Thursday, December 10, 2009

Free Stuff

With the holidays around the corner, my mailman and UPS guy have been very busy.  Every day a package or two arrives at my house. Many of these packages are from independent sellers who are sending me their handmade items that I have purchased.

As I have been opening the packages, I have been noticing something about myself.  This is something I have shared before, but in light of these packages, I feel that it is something that bears repeating:


Not naming names, but let me give you a few examples:

I LOVE handmade soap.  I bought a bunch of soaps froma bunch of both "I loved their sample" sellers and people I found on my own on Etsy. Since this was gifts for myself or my families, I went a little wild and picked myself up a biundle of items.

Three packages came yesterday.

Package #1 was from a well known and respected seller who I had heard about through being talked up on blogs and facebook. Their items came well packaged. there was a gift set for me and a separate bar of soap for my sister. A gift bag was sent for the components of the gift pack to be put into.  That was it. No thank you note. No special packaging for the extra bar of soap. No receipt. Nothing. Yes, it was profesionally packaged, and everything looked and smelled wonderful, but my thinking was "OK, great. Here's the stuff I ordered." and that's it.

Package number two was from someone who I had purchased from that I had just seen their soap on Etsy, and it looked "cool".  I had just purchased a few bars of cool sounding soap from them for myself.  When the box came and I opened it, the soaps were each beautifully packaged in a gift wrap type of packaging with the packaging info on the outside of the package. There was a nice little heartfelt thank you note in a pretty card with the receipt tucked into it. Again, everything was professionally packaged and put togehter, but wth the addition of the nice littl e note, my thinking became, "Oh, here's the stuff I ordered, and what a nice note.  It's so nice to get things like that. What a nice seller."

Package number three was a purchase from someone who I had gotten one of their samples before and loved, so I was buying full sized for myself.  I made a purchase of a bar of soap and some lotion.  In the box was my well packaged items, a little thank you note, and a few additional little samples of items  the seller thought I "might like". My thinking here was "Oh, awesome! Free stuff!  I got the stuff I wanted and some extras!!  is awesome!"

Now, everything I got was well packaged and what I had hoped for.  All the soaps smell great and were well packaged. But, I'll tell you: I am most excited about the one that had the free sample, and least excited about the one with no extras. The one who sent the note and prettily wrapped their items, I am very pleased with and will definitely think about specially when buying gifts for others.

People who cut a little into their profits to send me a little bit of something extra (everything else being equal), I tend to go back to more frequently for repeat purchases. I admit it.  I am very subject to free stuff bribery. I actually have a tea seller, two candle sellers, and a candy seller who I check FIRST when I need/want something potentially sold by them SPECIFICALLY BECAUSE I know I will get a little something extra when I buy from them.

Not adding in little extras will not detract me from buying from you, but adding a little extra will definitely put you higher in my mind for future purchases.  I know there are certain typed of things where a little something extra is not realistic. In those cases pretty packaging and a heartfelt thank you note are biggies.

Just letting you know, from a buyer's perspective. YES it makes a difference.

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