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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Milestone: First item shipped! And I'm still worried

Update (May 14, 2014):  After speaking with fellow vendors and researching what some ETSY sellers do re: tracking, I've decided that all shipping costs will be at the customer's expense.  If they want the package tracked and with insurance, they will have to pay.  My disclaimer: "LeilaBel Anne/Jennifer Ducusin is not responsible for lost, stolen or damaged goods in transit."  Packaging will be at my expense.

Original post...

Not gonna lie...I am hesitant to open my ETSY shop because the costs associated with shipping and packaging worry me.  With my limited funds (reminder - I haven't 'worked' since 2011), I've allocated most of my dolla dolla bills to buying supplies and tools for creating super cute, high quality goodies.  If I wouldn't own it, I'm not going to make it.  I knew one day I would have to ship something...that day came last week.

Deep breath.  Can't delay shipping now! 

Last weekend, my friend asked if I could make a scarf for her.  Since I don't live in T.O. anymore, I had to mail it out.  Envelope chosen, scarf wrapped and tagged, payment received via EMT...good to go!  Thank you, Tiffany!  Check out this beautiful mama rocking a LeilaBel Anne infinity scarf!

This is what I did with Tiffany's mail out.

1. Tissue paper to wrap
Ideally, I would use kraft tissue paper, but I had white on hand - BAM!  Cost saver right there.  After failed attempts to punch a decorative edge (see pics below), I simply wrapped 2 layers around her folded scarf and tied yarn around it.

2. Personalized tag
Using my large logo stamp (from Vistaprint) and trodat stamp (from Staples), I stamped card stock circles (made using a 1.75" Fiskars punch) to make my tags.  For Tiff, I wrote "Made For: Tiffany" on the back.  For my magnets, I'll be using a generic "Thank You" since customers will be selecting them at shows .

3. Kraft envelope
Credit to my hubby for selecting the padded envelope.  With a kraft envelope, I can stamp my logo onto it.  Logo Pride Bonus!

4. Canada Post shipping options
Here is where I am most concerned.  To track or not to track - this shouldn't even be a question.  TRACK!  If I don't track, there is a chance a customer may receive a second package if the first was thought to be missing, but was actually unknowingly delayed.  Trust - it's happened to my husband with his fishing lure business, so I know it can happen.  It's more cost effective to initially spend more to track than waste money sending another order.  I'm debating about how my prices will be affected by shipping costs.  Based on what I've researched on ETSY, I think sellers are increasing their prices so a fraction of the fees are paid by them, thus the appearance of lower shipping fees.  I'm debating what to do - what will turn off a potential buyer more? Higher item prices or higher shipping fees? What is your opinion?

Still not gonna lie...even with my first item shipped, I'm still worried about the costs associated with shipping and packaging.  Whatever.  Get over it, j.anne!  I seriously need to get over it if I want to have a successful business. Shipping and packaging are going to cost money.  Even I'm giving myself an eye roll for this.

Much love,

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