Tuesday, August 11, 2015

That's not how a Liquidation sale works.

Cameron had a sports card customer who wanted to know if we'd sell him cards for less than half price.

First of all, at half price, we're already losing money since the markup for sportscards has never been even close to 50%.  More often 25% to 35%.

Secondly, that's not how a "Liquidation" sale works.

Most liquidations sales would start at 20% off, or maybe, if you have time, 10% off.  Then after a set time, you raise it to 30% off, then 40% off, and so on until they are all gone.

I started at 50% because, well, these are sportscards, and it is such a dysfunctional industry that even at 50% you will get complaints.  As Cameron found out yesterday.

This guy was so aggressive that even friendly Cameron was driven to distraction.  I called him up and commiserated.  It is, after all, why I'm getting out of sports card business.  I had two difficult customers in one day a few weeks ago and that was it.  After 20 years of consistently making sports cards a smaller and smaller sideline, I still get the occasional customer who acts like I should bend over for them.

Never complain about the customer.  But since I'm getting rid of cards, I'm not sure "customer" is the right word.

Anyway, back to the sale.  Liquidation sales work because the customer has to guess whether the product they want will still be there when the discount lowers.  It's a bit of a game of Dare.

So going outside the Liquidation prices subverts the whole process.

Anyway, everyone, sportscards are going to be 50% for a good long time, and we will slowly but surely be winnowed down.

I spent a couple of years winnowing down manga and anime at 50%, until I'd sold about half of them, and then I stabilized and started buying again. But I am truly liquidating sportscards until they are gone forever.

I'm in no hurry.

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