Entrepreneurship for Antique Stores, small business, startups, management, finance, and planning.

dead inventory

Why Dead Inventory Can Kill Your Antiques Business

Not too long ago in an online antiques forum, a dealer posed this question to other dealers: “What do you consider dead inventory and what do you do with it?” It was a lively discussion, with 69 comments in the thread. The forums definitions of dead inventory included: Stuff nobody wants Anything over 10 months […]

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4 Ways to Dispose of Dead Antiques Inventory

5 Ways to Dispose of Dead Antiques Inventory

In my last column, we developed a definition of dead inventory. I promised you then that this time we would discuss how to get rid of dead antiques inventory in a manner that didn’t involve giving it away to the local thrift shop or carrying it to a flea market. So, here are five easy […]

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robo picker

Building Your Own ‘Robo Picker’

The show promoter’s message to dealers was quite clear: “WARNING !!!! DO NOT EMBARRASS YOURSELF BY TRYING TO SNEAK IN PICKERS TO BUY DURING SETUP. BUYING, HOLDING, AND SELLING IS NOT PERMITTED BEFORE 7:00 A.M. ON FRIDAY. YOUR COOPERATION IS EXPECTED. Violators will forfeit their space and will be asked to leave the show.” (sic) […]

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roller coaster

Adding Profit Centers Levels Out the Revenue Ups and Downs

When I graduated from high school back in the Neolithic Age, my uncles pressed me as to what my future plans were. Being a bit of a teenage scamp, I replied that I intended to be an unemployed ski instructor in the summer and an unemployed lifeguard in the winter. That plan didn’t work out […]

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low price

Are Antiques Prices Too Low?

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been following a discussion of antiques prices on a LinkedIn forum. The participants are all dealers, and the conversation continues as I write. Supply and demand antiques pricesIt’s been a lively discussion, and the general tone of the thread is respectful, which I find refreshing. Here are a […]

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Opening a Second Store? Do Your Homework

When the ghost of Jacob Marley visited Ebenezer Scrooge on that Victorian Christmas eve, Marley was dragging chains representative of the mistakes he had made in his life. Small business owners – especially retailers – do the same thing. We drag our mistakes around year after year until we become accustomed to them. We feel […]

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new used

Dealing in Used Goods More Profitable than New

My friend Brian is an exercise fanatic. He has special outfits for each type of exercise, and electronic meters to gauge each workout. I’m not into exercise at all. You’ve heard the expression “No pain, no gain”; my motto is “No pain, no pain.” As Phyllis Diller once said, “My idea of a workout is […]

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paypal logo

The Best Credit Card Processor For On-the-Road Selling

On a dark, clear night, look up into the sky and imagine trying to count all the stars.  You could spend the rest of your life doing so, and never finish the job.  It’s said that there are over one hundred billion stars in our galaxy.  Now stretch your imagination around this number: Credit and […]

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Create More Cash Without Raising Sales, Prices

Too often, we antique dealers find ourselves in the position of being “inventory rich and cash poor.” We have a lot of money tied up in inventory but not enough cash to pay our bills and write ourselves a regular paycheck. We try various tactics to squeeze more cash from our inventory: We mark-down items, […]

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price research

Know The Right Selling Price Before You Buy

Last weekend, after browsing through a live auction preview, I sat cross-checking my notes against my online research service. As my research progressed, I made notes for each item that I was interested in: high selling price, low selling price, how many were offered on eBay, how many of those sold. The item’s sell-through (number […]

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