Craftcation 2019 Recap

Craftcation 2019 Recap

Craftcation 2019 Recap

 

Hello there! I’m Angie with team Lucky Break, and I’m jumping in the driver’s seat to share our Craftcation 2019 Recap.

Craftcation 2019 Recap

The Lucky Break Team is a group of remote leading ladies sprinkled across the continental US. A handful of times every year, the LBC team has the opportunity to convene in person.  When we do, we team build, work on projects, and spend time basking in each other’s vibrancy. Craftcation is one of those times, and we aren’t even mad about it.

Craftcation 2019 Recap

Pictured: Angie & Harriet, Lela, Helen, and Chloe.

 

Craftcation 2019 Recap

 

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Review of Faire- The Wholesale Marketplace Platform

review of Faire

It’s the platform every maker and buyer is talking about, and I’m here to share my final review of Faire. Over the last few months, I’ve been exploring the Faire wholesale marketplace (formerly Indigo Fair) to help my community determine if they should apply to sell on the platform. The blog series has grown in size and scope as I dug deeper and deeper into the review of Indigo Fair/ Faire and analyzed the pros and cons of this emerging wholesale marketplace.

 

Review of Faire

I’m back with the seventh (!) and final installment of this series to share community reactions and my final thoughts regarding selling on Faire.

 

Faire Final Thoughts_2

 

HOW DO PEOPLE FEEL ABOUT FAIRE?

Over four weeks, I invited both artisans and buyers who had experience with Faire to take part in a survey to collect feedback from this community and measure the results makers see on the platform. I received 91 responses: 83% of those were from artisans, 9% were from retailers, and 8% of respondents both bought and sold on Faire. You’ll note that I’ve summarized the findings of this survey in an infographic at the end of this post.

 

The majority of respondents have been selling on Faire for less than three months (39%). Another 34% have been on the wholesale marketplace for between 3-6 months, and just 3% have been on Faire for eighteen months or more.  I asked those who completed the survey two key questions…

 

  1. On a scale of 1-100, how pleased are you with your experience with Faire? The average answer was 72.
  2. On a scale of 1-100, how would you rate Faire’s responsiveness and customer service? The average score was 79.

 

QUOTE2

 

I was keenly interested in hearing directly from brand owners about the volume of orders on Faire. The vast majority (47%) receive between 1-4 orders per month. Another 29% of respondents receive between 5-9 orders per month, which means that 76% of all artisans on Faire receive nine orders or less per month. Interestingly, 1% of respondents receive 50+ orders per month!

 

Exactly half of all respondents (50%) received their first order on Faire within one week of going live on the platform.  That’s quite impressive, and it’s easy to see why makers get hooked on Faire/ Indigo Fair so quickly. In total, 88% of Faire sellers closed an order within their first month, and just 2% are still waiting on their first order. That healthy dose of instant gratification makes me wonder if Faire tinkers with their algorithms to quickly deliver orders to new brands for the benefit of “seeding” the relationship.

 

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An Interview with Max Rhodes, CEO of Faire

Interview with Max Rhodes

An Interview with Max Rhodes, CEO of Faire

 

Over the last few months, I’ve been exploring the Faire wholesale marketplace (formerly Indigo Fair) in an effort to help readers determine if Faire is right for you. In an interview with Max Rhodes, the CEO of Faire, I invited him to the table to respond directly to some of my findings and the feedback gathered from the artisan community. I’m honored that he took me up on the offer and I’m eager to share our conversation about the pros and cons of Faire, alongside Max’s thoughts about the evolution of the wholesale landscape.

 

I’ve published Max’s responses in their entirety without editing.

 

faire interview_max rhodes

 

LELA: What does Faire look for in a maker? What factors do you consider when reviewing a brand’s application?

MAX RHODES: We carefully evaluate each maker that applies to join Faire, and there are several factors that we look at to determine which to accept. Among those are the number of stockists they are currently carried in, the category and quality of products, and their overall brand aesthetic. When appropriate, we will also cross reference a brand’s social media presence to gauge how well their products might sell on our marketplace.

 

QUOTE2

 

LELA: How does Faire vet potential buyers on the platform?

MAX RHODES: Like makers that apply, we also review every retailer to make sure they are a good fit for our marketplace. We fully vet each retailer to confirm that they are legitimate retailers, meaning that they must actually sell goods, ideally in a brick and mortar environment. There’s no shortage of fraud in ecommerce, so we have a team dedicated to making sure that doesn’t infiltrate Faire.

 

LELA: What can you share about the algorithm that predicts a brand’s visibility on the Faire platform? What factors into that algorithm and how can makers maximize their visibility?

MAX RHODES: The recommendations that retailers get are informed by a variety of factors, including: the type of retailer they are, their profile and products, the kind of items they have historically purchased, and conversion rates for a given brand (in other words, whether or not retailers are ordering once they visit a brand’s page and if those items are being returned or not). The recommendations can vary greatly by retailer because they are curated and catered specifically to their business needs.

 

 

QUOTE3

 

LELA: One maker I spoke with raised a concern about tax ID numbers as it relates to her responsibility to collect sales tax. Her concern was that if she’s ever audited by the state, she’ll need to produce the resale certificates from her in-state retailers that prove that those sales were exempted from sales tax. If she fails to do so, then she can be held responsible for not having collected the appropriate tax, leaving her to settle the bill and any related penalties.

As I understand it, artisans don’t have access to that information about their retailers via Faire. How would you instruct her to handle that? Could a Faire artisan contact Faire representatives if they were under audit and gain access to the necessary certificates to absolve them of any tax liability?

MAX RHODES:  Faire is a reseller and all purchases made by it from any Faire.com wholesaler are for resale on its platform and therefore should not be subject to sales tax. Faire exercises commercially reasonable efforts to ensure that any goods sold on its platform are purchased by resellers for resale in their ordinary course of business. As such, sellers should not incur any sales tax liability for sales made on the Faire.com platform. We encourage any maker who is in need of assistance regarding a tax related inquiry to contact Faire’s customer support team.

 

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The Disadvantages of Faire

disadvantages of faire

Over the last several weeks, I’ve been exploring the potential pros and cons of Faire (formerly Indigo Fair) here on the Lucky Break blog. Today I’m sharing some of the disadvantages as part of an ongoing blog series about emerging wholesale marketplaces. While there’s certainly a lot to love about working with this wholesale platform for artisans, there are notable disadvantages of Faire, too. I shared a few of those disadvantages in a previous blog, and I’m back with additional thoughts to help you determine if Faire is the right opportunity for your brand.

 

The Disadvantages of Faire

dowside of faire header image_part2

 

I’m pleased to share that Max Rhodes, Faire’s CEO, graciously provided answers to a tidy list of queries I sent his way. In the final two blogs of this series, I’ll share his responses, my final thoughts, and the results of the Lucky Break community survey.

 

FAIRE FAVORS BUYERS ABOVE BRANDS

There’s a general feeling among many makers and product designers that retailers are getting the better deal when it comes to Faire. They enjoy generous ordering incentives, including free shipping, free returns on first orders from any brand, and $200 cash to spend when signing up through a brand’s Faire link.

 

ERIN

 

However, artisans often believe that they’re getting the shorter end of the stick. We’re enjoying an increase in exposure, but we’re also paying a princely sum (up to 28% of the order) for the privilege of being seen. Thankfully, we’re not saddled with the burden of product returns, though passing the baton to Faire on that front creates separate issues that are worth exploring.

 

SLUGGISH CUSTOMER SERVICE

I frequently hear criticism about slow responses from the Faire team, especially as it pertains to reviewing applications for new makers. Despite those rumbles of frustration, artisan satisfaction with Faire’s customer support team appears to increase exponentially once we gain acceptance onto the platform.

 

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Top 5 Conference Networking Tips

conference networking

Conference season is upon us. Let’s talk about networking. I’m Angie from Team Lucky Break, and I’m here to share my top 5 conference networking tips.

 

Surprisingly, many people don’t really know how to network. Seems simple right? Just go and talk to people! I hate to break it to you my friend, but networking is so much more than being friendly and bubbly. It’s about making meaningful connections in a sea of people. Many don’t realize that to successfully network, you need to have a strategy in place. I’m here to help you take the guesswork out of strategic conference networking.

conference networking

 

Top 5 Conference Networking Tips

I’ve gone to dozens, if not hundreds of networking events, conferences, trade shows, and business mixers. Some were for my business, bobo design studio, a lot more were for my previous roles in media and advertising. Doesn’t’ matter the content of the show, the rules are the same.

 

I’ve outlined five simple conference networking tips that I’ve learned over the years that will make you a smarter, more strategic attendee at your next big event. To help illustrate how one would implement these techniques, we’ll follow along with a hypothetical brand owner named Lucky who designs and creates her own line of adorable dog-themed stickers and stationery.

 

conference networking

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