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Every Friday, I post a small insight into running Curio City and/or Blue Hills Editorial Services. My most recent posts are directly below. You can also start with the first post, or use the subject labels to the right to home in on particular topics. Feel free to comment on anything that interests you.
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Friday, July 11, 2008

Let Us Now Praise Famous Products

My DayClock (product #37) tells me that it’s Friday again already. I don’t have a blog post on the hook for today. Let’s see what I can whip together out of fragments.

I intended to pay homage to products that have passed on. My inspiration was the Mini-Briefcase Business Card Holder (product #16). It took over two years to sell 63 of them. The retail started at $5.99. I gradually raised the price to $9.99 as my supply dwindled. Then, just as I got down to two pieces left, I discovered that the wholesaler had restocked. The cost went up from $3.02 to $4.25 apiece, but as I’m sure that I can still get $9.99 for them, I brought in 50 more.

Since that’s as far as I took this idea, I’m going to leave it there for today. This post will now degenerate into unfocused rambling.

The jewelry vendor that I found at last Spring’s Cavalcade of Crap decided that she cannot profitably work on a special-order basis, and it would surely fail as a non-customizable stock item. So it looks like it’s going to fall through after all this time. It’s a pity; it would have done quite well and enhanced my product mix. Google tells me that two other vendors are using the same concept. One sells rings and bracelets ranging from $50 to over $1,000. The other sells cheap bead necklaces for $14. Both of them do custom orders. My vendor would have filled the wide niche between those extremes. We could have hit that one out of the park. I’m not going to reveal the concept today because the jeweler has not yet replied to my last-ditch pitch, and I’m still not 100% convinced that the deal is dead. She just has to decide whether she wants to sell online or not. Her stock pieces will probably do OK in stores, and she might be content with that.

Is the summer slowdown finally here? After a stellar couple of months, last week was the first disappointing week in ages. Right now, it’s nip-and-tuck whether I will even beat LY. I think the government stimulus checks and tax refunds have all been spent, and the economy is about to catch up with me. Or maybe not...the occasional off week is inevitable. One nice hefty sale could change my tune at any moment.

Now I’ve got to mow the lawn. After lunch I’ll process some orders and make a run to the post office and UPS Store. A large shipment of caps awaits me there, along with a couple of smaller boxes. My wife unexpectedly needed her Forester in Framingham today, so I can only retrieve one Miata load…and that ain’t much.

Reason to hate Yahoo: Same old reason: They raised the minimum prices on a total of 43 of my keywords in three separate batches. I deleted 30 of them. Nice going, Yahoo! If this keeps up, their only clients will be eBay and Amazon...which, I imagine, would suit them just fine. Oh well, at least they’re freeing up money that I can use to cover Google’s ever-rising prices.

  • The Zombie Store
  • Legal Extortion

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