Summer Sales Sense-Cents-Since

Heartfire (click to listen)

How many of you sell your products online? To use a Dr. Phil-ism, “How’s that workin’ for ya?” In other words, how are your sales?

It’s MUCH different than I or Randy sensed it would be. It’s not only MUCH different, it’s a MUCH harder, more complicated, over-rated and under-estimated sales model. Randy, and perhaps I too, thought that IF YOU BUILD A WEB SITE, THE WORLD WILL SURGE TO IT, BUY FROM IT AND WHA LA!! SUCCESS WILL BE OURS! HA! or in our case, HAH!

Turns out that building the web site happens to be the EASIEST thing you’ll do along the ROAD TO RECOGNITION! While we knew there were lots of  ‘things’ to be found on the WORLD WIDE WEB, I don’t think we actually knew just HOW many ‘things’ can be found on the WORLD WIDE WEB and that’s when you KNOW what search term to type into the browser like ‘glass heart’, ‘romantic gift’ from the heart.

Did you know there is a site called Wordtracker to browse that actually posts the most popular search terms and that you should build your text and advertising based on those terms and then periodically CHANGE the terms based on search term popularity? Who knew????? Good Grief! If you didn’t like the idea of feeding a sour dough starter, you will NEVER be fond of feeding your web site, blog page, and promotional materials the MEAT required to keep them UPDATED!  FYI: You are reading the words of one who let the SOUR DOUGH starter EXPIRE!

So, while I am totally engaged in ‘feeding the insatiable monster’ to promote web sales, I was ‘advised’ to introduce HIDE A HEART to the world in closer proximity to moi by venturing out to Summer, Holiday and Church Bazaar, Festival and Community Sales to ‘get the word out’ and spread the HIDE A HEART message father afield.

I began with a Church Bazaar during the beginning of the holiday season in 2009 at which I did not take any photos. (NOTE: Take photos of everything you do because you never know when they might prove useful. But I had no HIDE A HEART sign or place to display it. I did use the cupcake holder, but I didn’t take the hearts out of the package!) I did not research the location of the Bazaar because I paid $20.00 to co-sponsor a table with another CRAFTANATOR (my newly coined term). The church was located in a community that suffered a great deal of job loss and the Church Bazaar provided a really wonderful way for church members and neighbors to spend a few hours chatting with other church members and neighbors and peruse products that we had all so carefully created, packaged and displayed in the hope of selling to all who stopped by.

HIDE A HEART quickly realized the community needed a price reduction to be considered for purchase in light of the fact that the table next door was selling ‘surprise’ bags for $1.00 which ended up being filled with garage and household bits…mostly unmatched, some unusable…but people seemed to appreciate the ‘game of chance’. Hmmmm. Can’t compete or could I? It just dawned on me that I could have slipped a HIDE A HEART into a sack too and let people pay a $1.00 for a chance to win one and when I’d reached the price point from which I might make the slightest profit, drawn a winner! I do something similar with the HIDE A HEART FAN PAGE when I reach a certain goal!!! Why was I not thinking??? Nevertheless I was so grateful that over two days eight customers purchased a HIDE A HEART. However, this time I did learn that one wants to price things with cents…like $19.95 or $9.95 and bring $5.00 bills and nickles!

The next ‘venture’ was to a hospital Holiday Bazaar–again no photos. This time we paid $40.00 for the table/chair space + a percentage of our sales and all the CRAFTANATORS were directed to arrive at 5:30 am to drop off products and then go park cars in the north 40. We set up our tables in huge expectation for sales because so many customers were ‘on campus’…it’s a BIG hospital! (NOTE: You know those BIG containers of coffee you can purchase at STARBUCKS…get one…you’re gonna need it because the ‘selling space’ was extremely drafty and cold…around 40 degrees…and don’t forget to bring mittens and a hat!)  This was a single-day selling opportunity, and with the general American economic climate still suffering, although I had planned for sales of 30 HIDE A HEART, I was delighted by sales of 20! Progress!

The first summer festival sale was a couple of weeks ago at an event titled GOOD IN THE HOOD. (NOTE: I took pictures! See? I’m learning!!!!) This was a two-day sale for which I paid $150.00 for a lovely canopied space that included a table and 2 chairs set up on a grassy field of a neighborhood elementary school.

Display sign made, cupcake holder wrapped in pink tulle, table cloths,  two types of HIDE A HEART packaging for variety and price point + ways to display open product for touching, I enthusiastically set out for ADVENTURE!

I think the display was sweet and inviting.

People were friendly. Music was great. Food Fantastic! Money was scarce, so again I quickly decided I would offer a HIDE A HEART deal and sold enough to cover the cost of the booth reservation +. 

The most popular sales were of the Prayer & Hope & Healing HIDE A HEART.

Since beginning SALES IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, I have learned something every time I have a Bazaar (no pun) adventure! Be sure to walk away from the display table; Greet EVERYONE passing by and hand him/her a HIDE A HEART flyer or brochure. YOU never know…while they may not have the cash on that day (because I am unable to take credit cards), IF they buy on-line, HIDE A HEART is ready!

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3 thoughts on “Summer Sales Sense-Cents-Since

  1. Well done on your sales and learning activities!!!
    I think any form of stall is worth a go – especially when you’re starting out on a new venture!

    People’s reactions to your product, their questions, the opportunity to get immediate feedback – that in itself is so valuable, that add to that the potential to make sales – and its an all win situation!

    I was fortunate to be selected as a seller as part of a creative kiosk that was provided by my local city council during the run up to the christmas season 09.
    I was able to have this stall before I even attempted to open my online shop – I was so glad I did, it enabled me to see what type of customer my Jewellery attracted, age ranges, facial and verbal responses to prices – the list goes on… above all else it gave me confidence in my wares – which is imperative to be successful! Then to top all that I made quite a few sales!!

    The internet is an amazing tool for new businesses to have – the ability to have an instant international audience is incredible – but it is also a giant rabbit hole, filled with hundreds of similar people thinking the same thing…

    You can never stop learning in business, you can never know everything about your business as it needs to continually evolve in order to survive and grow.. so as brilliant as the internet is for enabling us to have these fantastic shop windows that are open to the whole wide world – the importance of direct customer contact will never wane.

    So, even if you’re sure your items wont sell in a small fete or bazaar, it really is worth doing something of that nature every quarter at least!
    Not only will you be able to physically see how someone reacts and responds to whatever it is that you sell… but there is always a good strong chance that it will lead to a sale via your internet shop further down the line!

    Its a win win situation!!!

    Make the most of the summer and get out there I say!!!

    Sorry, I think I may have rambled for far too long on that subject….

  2. Thank you so much for visiting my little blog at Milk & Honey! I had seen your Hide a Heart at Amber’s blog (Mommy the Marketer). So cute! I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. Congratulations on your business going so well. Oh! And I LOVED hearing your singing! So beautiful. 🙂

  3. I learn something new every time I attend a show! What’s right for one show, might be different for the next show. I’ve learned that if people can see and touch your items, it makes a world of difference. And they love sales! Thank you for commenting on my blog and leaving a link here. I enjoyed reading it.

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