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Pampered Chef: Cash & Carry Discussion

What do you think about cash and carry at fairs/expos?

  1. It is a violation of our consultant agreement.

    7 vote(s)
    12.3%
  2. There is nothing wrong with it.

    35 vote(s)
    61.4%
  3. I have no feeling either way.

    15 vote(s)
    26.3%
  1. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
    2
    I will promote and sell Company products to customers by regularly holding Cooking Shows. I will not sell Company products on the Internet or in any public, retail or service establishments. I will not sell Company products for resale. I will present Company products in a truthful, sincere and honest manner, and I will conduct myself in a manner that reflects the highest standards of integrity and responsibility in keeping with the reputation of the Company.

    I am curious to see what everyone thinks of consultants having Cash and Carry at fairs and expos. I feel that it is against our Consultant Agreement, but I have ran into numerous consultants who do this. I am very curious to see what others think.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #1
  2. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

    22,238
    5
    Anne,

    It's interesting that you bring this up. I never really thought about it.

    My thought is that a fair is not a "public establishment" because it's temporary. We also have some contact with our customers there, to discuss the products and work with them to make sure they are what the customer is looking for.

    There's also a section in the Recipe for Success that addresses having inventory for fairs. If it were against the policy, then the RFS would not include that section. :)

    Personally, I try not to have a lot of inventory for Cash and Carry. That's one of the great things about PC versus other home party businesses. But there's always something I've got floating around to take. And it never fails, no matter what I do take to a fair, there's always someone who asks for something I don't have and wouldn't stock (like the large round stone).
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #2
  3. ChefLisa

    ChefLisa Advanced Member

    894
    0
    Hi Anne!

    The answer to this one is easy and is located on page F-10 in the Recipe for Success.

    Here is a little of it:

    Personal Inventory
    Although The Pampered Chef discourages Consultants from having a regular inventory of products, you may choose to carry a small amount of inventory occassionally when exhibiting at a fair or for other special purposes. Personal inventory orders must be placed separately from any other order, via paper only.

    There is a detailed explanation of how to place the order in the Recipe for Success.

    Thanks!
    Lisa
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #3
  4. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
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    I wish I could see that online! And it does mention "discourages". Hmmm...
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2006
    Oct 23, 2006
    #4
  5. nikked

    nikked Senior Member Gold Member

    2,139
    6
    Toughie

    This is a tough one for me. My AD always provides cash & carry at fairs, especially fall ones. Unfortunately, we really do loose sales when we don't. Even established TPC customers who know and understand that we are a "direct selling" type business don't want to wait for an order at a fair, even when we offer "free shipping" on their orders.

    They're there to shop, and they want it now, not later.

    Plus, many consultants end up with extras through sell-a-thons, director's benefits, etc.

    I think selling it for more than the company sells it is ABSOLUTELY the wrong thing to do.

    I think the restrictions on booth selling is difficult, if the consultant wants to risk having cash and carry.

    I do think items should be bought through personal orders, not through shows or individual orders if the intent is to resell, and the consultant should not be able to return the items later if they don't sell. That's a risk you take with cash and carry. I know of a consultant who boughts lots (over a $1,000) in cash and carry through a show, most of it didn't sell, and they returned what didn't. Got to keep the original points and sales for incentives (because they didn't return the entire show), and got most of their money back too.

    How would TPC track that? I don't know, and that is probably why they just out and out say "no" to it.

    I guess what I'm saying is I understand the need for cash and carry, but I think TPC should have set policies for those who do it, instead of a complete ban on it.

    When I work the booth that has cash and carry available, I can't say I don't have it, because that would be lying...I shouldn't be selling it, because that's against company policy.

    I may loose the sale, or they may come back later when someone else is working who will sell it, and then I loose a potential customer.

    It's definitely a dilema...don't know that I provided any answers, but I definitely provided more questions (at least for myself)!
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #5
  6. nikked

    nikked Senior Member Gold Member

    2,139
    6
    Additional note

    I typed the above while the others were posting. I didn't realize that there was an allowance for booth selling, which makes me feel better about that.

    I'm really curious to see what else is posted!
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #6
  7. quiverfull7

    quiverfull7 Legacy Member Gold Member

    3,178
    0
    So... if one of your best customers called you and asked if you had a ... let's say... can opener on hand because she meant to call you 2 weeks ago but she needs it for a gift tomorrow ... and you HAVE a can opener on hand for whatever reason ... maybe because HO shipped 2 to your last show and it was the wrong item and in the adjustment they told you to keep them... would you tell this prime rated customer that you couldn't sell it to her? Couldn't you sell it to her and add one to the next show you do.. .that way you would replace the one you have and still use it for a donation to a charity auction or as a gift for a Host's Luncheon or something. I can't see how that would be wrong ... I am new and have never faced any of these situations and have NO intention of keeping any stock ... that's what I love aobut PC ... but serving our customers needs also seems a valuable need to me... Just tossing in more dilemas!
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #7
  8. Flamingo

    Flamingo Advanced Member Gold Member

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    Hey I did a Large Fair this past weekend and would have madea load of money if I had stock"cash and Carry" with me. I was able to get about $250 in orders direct shipping. But would have sold much more if I had it on hand. The Tastefully Simple was across from me and they sold out of almost all there stock at the show made a ton of money. Lucky them. I feel that as long as we dont sell for more than company list price and with no guarantee, we are ok.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #8
  9. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
    2
    quiverfull7: I was just specifically asking about selling cash and carry at a craft fair. IMHO: What you sell to an individual customer, out side of a fair, is up to you.

    Someone in my Director's DL saw people selling A TON of stuff out of a booth at a craft fair like hotcakes.

    IMHO: I am not judging anyone who does this but FOR ME, I personally feel that selling at a fair is counter productive to what we do--that we sell products to customers through Cooking Shows and Catalog shows or people we meet through those shows. I feel that when you C&C to someone at a fair, you are actually hurting yourself, that the relationship ends there with that $10 transaction. Whereas, if you schedule a show, you would most likely sell more to that person and begin to build a relationship.

    And, I think the extras we are given/earn are given to us to use to promote the company and products, not sell. Although, I guess if it belongs to you, you can do what you want with it.

    Of course, I do want to hear what everyone thinks of it! Afterall, it could change my opinion.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #9
  10. cmdtrgd

    cmdtrgd Legacy Member Gold Member

    4,969
    0
    I don't like to do it simply because of the warranty issue.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #10
  11. quiverfull7

    quiverfull7 Legacy Member Gold Member

    3,178
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    Forgive me. I somewhat misunderstood. I agree that customer service is what makes us different ... and that doesn't happen the same way in a fair situation. I wonder... when they c&c ...how do they write receipts for the quarentee? I know that isn't spelled right...sorry
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #11
  12. BethCooks4U

    BethCooks4U Legend Member Gold Member

    13,053
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    I find that it's impossible to know what people will want to buy. I do sometimes bring a few things with me but it always seems that they want something different.

    I remind the fair-goer that it's to their advantage to order it - then they don't have to carry it around with them. If they say they need something RIGHT NOW (I had one person want a SA 3 tiered stand and the pieces to go in it for that evening) and I have it NIB in the house I will deliver it that day and then place their order on the next show (to replace mine). Most don't mind waiting a week.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #12
  13. Rebeccascabinet

    Rebeccascabinet Member

    417
    0
    Thats the great thing about this company - is that we can run our businesses anyway we want (not violating PC rules of course). I personally don't have an opnion either way. I think a lot depends on our customer base, location, and how we chose to run our business, etc. It is an interesting topic to see both sides.
     
  14. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
    2
    That's a point I didn't even think of!


    Hey, no problem! You are exactly right, it IS our customer service. I don't know how it is handled at a fair. I doubt they do receipts at all.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #14
  15. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

    22,238
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    I don't usually do receipts at a fair for cash and carry. But then, I only take small items (mini serving spatula, recipe card sets, citrus peelers, etc.) that most people don't bother with the warranty anyway.

    I do take orders at fairs, but sometimes people just want a mini serving spatula to replace the one they lost. And I feel terrible charging $4 shipping on a $4 item.

    The whole items for sale issue is really a personal decision. It's your business. And remember that if you do have inventory, there's always someone who will want what you don't have (I had 3 people ask me at one fair if I had a large round stone).
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #15
  16. raebates

    raebates Legend Member Staff Member

    18,373
    400
    I've had pretty good success at fairs and expos. I don't do the c&c. I believe there's nothing wrong with it, since it makes provision in the RFS. However, it's just too much for me to hassle with. If someone is ordering something small (generally under $10), I omit the s/h fee. It's very few of my orders, and it's worth the Customer Care Brownie Points I build with that customer. Most people who are familiar with TPC know that they're going to be ordering the products for future delivery.

    I make sure everyone knows that I have no c&c, but I'll be transmitting the show right away, and they should have their products within 10 business days. If they don't want to wait, that's their choice. The Home Business Expo I did last year gave me just over $500 in sales, so it's working for me.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #16
  17. DebbieJ

    DebbieJ Legend Member

    10,901
    2
    I just bring along any extras I might have. At a fair on Saturday, the mini serving spatulas went like hotcakes.

    I bought specifically to bring cash & carry at a show once and I'll never do it again. I'm trying to find leads at a fair, not sell a bunch of stuff.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #17
  18. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
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    That's exactly how I feel!
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #18
  19. lisacb77

    lisacb77 Veteran Member

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    Andrea, how were you so successful collecting orders? I'm doing a fair this weekend and would love some tips!

    Ann, I guess if you put your fair orders in as a show where you were the host, could you then combine it with another order or the host order to save that person the shipping? And do you have any tips on taking orders at fairs?

    TIA.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #19
  20. MicheleC

    MicheleC Guest

    I can't even imagine trying to guess what people would want to order. I find it easy to put money into my business buying items to have for shows, etc. and have committed to focusing my resources on things that bring me new business. I can see how the mini-spatulas would sell well but I find it hard enough at times to talk with the people I think are interested rather than deal with selling small items. I look to my fair booths primarily for the business that it will bring me down the road although I will take orders and usually have an item on "special" at the fair. I have done a special sale for my extra products before Christmas each year and mark them down. I send this out on by email and like giving my customers a chance to pick up a special deal on a last minute gift.

    That said, I think it is up to the individual. If you want to take the risk of purchasing items on speculation then that is your choice. I don't think you should be able to return the items though as the consultant someone mentioned had done. That definately isn't right.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #20
  21. jwpamp

    jwpamp Veteran Member

    1,646
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    OK, so if you do cash and carry (or wish you did), what would you bring?
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #21
  22. DebbieJ

    DebbieJ Legend Member

    10,901
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    At this time of year, tons of mini serving spatulas!!! That's what everyone was looking for at our fair on Saturday.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #22
  23. heat123

    heat123 Legend Member Silver Member

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    I have done cash and carry 1 time at a vendor event for X-mas shopping and pretty much sold mini spatulas and tongs, SBCB and batter bowl gifts.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #23
  24. Grandmarita

    Grandmarita Advanced Member Gold Member

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    I've done two local Cash & Carry events, one at my Church Bazaar last Dec.,
    and the other at our local Museum. They are more work than a Cooking Show,
    with the hauling, set up and take down, as well as being there 7 hr. per day.
    However, it does get my name out as a local representative, and I had fun doing it. I will be doing both shows again this year. I also do put my PC sign out in front of our RV when we are traveling, and do a Cooking Show for anyone who knocks on our door. I set a time and suggest that they bring at least three other gals. I will sell them any items I have with me, and take orders for ones I do not. Their preference is to have it NOW. Since we are now returning to many of the same locations, I e-mail ahead to let them know I will be at a given event, and they order ahead, so that I can deliver when we see one another. One or two have placed online orders during the off season, because I gave them my business card with a free spice packet sample. My Curves manager encourages me to do Cash & Carry because folks like to pick up small gift priced items but don't want to pay the S/H. There have been times when someone will call, needing a gift that day. If
    I have it, NIB, I have no problem parting with it until I can replace it. More power to the person who can handle the storage and other stress that having a stock for Cash & Carry involves.
     
    Oct 23, 2006
    #24
  25. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
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    Email from my director:

    I spoke with PC this morning. They say that it is inappropriate business practice to set up at a fair with stock and sell it "cash and carry". If you happen to be somewhere and someone NEEDS something that you have, you can sell it, but that's the only acceptable and appropriate way to sell an item outright. Any time we see this being done we can contact PC and they have reps who research this and handle it.

    So that's that!
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #25
  26. raebates

    raebates Legend Member Staff Member

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    Thanks, Anne. You saved me a call.
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #26
  27. tiffanypc05

    tiffanypc05 Advanced Member

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    so what's the difference in selling them to someone who needs them and cash and carry? You're still selilng them...
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #27
  28. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

    6,701
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    Rae: You're welcome.

    Tiffany: I guess its the intent. I don't know.
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #28
  29. DebbieJ

    DebbieJ Legend Member

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    That's very bizarre given what it says in RFS about carrying inventory.
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #29
  30. tiffanypc05

    tiffanypc05 Advanced Member

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    i thought the same thing, maybe you got a newbie at ho that didn't know that policy....
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #30
  31. jwpamp

    jwpamp Veteran Member

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    Well, I will go with what HO says! I am taking samples to show and will take orders instead of doing cash and carry!
     
    Oct 24, 2006
    #31
  32. I have several large scale events, one in September and then two in December where cash n carry is requested. The September show is a large fair and has been going on for years, and I have been there for years! I send an email out to my clients in the area letting them know I will be there with small cash and carry items, but if they want stones, large items, etc, they can place and order and pick it up. That works well for me and generally garners me approximately $1500 - $2000 in sales combined. Heck, there have been times when I have sold my display items, as someone wanted something now. One lady was heading home to prune her roses, and was determined to have our shears! I give everyone who purchases a cash and carry item a receipt and make sure to get their email, so that next year they can get the email. As I said this works well. I do also book shows, and gather recruit leads, it doesn't have to be all or nothing. But it is YOUR buisness, and you can run it the way you want.
     
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