As much as I love the business of treasure-hunting for profit, I find discouragement can set in quickly when I have a down month (heck, a down week). My spirit’s dampen when I go in to fluff the space and I can’t see a visible change in scenery. Wa wa. Usually what’s most frustrating about it, is that I can’t pinpoint the reason behind why an item won’t sell. There are lots of reasons I can think of, but I still feel helpless as to what I can physically do to get things a movin’ and a shakin’.
Not that these are the “be all end all” strategies to creating a sales environment, but why not try everything and anything you can to make money start to flow into your space?
1. Lower the price
Kind of a no-brainer, but some never do. Make it a significant enough cut that the potential buyer can’t say no. Use red ink to slash the old price and then write the sale price bold and large.
Honestly, sometimes I will simply move a piece of furniture or vignette to a new location in the space. Take an item placed high and move to eye level. Uncover a table and let the customer see more of the tabletop. Move a lamp from the back of space into the front-most corner. When customers see items from a different viewpoint, they are able to see and think about it differently.
3. Trade out
This one is tough for me. I won’t give up on a piece until it sells. I only bring an item back into my tiny garage when I am VERY desperate and it’s been 4+ months. Not the most effective approach from what I hear, but I get attached. I saw something in them to begin with and can’t let go of the notion that someone else will see the potential too!
What I fail to remember at times is that just because something isn’t selling in one season doesn’t mean it can’t make a comeback later! Take the piece home, store it away and bring it back when the season rolls around again…it will be like seeing it with fresh eyes- for you and your patrons!
4. Clump up
I find I sell more “smalls” (small $5-$15 items) when they are clustered and displayed together. I know there is some scientific proof about this retail concept, but I can’t seem to recall the source right now:/ All I know is that when I have all of my vintage books displayed together on a bookshelf, they move. I group my white glass vases together and people buy more than one. Multiple stacked crates trigger the impulse to select one. Vintage prints in a neatly arranged pile make one want to dig for a treasure.
Lastly, the goal is turn-over. We all hope to sell the $400+ armoire each month, but the constant flow of inventory in and out of your space is where the magic actually happens. You want a mix of impulse and big-ticket sales, absolutely. But I would argue, more than that, you want fresh inventory and a steady inflow of cash. Avoid staleness.
Try these tricks out! Let me know if you see a difference! Any other suggestions to move your items?