Shipping. It’s the part of selling my pieces that I hate the most. Forget marketing, working on the website, finding customers – it’s shipping that is the biggest pain. For one thing, it gets in the way of a sale – people might be ok paying $1000 for that table, but $300 to ship it? It can be a deal breaker, and I don’t blame them. Then they worry if it will get there ok. Having said that, some can argue the type of person willing to pay that much for a side table doesn’t really fret over the shipping cost.
So, if you pass that hurdle, then there is the problem of – actually shipping it. My smaller items, like clocks, aren’t so bad; but tables? OMG! It’s like another project all by itself. You have to find a cardboard box of the right size (unless you have to use a crate), then find stuff to put in it to keep it from being damaged, i.e., packing peanuts. Then you have to attach cloths or pads in strategic places on the piece to prevent damage. The last big piece I shipped – my Limbert side table – I was able to ship in a thick cardboard box, yet had to make a 4-way “strut” to keep the box from collapsing in the middle. Thankfully, it got there unscathed.
Ok, enough crabbing about shipping; here’s the upside.
Thanks to the Internet, i have a worldwide audience for my pieces, and a very lost cost way of getting my “catalog” out there. And thanks to FedEx, in my opinion, the best shipping outfit, I get my piece there in good condition, on time, and at a fairly decent price.
So while shipping, the problem child, will never turn 18 and move out, I can deal with it.