House Of Rave on a new Supplier

HouseOfRave will be going through some big inventory changes over the next few days as I switch suppliers. Changing suppliers is no small task because it will essentially be a whole new business. I will probably end up LOSING money on HouseOfRave this month, but it’s in the name of future expansion which can’t happen with the current supplier.

There are tons of different changes I will have to deal with:

I still will essentially get orders then forward them to the new supplier, but for now it must be done the ghetto way of manually entering each order into their website. This takes lots of time, but will be worked on as the relationship builds.

I used to send money at the end of the month for products I ordered. Since I don’t have an established relationship with the new vendor, I must make sure to pay them soon afterwards. This has actually worked out quite nice, because I simple pay them each day for the products I ordered. I know right then and there how much profit has been made per day, the supplier gets his money right away, and at the end of the day I don’t owe anyone anything.

This one will be hard, as with the new supplier I currently have a straight percentage discount for products which isn’t very high right now. Topping that off, the supplier has higher shipping prices than the previous which really bites into my profit. However with this system I know that if I bring in $1,000 I just made approximately (percentage of that) in profit.

I used to track sales in a specifically designed Excel sheet so I could compare it to the actually invoice at the end of the month to check for billing errors. Luckily the shopping cart system I’m using (Yahoo) has more statistics features than Shopsite (which I use for HouseOfRave), so this will actually be an easier job. Also with the current payment system I have going with the supplier, I can easily see my per-day profits at the end of the day.

This is the biggest pain of all. Since HouseOfRave sells such niche rave/club stuff, I have to scour the new supplier’s inventory for stuff that would do well in that area, and their selection of those kinds of products is relatively limited. This might be a bad thing, but it also might be a good thing. Perhaps I may stumble upon a new genre of products that sells very well on HouseOfRave? I’ve learned you can NEVER quite predict which items are a big hit. I’ll just have to continually change things up on HouseOfRave to see what sells or doesn’t.

This is a big change as pics and descriptions take the longest amount of editing and creating time. Because HouseOfRave was a very rave/club niche site, so it had a lot of blinky stuff with blinky images to compliment. Some of the pages would be filled with product images that looked like this:

Now for the most part the pictures will be stationary and the products will not be as “Blinky” which may or may not be a good thing. I always thought the animated .gif images the previous supplier always used were cheesy, but after removing a lot of the current products, I quickly realized that all the cheesy blinky product pictures were a big part of the site.

They just plain demonstrated the product effects very well. It’s funny how AJAX, Flash and other in vogue technologies can help a website sell more and look better, but sometimes a simple .gif image (which has been around since 1985) can be much more effective.

I started going ahead and making .gif images for some of the products the new supplier offers and also for because I realized how much more interesting they make the site look. With a simple .gif you can convey a lot more information in one image….like how my studying is going