Ten Things to Think about When You Got Back More Than You Expected…
When you return to your favorite consignment sale event for pickup and you find a bigger pile than you expected it is easy to be discouraged…here’s a quick list of things to ponder.
10. How were your items priced? Pricing too high is a sure way to ensure you bring home more than you need to. Pricing guidelines vary by location and even by sale. A few quick pointers – what would you pay for this item, USED? Often consignors are stuck on what they paid new. Remember shoppers are looking for a deal. Take time to look through the prices at your favorite sales. Get a feel for how others are pricing.
9. Did you discount your items? If your sale has a discount day and you didn’t discount your items might stick out as over priced if other consignors discounted. Discounting items is a great way to help combat the possibility that you overpriced. By the discount day shoppers are expecting phenomenal deals – if your item didn’t sell during the full price period it will be more challenging to sell it at full price on during the discount period when shoppers are looking for even better deals.
8. Were your items presented in an attractive manner? Doing things like pinning or clipping your pants to hangers will go much further than just folding them and draping them over a hanger. No one wants to buy a shirt they have to iron or a toy they have to remove pet hair from. The secret sauce that makes consignment sale events so successful is the presentation of items in a visually appealing, retail like manner.
7. Do you have a dog, a cat, a smoker or overly scent your house? Perhaps you just stored those items for six months waiting for the right season and they got a little stale. You can become unaware of smells that you are routinely around...ask a friend. (A big hint here…freshen those cloths with dryer sheets or do a quick Fabreeze spray before you load up!)
6. How in demand are your items? Many sales limit infant clothing because the sell through rates are always lower. (Many moms get these items as gifts and there are many to choose from because they aren’t worn as much as bigger sizes.) Some items become dated quickly – sell those “hot” items sooner rather than later – while you can get more of your investment back! Waiting to sell clothing or toys for years can diminish the value as “newer” or more on trend items have come out.
5. Consider the timing of the event. Some things are out of the control of an event organizer. If there was a freak snowstorm during the week of your favorite spring event chances are the sell through on shorts and swimsuits will be less than normal. Trust me, if sale coordinators could predict or control the weather or other event changing situations – they would! If it was out of their control cut them a break.
4. How much stuff did you bring to begin with? Maybe you are picking up three boxes – which seems like a whole lot compared to everyone else’s pile. Consider that maybe you brought in a lot more than they did! If you brought three minivan loads worth of stuff and got back three boxes – you are probably still doing really good!
3. Most sales track things like the total sale sell through rates as well as individual rates. Ask your sale how your numbers stack up. Put all that data to good use for you! If the sale has a 80% sell through and you have a 40% sell through chances are there is an issue that needs to be addressed. If the sale has a 70% sell through and you have a 88% sell through you probably don’t have an issue with big piles!
2. Did you volunteer? Volunteering is one of the (if not the BEST!) ways to get a feel for the pulse of your sale. You will see what people are buying, you will see the condition and prices of the items that are selling. You will see how hands-on the sale management is. You will have a visual feel for the foot traffic at the event. If you really want to understand what is going on at your sale you need to be present. (Of course most sales have the added perk that you will make more $$$ to!)
1. Your favorite sale doesn’t like seeing your “big pile” any more than you do. Try talking with someone onsite before you leave pickup. Show them what you have left. Most sales will help you figure out solutions so that next time you leave with a lighter load!
~About the Author~
Sara Dawson owns KidSense Consignment Events, a pop up consignment sale business located in Pottstown, PA. Sara has been an avid consignment sale patron for ten plus years. Sara has a passion for children, families and great deals!