Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Another Scrap Book Store Bites the Dust

I just do not get it another ScrapBook store in the suberbs of Dallas is closing. The Scrap Bucket in Plano, TX is closing and it was a great store for 2 1/2 years. I loved the concept of buying pieces by the bucket. Also once again the store owners are blaming their customer's for not keeping their store alive. I do not get this at all. In a city like Plano Texas there are plenty of families and ladies that scrap to keep a scrapbook store alive, why blame the customer's. Why don't these stores ever take the blame themselves for not buying what their customer's want or offering choices for their customers. A little stamp store has been alive and well in Plano for many years now so why can't a scrapbook store stay alive?

This is what I think why they close:
1) They do well in their small space and think if they move to a bigger space they will do better and in the end they close. Don't expand to quickly! Stay where you are for 3 years especially if you are just getting by or just breaking even. I have seen this happen to often a store is doing well and they open a second store or grow to a bigger store and then shut down.
2) advertise - be creative! think outside of the box as ways to advertise. Funny some of my scrapping friends didn't even know about this cool store!
3) Stay on top of the FADs - This is a very fast moving and changing business. Buy just enough to sale out of it and then move on. Don't keep restocking the same items over and over again unless it is adhesive and cutting supplies.
4) make your store unique! With stores like recollections, Michael's and Target all selling scrapbooking supplies don't buy what they buy at market. Stay unique and not just in supplies, organize it in a unique way. make it fun, exciting and creative. A store needs to be warm and inviting. Make us want to stay and explore. I love the store's that look like boutique clothing stores. It doesn't have to cost a lot just be creative.
5) Don't expect to break even for a few years. You have to grow a business. get to know your customer's. The Scrapbucket sent out emails and had a website but it wasn't unique. It wasn't creative. It wasn't anything that made me want stay a while to read. It didn't really offer me anything. In fact their class offerings never had anything I was ever interested in taking.
6) offer unique classes. classes they can only find at your store. Right now a trend in scrapbooking is home dec. from what I remember they never offered a class that used scrapbook supplies in the home as accessories. Stay up with the trends! Don't just keep offering basic level classes. not everyone needs a basic class or a card making class or a stamp class, some of want more creative classes. Trust me we are out there!
7) if you are not doing so well don't send out 50% coupons for your high end items. yes we will use them on the expensive items if you let us. yes I understand you need to get customer's in the door but giving away product won't do it. Even Michael's has limits on their coupons. I do not even know if Recollections has ever mailed out a coupon. I could be wrong.
8) research - find out what your customer's want when you go to market. Ask questions, research and find out what is hot and what they think will be hot.

OK I am off my soap box. I just hate seeing stores close especially when there is a need for them and I have spent lots of money at them and I relaly hate it when they blame their customer's or the lack their of. It's not our fault!


Anonymous said...

You make a lot of great points. I think it was utterly tacky for them to blame it on their customers the way they did. I would like to add that one reason why I think they might have not made it is the owners were not particularly warm or friendly. While there were a couple of friendly employees, I sometimes felt as if I had walked into a club in which I did not belong. It doesn't take a lot to make someone feel welcome and want to come back. The way (cold & unprofessional) in which they are going out is pretty much the way I've seen them all along. They had some great things going for them but personality, which is essential in the type of business they were in, was not one of them.

Stephanie Wrightman said...

I don't often give my two-cents worth, but I have to in this case. I went into the ScrapBucket several times, and I discovered how much the staff loved Wendy's. While I know that people need to eat, I don't need to watch them. Do you agree?

Anonymous said...

That is too bad about the bucket but hey! Have you been to the Scrapbook Barn in North Dallas? They are awesome. Huge space, rockin scrappin parties, friendly faces and always current products. Guess What?! This weekend is the garage sale. Don't miss it.
3427 E. Trinity Mills, Dallas, TX said...

Are you a business major? Sounds like you could run a store!