Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Year-End Thoughts

As 2011 is now a thing of the past, I would like to reflect on an item that perturbs me. 99.99% of our customers are dear, sweet people whom we go way out of our way to attempt to please. They are gracious, kind, and appreciative of all our work we do to present our items in a professional and attractive manner. They know we spend countless hours looking for our unique, hard-to-find, really cool items. They also know we ALWAYS offer these items at a fair and reasonable price. They appreciate the ambiance of the soothing music, the attractive displays, the fragrance of burning candles, and the warm and friendly greeting from our staff. These are the reasons why our customer base grows year after year and our loyal customers keep coming back. 
  However towards the end of this year we experienced a few people who apparently did not feel this way. Through no fault of our own, a few people who came in the shop seemed hostile and rude. I don't know if this is a result of economic stress or what, but it seems that more of these types of people seemed to surface towards the end of this year than ever before. As an example, one lady stated that "This is all I am willing to pay for this item. Here is my phone number, you can call me when your ready to sell it for this price." By the way, the price she offered us was less than half of what we paid for the item. Another lady came in and asked for a quote on my custom built farm table and benches. I was out of town but my prices are listed in my catalog. She left leaving a message for me which said she would offer me about half of what my price is. I wonder how any of you would feel if you went to work for half pay. Hmmmm. 
Good thing we are now closed as I need a well deserved break especially from this kind of treatment. Most of our customers are dear and kind people, but there are a few who just don't need to come in any more. Wondering what you might feel about this. Please leave your comments below.


  1. One of the things that I've noticed while working in a part time retail job, is that people are becoming accustomed to 'negotiating' prices. This is particularly true in the jewelry industry. I was approached by a customer who had a pair of gold earrings selling for $700 and she wanted to know "what I could do for her." I had no idea what she was talking about, but luckily the owner was nearby and heard our conversation. She ended up giving the customer 20% off because the earrings had been sitting there awhile and it was easier for her to sell it to her for $540 rather than have it sit in the case. I don't know how that would translate to your industry, but I've been noticing it a lot more. No one should expect half off for something, no matter what the mark up. Continue to be your friendly and accommodating selves, its what your customers love and appreciate. Miss your beautiful store, see you this summer!!

  2. That's interesting! I would NEVER consider doing such a thing in a retail establishment. I wonder if that is being done in Walmart, Dicks, or in Restaurants now too? I know that haggling or negotiating is part of the "game" people play at antique shows. In that field, the dealers mark their wares way up knowing that they will be giving the people a "good deal" if they ask about a certain piece. Silly game. TV shows like "American Pickers" doesn't help matters either. Some people get the idea that it is OK to try to haggle down on the price to their advantage, thereby minimizing the amount of profit the store-owner makes. This is especially troubling when the poor store-owner relies on these small sales to put food on the table. Even more troubling when the people doing this have healthy paychecks coming in every week, fat 401K's, and driving new cars. What gives them the right to try to buy something for less than what it is listed at when they certainly have the means to pay a fair price. That urks me!

  3. It's very sad to hear that those type of customers found your store. They surely are not primitive country lovers. Anyone who loves primitives knows how special your store is and that wonderful stores like yours are few and far in between. I know that you and your staff were probably very nice to them and treated them with the respect they didn't show you and they were very lucky as I would have shown them the door and told them "don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out! But then that's what makes your store special, your "kindness". Take a deep breath and enjoy your time off. Those of us who love your staff and your store are eagerly awaiting your reopening

  4. We occasionally get a few of these in over the years but for some reason, this year produced more of them. I certainly hope this is not some sort of a trend.
    We thank-you for your kind words and hope you enjoy what we offer you this Spring. Thank-you for visiting our Blog. We hope to get more insights as to how to improve etc..via interactions from this Blog.