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Gift Shopping Service

Sandy Paluzzi
The Bead Peddler

Want to add dollars to your business?  Keep a calendar of your customer's gift giving occasions. 

Think of all the busy people you know: fathers, husbands, business executives, mothers, business administrative assistants.  They all need gifts for women for several occasions.  You can make their lives easier - and your business more successful - by offering them a gift buying service. 

That busy male business executive may be buying gifts for a wife, mother, daughter, and secretary.  He may have to remember birthdates, anniversaries, secretary's week and Mother's Day to name a few.  Why don't you help him out?  You could offer to go to his office to allow him to select a gift or you could select one for him.  Throw in free gift wrapping and he's yours for life.  Call about a week before the event to remind him of the upcoming date and set up an appointment.  If you're picking out the gift, you could just call to let him know you'll be dropping his gift off for him soon.  During these calls you can pick his brain for color, style and of course price range.

Want to do this on a larger scale?  Hit corporate offices.  Or leave the business world altogether and think of senior centers, nursing homes and retirement communities.  Many of those residents have difficulty getting to the store.  Why not bring the store to them?  Some of my local Baltimore senior retirement communities have wealthy patrons.  Even those on limited incomes still want to remember their loved ones on special occasions.  If you focus on one center, over time you will develop a relationship with most of the residents.  Bring over a small selection of cards and you've made their day.  A once a month trip to a senior center can bring in more than a craft fair or jewelry show.  Be sure to have things available for every age group - their 16 year old granddaughter is going to want an entirely different look than their 86 year old sister. 

With a little thought your gift shopping service can be used for many people in your customer's life.  Beaded wine stoppers or bottle openers appeal to men as well as women.   Hit the younger people on their list by  putting together bead kits.  What about a key ring for the child who has finally been entrusted with a house key?  Add a charm of your patron's choice and you have just made a very quick sale.

Want to reach more people than your time allows?  I can think of two ways to do this:   (1) team up with other types of crafters to offer a range of items to both of your customers and (2) offer to supply your jewelry to a personal shopper at a discounted rate.  There's a lot of money in gifts.  There's no reason to confine your sales to holidays such as Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanza, or Mother's day.  Take advantage of the gifting that goes on all year long.

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