Yep, less than a week to go and it will be Rosebowl Flea market again, and I am dreading it.
Normally I load on the Monday before and get ready, I got home and I just didn’t feel in the mood to load, too much to do and I guess I am not optimistic about doing well out there. To make it worse, they increased ticket prices by 10% for sellers so that increases the cost of selling from $190 to $210, well it is not literally 10% it is $10 for each ticket and since I have one that was $110 and another that is $80 it is more than 10% for the one ticket and slightly less than that for the other! Either way it is a big price increase. The reason given was that costs have gone up…
…but I believe it is more a case of an increase in the number of sellers that are quitting because it is not financially viable and it is difficult to get out of the flea market at the end of the day because of the ever changing layout that means that it can take 40 minutes to leave the flea market.
The show also has fewer customers coming through the turnstiles, they claim that it is more people but as sellers we have noticed far less people walking around the show ground and they come in later paying the cheapest price possible to enter. Rather than charging less to enter they increase fees to customers and they then arrive late and want everything cheaper and cheaper.
Less staff and now we don’t see trash cans, shoppers dump their trash in our selling spaces and we have to clean that mess up at the end of the day.
Last month I had a customer angry because I wanted his driving license or $30 deposit on a furniture dolly (that he would get back upon return of the dolly). He couldn’t understand that I have lost on average one dolly each month because people buy items and don’t return the dollies in fact I think they keep them to move their purchase when they get home, I can’t carry that loss. The cost of dollies especially the two wheel variety is high, the last two cost me $60 each. The items that were purchased cost that price or less so effectively I gave Away the purchase or lost money on the purchase.
Saying that I would rather sell at the shows than out of the stores, I could sell cheaper at the shows and make more money because of the commission and booth rent costs in the antique mall.
Ideally I would rather sell online and focus on that but who knows how long before eBay makes it no longer viable to sell on there.
Well Thanksgiving is here once more, sales for this week will plummet while everyone focuses on standing in line and buying gifts for their loved ones. Sadly for the most part those gifts do not include antiques and collectibles, it includes new fun toys.
The antique stores are quiet, no not quiet they are closed Thursday! The mall I have booths is having a sale, but as usual they will offer discounts to customers and we will sell the same number of items and get less. Usual routine each time they have a sale.
Oh well, how does the phrase go…
…Gotta roll with the punches!
Online business has improved at least for the first past of the month, it will help subsidize losses within the business this year which declined in May and sat in the quagmire since then with very little improvement.
I’ve started updating some of the tables I use. I don’t overload them so I thought I would purchase a couple of those folding tables that fold into a single unit instead of taking my heavy swap meet tables with their separate folding legs. Easier to pack into the Cargo van and take up less room. At the end of the day that is what really matters. I invested $80 including taxes in two five loot long ones and will make life easier, with those, and if necessary the two card tables, it is likely that I will have plenty of table space for what I need and I will invest in a couple more in a couple of weeks. Then I can store the big heavy show stuff. I have decided it is time to modernize and make things easier. I need an easy set up.
I will not sell my older show stuff. It belonged to mom and dad when they first started the business and if I need them they will be there and be ready for use.
While I, for one, do not believe that we are out of the woods by any means I certainly think that there is a tiny glimmer of light coming from the distance and while it is a speck the size of a mustard seed and things will pick up.
We are in the season of spending and people cannot help themselves. I am sure I am the only one that is too cheap to spend. I did my spending earlier this year giving people that I cared about loans that they had no intention to pay back but being a believer in only loaning what you are willing to lose I wrote that series of large loans off.
Enough said about that and back to the subject in hand!
Yep. I feel that people will start spending, credit cards may get maxed out but I am sure that things might improve.
In this light I am making a Stab at expecting business to improve and I am going to build up stock and make an early display of Christmas items and make a display case themed that way and put some high end items in the case.
I need to keep the momentum going that I have had this month after two terrible months in the antique store. I cannot afford to hemorrhage losses and that is what has happened too often. So a new era will dawn and I am going to focus on getting back to building the business and turning a profit across all the sales lines.
No more going to shows and selling my purchasing mistakes for the same price or less than I paid for them. I need to make a profit. Either make a profit or go back to working, just don’t want to go back to journalism, it ceased to be fun years ago, but realistically I have to make a choice and start looking for work. This is all a last stand if business doesn’t improve how I anticipate it to!
When you sell on eBay it is so frustrating, they take a simple process and make it less functionally that it should be. They could make life easier for sellers but they do not think of the obvious, they think of it from doing a specific function but in that process they forget that it should do exactly they imply.
A fine example if their bulk relist or relist as fixed price or edit.
When you add best offer it shows bulk options but these options only work if you already have best offer minimum values preset…
… Even though you are adding these in bulk and therefore it is obvious that these would not be set.
A simple corrective formula would be something simple like
If value=0 or value=blank then set value=buyitnowprice.
Then it can use the decrease setting. Of course it would lock out the increase setting because it would not be valid and then would give an error of best offer amount is higher than buy it now price etc.
So today I spent the time manually changing these settings because of a lack of functionality that should be in there.