Monday, October 14, 2013


Running a store like mine, I end up with lots of excess.  There's no way around it.  If I try to order so tightly it doesn't happen then I'm inevitably underordering.  Yes, I can sell through at 100% --- but only at much lower sales levels.

Obviously it's a constant balance between profit margin and sales. 

So anyway, I end up with a lot of junk.  I will sell the junk to individual customers at big discounts if they express an interest, but other than that I don't put stuff on sale.  Too much work for too little return.  Like advertising, I thinks sales have lost their effectiveness.

So I simply set it aside in the basement.

Lately I've been wondering what I can do with it all.  We have a storage unit full of books, as well. 

I may just see if I can't get pennies on the dollar for my boxes of comics.  The overstock toys and books and cards are probably just a loss.  Headed for the dump some day.

I'm lucky to have the storage, I guess.

I just ordered a ton of books at discounted prices -- and I know that probably half of them won't ever sell.  But the half that do sell will pay for the rest.  It's the only way to do it.  Seems like a bit of a waste but without knowing what the customer will buy, I'll always have stuff I thought they would buy but they didn't...

What about the internet?

The hidden costs are too high.  Mostly time and mental space.  It's more or less an all or nothing proposition -- being aware constantly of what things are selling for, and how to divvy up the material in a cost-effective manner, etc. etc.  For low return.  Yes, I could spend years online selling this stuff off, but I've got better things to do.

So, I'm not asking for anything here, just saying. Our whole culture is awash with overstock, though maybe only retailers see it cold-bloodedly.


Duncan McGeary said...

Time is worth more than 10.00 an hour to me. If it was worth 10.00 an hour I'd be working a full shift at the store, but I don't...

But even at 10.00 an hour almost any solution to the overstock problem -- once you include the 10.00 an hour -- isn't cost effective.

Kevin said...

"I may just see if I can't get pennies on the dollar for my boxes of comics. The overstock toys and books and cards are probably just a loss. Headed for the dump some day."

I guess I don't get it. So instead of having a "sale" and offering the toys, books, and cards for real cheap, you'd rather just dump them? Wouldn't it cost as much time to sell them as it would to box it up and haul it to the dump? may as well just put a free sign on it and put it in front of the store and let the tourists and festival goers pick through. Or maybe offer a deal..."Free overstock crap with purchase of $10 or more!"

Unless I misunderstood...which is possible. I am on a diet and haven't had cookies or scotch for weeks. It is making me exceedingly fuzzyheaded.

Duncan McGeary said...

Sales don't work. People don't respond to them. They are a lot of work to put in place, work I could be spending on something that actually is effective. Space, time, all that.

If they would actually work, I'd do them. As you said, why wouldn't I?

Duncan McGeary said...

For example, I'll make you a standing offer right now -- any box of 300 comics downstairs for 50.00.

But you can't pick and choose -- it will be random, with all the junk and all the duplication.

Because otherwise, I have to spend hours going through and separating them and making sure you get decent non-duplicating stuff, and by the time I'm done, I'll want 100.00 a box, at least, and if it's good stuff, I want 150.00 a box. (.50 cents for good comics...)

So what do you say? 50.00 for a random box?

Duncan McGeary said...

In other words, 90% of it is truly junk, and extracting the 10% that isn't junk isn't worth the time and effort to extract it.

Leitmotiv said...

I'm interested in old, dead CCGs if you have any.