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  #11  
Old 20th October 2017, 12:27 PM
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DarkHyren DarkHyren is offline
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Most important thing is transparency. Don't be like a certain retailer and say "oh items are coming next month, no wait next month, no wait the one after that", it's all just hot air. If you have delays be honest about WHY there are delays. Doing something to prove that the delays are real (like showing invoices proving you actually ordered products) goes a long way to helping ease customers minds.

Many people wont put up with excessive lateness or rudeness from a merchant. Learn the value of the motto "the customer is always right". Don't treat customers like they are idiots or only have value because they can give you money. The best thing a customer can give you isnt their wallet, it's their loyalty and praise.

drifand has said a lot of things worth paying attention to as well, you might not have experienced the worst of things that an online retailer can do but we have, and because of it even though there are now 4 or 5 other AU online stores we could buy from we still dont have much trust in them.

Oh yeah, and while it might be tricky to do a lot of us would like deposit only preorders, we might hesitate to give all our money over for an item that wont be coming out for 6+ months but we'd be more willing to pay say $10 to secure that item. This does require you having the capital to pay for your stock in advance and not getting reimbursed until the customers item is ready to be mailed to them, but it's much better then a certain retailer that takes customers money and only orders afterwards at the last minute.
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  #12  
Old 20th October 2017, 01:27 PM
Ironprime3089 Ironprime3089 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkHyren View Post
Most important thing is transparency. Don't be like a certain retailer and say "oh items are coming next month, no wait next month, no wait the one after that", it's all just hot air. If you have delays be honest about WHY there are delays. Doing something to prove that the delays are real (like showing invoices proving you actually ordered products) goes a long way to helping ease customers minds.

Many people wont put up with excessive lateness or rudeness from a merchant. Learn the value of the motto "the customer is always right". Don't treat customers like they are idiots or only have value because they can give you money. The best thing a customer can give you isnt their wallet, it's their loyalty and praise.

drifand has said a lot of things worth paying attention to as well, you might not have experienced the worst of things that an online retailer can do but we have, and because of it even though there are now 4 or 5 other AU online stores we could buy from we still dont have much trust in them.

Oh yeah, and while it might be tricky to do a lot of us would like deposit only preorders, we might hesitate to give all our money over for an item that wont be coming out for 6+ months but we'd be more willing to pay say $10 to secure that item. This does require you having the capital to pay for your stock in advance and not getting reimbursed until the customers item is ready to be mailed to them, but it's much better then a certain retailer that takes customers money and only orders afterwards at the last minute.
We plan to be very transparent with customers. I actually find it surprising that more companies don't provide frequent updates on incoming stock.
As for deposits, I think that will be an option down the road but as we are just starting up it will be hard to be able to make that work financially. It will take a few months to be able to afford those kinds of sales.
In saying that I don't think we will be listing many preorders that have a 6 month waiting time, in the beginning at least.
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  #13  
Old 20th October 2017, 04:07 PM
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UltraMarginal UltraMarginal is offline
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  • be honest and transparent with customers
  • provide accurate estimates for arrival of stock
  • be competetively priced
  • I can take or leave incentive schemes, I'd rather just have consistantly good value product.
  • Post general information updates etc regularly on your site to avoid being swamped by hundreds of emails asking the same question
  • be aware that couriers don't work for everyone, as they don't leave slips for pickup at the post office. not everyone can receive parcels at work. I've had a few boxes damaged by couriers lately as well.
  • pack items on all sides of the box, not just the side the customer sees when they open the box. this is something that PC did get very good at, the crumpled paper is light, cheap and recyclable.
  • sturdy boxes are a good thing
  • have a good filter system on your website, it's frustrating looking through heaps of sold items trying to find that few that aren't sold out.
  • don't make your website secondary to social media, it must be your primary focal point for information and contact.
  • give me lots of cool free stuff. ;-)
  • It seems that multiple payment options are appreciated, as is some sort of layby.
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  #14  
Old 20th October 2017, 06:40 PM
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Trent Trent is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UltraMarginal View Post
  • be honest and transparent with customers
  • provide accurate estimates for arrival of stock
  • be competetively priced
  • I can take or leave incentive schemes, I'd rather just have consistantly good value product.
  • Post general information updates etc regularly on your site to avoid being swamped by hundreds of emails asking the same question
  • be aware that couriers don't work for everyone, as they don't leave slips for pickup at the post office. not everyone can receive parcels at work. I've had a few boxes damaged by couriers lately as well.
  • pack items on all sides of the box, not just the side the customer sees when they open the box. this is something that PC did get very good at, the crumpled paper is light, cheap and recyclable.
  • sturdy boxes are a good thing
  • have a good filter system on your website, it's frustrating looking through heaps of sold items trying to find that few that aren't sold out.
  • don't make your website secondary to social media, it must be your primary focal point for information and contact.
  • give me lots of cool free stuff. ;-)
  • It seems that multiple payment options are appreciated, as is some sort of layby.
The ones I've bolded are very important.

I can't get packages delievered to work. Once would get me a stern talking to, the next time would be my job. In my experience of having TFs delivered (and I have had an awful lot of TFs delivered over the years!), all of the issues I have experienced have been from couriers. In my area at least, Auspost are faultless. Yet I experience no end of problems from the local courier company who seems to have the contract for all Wollongong. To get an idea of what I'm talking about, check out the google reviews of them. I have had far more bad experiences with them than good.

So yeah, couriers may suit some, but don't think they are a one fit solution for all.

And yes, knowing what is in stock and what is sold out will get you more business. If I have to click on an item to see that it's sold out, you're gonna lose my business very quickly.
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  #15  
Old 20th October 2017, 09:36 PM
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Bidoofdude Bidoofdude is offline
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Stocking new official stuff, relatively cheap and fast shipping.

Seriously, every new retailer and their mum decides that they want to be the newest third party and MP Australian dealer on the block. They're great and all, but I just want some Transformers.
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  #16  
Old 20th October 2017, 10:39 PM
llamatron llamatron is offline
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Originally Posted by Bidoofdude View Post
Stocking new official stuff, relatively cheap and fast shipping.

Seriously, every new retailer and their mum decides that they want to be the newest third party and MP Australian dealer on the block. They're great and all, but I just want some Transformers.
I would speculate that comes down to supply + cost issues.
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  #17  
Old 20th October 2017, 11:48 PM
Ironprime3089 Ironprime3089 is offline
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Originally Posted by Bidoofdude View Post
Stocking new official stuff, relatively cheap and fast shipping.

Seriously, every new retailer and their mum decides that they want to be the newest third party and MP Australian dealer on the block. They're great and all, but I just want some Transformers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by llamatron View Post
I would speculate that comes down to supply + cost issues.
I am looking at more official stuff but like llamatron said cost is the issue, its hard to find suppliers of official stuff. I am new to this obviously but I really have no idea where PC sources some of their stuff.
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  #18  
Old 21st October 2017, 10:34 AM
drifand drifand is offline
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Originally Posted by Ironprime3089 View Post
I am looking at more official stuff but like llamatron said cost is the issue, its hard to find suppliers of official stuff. I am new to this obviously but I really have no idea where PC sources some of their stuff.
Mate we don't want where pc source their stuff. Find your own, charge your own and make sure you make profit.

Listing prices to be the current lowest price is absolutely NOT what I am looking for. Reliability comes a long way. I said this from the very start, no point giving 30-50% discount when there is no goods to provide.

Amiami and hlj are not the cheapest but their reliability is there, I don't even need to send a single email because they update you throughout the items you purchase.

Most sellers nowadays source their goods directly from china. Whether through tapao etc....I just have not reached that stage where I want to complicate my hobby to order it. This is where sellers who know what the heck they are doing do the risk and bring the goods in.

What I like from a retailer is they get a stock of 100-200 pieces of the hottest product and that's it. Stick to it. There is no point in doing extra runs which confuse and frustrate everyone else waiting.

Never be greedy, sell what you can sell don't get multiple suppliers for one product if you can't keep track.

I have to say there are currently two retailers on octa who are actively updating their products. That to me is being reliable.
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  #19  
Old 21st October 2017, 10:42 AM
Ironprime3089 Ironprime3089 is offline
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Originally Posted by drifand View Post
Mate we don't want where pc source their stuff. Find your own, charge your own and make sure you make profit.

Listing prices to be the current lowest price is absolutely NOT what I am looking for. Reliability comes a long way. I said this from the very start, no point giving 30-50% discount when there is no goods to provide.

Amiami and hlj are not the cheapest but their reliability is there, I don't even need to send a single email because they update you throughout the items you purchase.

Most sellers nowadays source their goods directly from china. Whether through tapao etc....I just have not reached that stage where I want to complicate my hobby to order it. This is where sellers who know what the heck they are doing do the risk and bring the goods in.

What I like from a retailer is they get a stock of 100-200 pieces of the hottest product and that's it. Stick to it. There is no point in doing extra runs which confuse and frustrate everyone else waiting.

Never be greedy, sell what you can sell don't get multiple suppliers for one product if you can't keep track.

I have to say there are currently two retailers on octa who are actively updating their products. That to me is being reliable.
Thank you for the advice. I will definitely keep that all in mind. My starting budget is not the highest but I am trying to get as much as possible for the stores opening
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  #20  
Old 21st October 2017, 06:44 PM
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DarkHyren DarkHyren is offline
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Originally Posted by Ironprime3089 View Post
I really have no idea where PC sources some of their stuff.
eBay, stolen goods, and the back dock of the stores his mates work at.
As drifand said, don't look to PC for any kind of example, if anything you want to distance yourself as far as possible from even having him mentioned in your threads.
In saying that it might not be a bad idea to look at what other AU based TF stores are doing to get some ideas. Some are listed HERE (clicky) however that list is incomplete and hasnt been updated in a while. Just as we've said, probably avoid using PC as any kind of example.

Do some research on different options like taobao, Hasbro Asia, and whatever other wholesalers you can find that can reliably source you stock.
Reliability is key, dont sacrifice service, quality or reliability for cost, because while certain stores might look cheaper they are also the ones that never deliver or communicate and force customers to have to do bank chargebacks and paypal claims.
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