Saturday, 16 March 2013

To sell or not to sell, that was the question

It's been a busy end to the week, what with the Sefton Women In Business meeting on Thursday night and a Sales training course run by 6th Door yesterday.

As ever the WIB is a great networking forum and as it is only my second meeting I am still finding plenty of new people to meet and build contacts with.  We were all hoping that we could hear a great talk by Claire Robertson, the founder of Wellworths, but unfortunately she had to cancel at the last minute.  In her place we were treated to an interesting interview with Claire Wright of Zenith Art.
Good food, excellent company and the opportunity to develop the business made for a fantastic evening.

The next morning saw myself and a number of others attend a Sales seminar run by Chris Dawson of 6th Door.

This was an event, aimed at giving the top line on selling especially useful for the non sales person.  It was ideally pitched at the small business as it covered all aspects of the selling process.  Chris also ensured that all the participants had the opportunity to identify what aspect of selling they found most difficult and he made sure that these points were addressed.
What I really liked about the course was that it gave me a focus and a starting point to take forward the selling side of the business.  As a technical person I usually act like an ostrich and not do anything.  As I have understood from yesterday, doing nothing will get me nowhere, but doing something, anything will improve my chances of generating business.
Hats off to Chris, it was a great course.

If you are interested in brushing up your selling skills, I would recommend 6th Door. You can find his site here- 6th Door

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Iron on labels

This weekend was busy, I managed to get to one of the key trade shows with the chance to catch up with my suppliers. Each year they bring out new and exciting products and I always like to look and see what will fit in with my current business line.

One new product that I am going to stock is Taggit.  This is a neat little plastic clip that securely attaches your label to the garment.  It would be fantastic for items that you can't iron such as some of the new style sports kit or for items that are subject to more rigorous washing such as those used in some care homes.

Below I have a picture of what can be done with the basic iron on labels.  Were you aware that these can be sewn on too.  Admittedly it can be a pain if you have to stitch loads of labels on, so why not try some of the new clip ones

Attaching Iron on labels with the use of a clip can make the label is virtually unremovable.  

If you want to try out the new Taggits, why not use the new buy now button below and make this years labelling a whole lot easier. The cost is £5 for 50 taggits with £1.50 Postage & packing

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, 18 January 2013

Staying fit and healthy

With the UK being hit with snow and reports in the paper of poor uptake by some groups of the flu vaccine. It is even more important to stay healthy at this time of year.

The last thing I need when running my own business is for that business that I am working hard to keep going, is left languishing whilst I am suffering in bed with flu.
So, if you are like me you need to know what steps can you take to try and keep yourself up and running.

1. Wash your hands.
This is probably the single most important thing you can do to prevent the spread of germs.
Just make sure it is warm water, plenty of soap and ensure you rub all of your hands for around 20 seconds with the soapy mix before rinsing.

2. The old adage of coughs and sneezes spread diseases is true.
So make sure you catch those coughs and sneezes in disposable tissue and then bin that tissue. If you are caught without a tissue to hand, cough into your elbow, you don't touch or shake hands with that.

3. Get the flu jab.
This is especially important is you are in a vulnerable group. Reports in my local press are saying that pregnant women are failing to go and get their jab.

4. Exercise regularly.
Try and get at least 30 minutes every day.

5. Eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of water.
This along with the exercise will help to keep your immune system boosted, and so fight off those nasty winter bugs.

Hopefully doing this you will be able to fight off the bugs this winter, stay fighting fit and so not loose valuable business time.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Updates to the Crafty Craft site.

Well 2013 has arrived and along with a New Years resolution of trying to write more blogs, I have resolved to try and increase the rating on my website.
In order to do that I really must attend to it far more often and not leave it languishing in the background.

The Crafty Craft Web site

To that end I have started by including a link on the site that gives the customer a greater choice when it comes to garment decoration.
This area of the site was limited in choice with only polo shirts, sweats and hoodies as options for decoration.  Using the link now will take the customer to a complete catalogue enabling them to select from a wide range of garments suitable for decorating including Soft shell, Fleece Outerwear and Workwear.

So if you are looking for some workwear or leisure wear embroidering, check out the web site.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

eBay costs

Possibly like a few other sellers you have been sent letters saying that eBay may restrict your activity if you don't improve your seller rating.
One of the ways they suggest that you do this is by lowering the postage cost or even offering free postage.

However, if you are listing to make some money, as we all are, whether it is to clear some unwanted items from home, raise funds for some event or starting a small home based business, another aspect to remember when selling on any of these sites to be covered are the fees. In eBays case this is a variable amount dependant on the start price of your auction and also on its end value.
I have put together a table below showing how the costs stack up.  I have shown it as a 99p listing with only one bid, a listing where I have included the costs in the auction price, with only the actual postage in the postage section and a free postage option.  In all cases I have kept the costs of the 'item' approximately the same, that is I would make the same amount of profit each time.  I also have allowed a fixed price for packaging and set the same costings for mailing, that of a second class recorded packet.

99p auction Fees & packaging in listing Free Postage
Basic costs
Item £0.92 £0.92 £0.91
Packet 2nd class recorded   £3.15 £3.15 £3.15
Packaging   £0.20 £0.20 £0.20
Ebay listing fees   £0.00 £0.15 £0.25
Final fees Paypal   £0.37 £0.37 £0.39
Final fees Ebay   £0.10 £0.19 £0.55
Total   £4.74 £4.98 £5.45
Listing   £0.99 £1.83 £5.45
P&P Listed   £3.75 £3.15 £0.00
Total customer pays   £4.74 £4.98 £5.45

If you look at the table, you can see by listing using the 99p auction the overall costs to the customer are lower than it would be if I were to list for example, offering free postage as eBay wants you to do and make the same profit. It can also be seen that the fees if using the free postage method are actually more than you make selling the item!
I am after all, selling to generate some cash for me, not eBay. Remember this too, if you list for any more than 99p then you have the listing fee to pay whether the item sells or not, so if you have to relist to sell your item, your overall profit could diminish quite substantially.

I have made my decision, to list using the 99p auction as I am not a shop but an individual who wishes to sell some of her items and give the public the opportunity to buy a bargain. I do not have corporate wealth behind me that can fund advertising(listing items that so not sell immediately) so I pitch my wares accordingly.
I just wish those members if the public who think that they should pay little or no postage look at the costs involved...... it is not just the stamp!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Totally Zentangled

Had a fab weekend with the chance to get out to the craft show at the Trafford Centre, Manchester. One of the things we saw whilst there was Zentangle. It's a fab form of doodling. Just the sort of thing you do whilst eating lunch and is a craze that is currently sweeping America.
My friend got the beginners book and one for my daughter for Christmas though it was too good not to have a go myself.

Here's what I doodled at lunch

Not bad just using a scrap of paper and a ball point pen. To do it properly you need a fine pen and squares of paper they call tiles, but the principle is the same.

I also had a look on the web and came across some excellent site for tile ideas
Tangled Patterns which are excellent for lots of tangle patterns including strings. Also The Tangled Penguin which has a good start for beginners patterns.

I have already had some ideas as to how to use the patterns for infil in stamped images, diecut shapes and embroidery, now I just need loads of time to do more!!!.

As I see good patterns and instructions I will bookmark them on my Pinterest page. Check it out if you fancy having a go.

Sale ends 30th September

The iron on and stick on labels currently on sale in eBay will end on Sunday the 30th of September.
Stock up whilst you can.