Wednesday, July 18, 2012

reality vs retail

When you're a retailer, reality rears its head and smacks you in the jaw (is that a mixed metaphor or something?).  Anyway, let's be realistic that in a perfect world you can open a shop and stock it with various goodies that just fill your heart with warm yummies.  NOT.  Down the street there is a Michael's that sells DMC  floss for .35 a skein and Ott lights for $40 after their discount.  I do stock DMC and sell it for the recommended retail because I can use it as a convenience for kitting needlepoint canvases. I  no longer stock Ott lights.  On both of these I can't compete on price, but at least on DMC cost-conscious people are only buying a skein or two for convenience so it doesn't bother them that I am selling at recommended retail.
But the Ott light price difference is real money and makes it worthwhile to drive 20 blocks to save $40.  So I don't bother to stock it.  I don't want to look at that lamp for a year waiting for it to sell.  I'd rather be a good guy and send people to Michael's (always suggesting that they wait for the 40% off coupon in the Sunday paper--I'm nice, but I'm also a bargain-hunter at heart). But it always surprises me that some people resent that I don't stock the lamp.  Even after I've told them how much cheaper it is at Michael's.  Duh!  Just hand me the extra $40 and I'll go buy it for you and deliver it to your door.  Vero is a small town.  I can do that.   But I don't want to stock it.  No way.

The other day a long-time customer called and asked, and I quote, "I saw somewhere that you're open on Sundays?"  I responded quickly, "in your dreams".  I shouldn't apologize, but I do.  My Sundays are spent in several ways:  1. reading the Sunday NY Times 2. doing bank deposits and sales records 3.laundry if I absolutely have to 4.watching golf and especially Boo Weekley who finally managed a top-10 finish this week (3/11)/or tennis, rooting for Rafa against my husband and Roger and 5.taking an afternoon nap.  I come from a long line of nappers and it's one of my favorite pastimes.  Notice that house cleaning didn't even make the list.  Thank goodness my husband, who is retired, likes to clean.  Bless him!

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