It's A Gift

…some thoughts about gifts and giving and about life in general

Consider Your Business Style

by admin - July 28th, 2012.
Filed under: Uncategorized.

I recently closed my "brick and mortar" retail hobby shop after just over twenty seven years in business. I have not retired, but instead decided to concentrate on the gift basket business I’ve been building for the past seven or so years and on my other e-commerce site.

Some events of the past couple of months have made me think about my own business style. I know that there are many out there who think that they have to act somewhat like piranhas when it comes to their competition. I think that they are wrong! As long as your competitors are not actually setting out to undercut your business, there are a couple of very good reasons to maintain a friendly and civil business relationship. In the retail world it is extremely unlikely that you will always have the exact item that your customer wants. In this case, you will do yourself as well as your customer a favor by checking with your competition and referring him or her to the store that has the item in stock. This not only shows your customer that you are putting his/her needs first, but it also usually means that your competitor will return the favor.

Another benefit that I found was that most of us would share information that could prevent losses from fraud and theft. Despite that fact that I belonged to business organizations like the local Chamber of Commerce, I never received any "heads-up" alerts from those sources, but did hear them from my direct competitors.

Finally, when I had run my "Going Out of Business Sale" for as long as possible, I still was left with more inventory than I wanted. The prospect of having to get rid of it all via Ebay or the like was pretty unsavory to say the least! Luckily for me, since I have always tried to maintain the friendly competition I mentioned at the start of this article, one of my competitors made me a decent offer on much of my remaining stock. I’m sure that if I had followed the "piranha" model, they would have been happy to see me choke on it all.

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