Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Money Isn't Everything

I'm on a forum that is basically jewelry designers. Some of them sell, some of them don't. However, all of them seem to think that I and a few others price our items too low. Apparently this hurts the industry as a whole. I will not share the official "formula" that many designers go by, but it is not hard to find if you look. I do not go by this formula. We have our own that we came up with after much thought and tweak it as need be.

Our prices started out really low because we started out working with mostly inexpensive materials, making simple items. As our skills and sales have grown, we have expanded into higher quality materials and more intricate designs. With that, as well as the rising cost of supplies (which has been scary crazy lately!) and other expenses (rising shipping costs, costs to maintain website, etc) our prices have naturally gone up. However, we believe they are still reasonable, though unfortunately they will have to go up more if the costs of materials keep rising as they are now. We will keep trying our hardest to find the beast deals however and will always pass those savings to our customers.

One of our business goals is to provide high quality jewelry to every "belle". We believe every woman that wants shiny stuff should be able to buy pretty shiny stuff without having to resort to going to Walmart and buying stuff that will not last more than a few days. We believe jewelry is an investment, we just don't believe you should have to take out a loan to make that investment. *grin* So we have worked really hard to find a good pricing level for our customers. Our target market is people like us - who want beautiful quality pieces at affordable prices. We believe we have accomplished this goal well, and so far, we have gotten positive feedback from our target market. And to be quite honest, I'd be embarrassed if my own peers could not afford what I had to offer. Not because I expect them to buy, but why would I try to sell something that not even I would buy?

However, we have also had customers tell us that our prices are a little too low. I'm not sure why they would say this except they must just expect it after browsing around the handcrafted jewelry world.

Since many of my readers are a part of our "target market", I thought I'd ask you. I'm really not interested in hearing from other people who do this for a living, because more than likely we have very different goals. *grin* Be honest. Leave a comment if you'd like, or vote anonymously if you'd prefer. I'm sorry the poll looks weird. I don't know how to fix it.

How well are our items priced?

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Heidi @ GGIP said...

"Our target market is people like us - who want beautiful quality pieces at affordable prices. "

I like the way you said that.

Interesting post about how the "other" people think that your prices are too low. I don't understand how it hurts them.

I definitely think that you have to price your items so that you make a profit. But I do like how you do have affordable jewelry. It seems that you have a range of prices right now which is always a good thing.

I have seen many etsy shops where the prices are so high that I really couldn't ever dream of purchasing something from them.

Jeanie said...

"why would I try to sell something that not even I would buy?"

Exactly. And obviously the other designers giving you a hard time buy jewelry for themselves that THEY pay an arm and a leg for. Nothing wrong with that -- hey, if you want to spend $115 on a necklace -- go ahead, but many, many people will never or can never spend that kind of money on jewelry.

It doesn't even make them "cheap". People just have different budgets and different ideas of what things should cost.

Are these riled-up designers also writing WalMart and Target and asking them to raise prices, too?