Okay, so, it’s that time of year. Nearly Thanks giving, and most of the stores out there have already schlepped out Xmas decorations, that fake gawd-offal cinnamon scent, and all the cheap toys they could find.
I’d like to stop and take a moment to say that I’m glad a major outlet has joined me in not succumbing to this trend. Nordstroms also refuses to give in to the trend of slathering Xmas all over the last half of the year. They promise no to “deck the halls” until black Friday. Good for them.
Here at Bearclaw, we don’t use a standard retail strategy. We actually MAKE things. Most retail places buy things in bulk, mark them up at least double, then have “sales” to get rid of them when they’re unpopular. So, they buy something like 100,000 phone accessories from China for $1 each. They put them on the shelves for $5 each. Don’t believe me? Check this website, find something, then check somewhere else, like Amazon. Happens all the time.
Now, when they get over the “gotta have it” hump, they can drop the price to $4 or even $3 (that’s 40% OFF!!!!) without damaging their profit margins. Usually they’ll make a lot of pomp and circumstance out of it, and in the end, they’re still making a good profit. Not really “evil” but a bit on the deceptive side.
Or, you could go the way of Walmart. Sell the stuff at $1.50, have modest margins, but put a lot of pressure on the company to sell to YOU lower. It generally goes like this: We don’t want 10,000, we want a million of them. And since we’re buying in bulk, You can sell to us at $0.50 a unit. And generally that’s true. But if you’re talking to a local company with limited facilities, the threat becomes: sell to us at $0.50, or we’ll get someone in China to make them for $0.25. Then, when they have your brand on their shelves, they either move you to China, or knock them off anyway and put the products side by side.
*sigh* I hate retail games. And here at Bearclaw we don’t play them. We have a standard formula that covers the material cost, the labor, and a little piece of the overhead. That’s what you pay. We don’t have “sales” because we don’t rip you off most of the time. You get a fair price ALL the time.
“But what about this thing on sale?”
Yup, we do mark down some items. The All in One kits, for example. Basically, we take the overhead from several items and combine them into one. Plus we take a little hit in labor to help make sure that you spin safely. We’re willing to do that.
Anything else you see on sale is because our costs temporarily went down. Like when a bunch of brass “falls off a truck” or something. We’ll pass that on to you. But if we find a new and cheaper way to make something, usually we’ll give it a new name, or just drop the price permanently.
So, don’t expect a “Black Friday” sale from us, or a Digital Monday sale, or the 9 sales of Hanukkah, 8 festive savings, 7 swords a frying, 6 poi a spinning… FIVE… GOLDEN…. SALES…. *shudder* no. None of that. We’ll just keep offering Good prices for good tools.