Posts Tagged ‘buy-outright’

What if you looked at your consignment, resale, or thrift shop differently in 2012?What If…

you thought of your consignment, resale, or thrift shop just a little differently in 2012? Would your shop be more successful? More fun to run? Would you find unexpected supporters and fervid fans if you just approached things a tiny bit differently?

This week we’ll present a few What Ifs for you to consider. And what if you took the kernel of one of my what ifs and modified it for your business? What if my idea, and your interpretation, and someone else’s version combined… can you see where this is going?

What if you dared to be greater than you already are?

What If? You changed the way you thought of incoming goods? Whether you buy outright, deal in donations, or consign, this Auntie Kate question might have you thinking about your intake procedures:

“Help me please! When new consignors call for an appointment and we can’t fit them in for months, some just laugh. We try to take 4 or 5 appointments a day.” “I have to turn down new consignors every day. I take one new consignor a day. I’m backed up for three months.” “I want to read about how many items to accept and methods for getting items on the floor more efficiently.”

Auntie Kate answered:
Processing incoming merchandise can be a business-killing bottleneck. The most productive shops have systems to ensure their sales floor is full of fresh new items without detracting from their sales activities and without sacrificing their patience, good humor or family life.

The keys to effective acceptance are simple:

  • Accept when your suppliers can come in, not when it’s convenient for you. Give your suppliers what they want: a quick, easy, convenient way to bring items in.
  • Don’t waste time ondecisions. Mulling over the price of a t-shirt for 10 minutes can mean the next consignor (the one with the designer bags) decides the wait is too long.
  • Arrange your acceptance area for efficiency. Having to shift goods, dig out forms or even your computer, or tripping over hangers will slow you down. Spending five minutes too long on each batch can mean a full wasted day a week.
  • Don’t lose time on mistakes. Lost a whole batch? Whose items are those? Where are the tags for these? Where are the things for these tags? You know what I mean. Develop a system that works and stick to it.
  • Don’t perform tasks less-experienced people could do.
  • Design a way to handle overflows. Consider a variety of possibilities, from a “free-for-all” day to a Drop-&-Run system. You may be killing yourself trying to fulfill expectations you think your suppliers have without realizing that they might be delighted with an alternative.

Imagine what you could do if your intake structure reflected your desire to grow your business.

There’s more What if‘s all this week… look forward and back. 

Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/libraryman/


Read Full Post »

I received this email from a concerned supplier this week:HowToConsign.com teaches consumers how to Turn Their Cluttered Closets into Cash!

What do you think of a consignment shop that was giving you 50% of the sale price and then all of a sudden, you go there and now they are only buying outright and giving you only 25 to 40% of the estimated sale price. Just wondering. I was consigning there but decided not to anymore. Would like to hear what you think of this.

How would you answer this consumer? Here’s what I said as representative of the 160+ Sponsor Shops of HowToConsign.com. See what you think.

I’d say that’s a great deal… if you understand it!

When you say you were getting 50% of the sale price… you were getting that only if the item sold.
And you were getting 50% of what the item sold for, which might be less than first established.
So you were sharing the risk of the item never selling (you get zero, of course) or of the item selling at a reduced price.

With buying outright, the shop assumes all the risk of the item not ever selling, or of having to reduce the price and their getting less than they evaluated your item at.

For example, let’s say you want to get rid of a coat. You take it to the shop, which evaluates/ estimates the coat is worth $50.
You consign it; it sells; you make $25.
Or maybe it never sells, you get nothing.
Or maybe the shop has to mark it down to $40 or $30… you get less, say $20 or $15… and only after it sells, of course, which might be weeks or even months later.

Take the same coat in and offer it for sale outright. The shopkeeper evaluates it at the same $50. You get $12.50- $20, cash in hand today. The shopkeeper assumes all risk of a markdown or it never selling… so, if the coat sells, eventually, for $30 and the shopkeeper invested her $20 in it, she’s made $10 and in the meanwhile, she’s used up space in her shop and not had the $20 she gave you, to invest in more merchandise to sell. But you have your money, without any worry on your part.

Some folks like cash in hand today, others don’t mind waiting and sharing the risk of whether and for how much it will sell. It’s a matter of preference. If you don’t care for the buy-outright way, you shouldn’t feel guilty about switching to another shop’s consignment services.

Many thanks for the excellent question, and congratulations on recycling your no-longer-loved possessions!

Would you have explained this differently?

Tell us how….

Read Full Post »

Of course, to have petty cash... you need to know How to Make More MoneyIt amazes me that some consignment, resale, and thrift shops don’t manage small expenditures with a

petty cash fund.

It’s by far the easiest way to do so. Here’s how:

Establish A Petty Cash Fund
Designate an individual and a backup person as custodian of the fund. In this case “many hands do not make light work” . This fund is used for minor and unanticipated expenses where a check can’t be written or the amount is so small that you don’t want to write a check. Some examples include buying pizza for the staff, postage stamps, minor office supplies, paper towels, and cleaning supplies. A pre-numbered voucher or ticket should be filled out and approved for each expenditure. When the balance in the fund becomes low a check from your regular bank account should be issued and cashed to replenish the fund and the expenses recorded in your accounting records. Surprise counts of petty cash should occasionally be done to make sure that employees are not “borrowing” from this source of cash. Counting the fund is very easy. The total amount of the tickets and the cash on hand should equal to the fund’s established balance.

from The Bean Counter

Read Full Post »

Have you learned to say no yet?

Consignment, resale, thrift guidelines to accepting and pricing

Want more on Accepting & Pricing? This Product for the Professional Resaler is one of our top sellers!

Have all the members of your acceptance team?

Better get ready. The fall rush will be on you before you know it. And you’ll have to say no, as you know, quickly, kindly… and clearly.

Of course, as you sort through incoming, you “fill the cup” with the decisions shown here: First, it needs to be clean, then in the condition your customers demand, and so on up to the brim of suitability.

But that’s a lot of if-come-maybes for your suppliers to understand. So no sense trying to tell them all this. People understand best when given one single reason for your no.

Here’s my Big Three, used not only in the no-thank-you staement, but as easy-to-grasp parameters when you’re explaining what you take.


Easy to understand, say, remember. And these three points make saying no

simple and impersonal.

Clean. Sadly, not as obvious to all as we resalers might wish.

Current of course covers in season and in style at the same time.

And “our customers won’t think this is cute“… is the best way I’ve ever figured to say NTY due to style, fashionabilty, or quality. As in, “cute” is what my CUSTOMERS decide not me, so the whole “our decisions must be based on what our customers will buy” is distilled into one word. Of course,

if you’re selling Christian Lacroix shoes or a Knoll sofa

you might choose “classy” instead of “cute.” Or even cwality… oops, quality.

Get your copy of The Money-Wise Guide to Accepting & Pricing here.

Read Full Post »

I love, love, love this simple, quick shot showing a range of shoe styles from a (more…)

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: