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Old 7th June 2007, 02:22 PM   #1
vmhatup
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Default Help Building Small Electronics Store

I'm starting a small electronics store that will only advertise through a major local newspaper. I don't have a physical location and I'll ship to the client via mail.

Since I'm starting now, I will only be offering about five items ranging from $400-$1000. I already have a supplier.

Since I don't know what merchandise will sell (and what won't), is it reasonable (and fair to the potential client) that I advertise an item that is not available at the moment but will be available in a few days (after I order it)?
Basically, when a client calls me for an item, I want to tell him that I don't have it available now, but I can order it and receive it within a few days. Is this a good practice? Are there better ways to convince the client to wait a few days while I order the item he wanted? This is only temporary, until I start selling more.

I would prefer having the item available when the client asks for it, but I can't risk purchasing one (or many) of these expensive items if I don't know if/when they'll sell.

Any help or suggestions are really appreciated.

Thanks.

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Old 8th June 2007, 11:19 AM   #2
vmhatup
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Any help is really appreciated...

Thanks in advance

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Old 8th June 2007, 03:13 PM   #3
Logan
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I'm not sure what other option you have, besides going the route you describe based on the parameters you outlined. My two cents, it is better that you have the items on hand - but when people order online it is not unheard of that items don't ship right away or not on hand. I think what you need to do is think about the weakness of your strategy and how you can best offset that. For example, be prepared how you are going to explain it to the potential customer. Another issue, what happens if they return it. Does your supplier have a return policy - or you stuck back to a situation where you have inventory. Orders also get canceled, what happens if it occurs after you have placed your order. In some cases, I have clients that have the goods directly shipped to the customer - which can save time and costs. That might be something to consider, but maybe not if your supplier won't or you are concerned about the source becoming known.

I wouldn't let it stop you - just try to address it the best you can for now.

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Old 9th June 2007, 05:44 AM   #4
Peter Bowen
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I think you're far better off not buying stock until you've sold it. Dell does this very successfully.

Just make sure your customers have a good reason to wait the few days it takes you to get and ship and make sure that your suppliers are reliable (preferably have a few of them)

Cheers

Pete

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Old 9th June 2007, 07:58 PM   #5
vmhatup
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Thanks for the help.

Suppose I employ the strategy of purchasing once the client's interested, how can I reply when someone calls in response to an ad they saw?

For example, I advertise (in the newspaper) that I'm selling five cameras, and a few other things. Someone calls regarding an item. What's the correct answer to let them know that I'll have it in 3-5 days (after I've purchased it)?

Thanks again.

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Old 10th June 2007, 05:07 PM   #6
Logan
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I'm not sure if there is a correct answer, but there are better and worse ways to answer. For example, you might say something along the lines "to provide you the lowest prices, we don't stock all products. your order will be delivered to you in 4 days - and we guarantee that." This would be better than "so we can make the most money, we don't stock all products. your order should arrive to us in a few days and then we'll get it to you from there.". I would write a script - and try on others you know to get feedback on how it 'sounds'. You can share here also to get feedback.

Are there benefits to them? That's what you want to convey.

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Old 11th June 2007, 04:30 AM   #7
Peter Bowen
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Forget explaining why you can't deliver today but rather put a positive spin on it.
"Delivery to your door guaranteed within four days"

Cheers

Pete

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