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 Competitors in your shop
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Chatty Knitter

296 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2005 :  09:34:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit knittinggal's Homepage Send knittinggal a Private Message
[navy]I posted this in the middle of another thread and realized it wasn't getting seen. So I will post it here! First, I am not a shop owner but this question is for shop owners. What would you do if you had a competitor come into your shop and start checking your inventory and prices? AND what would you do if you heard this competitor criticizing your prices to one of your customers?


The Irish Ewe
Permanent Resident

1052 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2005 :  12:53:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit The Irish Ewe's Homepage Send The Irish Ewe a Private Message
Kay, I have no problems with it. There are hundreds of major yarn companies in the States alone, and THOUSANDS of small companies - there is no way anyone can stock EVERY yarn out there. I love to get lists of what other shops have, so if a customer is looking for a certain brand/yarn, I know just who to call.

No reason for any of us to be snotty to each other - after all, no one but a yarn shop owner knows how it feels to see all this yarn all day, and not have any time to knit any of it!

I've never had anyone critize me in my hearing (at least, not another shop owner). If it happened? I think I would simply say "Thank you for visiting, but I do have to ask you to return to your own yarn shop now." And walk them to the door. And then I would be taking a good hard look at my prices to see if they did have a valid point.

The Irish Ewe
Norway, Maine
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Kelly B
Permanent Resident

2206 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2005 :  1:10:33 PM  Show Profile Send Kelly B a Private Message
1 seems OK to me - the other owner can stock her shop with things you don't have, so the two shops complement each other rather than competing head to head.
2 is pretty obnoxious.
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Permanent Resident

2215 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2005 :  1:27:55 PM  Show Profile Send MMario a Private Message
I would think proffessional courtesy would prevent anyone other then a total j*rk from *commenting* on prices and stocking choices while in another persons shop. Heck, common courtesy should do so.

But checking out the competition is certainly something virtually every business does.

MMario - I don't live in the 21st century - but I play a character who does.
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Chatty Knitter

126 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2005 :  07:10:15 AM  Show Profile  Visit emilyn's Homepage Send emilyn a Private Message
I think the criticizing bit is out of line.
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Permanent Resident

1021 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2005 :  07:34:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit Yarnni's Homepage Send Yarnni a Private Message
With the exception of critizing (very tacky) I don't have a problem with competitors. Even though I'm online (hope to have a store soon)I know that competitors subscribe to our site and receive our news that we email out. I send people to other stores all the time if I don't have what they require.

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Boston Terrier Knitter
Chatty Knitter

315 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2005 :  11:09:55 AM  Show Profile Send Boston Terrier Knitter a Private Message
We have 4 yarn shops in my area and they all carry something different. I think that if a competitor came into a store and started bad mouthing it to a customer, I'd have to consider the source if I was the customer listening to it.

"Nothing in America is more American or more expressive of the American spirit than that of the little American dog, the Boston terrier."
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Permanent Resident

6331 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2005 :  11:38:38 AM  Show Profile  Visit GFTC's Homepage Send GFTC a Private Message
A friend of mine who is in real estate was at a social event and the woman who owns String (a NYC LYS) was seated at the same table. My friend's wife mentioned that her husband was working on a deal to rent a store to one of the other NYC knitting stores that is planning to move to a better location (this wife had absolutely no business having that conversation but that is another story). Anyway, the String owner, who also wrote the new Luxury Knitting book, proceeded to badmouth the other store and actually say that their business was terrible and it would not be a good deal!!!

How did I get involved? My friend knows I knit and called me to run this whole mess by me and see if I knew anything as a customer of the store in question. I was horrified that anyone would do such a thing.

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of troy
Permanent Resident

2474 Posts

Posted - 12/01/2005 :  3:32:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit of troy's Homepage Send of troy a Private Message
i used to work in a fabric store. directly across the street (a wide street!) was another fabric store.

We charged 10cents more per yard on Poly crepe. (we carried over 30 colors!) the store across the street carried 5 or 6)

Once, a group of women can in, and complained (as they were admiring several coordinating shades of crepe), that we were too expensinve... the store across the street was cheaper.. could i do better on the price?

I agreed, we were more expensive.. i invited them to cross the street.. one demurred the store across the street didn't have the colors they wanted. Ahh!

No one store has everything. some are pretty, (purl in soho is pretty) but its a small store. Seaport is rambling and its sometimes hard to find things.. (but what a selection!)
KnitNY is pretty, and has a good selection --well a good selection of pricy yarns.. and they have steps (not handicapped accessable) and they are rude to fat old ladies..(we are obviously not their desired clientle)
No one yarn store is perfect. Each LYS has pro's and con's (others love KnitNY because it has Rebecca and other european knitting magazines)
price is just one factor. smart owners have a philosophy and a niche they want there store to fill.. Seaport REFUSES to carry any Lion Brand--but it does carry acyrilic and other synthetics.. Smiley's has lots of synthetics.. and very cheap, but it also has some lovely italian yarns that you can't find anywhere else--silk, alpaca's, wools, (and these are bargains too!)

Price is one consideration..but its very rare that its the only factor when you make a decision to buy or not..

sometimes, when you want that specific color, you end up paying a bit more..

(and how do i know? well i have shopped all these LYS--and others!) If you look at any single 'point' no yarn shop is perfect. but many are perfectly wonderful!

See my photo albums, (edit-NO PASSWORD REQUIRED)
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