I went into this year committed to being prudent in my buying.
I've got the product lines I want, in the right proportions. It's been a long time getting here. So all I need to do is keep the product lines stocked, but avoid trying to bring in whole new product lines, or expanding the ones I have without justification.
In the past, higher sales have always been the only justification I needed. But that means all the profits are captured by inventory, and I've decided it's time to see if the store can actually liquify some of those profits.
It's been hard. I think I've made just a tiny little progress in profits at a tiny little loss in gross sales -- at great restraint.
Thing is, after 9 months I'm only 1.5% behind last year in sales -- and I had what I consider an under- performing November and December last year, so there is a decent chance I could actually match last year.
I've beaten last year in sales 4 out of 9 months. October will probably be hard to beat, but add in November and December, and I should beat last year about half the time and end up in about the same place.
The trend is up -- beat last year in both August and September.
An entire year of being very disciplined has probably resulted in a few percentage points better profit, at the cost of one and a half percentage points lower sales.
Not a dramatic result, but continued for several years might actually amount to something.
The other cost is that I'm not having as much fun buying stuff. It's very addicting, buying stuff. But like I said, when I buy everything I think the store needs, I just get a bigger store, with higher sales, but whatever profit I make is frozen in inventory. For one thing, I simply don't have ROOM anymore to act that way.
I'm trying hard to be mature about this. It's hard.
3 hours ago