JAY X

Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« on: July 21, 2020, 10:33:36 AM »
Hi!

I want to know your opinions/experience about payment options when you are a small maker and don't have stock ready to ship.

Some websites ask to allow 4 weeks for shipment after full payment, (for sourcing parts and pieces, chassis, etc),  others may ask 50% in advance...¿What is/are the best options when you don't have stock?

Thank you for your advise!
Jay x


JohnRoberts

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2020, 12:09:10 PM »
You don't say where you are located... I am only familiar with US laws regarding direct marketing product to consumers.

Back in the 70s. the FTC tightened up the rules such that you must ship a mail order sale within 30 days of receiving payment, or mail a notice to the customer offering their money back if the shipment was still delayed. Back in the 70s we didn't have email and my kit business would have boom bust cycles where I could sell hundreds of kits when the Popular Electronics article hit,,, Operating a one man business I would sometimes have to consider stopping building kits to notify customers I was delayed...  ::) By the late 70s I discovered a slick mailer available with pin feed that used carbon paper inside, so I could address the mailer and print a short message using my sturdy dot matrix printer.

Of course times have changed and customer now expect near instant gratification. Years ago I used to schedule my shipments for once a week, now customer orders get shipped often within 24 hours.

Modern electronic payment methods also offer more flexibility.  I used to accept credit cards before dropping them because of the large overhead fees. I still take Paypal which is lower overhead and pretty widely used, years ago people would not buy using Paypal, now I do not get complaints and people can use paypal with credit cards.

With the credit card service I could authorize a card transaction but not capture the funds until after I shipped. I don't think Paypal has that feature.

If you are selling from a website you can incorporate a paypal "buy now" button to collect a suitable deposit for an order. I do not know what is suitable for your product or customers. Then when you are ready to ship you can send the customer a paypal invoice for the balance.

Just be clear up front with your customers what your terms and conditions are.

It is so much easier these days than back several decades ago... good luck.

JR
Don't only half-ass tune your drums. Visit https://circularscience.com to hear what properly "cleared" drums sound like.

JAY X

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2020, 12:25:53 PM »
Hi!

Thanks John!
I see...Another option would be to make a pre-order page...maybe asking a small fee for reserving a unit.


JohnRoberts

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2020, 12:33:01 PM »
Hi!

Thanks John!
I see...Another option would be to make a pre-order page...maybe asking a small fee for reserving a unit.
yes and once you have their paypal contact data you can invoice them for the balance, when you can ship.

JR
Don't only half-ass tune your drums. Visit https://circularscience.com to hear what properly "cleared" drums sound like.

squarewave

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2020, 12:55:52 PM »
This isn't really answering your question but this is the Internet so I'm going to inject my opinion anyway ...

I think waiting for an order before you start a build is not ideal. Even if there is some variation in the product, is it not possible to have 2-3 90% built? I think you're going to get a lot more business if you ship quickly. If I ordered something and it took 4 weeks, I would be a little disappointed regardless of how good the product is. You are probably catering to some people making compulsive purchases (do I really need a tube mic compressor?). So it might be important to give them the emotional satisfaction of getting they're new toy quickly. Otherwise, they may be deflated by the time they get it or worse, change their mind and decide they need some other gizmo instead.

ruffrecords

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2020, 04:49:40 PM »
For me it is a little different because everything I do is customised and costs too much for me to afford to stock a few. So I discuss a customers needs for as long as necessary to establish a design, price and timescale they are happy with. At that point I ask for a 50% deposit all of which (and more) is used to buy the parts. I then build the mixer. When it is completed and tested I ask for the balance plus the shipping cost. Seems to work fine so far.

Cheers

Ian
www.customtubeconsoles.com
https://mark3vtm.blogspot.co.uk/
www.eztubemixer.blogspot.co.uk


'The only people not making mistakes are the people doing nothing'

rob_gould

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2020, 05:30:58 PM »
I ask for 50% up front, then 50% plus shipping when the item is ready to go.

For anything less than €500, I ask for the whole thing up front just to simplify my accounting.
Studio furniture, modular synth cases and more...

www.gouldcaseworks.nl

JAY X

Re: Payment and shipping options for small audio makers
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2020, 06:04:37 AM »
Hi!

I see, sometimes the more artisanal/Custom the product, you can ask for advance payment. But for Standard production product, it is better to have some stock. it makes sense!.

Jay x


 

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