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Looking for Early Adopters for Supplies Marketplace

iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2020, 03:16:52 pm »

Hi guys,

In preparation to launching our new Supplies site, I'd like to invite those who sell supplies (art and craft supplies, party supplies, home and office supplies, beauty supplies, home and garden supplies, pet supplies etc) to start posting those items in their new Supplies stores.

For now, we'd like you to use iCraft admin pages to upload your inventory. We need to create enough inventory of supplies across multiple categories before we could launch a separate Supplies marketplace.

Here is how this will work

1. Register new account on iCraft to setup a new Supplies store. If you are already registered on iCraft, either use a different email for your Supplies store or let us know if you'd like to have a single login to both stores with your current email. We'll help you set that up.  

2. Contact us after that, so we'd remove all fees for your new account meant for selling supplies. We are offering 1 year free accounts to all new adopters.

3. Start uploading your items in the new hidden Supplies category. Let us know when you need new sub-categories and we'll add them for you.
Your Supplies store will not be available on iCraft through regular search and navigation. Your Supplies store and your product listings will be accessible only through direct links that you'd share with your potential customers. So technically you could send people directly to those page from Facebook and other social media sites and sell your items that way.

Please let me know if you have any question. Thanks!
« Last Edit: January 19, 2020, 03:22:08 pm by iCraft Admin »
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2020, 08:18:58 pm »

I wanted to add to this post that we will be accepting soon products in new products categories, other than Supplies. Please contact us to let us know if you want to sell Vintage items, Indigenous products, Sports Memorabilia items. We'll setup new categories and sub-categories in our system for you and provide you with more info on the selling process. Thanks!
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #17 on: January 24, 2020, 09:42:13 am »

I would like to use one login and current email for both my regular iCraft store and my supplies store. To keep my brand, may I use the same store name for both, but use a different tagline for each store to distinguish between the two stores? Or would it be more efficient to keep my current store name for supplies and replace the number 1 with the number 2? Also, with regards to the new supplies marketplace, will the same payment system be in place for buyers - given 3 days to pay for orders? Thanks!
SarahMars


Posts: 238


« Reply #18 on: January 24, 2020, 10:07:22 am »

I was wondering why you use 1 in the store name. I think it looks better without any numbers. Just my two cents.  Undecided
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #19 on: January 24, 2020, 02:47:33 pm »

Hi Sarah,

Thanks for inquiring about my reasoning for having the 1 in my store name. When I was selling on another marketplace site, I had 4 four different shops including my current one here. It was tough keeping up with all 4 shops since each shop required a different login. After 3 years, I decided it was time to downsize and roll all listings into 1 shop. Of the 4 shops, CreativeXpression1 (the number is also a play on the word "won"). I believe I made the right choice because within 6 months of combining all listings into one shop, I had more shop visits and more sales than I did in the 3 years of having 4 shops. :-) Blessings ~ Rita
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #20 on: January 24, 2020, 11:11:44 pm »

Hi Rita,

Eventually, we'll have a single login to all your stores.

For now, however, if you want to login with the same email and keep the same store name, I suggest you use the current store, without creating another account.
 
I'll send you instructions next week on how you could start uploading your supplies inventory into separate categories, using your current iCraft login. Supplies listings will not be displayed on your iCraft store.
Could you tell us in which Supplies sub-categories you currently sell? And if you have a most recent CSV file that we could use to upload all your listings for you, that would be great. 

In terms of payments, we will be rolling out new payment pages separately from the current site soon. We should have more payment options. However, I am not sure if we should remove the instruction to buyers to pay within 3 days, if they didn't pay immediately after their purchase for whatever reason (technical issue, non-sufficient funds etc). Do you think 3 days is too long? Thanks!
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2020, 12:05:32 pm »

Good Morning,

I'll be sharing several short posts in reply to your latest post – makes for easier reading...

I will first address the last question you posed in your post below....
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #22 on: January 26, 2020, 12:21:43 pm »

This is a detailed answer to your last question; I'm a writer and often use analogies to express the point I'm attempting to make. I'd written my reply not long after I read your question, but left my reply sit for a few days instead of posting it right away. I come away with the same questions posed and the same conclusions. Only iCraft can answer my questions below.Those answers will determine if my conclusion is altered, whether I post the other short replies as it relates to the first part of your reply and also whether I choose to keep my store open on iCraft.

“Do you think 3 days is too long?” My answer is a simple yes. Here is why:

1. When you or I go to a grocery store to purchase food, does the store require we pay for the food before either of us are permitted to leave the store? Does the store give its buyers/customers (you and I) 3 days to pay for the products in our carts or does the store require that we immediately pay for the products? 

2. The grocery store, like iCraft, gives its customers the option of how they want to pay for their order: cash, check, credit card. The major difference between the grocery store and iCraft is that grocery store customers pay immediately for the food in their carts not within 3 days.

3. I’m asking if you could mentally walk in the shoes of potential iCraft sellers. As a seller would you think it’s fair if an online marketplace host site failed to disclose in its seller information that the site grants buyer(s) the option of 3 days to pay for their purchases? I carefully reviewed the “sell handmade” info on iCraft site and have not located any reference of this most unusual business practice iCraft has implemented for its sellers' customers. Why not disclose in the seller information for those vendors considering opening a store on iCraft host site? Why is it that sellers are only introduced to this iCraft business practice when they receive an order notification email? Would it not be more beneficial to building the host’s relationship with its sellers if this practice was disclosed upfront to potential iCraft sellers?

4.  When a buyer places a product order from an iCraft seller, whether that product is paid for or not, that product goes through iCraft system and ends up as a “sold” product on the iCraft recently sold page. Is this truthful or deceptive? Does this practice hurt iCraft? Quite the opposite. It benefits the host site. How? It attempts to further legitimize the relevancy of the host site. However, this is not truthful. Why? By continuing to include canceled unpaid products alongside legitimately sold products is deceptive to anyone (buyers, sellers, visitors) who visit the recently sold products page. Wouldn’t iCraft want to stop this deceptive practice?

5. Sellers who have to cancel unpaid orders, add these unpaid products back into their business inventory. Why doesn't iCraft do the same by removing those unpaid products from its legitimately sold products? Is it difficult for the IT team at iCraft to remove the canceled products from the iCraft recently sold products page when a seller must cancel an order for nonpayment? Doesn't it require the same process for the IT team as it does for the seller? It’s just a simple click of the mouse on those unpaid products to delete them. The iCraft system automatically reduces the number of products sold when sellers have to cancel orders for nonpayment. Therefore, the iCraft system reflects the accurate number of products sold in those sellers' stores. Likewise, wouldn’t the iCraft sold page automatically update the actual number of sold products on the recently sold products page when the iCraft IT team deletes these unpaid products at the request of its sellers?

7. I just canceled my last product order for nonpayment, which consisted of 5 products (each with a different order number from the same buyer). Order placed on January 22, canceled January 26. Of the 9 sales I've had on iCraft since June 2019, 7 of those orders were canceled for nonpayment. Those 7 product orders occurred in just over a month, from December 17, 2019 to January 22, 2020. I requested that the first 2 unpaid product orders be removed from iCraft recently sold page. These 2 products remain on this page and have not been removed as requested. So, once again, I’m asking these 2 products along with the other 5 products ordered on January 22, 2020 be removed from the iCraft recently sold products page. Yes, the removal will impact the overall “sold” numbers for iCraft; instead of 200 recently sold, the actual number would be 193. Legitimately sold products appearing on iCraft recently sold products page would more accurately reflect to anyone visiting the site that iCraft is a reputable, reliable and truthful business that doesn't consistently practice deception to further its legitimacy as a business.   

8. I can only hope that the 7 unpaid canceled orders will be removed from the iCraft recently sold page within one week of the date of this post. I believe this is ample time to delete these unpaid products. If these products are not deleted, then I believe that I’m left with no choice but to close my iCraft store. Why so drastic a decision on my part when I truly do love being here on iCraft? It’s really simple. Practicing deception is not part of my business plan nor is it part of who I am as a person. 

Thanks for your understanding and prompt reply to answer not only questions, but also my concerns within this post. Rita
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #23 on: January 27, 2020, 02:29:36 am »

Hi Rita,

Deception is a strong word. I can assure you that we are not trying to deceive anyone.

We don't post any stats on the Recently Sold page. We show last 200 items sold on iCraft, so if we remove your 7 unpaid orders, it will still say 200 Recently Sold items, not 193.

The purpose of the Recently Sold page was to encourage buyers to check what others are buying and maybe buy the same items too. So in my mind, if your products are listed there, your store gets extra visibility and maybe extra clicks. I am surprised how strongly you feel about immediately removing your products from that page.

I didn't know about any issues on the Recently Sold page until I saw the discussion on forum. I didn't even think Recently Sold page was used much. We never get questions about it.

I asked the developer to fix the code and exclude unpaid orders from that list. It's not as simple as clicking a button and removing items one by one. Unfortunately, I don't have that option.

We are also really busy right now with the new platform development, so making quick changes on the current site is a challenge. I have to wait for developer to make this update. I'll keep you posted. Thanks for your understanding!
« Last Edit: January 27, 2020, 02:41:20 am by iCraft Admin »
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #24 on: January 27, 2020, 03:12:59 am »

Hi Rita,

I think there is some misunderstanding about the "3-days to pay" message.
We are not saying that to buyers at the Checkout. We require payment on the last step of the Checkout process. Everyone is redirected to PayPal at the end.

We add that message in the email to buyers after we already redirected users to PayPal, assuming that the majority of people have paid already. What we say there is that if you didn't pay yet, for whatever reason, then pay for your order within 3 days or your item will be re-listed. This is just to nudge people that didn't pay yet, to do so.

The reason for giving buyers some time to pay is because we don't really know why they didn't pay at the Checkout. PayPal is a separate site and we don't know what happens after we send buyers to pay there. Maybe they got an error message on the PayPal page and currently dealing with PayPal about that, maybe these people need help with filling out the payment form, maybe they need more time to transfer funds from one account to another, before paying for their iCraft order etc.

Anyway, we are going to review our emails and see how we can improve them. Thanks!
« Last Edit: January 27, 2020, 03:16:08 am by iCraft Admin »
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #25 on: January 27, 2020, 09:47:38 am »

Hello Admin,

Thank you for your prompt reply and answering my questions/concerns. I don't want to cause trouble for anyone. I apologize if my strong word offended anyone and ask those whom I may have offended for forgiveness. I honestly do not want to close my iCraft store and have been eagerly awaiting the launch of the new supplies marketplace.I have more than 200 supply listings to post, which doesn't include multiple quantities of same product.

I understand that deception is a strong word, but I would hope you understand this is how it felt to me when writing the post. In the 12 years of selling online, I have never experienced this situation of unpaid orders. I've been at my wits end as to know how or what I can do to correct unpaid orders. I was laid off from my day job the day before Thanksgiving with no job prospects in site. I have been counting on sales to help pay my bills. The totals from those canceled orders is not a lot of money, but every little bit helps when it comes to finances. Included in my fiances are the iCraft renewal fees coming due in less than a month. The hope and excitement that comes from receiving order notifications is very short lived because of having to cancel those orders due to nonpayment. It is very stressful and frustrating to say the least

I don't mind admitting that I'm shedding tears at the moment due to the stress of not having a job and coping with the fact that my hope has been repeatedly dashed from having to cancel so many unpaid orders in such a short time. I've tried to encourage myself by continuing to work on writing supply listing descriptions for when the new supply is launched. However, this latest round of canceled orders apparently was the proverbial straw that broke this camel's back. Again, I sincerely apologize for my sharp tone. If iCraft will let me, I would like to keep my store open on iCraft. I'd also like to share the other post that relates to the first part of original reply post (deals with the subcategories for my supplies), but will await your reply before sharing that post.

Blessings ~ Rita 
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #26 on: January 27, 2020, 02:41:26 pm »

Hi Rita,

Sorry to hear about your job situation!
And I completely understand how disappointing it is to see unpaid orders. It's still a mystery to me why you had so many unpaid orders, but as I mentioned before, we are looking into that.

I don't want you to be stressed over our fees and can help by giving you a 6-months credit. I applied it to your account already, so you don't need to worry about renewing until later. Hope this helps!

I am looking forward to your insightful feedback and suggestions in the future. Thanks!
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #27 on: January 27, 2020, 06:42:46 pm »

Dear Admin,

Thank you for completely understanding my frustration and disappointment regarding unpaid orders. I'm glad that it's also a mystery to you; makes me feel better knowing the host site is in the "boat" with me, if that makes sense. Thank you again for looking into this.

I noticed a pattern with the last 5 products ordered as far as buyer name, email, address. I thought it strange at first, but encouraged myself to wait and see how these orders played out. Maybe the pattern I noticed would help in solving the mystery. I can share that pattern with you if you'd like, but I'd prefer to share it in a private email communication. Would that be the email address cservice@icraftgifts.com?

Thank you also for the condolences on job situation. The words "thank you" doesn't adequately describe how much you've helped to reduce my stress regarding the upcoming renewal fees. I am very grateful for the 6-month credit!!!

I'll be sharing the first part of my reply to your Jan. 24, 2020 post next....



 
CreativeXpression1


Posts: 64


« Reply #28 on: January 27, 2020, 07:37:13 pm »

Hello Admin,

This post relates to the first part of your Jan. 24, 2020 post regarding subcategories for the supplies I'll be listing in my supply store....

I'd rather keep same store name for both stores and revise my store tagline to differentiate between the two stores. I'll look forward to receiving your instructions. I understand supply listings won't be displayed in my current iCraft store. Do you have a tentative date when the new site will either be in beta or live? Any idea what pixels will be for listing photos? I ask because once I know pixel size, I'll create a template in my design program and resize my photos so they'll be ready to go. You'd shared earlier that I wouldn't need to do this, but I've tried to upload photos that I'd sized for the other online marketplace and they were too small. I've created a 950 x 950 pixel blank template, so uploading listing photos goes much smoother. I like designing, so am okay with taking this extra step in the process of preparing listing photos to upload.

I sell a variety of supplies as indicated in the inventory file I submitted to iCraft in 2019.

Bead types for making jewelry - all beads are counted by hand by me in home studio - each bag is labeled with color, bead size and quantity of beads:
+ Hamna/perler beads
+ Kandi/pony beads (oval, tube, sphagetti, etc.)
+ Faceted beads

I also sell as indicated in the inventory file:
+ Perler Bead Pegboards for making specific designs using perler beads. Paid orders include ironing sheet, instructions along with a small bag of perler beads as a thank you appreciation gift.

In addition, I also sell scrap booking supplies that include:
+ Self adhesive foam die cuts
+ Craft foam sheets in various sizes
+ Friendship bracelet skeins
+ Wonder Loom Bands

When I had the above products listed along with my handmade products on the other marketplace site, I carried an average of 400 products on that site. More than half of the listings were supplies, which also included multiple quantities of same product.

I do not have a current CSV file; therefore I review/revise each listing photo, listing description, shipping fees, etc. before adding that product to my iCraft store. It is time consuming with having a large quantity of product listings. However, the review/revisions further ensures that my product offerings are current, relevant and up to date. This same process would be used when listing any supplies.

Offering a suggestion for stores to potentially get more visibility, store clicks and possible store sales - maybe for the updated iCraft site...

Have you ever thought about letting members create treasuries? Treasuries are good promotional tools. A treasury usually has a theme, title and consists of 16 spaces. Each space is filled with a product from another seller's store. The treasury curator promotes the treasury on their FB, Pinterest and other social media. The curator does not include a product from their store in the 16 spaces; I'd created many treasuries through the years on the other site. Like many other changes that occurred on the other site, sellers could no longer use this promotional tool since the code for treasury links was removed from the site. Teams were also common on the other site. Many teams solely existed to create and promote treasuries. When those links were removed, these teams also died for their sole purpose for existence was gone. At any rate, treasuries are great  promotional tools which not only promote the "featured stores" in the 16 spaces, but also the curator. If interested, I can share more on this in a  regular email.

Blessings ~ Rita
iCraft Admin


Administrator
Posts: 1635


« Reply #29 on: January 29, 2020, 02:40:10 am »

Glad I could help, Rita!

We'll provide you with CSV template and an easier way to upload your items. I'll send you instructions in a few days.

Yes, that email is correct or you can use our Contact form.

In terms of Treasuries, technically, you could use My Favorites feature to create Public Collections, which then could be shared through social media. We don't limit how many items you can save to Collections and allow you to add your own items to the same Collection too. Here is one example of a Public Collection - Gift Ideas for the Home Enthusiast

We don't have Teams or Groups feature on the current site, but we could introduce them later on the new platform, though this would be a nice-to-have feature at this point.

I don't have a specific date when new supplies marketplace will be ready. We'll be rolling out new pages gradually and could start selling supplies before the new marketplace is fully developed. I'll post additional communication about that soon. Thanks!
« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 02:42:56 am by iCraft Admin »
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