What strategies does it take to stay ahead of the competition with a Consignment Business? We asked several Consignment professionals what trends they monitor regularly and how they cater to their clientele. Here’s what they had to say:
Tracy True Dismukes, owner of Collage Designer Consignment says, “We have a big following for authentic designer handbags and we also have a lot of Chico’s fans. Because of the location of our Homewood store, we have a constant flow of gorgeous designer bags (and designer shoes) that keep our clients coming back to see what’s new.” Tracy also emphasizes the importance of presenting inventory in an organized fashion, as you understand how your customers shop. “A few years ago, we got some great sources for Chico’s and Talbots clothing so we separated them out into their own departments and our clients love being able to go straight to their favorite racks.”
Sporting the same great styles and fashions you sell in your shop while working at your store is a strategy Jeanne Bingaman, Owner of Nearly New Consignments Boutique, enjoys. “Staying up to date with the ever-changing trends keeps us on our toes. We try to be fashionable examples: we wear the clothing straight off our racks, we display various outfits that any taste or size could wear.” Jeanne says it’s also important to stay in tune with your social network following, “We update our Facebook Fan Page on a daily basis with fashion tips, ideas and more. We pride ourselves on getting to know our consignors and customers on a personal basis. By doing so we are able to offer them many incentives: 10% off on birthdays, bring a friend to shop and both receive 10% off, “Shop & Drop” program for our consignors and many more.” Lastly Jeanne emphasizes the significance of giving back and being visible in your local community. “We give back to the community by continuously collecting donations of clothing, food and household items for various churches, charities and organizations throughout the tri-state area. Consignors know that by coming to us, they’re not only getting the most for their money, but the most for their community.”
“Know your customers shopping habits and monitor the best selling items,” says Shannon Wilburn, CEO of Just Between Friends. “We are constantly searching for ways to improve our processes to make consigning an easy and organized process.” Shannon says presentation is key, since her consignment business focuses more on sale events. “Our quality control and organization at our events is what sets us apart from our competition. We have very strict inspection processes for every item that comes through. Our sales floors are very organized by item, size and gender so it is easy to find what you want and need.” The simple things make a big difference in providing a positive customer experience, “Our online bar code tagging system makes it easy to tag and sell your items and consignors can check their totals throughout the sale. “
The logic is simple, understand your audience, their needs and what they look forward to when they walk in. Deliver by listing and responding to their needs with exciting options they can be eager to look forward to as you create repeat customers. The consignment business is certainly more personable than big department stores – and the deals are better too! Providing friendly advice and service will keep any Consignor above the competition.