How to Sell those Unsaleable Products
We all come across an idea or product that just won't leave our shelves or booth. It just sits there and stares at you. You maybe thinking "I have put a lot of time and effort into making you. You are one of my best ideas. Why are you not selling?"
Many of my ideas have flopped. I thought for sure I had a winner, but the world wasn't ready for my marvelous creation. I could have allowed my disappointment take over or I could keep persevering. Trust me there were times I wanted to just give up, but I chose to accept the challenge and brainstorm different ideas. I think you could call it "up cycling".
It would be a shame to give up, throw it out, or just put it on a shelf never to be seen again. Don't forget, your time and energy are already invested in that product . No matter what, it's worth something.
First, let's take a good look at what won't sell and ask the question why you think it won't.
Could it be because:
- There is no demand for it at the moment- Example, selling floral scents in the fall and winter was always difficult for me. I have to sell them in the right season.
- Too much competition for that product - Everyone is selling apple and spice.
- Needs to be trendier-Their products are "almost" exactly like mine. We are carrying the same jar, scent, wick, and color.
- Play around with pricing- it doesn't always mean that you need to decrease the price, but increase it. We will discuss this a little later.
You need to know the WHY behind the lack of sales with the product. When you understand your why, you will be able to figure out your action. These are issues I have encountered in my own business.
When I couldn't move a products I had to understand the reason behind it.
Here is an example- I used to sell pretty punch-tin metal candle holders. They were so cute and went will with my 16 oz. candles. I thought for sure they would sell. Well, none of them did. Luckily, I was testing out the market and only had 3 to sell. I was up for the challenge to get a better price for them instead of doing a flash sale to unload. I noticed that the market was full of items decorated with pip berries. There was the answer. I went out, bought pip berries, and decorated the punch-tin candle containers in a way they weren't a fire hazard. They flew right out of my booth. Sold all 3 during that one show.
Are you ready to brainstorm some ideas that answers your problem? This is my absolute favorite part.
- If you are working with out-of-season products or products that are not in demand, you could have a super sale. Super sale is the easiest choice to move product out of your store. The sale should allow you to recoup your investment and a tidbit more. Or another idea is just save them when you know you can sell them again. You don't always have to get rid of them unless the quality decreases. Now, if nothing moves you can give them away as gifts. There's a win-win solution.
- Have you been to a show where there are 10 other vendors with the exact same apple and spice candle? You know what I mean. Pull out your creative side. This is a chance for you to show everyone what you are all about. Make your candle or soap stand out. Market your product different than what others are doing. You can add something special to that product to make it stand out.
- What do I mean by it needs to be trendier? The story that I shared with you is a very good example. My product wasn't appealing to my customers. They wanted pip berries. I had to pay close attention to what the other vendors were doing and what their customers were picking up and buying. Your shows are excellent places to listen (watch) to your target customers. You can learn so much from their body language and their purchases.
- Pricing- This is one of the hardest things to formulate into your products. If you need a pricing formula click here. But what I will tell you might seem foreign and you might wonder how in the world does that look. It's amazing, but it does. Sometimes if the product is not selling, it could be because it is priced too low. It is all about the perceived value from your customers end. There will be many of you that this will hit you and create the shift you NEED in your business. It comes down to the value and what your market will tolerate. Start experimenting with numbers and see what works and get rid of what doesn't.
How are your end of the year sales going? Are you where you want and need to be?
What do you need help with? Write to me below.
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