It’s Monday after Christmas, and we survived! Sort of. I will do a recap in the next post.
I wanted to talk to you a little bit about the merchandise store. We made the decision to pause the ordering.
Lack of Inventory
Christmas season is very busy for our supplier, and they are out of most things. This is not just because BDH placed almost a 1,000 orders, most of them for multiple items, but also because our supplier provides printing services to a bunch of Etsy stores.
As of now, we still have 226 orders in production, meaning they are waiting to get blank mugs, mouse pads, etc., so they can be printed and shipped out. If you order more stuff right now, I have no clue how slow it will get to you. On my end, I can only see that the item is in production or that it has been shipped, but not how long it will take.
Errors and Reprints
We’ve shipped 209 BDH mugs, 36 Ripper Cushion mugs, etc. Some of these mugs arrived broken, which is inevitable considering the sheer volume of packages going through at Christmas time. We replace these mugs at no cost to you. Please do not hesitate to let us know if the mug is broken. It’s not a bother. You are not inconveniencing us. We want you to be happy.
While we are here, that thing I worried would happen did happen, and it is now known as the Great Tote Bag Catastrophe. Some of the Cutting Edge tote bags have been printed with a mirror image on the back side. Nobody can tell me why this happened or how many of them went out that way. I’m resolving this on our end and will be issuing replacements.
Please look at your Cutting Edge tote bag. If it is a member of the exclusive Mirror Image Club and you would like a replacement, please email to email@example.com with your order number and a photo of the calamity. There is no need to return the Mirror bag. Please keep it as a spare.
We need to make sure everyone is happy before we take any more orders. And I want to see the correctly printed bags from our supplier.
When I watched many hours of dropship store tutorials, I was led to believe that it is mostly an automated process. It is not. It eats time like crazy. People email a lot. Some of it is unintentionally funny, like a customer who sent me an email advising me that their post office is closed and if I could “redeliver” the package to their house, they would really appreciate it. Of all the times to not have one of those Harry Potter owls handy, hehe. But most of the communication involves looking up orders, offering explanations and screenshots, and apologizing, all of which must be done with care.
If you look at the prices in our store, they are a lot lower than typical merchandise prices. It wasn’t designed to be a money maker. It was set up to recoup our costs and let you get fun stuff. Our primary income stream is writing. The store isn’t making enough – because it is designed that way – to allow us to hire someone to manage it and if I manage it, we are going to run into significant writing delays.
Which is why the merchandise store is going to be a seasonal thing. When we are between projects, we will open it for orders, keep it open for a couple of weeks, and then mothball it again for the next writing session. This will allow us to get new designs in, set up international stuff, and generally get a better handle on things.