Well, I'll be honest with everyone. This Halloween season kicked my rear. I've never felt more inadequate, stressed, defeated and beaten as I did for the whole month of October. I never want to repeat another month like that in my life....EVER. It wasn't the volume of orders that we had (good glory! I'll never complain about that!) or the two festivals that did it to me. I think we just need to figure out the best way to take orders so there's as little confusion and frustration as possible. I've talked about this with the midwest branch of my company (my brother and his wife) and we decided that for next year, we would have a "rewards program" so to speak for customers that followed some guidelines we're going to come out with. It will be based on things such as-how early they order, how quickly it's paid for, and how and when you send us the measurements for custom orders. For instance, next year, near the end of September, we will feature lots of really fantastic Halloween costume corsets, HOWEVER, the price on the items will go up each week until Halloween, when they will be at the highest prices that we would ever sell our items at. The reason is that the procrastinated orders nearly killed us. I totally understand procrastination, I'm guilty of it, and I'm trying to purge it from my life, but we're just saying that we're going to REWARD the smart girls who plan ahead. So, essentially, you could pay $100 for a corset at the end of September, of you could pay $140 for the same corset at the end of October. We'll also be sending out really fantastic coupons along with the early orders, so you can get splendid discounts on your next purchases.
I'll be coming out with an official list of "guidelines" for getting customer perks, but we want you guys to know that we're not just doing this to save our own skins. I'm trying to make it so when people order from us, it's pleasant, painless, well communicated, and that you guys end up getting a perfect product and looking spectacular. And I'll let you in on a little secret. There's lots of odds and ends type of corsets laying around my sewing shop that haven't been listed on etsy or artfire for whatever reason. When I get customers that I really like working with, I generally look around my shop to see if one of those corsets is the same size as the one I'm sending them, and I'll throw in a free corsets. I know there's a handful of you who have been beneficiaries of totally free corsets, and I want you to know that it's because you made my job easier and were just beautiful to work with.....oh, and I happened to have another corset in your size (that's the biggest factor).
Oh, one last note, completely unrelated! Lots of you have noticed that we haven't been listing on ebay. We're really trying to run our business without having to do business through them. They are not a seller-oriented website, and when we give them 16% to 18% of each of our sales, and they still aren't willing to work with us ...it makes us feel that maybe we don't want to give them our money. I might change my mind on this, because ebay has been a good way of promoting our business, but they have also been, for the most part, a great big corporation that doesn't give a dang about little companies like me. Bleh. So, PLEASE check out our artfire and etsy stores. We purposely put better stuff on there anyhow. ;)