drones.  No, this has nothing to do with Star Wars, those are droids. These types of drones are aerial vehicles (very similar to a remote control helicopter). These drones are outfitted with cameras on them and or go-pros for pedestrian use.  Often times used for hobbies, these drones make for some incredibly fun toys.  Typically yielding breathtaking photos, drones are ideal for trips to beautiful national parks or natural wonders.

Be careful flying one of these in city territory, officials tend to be pretty protective with regulations for safety in public spaces.  But typically happens with these drones is customers buy them, try them, like them, and then want their money back so they return them…they may or may not have also ran them into a wall or tree at somewhere along this process, ha!

launching a business in the tech space…

Launching a business in the tech space involved some risk – both to build your brand and sales channels but also on the returning end.  But with great risk comes with great reward, if of course, you work hard.

Where Alex Blaker and Tech Supplier succeed is understanding the trends and customer satisfaction from their experience analyzing returns.  Through this, Tech Supplier discovered key insights from product price point positioning to packaging.  This is certainly not an easy world to understand but an interesting one.  In short, Alex has learned more about customer satisfaction returns than through initial inbound marketing or focus group sessions.  He then, with this insight, has been able to build to sell refurbished items to an entirely new market.

top 5 people to coffee with…

And, as always with these community features I like to ask the same question.  If you could have coffee with any 5 people, who would it be?
1.) Phil Knight of Nike
2.) Jay Leno, car nut and workaholic.
3.) Sam Walton
4.) Ray Kroc
5.) Roger Penske, race team owner and very successful entrepreneur