Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I Really Need to Stop Being So Sensitive

I was asked today why someone should buy from me when they can find one of the yarns I sell at a better price somewhere else.  Well, the obvious answer is that nobody is forcing anyone to buy anything and they are free to go buy the yarn from that other person.  It's really a no-brainer...  (of course I didn't say any of that to them)

But this is bugging me, and I don't know why.  Well, I know why - I'm too sensitive and it wasn't a bad question, just one that made me doubt my little yarn business.  I'm competitive with a lot of my prices.  And then there are some items that are good deals only if someone buys multiple items from me and gets my discounted shipping rates.  Often I have to purchase yarns in large quantities in order to get a decent price, and then I can sell them in smaller quantities to people who don't want a whole bag.  Not everybody wants to buy $200.00 worth of yarn at at time.  Not everybody needs 10 skeins of yarn for every project.  I like to offer variety, and it's especially beneficial for those who make multiple purchases from me. Often they can save overall when discounted shipping rates are factored in, even on those items in which my prices aren't quite as competitive.  Plus, from me, you can buy a combination of yarns that I pulled from 4 or 5 different sources.  If someone were to go to each of these sources and buy one skein here, three skeins there, etc. etc., they wouldn't receive deals on shipping rates or would pay a higher price on some of those yarns since they're not buying in quantity.

It would never occur to me to question a seller who has an item in a price range I'm not comfortable with.  If I feel like I can get a better deal somewhere else, I'll go shop somewhere else.  Or sometimes, even at a slightly higher price, I'll stick with a seller I trust.

I didn't want to be rude to this person, so I answered and told them that if they were to purchase multiple items from me, that they might save a little on that particular yarn, which is the truth, depending on the combination of yarns they purchase.

I can't let this kind of thing get to me.  I'm not dishonest with my yarn-selling business.  I don't inflate my prices to ridiculous levels, in my opinion.  I don't claim to always have the lowest prices, but I do my best to keep my prices down.

You can't be sensitive when you're running a business.  There are always going to be people who are dissatisfied no matter what you do.  Of course, often you can also learn from a customer's dissatisfaction.  For instance, one skein of yarn I sold someone was apparently tangled up during the spinning process at the factory.  I've used a lot of yarn myself in my life, and for me, this isn't that uncommon - I can't tell you how many skeins of knotted up yarn, even from well-known manufacturers, I've spent hours untangling .  But I realized when I learned this from the customer that not everybody has run into a tangled skein, and so now I'm adding  a yarn tip to my listings suggesting that it's a good idea to unravel the skein and roll the yarn into a ball prior to starting a project, just in case.  I felt bad that the person who bought that skein blamed me for the problem, but at the same time, it allowed me to come up with a way to warn people that this may happen once in a while...

I don't expect the world to buy from me.  I don't feel bad that the person who asked me that question today is going to shop elsewhere - of course I would like everyone's business, but everyone has particular wants and needs and I don't have the time or the money to please everyone.  Nobody does...that's why there's  not one huge megastore on the planet that everyone buys everything from!  (well, there's one that's close, lol)

My selection appeals to some and not everybody.  If I had several million dollars, I'd open a warehouse, purchase a few delivery trucks, hire a staff and buy huge varieties and quantities direct from yarn manufacturers and sell away!  But I'm just a chick that likes to crochet, wants to make a little pocket change, loves buying yarns, uses some of them, sells most of them and has a great time doing it!

I can't let the naysayers get me down...I have a lot of happy customers and I value each and every one of them, even if they're mad at me for their yarn being tangled.  :)

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