Thursday, January 19, 2017

Tips for Running A Successful Antique Booth



There are two kinds of vintage dealers in this business. 





1. JOY VENDOR: The Joy Vendor is in it just for fun. They usually have a full time job. Having a booth allows them to feed a creative need or design outlet while adding some extra cash to their pocket. 

2. BUSINESS VENDOR: The Business Vendor is serious. They do this full time and it's usually how they make their living. They may have multiple booths in several locations. 

Which ever vintage vendor you are, we all have one thing in common, we dream of success and making lots of money. Unfortunately, in this business the cold hard reality is you probably aren't going to get rich. In fact, if you were to examine your earnings a little closer you might just be surprised at how very little you do make once you figure in rent, commission, inventory, supplies, gas money, your time, etc. 

My friend, Denise over at Vintage Show Off (although blog is no longer active) wrote a great article on the "Earnings of a Booth Vendor" This is a great read, but be prepared this article is truly sobering. If you haven't read it already, do yourself a favor...grab a glass of wine first. 


This blog post isn't meant to dishearten you. In fact, we want to encourage you to be the best vendor you can. So we took a little survey over on our Facebook page the other day. We asked our readers to share their best advice and tips for a successful booth. We thought we would share some of those comments here.  So if you are ready...here we go!

Tamara Bronaugh: I am one of the ones that are all for cool price tags, and they don't have to cost a lot, ( or anything really ). I bought a huge box full of old black and white photos at an auction and punched a hole in the top, ran a string through and used them a price tags for over a year before they finally ran out. People loved them and it gave them an extra little reason to walk into my booth to check them out. Also, on price tags, it only takes a few more seconds, but instead of just writing the price, description, vendor #, write something about the item that makes the customer know that you value it. Like..."80 year old mortar and pestle from a dentist's office!" which is why I always ask whenever I buy anything if there is a story behind it...( I am also guilty of ending my descriptions almost universally with a (!) but I really AM excited about the item, and my customers can feel that.

Sandra Lucas: Keep it fresh! I go to my booth at least twice a week. I bring new items in but also move items around. If it hasn't sold try a new place for the item. I had several items that were not selling, moved them and they sold that day!!! Place your items to make it easy for walking around, they will stay longer!

Debbie Joyce Gannon: I post almost daily on my FB and IG business page to promote my business (booth, Etsy shop, shows) and a couple of times a week to show items available in my booth. I also restock and move items around every week.

Sue Marie: Have a theme and it will attract the buyers eye. You can sell more than one item to a customer by offering things that go well together & inspire their homes. Here is a pic of my "old Hollywood " booth...it was a hit!


Kathy Setzer Goodson: Reorganize your booth often. Keep it neat and clean. Don't block the entry with large pieces but rather lead the eye into the booth. Personally I don't waste time, money and energy on fancy sell tags. Both shops I'm at take them off any way! Just use a clearly written price tag and attach so it won't fall off. Use glue dots when there is no place to use a string or plastic hook.

Moose Out Front: Stay true to what you do best. Don't fall into the trap of doing what others do keep it original. Always be up on trends and keep your space open and floors clean. Use Social media and encourage other merchants to also.

We would like to thank everyone for posting your comments on this survey. We will be featuring some of the ones that didn't get shared here in an upcoming feature. You can read all of the comments on our FB post here

We used to feature "Booth Tips Tuesday" where we would feature a tip each week from a dealer. Life got crazy though as it always does. We would like to get back to featuring those. If you would like to read some of the previous tips feel free to click here


For those of you that are new and stopping by for the first time, we wrote  a blog post last year called: 5 Easy Tips to Staging A Booth Like A Pro. If you would like to check it out Click here 


1 comment:

Queen Of Hearts Antiques said...

Could you please contact me about doing a class? You will be compensated for your time. You can email me at pegjones@bellsouth.net. Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you.