Eva Walsh, vice president of business development at Dallas Market Center, recently shared her suggestions for achieving buying success in Dallas in a Q&A with California Apparel News.

How do you advise buyers to shop your shows?
We’ve put together the following list to guarantee buying success while at Dallas Market Center:
Download. First things first, download the Dallas Market App before you arrive at Market to access the most complete and up-to-date market information available.
Get familiar. Everything’s bigger in Texas, including FashionCenterDallas. But don’t worry—our facility is organized by product categories into easy-to-shop neighborhoods. In general, permanent women’s apparel showrooms are located on the World Trade Center 14 and 15; Fashion Accessories, Scene and Strut—Dallas Shoes are on WTC 13; Temporaries are on WTC 12; Children’s Apparel on WTC 8; and Men’s Apparel are on WTC 7 & 15.
Make appointments. Make appointments in advance with key vendors to ensure you accomplish everything you need to at market, and leave time to check out new lines.
Take notes. Take notes throughout the year on what sells and what customers are asking for so you are prepared to look for these needs at the show. Tweet or post on Facebook lines and products that you are considering buying, and monitor customer reactions. Listen to your customers!

Bring backup. When possible, bring a business partner or sales associate to help cover the entire market and make evaluations.
Come for inspiration and learning. Trend seminars and line tours can be invaluable; so can networking opportunities with other retailers during social events hosted by the Dallas Market Center. Take photos of visual-merchandising ideas that can be executed in the store. Product photos can also be posted on Pinterest back home to alert customers on what trends will be coming soon.

Come early and stay late. To allow for additional time to buy, we offer a Preview Day, when exhibitors take appointments, and, on Fridays of Market, a shop-late night with many permanent showrooms open until at least 7 p.m. to help you get business done.
Wear cute shoes! It is all about fashion, after all!

Additional tips:
Make sure you explore new lines, visit at least one showroom you haven’t worked with before, and scour the temporaries for new products at every Market.

Be sure to have your credentials (credit information, business cards with ship-to- and bill-to addresses, and copy of state retail-tax license) readily available.
Don’t be afraid to leave orders at market—you can always ask your sales rep questions later. And don’t feel like you can’t discuss different terms on orders for lines you are trying out.
Do you have any resources to help them plan ahead?
The best way to work market is to plan ahead and download the Dallas Market Mobile App. The App will help you organize each day for maximum efficiency.  In addition to the Dallas Market Mobile App, buyers should “like” Dallas Market on Facebook and follow us on Twitter as well as check out our Pinterest page. Exhibitors post new lines or products on these social sites leading up to Market, which is a great resource for buyers. 
How should they follow up after the show?
After Market, follow up on any orders you have questions about and share your inspiring market experience with your staff, including the photos you took at the show. Get everyone excited about the new lines that will be available in your store. It’s always smart to organize images of the collections that will arrive soon to use via social media to entice your customers to come check out the new offerings.
And book your next trip to Dallas Market through our in-house travel team, which offers great discounts on air and hotel. Contact Market Travel® at (214) 744-7444 or markettravel@mcmcmail.com.