Thursday, January 12, 2012

December Sales Recap

Okay, I'm relapsing a bit here.  Been pushing myself too hard this week to get the mess in my booth at the Peddlers Mall cleaned out.  Been working out there every day this week until closing time.  When I woke up this morning, my head was packed with crap and my throat was raw.  Geez!  I want this cold thing gone!  If I can get that booth to a certain point tonight, I'm planning on spending the weekend in bed, hopped up on NyQuil and, if that doesn't do it, then next week, it's off to the doc.

I was kind of shocked once I got all my shelves condensed and the last bits of Xmas all pulled to see that I'm like 2/3 empty there.  Wow!  And there wasn't a lot of Xmas to pull, so that should give you an idea of what sales there have been like.  It's kind of impressive to me that my space has looked like hell all week, yet I've been consistently strong in sales. 

It makes me hopeful for a couple of things:

1.  I'll burn through quite a bit of the backstock I've got built up at home during the off yard sale season.  (Although as warm as it's been, there may end up not being an off season.  Maybe I'll just declare a buying moratorium on smalls for a few weeks.)

2.  Tax season should be really good.  I'm already planning on pulling some larger pieces in.  I'd been keeping my furniture stock for YesterNook at the Peddlers Mall until I needed it, and most of it sold from there.  It's giving me ideas.

So, about December.  It's a hard month for a re-seller.  Unless you do new goods, most people don't look at you for gifts, which means your sales could lag.  I shared yesterday one way I get around that.  Another way is to try and have a wide variety of collectibles of all sorts on hand for those who are shopping for loved ones who are collectors. Finally, it never hurts to have a lot of good quality second hand Xmas items, expecially vintage items.

The month started off very well at both sites and was strong throughout the month.  YesterNook's open house on December 3 was a good day, and I sold lots and lots of vintage ornaments throughout the month.   I started increasing my selection of books in the middle of the month, and that seemed to be well-recieved as well.  I had very high hopes for the month, but sales pretty much tanked for me the week after Christmas.  I experienced my first sale-less days of the month in that week.  It just never recovered from that.  You can have a good head of steam, but a few slow days will always kill your forward momentum.  In the end, I did about the same thing as I did in November.  The really interesting thing is that I didn't sell any furniture at all in December, and still ended in about the same place.  I think my future really does lie mainly in smalls.

The Peddlers Mall was pretty awesome all month.  There was a slight slowdown after Christmas, but only a day or so.  December 26 is usually a good day there, but I think that it being on a Monday hurt.  They also did a special sale day on December 31 that ended up being really good for me.  Not only was my small furniture stash selling, but lots and lots of other items did as well.  As the stock started dwindling down, some of my long time shelf sitters started to go too.  That's always nice!  I ended up with one of my better months there, and probably my fourth or fifth strongest of the year.  It was definitely the best one since September.

And that fact got me to thinking.  Ever since YesterNook opened, I've spent way more time focusing on that space and giving second shift to the Peddlers Mall.  As a result, my November was 100-150 lower at Peddlers than it should have been, and even that fantastic December could have been about 50 higher, if I had focused on re-stocking as I should.  I don't necessarily think that what I did was wrong--you do have to nurture your new baby after all--but I think it's time to start giving Peddlers alot more attention and TLC.  It's my clear money-maker, for sure.

The challenge for 2012 will be to keep Peddler's well fed and growing--I have great plans for that space--while getting YesterNook up to the level it needs to be at to be viable for me.  I'll keep you informed how it goes.

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