Children’s Orchard, Inc. Operations Manuals BUYING AND PRICING

Children’s Orchard, Inc.
Operations Manuals
BUYING AND PRICING
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page
Children’s Orchard’s Philosophy for Buying and Pricing....................................................1
Sizing ................................................................................................................................... 4
Buying Sources .................................................................................................................... 5
We Pay Ca$h ...................................................................................................................... 11
Getting buys
Sample newspaper ads ................................................................................................12
Making Appointments....................................................................................................... 14
Buying Clothes................................................................................................................... 18
Pricing Structure ................................................................................................................21
Market Pricing Study ........................................................................................................ 22
Playclothes......................................................................................................................... 24
Buying Equipment............................................................................................................. 26
About Older Cribs ....................................................................................................... 28
Buying Toys and Books ..................................................................................................... 29
Buying Scenarios ...............................................................................................................30
Buying Tools ...................................................................................................................... 34
Seller’s Card (Example #1)
Accu-Fair Tape (Example #2)
Drop Off Procedure ........................................................................................................... 37
Drop Off Record (Example #3)
Drop Off Log (Example #4)
Walk-In Customers ........................................................................................................... 41
How to Prepare Inventory for Sale ................................................................................... 42
Processing Procedures ...................................................................................................... 43
Application of Tickets (Example #5)
Weight/Size Chart (Example #6)
Sizing Chart (Example #7)
Gap &Gymboree Sizing Chart (Example #8)
Other Sizing Charts (Example #8a)
Ticket Colors Per Month (Example #9)
Off-Season Inventory Sheets (Example #10, 10a)
Categorization and Colorization Procedures .................................................................... 52
Categorization/Colorization Chart (Example #11)
Off Season Inventory......................................................................................................... 54
Seasonal Clothing Classifications (Example #12)
Accu-Fair Buying Computer System................................................................................. 56
Samsung 5200M
User’s Guide
Operational Guidelines
Daily Closing Procedure
Buying Register Weekly Closing Procedure
Sample Buy Closing Report
Sample Z Tape
Labeling Keys
Check Log
Ca$h Plus Guarantee......................................................................................................... 74
New Merchandise.............................................................................................................. 77
Vendor Form
Charity Program ................................................................................................................80
Quizzes............................................................................................................................... 83
Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
CHILDREN’S ORCHARD’S PHILOSOPHY FOR BUYING & PRICING
Children’s Orchard’s reputation for value priced, quality inventory in excellent condition
has made us the nation’s foremost authority in the children’s resale business. It is the
responsibility of every franchise owner to uphold our image and reputation on a daily basis.
Our watch words are quality, quantity, cleanliness, and friendliness!
RESALE QUALITY STANDARDS
GENERAL STATEMENT
To maintain and enhance our image as retail stores that happen to sell used
merchandise the highest level of product quality is critical. To meet your sales and profit goals
you must attract hundreds of families who never planned to shop resale. It is not enough to
simply be the best resale store. There are not enough resale shoppers in most towns to generate
the sales that you expect. To be successful you have to attract, educate and win over large
numbers of parents who now shop only traditional retail.
To do this the merchandise must be almost like new. Our customers can afford to buy at full
price so why would they settle for something that is worn, discolored or defective? The answer
is that they will not!
The guidelines for product quality are listed below.
CLOTHING
REGULAR RACKS
• NO staining of any kind regardless of how insignificant it may be.
This is a critical element of our brand and image. A customer should not have to inspect
the clothing as they shop and should never get a garment home and find a stain.
The only exception is that heavy winter outerwear, like ski jackets and snowsuits can
have one or two very small and minor stains on the arms or legs.
•
NO obvious or overall pilling, fading or wear
This means any slight fading must be even, not more or less faded on seams or edges.
No “moons” on the knees of pants. No overall or excessive pilling.
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
There are two exceptions. Toddler and kid size (2 and up) sleepwear can be quite pilled
as long as the material is not thin. Check the feet and if they are white and not cracked they are
okay to buy. Blue denim (only) blue jeans can be quite faded, even more faded on the knees.
•
NO defects of any kind such as tears, holes in the seam, missing, broken or replaced
buttons, broken zippers, repairs or alterations or garments that are stretched out of shape.
PLAY WEAR DEPARTMENT
•
Minor staining is acceptable
Small stains that are not dirty looking or yellow and are on an inconspicuous part of the
garment, like a small grass stain on the knee. In fact garments that are in excellent condition
but have a small stain are the ideal play wear garments.
No yellow or dirty looking stains and nothing on the front of the garment, near the face,
or on the bottom.
•
Slightly more pilling, fading and wear than garments we buy for the regular rack is
acceptable.
We go just one step further on wear but garments should never be shapeless and limp or
excessively faded or worn.
•
NO defects of any kind such as tears, holes in the seam, missing, broken or replaced
buttons, broken zippers, repairs or alterations.
TOYS
•
•
•
•
•
•
Must not be recalled and must meet current safety standards
Not faded, scuffed or scratched
No decals peeling off or missing
All pieces and parts are in tact
Reputable name brands only
Current styles only, less than five years old
BOOKS
•
•
•
No torn or scribbled pages
Covers in excellent condition not marred, torn or scratched
High quality books only (not Golden Books, etc.)
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Buying & Pricing
EQUIPMENT AND FURNITURE
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Must not be recalled and must meet current safety standards
Not faded, scuffed or scratched
No decals peeling off or missing
All pieces and parts are in tact
Reputable name brands only
No torn fabric or vinyl
No stained fabric, mesh or vinyl
No rust or peeling finishes
Current styles only, preferably no more than two or three years old, never more than
five years old.
WE PAY CA$H
Children’s Orchard was the forerunner of the resale concept of paying CA$H for
inventory as opposed to consignment. This policy has made Children’s Orchard stores
extremely popular with parents wishing to sell their children’s outgrown items. Receiving cash
or a check for their goods on the spot is far more desirable to parents than the uncertainty and
hassles of consignment. The CA$H policy is also favorable to the franchise owner.
The bookkeeping in a consignment operation having the average volume that a
Children’s Orchard store has would be overwhelming. In addition, the margins at a Children’s
Orchard store are far more favorable than the typical 50/50 split at a consignment shop.
Paying cash for your inventory also puts a greater degree of responsibility on your
shoulders to accept only the very best nearly new items your seller brings to you. Offering your
customers items that are stained, worn or out of style, not only turns them off, but sheds a bad
light on all of your inventory. The losses you will experience from bad buying will obviously
impact your bottom line.
STORE CREDIT – THE CACHE CARD
Paying sellers with store credit instead of cash is even more profitable than paying cash.
When we pay with credit, the seller receives 40% or 50% more. We keep our cash and pay the
customer only what we paid for the merchandise they buy with the credit. The cache card is a
valuable tool for increasing sales and improving profitability.
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
SIZING
Children’s Orchard stores carry clothing sizes Newborn through 8. We have found from
years of experience that once children reach a certain age, they begin to become very particular
about what styles they will and will not wear. Sales in the larger sizes diminish greatly in
comparison to the infant through size 8 categories. You will find that people often request that
you carry Sizes 10-14 or request that you buy larger sizes. The reality is that parents would love
to be able to stay with Children’s Orchard into their children’s preteen sizes—it’s the kids who
ultimately won’t go for it!
A few stores carry sizes 10-14. You may want to try the larger sizes to see if they sell in
your market. If not, put them on clearance and stop buying them. Be sure you only buy name
brands and the latest styles.
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Buying & Pricing
BUYING SOURCES
Nearly new children’s clothing and accessories come from virtually every household that
has kids! Fortunately for us, children outgrow their expensive clothing and accessories every
few months! This holds true for their toys, books, strollers and other equipment as well.
Nearly everything that parents buy for their children is potential inventory for
Children’s Orchard. Your main thrust should, therefore, be to inform every parent in your
town and surrounding communities that your Children’s Orchard store is open and anxious to
serve them.
WINNING OVER SELLERS FOR REPEAT BUYS:
Cultivating Positive Relationships
Who is our target seller?
• Busy parent of young children
• Middle to upper middle household income
Why sell to Children’s Orchard?
• Get rid of the things that they are no longer using! #1 REASON
• Recycle/reuse
• Help less fortunate families afford nice things
• Get cash
Why not just give their things away to charity or have a garage sale instead?
• Garage sales too much work for very little money
• Don’t want to invite strangers to their home
• Who actually receives the clothing donations? Are they sold or given away?
• Don’t like how some charities handle their nice things
• Take pride in their nice clothing and would rather see it carefully hung, steamed and put on
display than thrown in a pile
What a seller goes through to sell to us:
• Call for information and make an appointment
• Sort through outgrown items
• Launder, fold and load into the car
• Load kids into car seats, get diaper bag and snacks, etc.
• Drive to CO store
• Unload bags or boxes, get kids into stroller and into store
• Wait while seller sorts through what CO can buy
• Get $30 cash (on average)
• Take home 60-70% or donate to charity
• Is it worth it? ONLY if the staff at CO makes it a very positive experience from beginning to
end. Here’s how:
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
Buying process
1. Greet seller by name as they arrive, be friendly and positive regardless of whether or not the
seller is late, you are behind schedule, etc. Give them your full, undivided attention
2. Help them carry their items to the back room
3. Chit chat about anything but the transaction (weather, their earrings, something cute in
their bag or box, etc.)
4. Carefully and patiently explain our buying procedure (if first time seller), ask seller to
complete a buy card.
5. Offer options to donate what we cannot buy to charity and choice of store credit or
cash/check
6. Ask if the seller has any questions and if so provide complete answers.
7. Do the buy carefully, setting aside items with obvious staining, defects, etc.
8. When done invite the seller into the back room to make the offer privately.
9. Say something positive about one of the items they brought in, how well they took care of
their kids’ things, etc. If you bought anything you can find something complimentary to say.
10. Say very little about the items that we cannot buy. Simply wave your hand over the bags and
boxes saying, “These are the items that we passed on today because they had some
discoloration or more wear than what we find we can resell.”
11. Then say in a very positive tone of voice, voice rising in pitch, “And I can pay you $30 for
the things that we would like to buy!” (Say as if it were a million dollars even if it is only
$2.)
12. Ask the seller to sign the buy card, indicating that they accept our offer.
13. Pay them in cash, check or store credit
14. Ask if the seller has any questions if this is their first time selling or if they seem hesitant.
Thoroughly address any questions or concerns.
15. Thank them genuinely for bringing us their nice things. Invite them to come back when
they have more items to sell.
16. Help them take back to their car anything that we cannot buy that they do not want to
donate.
17. Drop items into corresponding sell price bins.
18. File Accu-Fair receipt.
What the buyer can do to turn this into a positive experience that is likely to be repeated:
• Work hard to develop a strong, positive relationship with the seller as if you were just
introduced to a new friend.
• Compliment their great taste or how they took such good care of their child’s things. Tell
them how excited you are to get their beautiful things for your store and how you are sure
they will sell right away. Say that a young family who cannot afford to buy them new will be
thrilled, etc. In other words find a way to stroke their ego and raise their self-esteem.
• Mention that they are recycling today with CO (especially toys and equipment). We recycle
tons of steel, plastic, etc. each year.
• Take as much time as is necessary to help sellers understand our process. Patiently answer
all of their questions no matter how busy you are or how difficult they are.
• Be upbeat, outgoing and positive.
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Buying & Pricing
Planning For Buys
How many buys do you need each week?
For this example we will use the following assumptions:
Sales goal of: $200,000
- Buys average 20 pieces
- 2004 cool region seasonal pattern
Buying formula – (2.87 * Annual Buying) + 36,000 = Estimated annual sales
(Estimated Annual Sales – 36,000)/2.87 = Annual Buying
Month
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
Total/average
Buying Budget No. Buys Buys/week
3,371
169
42
3,771
189
47
6,114
306
61
4,571
229
57
3,771
189
47
4,057
203
41
3,829
191
48
6,571
329
66
6,114
306
76
5,714
286
71
5,829
291
58
3,486
174
44
57,198
239
55
For this example we will use the following assumptions:
Sales goal of: $400,000
- Buys average 20 pieces
- 2004 cool region seasonal pattern
Buying formula – (2.87 * Annual Buying) + 36,000 = Estimated annual sales
(Estimated Annual Sales – 36,000)/2.87 = Annual Buying
Month
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November
December
Total/average
Buying Budget No. Buys Buys/week
7,483
374
94
8,371
419
105
13,571
679
136
10,146
507
127
8,371
419
105
9,005
450
90
8,498
425
106
14,585
729
146
13,571
679
170
12,683
634
159
12,937
647
129
7,737
387
97
126,958
529
122
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
Asking for buys
Profitability of one more buy per day
Encourage your employees to ask each and every customer if they have things that they
would like to sell, trying to schedule an appointment for them on the spot.
Some franchise owners have used bonuses, like $1 per buy booked, to encourage this
important behavior.
Let’s take a look at what one extra buy per day can mean to your sales and profit.
Assumptions
Average Buy
= 20 pieces
Average Pay Price per Piece = $1.00
(Total Buy = $20.00)
Average Selling Price per Piece - $4.25
(Retail Value of Buy = $85.00)
Results
If you buy 305 days per year and increase by one buy per day you will:
¾
¾
¾
Buy 6,100 more pieces
Increase sales by $25,925.00
Increase gross profit by $19,825.00
If you are already at or above your break even sales level you get to keep most of the extra
profit!
If you paid your employees $1 for every buy booked you would still have an extra $16,470.00 in
profits. (Based on paying them $11 per day, 305 days per year.)
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Buying & Pricing
Scenario: Borrow to get 3,000 pieces of clothing
Cost of 100 Buys:
Advertising
Labor to buy, process and display in store
Supplies
Storage
Price of Goods
Subtotal
Interest on loan
Total Cost
$
$
700.00
500.00
200.00
90.00
3,000.00
4,490.00
250.00
4,740.00
Sell Price
$
12,750.00
PROFIT:
$8,010
$
A 169% Return
Scenario: Host buy to get 3,000 pieces of clothing
Cost of 100 Buys:
Labor to buy, process and display in store
Supplies
Storage
Price of Goods
Host Buy Fee @ 40%
Shipping
Total Cost
$
180.00
200.00
90.00
3,000.00
1,200.00
500.00
5,170.00
Sell Price
$
12,750.00
PROFIT:
$7,580
A 146% Return
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
Scenario: Hire a yard sale buyer who is required to buy $500 worth, or more per
weekend, 22 weeks per year, ½ toys and ½ equipment. Pay him/her 25% of $$
spent.
Cost of Buys:
Advertising
Labor to buy, process and display in store
Supplies
Storage
Price of Goods
Fee to buyer
Total Cost
Sell Price
Toys
Furniture and equipment
Total Sales
PROFIT:
$13,200
$
$
$
$
$
300.00
50.00
200.00
11,000.00
2,750.00
14,300.00
16,500.00
11,000.00
27,500.00
A 92% Return
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Buying & Pricing
WE PAY CA$H
Buying both seasons all of the time has helped to eliminate inventory shortages, but just
to keep things rolling, here are some hints on how to get inventory. REMEMBER, if you don’t
have the inventory, you can’t sell it! Soliciting buys should be ever on your mind.
1.
Be sure to keep a file of apple cards on all of your sellers. Include on the card their
names, addresses, phone numbers, children’s gender, and sizes of clothing they bring in.
Always grade a seller according to the quality and condition of the merchandise they
bring you. Note the date of their appointment on their card as well. Each new season
you send a card directly to your sellers and invite them to make an appointment to sell
you their “BEAUTIFUL THINGS”. About a week after they receive their cards, give
them a phone call and personally invite them to make an appointment once again.
People are flattered that you are actually seeking their beautiful, quality clothing.
2.
Each time you do a buy, ask your seller if he/she knows of any friends who may be
interested in selling you their things. Take names, addresses, and phone numbers if
possible to give those friends a call.
If your sellers don’t have names on the tip of their tongues, ask them to pass the
word along if they come in contact with potential sellers – neighbors, other parents in a
play group, etc.
3.
Give each seller 3 cash flyers – either hand the flyers to them with their check or returns
or put them in their bag if they have made a purchase.
Ask your seller politely if they’d mind giving a flyer to any friends who may not
have brought us clothing, toys, and/or equipment.
4.
Don’t be afraid to solicit business from your customers. If someone mentions that they
go to a play group, Lamaze class, or has a child in Nursery School or Day Care, ask them
if they would take along cash flyers to hand out at their next meeting or if they would
leave a stack on top of the cubbies at Nursery School.
5.
The Classified Section of your newspapers is sometimes overlooked as a potential
advertising area. You can often get many appointments from a Cash Ad under the
“WANTED TO BUY” or “GARAGE SALE” (in season) columns of the classified
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Buying & Pricing
SUGGESTED ADS FOR CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING
Garage Sale; Merchandise Wanted to Buy
WE PAY CA$H ADS
“Why have a garage sale? Children’s Orchard pays CA$h for gently used clothing, toys, baby
equipment and furniture. Top $$. Call XXX-XXXX.”
“How to keep strangers out of your bathroom. Instead of a garage sale, sell your gently used
children’s products to Children’s Orchard. We pay CA$H, we pay more. Call XXX-XXXX.”
“RECYCLING PAY$. Children’s Orchard pays CA$H for your kids gently used clothing, toys,
baby equipment, and furniture. Top dollar. Call XXX-XXXX today.
“Big wheels earn big money at Children’s Orchard. Bring us your gently used toys, clothing,
and baby equipment, and we’ll pay you CA$H. Call XXX-XXXX.”
“We pay CA$H – Top dollar – for gently used children’s clothing, toys, and baby equipment.
Tax receipt for items we can’t resell. Call today! Children’s Orchard XXX-XXXX.”
“Kids too big for their britches? Trade ‘em in for CA$H at Children’s Orchard! (Not the kids,
the britches) Call XXX-XXXX.”
“TOYS TOYS TOYS (double size text, on a line by itself)
We pay CA$H for quality toys. Clean out the toy box and call XXX-XXXX today.
Be sure to co-op with surrounding stores if possible.
You should run this ad for at least 2-3 weeks. If you get a good response, consider keeping it on
an on-going basis. Frequency is the key to effective advertising.
6.
Always remember to keep a stack of cash flyers on your counter. As you put a flyer in
each customer’s bag, say “Don’t forget that we pay cash for your children’s outgrown
clothing, equipment and toys. Would you like to schedule an appointment to bring
some things in?”
Have a goal for your sales people to book at least 5 appointments a day from your
customers.
7.
If your town has no restrictions, don’t hesitate to do a cash flyer blitz in front of TOYS ‘R
US or CHUCK E. CHEESE every now and then. Don’t overlook parking lots at movie
matinees on Saturday and Sunday.
8.
Have an incentive program. Give a gift card for $5.00 if a seller has a friend that comes
in and sells to you.
9.
Contact LaLeche and Lamaze classes. Ask instructors to give out flyers at classes.
10.
Local birthing classes at hospitals have packets for future mothers. Find out how your
flyer can be part of your packet.
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11.
Post a flyer on the bulletin board at your local YMCA and YWCA.
12.
Put a stack of flyers in grocery stores near coupon/bulletin board area.
13.
Request that a nearby Children’s Orchard host you to buy some of their (excess)
clothing. Network with your fellow franchisees as to who might have “extra” buys.
14.
Buy clothing from church or school fundraisers.
15.
Trade or buy mailing lists from local businesses that may have parents with young
children as clients, i.e. photographers, dance classes, gymnastics classes, day care
providers, nursery schools, etc.
16.
Buy a mailing list from a parents’ paper and send a Ca$h postcard to them. Be sure to
co-op where possible.
17.
Do you have any local children’s radio programs? Consider advertising with them. Be
sure to co-op if possible.
18.
Consider an incentive to your employees for making appointments. One of our
franchisees came up with a great idea! He offered his employees a reward of $5.00 if
they made three or more appointments during their 4-hour shift. He suggested calling
back previous sellers who hadn’t been in over six months, putting flyers in each bag, and
actually asking each customer if they’d like to make an appointment as they checked out.
He started the incentive program on a Friday and by the following Monday, at noon, his
employees had booked over 25 appointments!
19. Finally, be sure to take a look at your buying procedures. Are you following the buying
guidelines set forth in your manual? Are you paying the customers fairly? Are you
handling them in an understanding and respectful manner?
Word of mouth is still our most valuable marketing tool. If you please a customer,
they’re bound to pass along a recommendation to do business with you. By the same token, if
you offend them in any way, they will go out of their way to tell their friends and acquaintances
of the unpleasant experience they had at your Children’s Orchard store.
Nurturing your customers and meeting their needs is so very important as your business
grows and your reputation in the parenting community spreads.
If you incorporate the suggestions listed above into your daily procedures, you should
enjoy a constant flow of happy customers and quality inventory.
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MAKING APPOINTMENTS
In order to prevent wasted time, impatient parents, screaming babies and a huge mess,
make definite appointments to examine and buy merchandise. Appointments should be
spaced at least one-half hour apart.
When people call for an appointment, state clearly, “We buy only quality clothing, clean
and in excellent condition. We do not buy things that are worn, stained or out of style. These
guidelines apply to toys and equipment as well.” Also, specify that you buy all seasons all the
time. This is very appealing to parents. Stating quality specifications clears things right up and
discourages those with inappropriate goods. Ask customers how much they are bringing so as
to plan your time accordingly.
You want your inventory to be in style and as nearly new as possible. Stained or worn
clothing sheds bad light on your nice things. Look in your own kid’s closets. Chances are you’ll
see perfectly good clothing - - outgrown, but not worn out. Some toys that the kids just never
really used may be sitting untouched on the shelf, outgrown as well. Millions of parents across
the country have closets and shelves like that. This is the reason a Children’s Orchard store is a
blessing to the buyers as well as the sellers and especially the owners!
The following is a telephone prompter for you and your employees to use to insure your
appointment making procedures is as efficient and effective as possible:
Appointments
INFORM SELLER:
¾ Items must be freshly laundered
¾ We buy items that are in excellent condition
¾ No rips, stains, pills, no buttons missing
¾ Taking all seasons
¾ Must be contemporary and in style
WE TAKE TOYS TOO:
¾ Must be clean
¾ Must contain all pieces
¾ No teething toys or war toys
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
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WE TAKE EQUIPMENT:
¾
¾
¾
¾
If seller has equipment, ask what types and let them know what you are interested in
Must be clean
Must be complete
Not more than 5 years old
ASK FOR:
¾ Name, phone number, quantity, sizes, new or repeat seller.
The Call
When someone calls for an appointment, the conversation might go like this:
You:
Caller:
You:
Caller:
You:
Caller:
You:
Caller:
You:
Caller:
You:
Caller:
“Good morning! Children’s Orchard.”
“Yes, I have some children’s clothing I’d like to sell.”
“Fine. We’re taking all seasons of clothing now; and as you probably know,
we take only things that are freshly laundered, fashionable and in excellent
condition. No rips or stains. Also, why not clean out the toy box or the attic!
We can always use good toys, books, and equipment. Toys and equipment
must be clean and contain all of their parts. OK, may I have your name, and
I’ll make an appointment for you.”
“My name is Sandy Beech.”
“Okay Sandy, approximately how much will you bring?” “A market bag or a
box full?”
“Oh, I’d say two large boxes.”
“We do our buying daily from 9:00 to 5:00, Thursday and Friday evenings,
and on Saturday mornings from 9:00 to 12:00. What’s a good time for you
Sandy?”
“How about 10:00 on Saturday, the 12th?”
“Fine, may I have your telephone number in case we need to contact you?”
“Sure, it’s 555-4567
“OK, Sandy. We’ll see you at 10:00, Saturday, March 12. If you have to
change or cancel your appointment, please give us a call.”
“OK. Thank you. Bye.”
Your Appointment Book
Using the code N=No or Y=Yes if the customer has sold to you before, you will have
written the following in your appointment book:
Tuesday, March 12, 1999
9:30 Anna Nimity – N (4 boxes) – 555-3456
10:00 Sandy Beech – Y (2 bags) – 555-4567
10:30 Hazel Nutt – N - Crib (1 market bag) –234-5678
11:00 Berti Feeder – Y (4 bags) – 555-1000
11:30 Lunch
12:00 Mrs. D. Point – Y (1 shopping bag) – 555-6789
12:30 Lynn Oleum – N (1 market bag) –456-7890
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This information provides you with an idea of how much buying you’re going to be
doing that day so you can be adequately prepared.
If you are not the only person scheduling buys in the appointment book, we suggest that
you highlight 2-3 weeks in advance all available appointments. This eliminates the need to
change seller’s time when you realize that at 2:00pm on March 16th, an appointment has been
scheduled, and your daughter has her first dance recital.
Reminder Calls
You may find you will be booked for appointments as far as two to three weeks in
advance. We suggest that you call the people a day before they’re scheduled and remind them
of their appointments. This really helps to cut the no-show factor when appointments have to
be made far in advance.
Priority Appointments
It is a good idea to leave a few time slots open each week just in case an “A” customer
wants to come in or someone is moving and needs to get in ASAP.
Grade Your Sellers!
Using your Buy Cards, be sure to grade the sellers’ items. For instance, if someone has
beautiful things—all brand names, spotlessly clean, etc.—check 4 apples on his/her card. Then,
when you’re ready to begin your next season’s buying, go through the book and call or send a
direct mail invitation to all of the “four apple” people and ask whether they’d like a priority
appointment. The people are flattered and you are assured of a cream-of-the-crop batch of
clothes.
Be Straightforward
One more thing you can do to maximize the productivity of your appointment-making is
this: When someone says they have a larger piece of equipment—crib, carriage, etc.—ask then
how much they had in mind for the item. If they say, “Oh, I don’t know, we’ve had it for four
years just sitting in the attic. I just want to get rid of it,” that’s one thing. However, if they say,
“Well, it cost $200 new; I’d like to get at least $150 for it,” it’s likely that no amount of
bargaining is going to bring this item into your range. You should say, “We couldn’t possibly
pay you that much money for used equipment; perhaps you’d be happier if you tried to sell it
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on your own.” Also, with a person like this, you might state your general pricing policies for
clothing in case he/she is expecting $20 for each dress. This saves anxiety and disappointment
on everyone’s part.
Buying is the life blood of your whole business and without appointments there is no
buying going on. You should make getting appointments top priority in every employee’s
mind. Every customer should be invited to make an appointment. We Pay CA$H bag stuffers
should be put in every bag. Ca$h advertising should run regularly. Get the appointment, get
the inventory and get the sales. It’s as simple as that!
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BUYING CLOTHES
Begin by contacting friends and neighbors. Tell them about your new business, and ask
them if they would like to be “guinea pigs.” At first the process may seem awkward, but
practice will make you a pro. People will usually bring you their clothes in plastic bags or
boxes. Familiarize yourself with the lists of name brands included in this section so that you
will recognize high quality items at a glance.
The Process
On buying day, when your buying appointment arrives, meet them as they come in and
help carry the things to the back room. When you’ve gotten everything together, say, “Would
you care to browse around the store while I go through these things? It will take me about 15
or 20 minutes.” It can be very nostalgic for a parent to see their little one’s duds placed
impersonally in a pile and wind up who knows where. If your seller stays with you, you’re
bound to hear comments like, “Jennifer wore that little red dress only once! It was her first
Christmas. Gosh, she was cute!” As you can see, it would take two weeks to sort through this
person’s clothes! And it’s not just fancy clothes that tug at a parent’s heartstrings. It could be
booties or a worn out pair of Oshkosh overalls—anything that recalls one of those precious,
precious moments. If you have kids, you know what we’re talking about. So do try to convince
your sellers to step back into the store to browse while you go through their things.
If someone wants to know every price you’re giving them on every undershirt and pair of
pants, it will cause delays. Give a seller an example of what you pay by quoting the pricing of a
top brand item and explain that condition and brand name have a great deal to do with it.
People may want to know prices on special items, such as snowsuits or expensive coats. This,
of course, is understandable, and you should oblige.
Bin Buying
You will be working in your back room when buying. As you begin, check each item
quickly, but carefully, for wear (collars, knees, hems or cuffs, especially), staining, pills (on
synthetic usually), zippers that are not in working order, buttons or belts missing, and rips,
especially in arm holes and seat of the pants or crotch areas.
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The process of buying your resale inventory is simplified and expedited by using the bin
system and buying register. A bin is designated for each buy price—i.e., $.50 bin; $.75 bin;
$1.00 bin; etc. A $.50 purchase is placed in the $.50 bin; a $.75 purchase in the $.75 bin; etc.
To use the buying register, you simply touch the key on the Accu-Fair buying register
that corresponds to the item you plan to purchase. Then place the item in the bin number
indicated on the key.
When you are done ringing all of the items on the register, hit the subtotal key and make
the offer to your seller.
Making the Purchase
When you’ve finished going through all the clothing put all of the returns back in the
seller’s bag or box. Call the customer back to the buying area and tell them what you could and
couldn’t take and make them an offer. If they question why you couldn’t take some items, tell
them: “They were a little too worn,” or “Some had minor yellowing,” or whatever applies. Keep
the most obvious samples of unsalable items near the top of the box or bag to use as examples.
Ninety-five percent of the people who come into a Children’s Orchard store are very happy with
the amount of money they receive for clothing they’ve already gotten use from and were
probably going to lend, give away or throw out.
Occasionally, however, there will be someone who will feel they haven’t gotten enough
for their goods, and you will have to call your diplomacy into play. If someone seems unhappy
with the amount you offer them, you might say something like this: “We try to keep our prices
reasonable, and, therefore, we do have limits on what we can pay,” or; “Your things are very
nice. I would love to have them in my store. We do pay more than anyone in town.”
Don’t fret if someone decides not to do business with you. There will be dozens more
sellers waiting in the wings. Politely pack up his/her things, apologize for not being able to do
business, help him/her to the car, and cordially invite him/her back as a shopper.
Learn to Negotiate
Buying is probably the trickiest part of your new business. Naturally, you will want to
buy at prices as low as possible, yet keep your sellers happy and feeling they’ve received a
healthy sum for their goods. Children’s Orchard has spent years developing and perfecting our
buying and pricing procedures to make our sellers, our customers, and our franchisees happy.
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Although our guidelines work well most of the time, there will be occasions when you’ll need to
vary from the guidelines slightly.
Buying expensive items of clothing or equipment may sometimes take some negotiation.
Before you begin negotiating a price, always consult your Buying & Pricing Guidelines. If the
amount you suggest to your seller is too low, based on the guidelines, ask your seller what price
they had in mind for the item. If it’s too high, tell them that you cannot readily sell the
merchandise in your store at that price. Say, “How about
?” (offering
slightly higher than your pricing guidelines). You can usually arrive at a satisfactory price after
this exchange.
If your seller is reluctant to come down on the price, think it over for a minute. Are
these items very popular? Something you know you could sell in a minute? Something you’d
like to have in your store to service your customers? If so, consider a slightly smaller markup.
Never let an “A” customer leave your store without selling you all his/her gorgeous things. You
need great quality items to balance the mix of inventory on your floor. If you feel lukewarm
about the items, you’d be better off to put your money elsewhere. Tell your customers that you
must keep your prices down and that perhaps they’d be better off trying to sell the items
through an ad in the paper or at a yard sale.
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PRICING STRUCTURE
Generally, we mark clothing up approximately 3X; if we pay $1.75 we charge $6.99. On
specialty items or very expensive things, our markup is less because our sellers expect us to pay
more for this type of merchandise. Some items on which you may notice a lower markup are
designer clothes, excellent quality coats, snowsuits, sport coats, boys’ three-piece suits, used
equipment, and higher priced toys.
We recommend that you complete a market pricing study before beginning to buy for
your store. Instructions follow on page 22.
Our gross margins range from 70% on certain used clothing items to 20% on some of
the new equipment. This range generates an overall gross profit margin from 65-70%,
depending upon product mix. (Margin is the percentage if the selling price that is gross profit.)
These margins give you an edge to cover markdowns or “Sales.” This unusually high markup is
one of the keys to success in this unique business. You can readily see the advantage this gives
you over a consignment operation.
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MARKET PRICING STUDY
A thorough analysis is required to determine the level of pricing in your particular
market. Visit a variety of discount stores, department stores, and specialty boutiques,
gathering data in four basic price categories – low, medium, high, and better, or as Children’s
Orchard refers to them, “C”, “B”, “A”, and “A+” brand names. “A+” and “A” brands are items
that are found only in pricey boutiques and are therefore in limited quantity and at high and
better price points. “B” brands are found at better department stores and occasionally at
discount stores and are considered “better” brands. “B” brands are at moderate price points.
“C” brands are found everywhere—discounters and department stores—and are heavily
discounted due to wide distribution. Some examples of the various brands follow:
“A+” brands = Sarah Kent, Rothschild, Cache-Cache, etc.
“A” brands = Absorba, Ralph Lauren Polo, Tommy Hilfiger.
“B” brands = Oshkosh, Lands End, Lee, Gap, etc.
“C” brands = Sears, Healthtex, Wrangler, Penney, Spencer, etc.
Note: Brand rating is not necessarily a judgment of quality; it is more a case of price
and availability.
When you visit the various types of stores and look at the numerous brands, collect price
information on the following basic items. Collect enough information to determine a valid
average retail price in your market for each type of item in each of four brand classifications.
Items to price include: pull on pants, regular zipper pants, overalls (shortalls, skirtalls),
tops (not just T-shirts), dresses (an important one), jackets and coats, one-piece outfits
(sometimes called coveralls – long legs), and rompers (one-piece outfits that have short legs),
sweaters, blazers, sleepers, and pajamas.
Use this information to arrive at averages. For example, you’ll need to know what the
average price for “A+” brand pull-on pants, “A” brand pull-on pants, is and likewise for all of
the items above. You will want to retail clothing in your store at 50-80% off “regular” retail.
Doing this survey will allow you to make price adjustments to the buying and pricing guidelines
based on “regular” retail prices in your market.
You should also do an analysis of toys and baby equipment. Averages don’t really make
sense for these items; simply list the prices of several dozen different name brand toys and
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pieces of equipment, such as strollers, carriers, etc. Use those as a reference when buying
resale equipment.
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PLAYCLOTHES
Many of our stores carry an extensive selection of fine quality playclothes. These same
stores have seen sales increase 15% and more since introducing the playclothes category to
their stores.
We recommend that you purchase “A+”, “A”, and “B” quality clothing with slight
imperfections (maybe a bit worn at the knees or a little pilling or perhaps a spot in an
inconspicuous place) for your playclothes section.
Do not be tempted to buy “C” quality clothing for your playclothes racks. We have found
that our customers are looking for the “better” quality items when shopping for playclothes.
Refer to Children’s Orchard Buying & Pricing Guidelines for complete information on
playclothes and maternity.
The Playwear Opportunity
Playwear provides the opportunity to positively impact your bottom line. Here are
examples of what might be possible.
Assumptions for Current Situation
¾ Current sales level is $219,000
¾ Annual playwear sales is $10,000, other sales $209,000
¾ Cost of goods sold is 40%, COGS on playwear alone is currently 22% (using old system
prices)
¾ $209,000 in sales at 40% COGS = $125,400 gross profit
¾ $10,000 in playwear sales at 22% COGS = $7,800
¾ Total of $219,000 in sales = $133,200 gross profit.
Scenario #1
¾ Double playwear sales while keeping regular sales the same.
¾ Total annual sales of $229,000, $20,000 in playwear and $209,000 in other sales.
¾ Move to recommended pay prices for playwear – most $.15 or $.25
¾ $209, 000 in sales at 40% COGS = $125,400 gross profit
¾ $20,000 in playwear sales at 9.5% COGS = $18,100 gross profit
¾ Total of $229,000 in sales = $143,500 gross profit
¾ ADD $10,000 IN SALES BUT INCREASE GROSS PROFIT BY $10,300
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Scenario #2
¾ Double playwear sales but keep total sales the same at $219,000
¾ $20,000 in playwear sales, $199,000 in other sales
¾ Move to recommended pay prices for playwear – most $.15 or $.25
¾ $199,000 in sales at 40% COGS - $119,400
¾ $20,000 in playwear sales at 9.5% COGS = $18,100 gross profit
¾ Total of $219,000 in sales = $137,500
¾ IN THIS CASE YOU DO NOT INCREASE SALES AT ALL BUT YOUR GROSS
PROFIT GOES UP BY $4,300!
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BUYING EQUIPMENT
It is especially important to be attentive and selective when buying equipment, due to
the fact that much larger sums of money are at stake.
Be very careful that all equipment items have their parts in working order and meet
federal safety regulations.
Contact the Consumer Product Safety Commission to keep you abreast of recall notices.
There are different ways to do this:
1. Call the CPSC’s toll-free hotline at 800-638-2772 to listen to prerecorded information.
2. Use the CPSC’s Fax-On-Demand. Call 301-504-0051 from the handset of your FAX
machine. Order their catalog, which gives you the release numbers you need.
3. The CPSC’s news releases are available in the INTERNET, using the agency’s “gopher”
service: cpsc.gov. You can add yourself to a list server to get CPSC news releases
automatically via INTERNET e-mail. To subscribe, send an e-mail message to:
[email protected] In the body of your e-mail message, enter: sub CPSCINFO-L
YourFirstName YourLastName.
Take only items in very good condition. It isn’t worthwhile to sacrifice valuable space
for anything that is going to hang around and have to be drastically marked down in order to
sell.
Example: New Pack ‘n Plays retails at $50. We could charge $24.99, so we could pay
$12-13. If there were any signs of wear, we would go down in price accordingly.
There are many grades of quality, many models and many styles of children’s
equipment. Prices on cribs, for instance, may range from $99 for a Sear’s basic model to $350
for a Simmons canopy-type crib. Some designer companies, like Bellini, may charge $700$800 for a convertible crib.
It’s advisable to keep a discount merchandise catalog nearby when buying. Check
carefully on new prices of equipment you are buying. Asking the seller what the item cost
when new is not always reliable.
Determine the average prices you will pay for various items. Work down in price for any
signs of wear, and up for particularly fancy, unusual, never or barely used, or obviously
expensive equipment. Coming up with good average prices is the key.
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Don’t buy anything that is in poor condition. However, some elbow grease will often
make a soiled item look just fine. You will be trained to spot value.
When a piece of equipment comes in with several parts, check carefully to be sure all
screws and parts are there. If there are small parts, put them in a baggie and tape them to the
item.
Equipment to Avoid
1. Don’t take car seats. You can never be sure they weren’t in an accident, thus having
hairline fractures that render them unsafe.
2. Don’t take cribs older than 5 years, or with slats any farther apart than 2 3/8”. All cribs
should be set up and checked for workability, parts, stability, etc. Loose parts should
be put in a baggie and taped to the crib. If you have more than one crib in stock,
number the cribs and their own bag parts, to avoid mix-ups.
3. Don’t take feeding dishes or electrical feeding appliances. With the advent of microwave
ovens, these items are virtually obsolete. Be wary of all electrical items - - lamps,
monitors, etc. Be sure to check them thoroughly prior to buying them.
4. Don’t take a wobbly changing table. This condition usually cannot be remedied. No
ripped pads or broken wicker. A good changing table should have a safety belt.
5. Don’t take older model scales.
6. Don’t take Johnny jump-ups or swings with soiled seats, mildew spots, cracked plastic
or weak seams.
7. Don’t take backpacks with soiled covers.
8. No bathtubs with discolored sponge rubber on the bottom.
9. No strollers with any rust (other than very minor spots that can be removed with SOS).
Check wheels to be sure they’re not broken or wobbly. Older-model strollers don’t sell,
so don’t take them.
10. Older carriages - - especially plaid ones - - don’t sell either. Don’t bother with them even
if they are perfect.
11. No mattresses.
HINT: Give everything the whiff test. If something has been stored in the barn, it may
have fallen victim to the resident cat, or if it’s been in the basement, it may be musty or
mildewed. No one will put their baby in something that isn’t fresh as a daisy – particularly
carriages, strollers, and cribs!
Don’t buy it if you hear yourself asking any of the following questions:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
“So what’s wrong with a stroller with only three wheels?”
“It would look great if we just took the dents out and painted over the rust.”
“I might be able to fix that.”
“Some bleach or pre-soak might get that stain out.”
“If we price it low enough someone will buy it.”
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It is simply not worth buying inferior or even marginal merchandise. It isn’t worth the
space it takes up or your valuable time trying to bring it up to snuff and most of all YOU
DON’T WANT THAT IMAGE IN YOUR STORE.
ABOUT OLDER CRIBS…
Older cribs can present safety problems. Follow these guidelines when assessing
whether or not to buy a crib for your Children’s Orchard store.
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
Too much space between the slats may allow a child’s head, but not the torso,
through the gap. Federal laws today allow 2 3/8” maximum between slats.
High corner posts or finials have caused many tragedies. Most newer crib designs
have eliminated this problem. Avoid buying older cribs that have corner posts that
are not level with back panel.
Check for cracks and separation of the wood, missing or broken parts.
The top of the fully raised side rail should be at least 26” above the spring frame in
its lowest position.
Federal law requires crib mattress size to be 51 5/8” X 27 ¼” X 6” thick. If a
mattress does not fit snugly, the gap may be dangerous.
Some decorative end panels on older cribs have a cut out design that leaves a gap in
which a child’s head could be trapped. Do not buy.
Many cribs made before 1978 used lead-based paint. Do not purchase or sell such
cribs.
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BUYING TOYS AND BOOKS
When buying toys, you may have to be a little lenient about perfection. It’s most
amazing when a Fisher Price schoolhouse comes in with all its letters and people without teeth
marks on their faces! But, believe it or not, there are lots of little tykes out there who actually
take good care of their toys, and these are our favorite kind.
Stick to name brands as much as possible. They will be what you see the most of
anyway, since the cheaper things never seem to last more than a short time. Check toys
carefully to be sure that they work the way they are supposed to and have all their parts. Keep
a few batteries on hand to check out any toys that require them. We don’t recommend
accepting board-type games. More often than not, pieces, parts or instructions are missing and
you’ll have a loss on your hands.
Don’t take jigsaw puzzles with a million pieces. Stick to the large toddler puzzles or the
wooden ones.
When you have toys with small parts, be sure to keep them out of reach of the little ones.
We often tape boxes closed to discourage kids from getting into things. Shrink-wrap is the
perfect solution for keeping toys together and making them look like new.
Books are good sellers, but don’t take any books with ripped bindings or pages, or
coloring books with coloring in them. Leaf through books to be sure that they haven’t been the
target of a mad scribbler!
A word about safety here. When buying toys and accessories, keep a watchful eye for
obviously dangerous toys, such as ride-on toys with wobbly wheels or a tricycle with a loose
seat or handle bars, rocket-shooting electronic-type things or dart guns. You must protect
yourself, your customers and their children by being concerned with safety first.
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BUYING SCENARIOS
The relationship that develops between the buyer and the seller is the single most
important part of resale buying. Since every individual is different, there are a million things
that can occur to turn the experience from a good one into a bad one. The key to preventing
this is to know how to handle these situations when they arise. The following are some of the
common situations and some ideas about how to best handle them.
“I HAVE SOME THINGS TO SELL” (walks in with no appointment)
Response: “Thank you for bringing us your things. We do our buying either by appointment
or by what we call a drop off, where you leave your items here until we have an opportunity to
look at them. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to look at them now because I have another
appointment. Would you like to do a drop off? Let me tell you what I will be looking for. We
buy items in excellent condition, things that have NO stains, obvious wear (pilling/fading), and
no defects such as missing buttons or broken zippers. The items need to be freshly laundered.
When we have gone through your items, we will call you. When you come back, we will return
to you any items that we cannot take, and will pay you for the things we can take.” (Have them
fill out forms and give them a copy of the buying policies.)
“I’D LIKE TO WATCH WHILE YOU GO THROUGH MY THINGS.”
Response: “We do a lot of buying and have a tight schedule. We‘ve found that we can go
through the items much more quickly when we do it alone. You are welcome to look around
the store, or, if you prefer, you can run an errand. It should take me about
minutes to go through your things.”
If that doesn’t work then the response is: “We are part of a national franchise, and the
specifics of our buying system are confidential, but we do pay fairly, and I’m sure that you’ll be
happy with my offer.”
“HOW MUCH DO YOU PAY, (FOR INSTANCE); HOW MUCH WILL YOU GIVE
ME FOR THESE OSHKOSH OVERALLS?”
Response: “We don’t quote prices on individual pieces. We look at the brand, quality, and
condition of the items and rate each piece according to our franchise system. Then we give you
a quote for the total quantity that we can purchase. We do pay fairly and more than most
people can get at garage sales, so I’m sure that you will be happy with our offer.” (If not happy,
there is no obligation to sell the items to us.)
If that doesn’t work the response is:
“We are part of a national franchise and the specifics of our pricing system are confidential. If
there are a couple of specific items you’d like me to quote a price on, I’d be happy to do so.”
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“THAT’S ALL YOU CAN PAY! I’D RATHER GIVE THEM AWAY.”
Response: “Have you ever sold clothing before?” [If NO: “Unfortunately, the resale market is
such that clothing is worth a very small percentage of what it costs new,” (Add, if necessary,
“similar to selling cars or used furniture.”)] “You have a lot of nice things and I would like to
buy them. We do pay fairly and more than most people can get at garage sales, but I
understand if you would rather give them away.” (It is better to have them leave with clothing,
but happy, than to pressure them into the buy and have them have second thoughts later.)
“YOU COULDN’T TAKE ANY OF THESE ITEMS! WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS…
AND THIS… AND THIS…?”
Response: “You had a lot of nice things that I could take. These items either had some
yellowing or were more worn out than what our customers are looking for. I really can’t go
back through all of those items with you, but I assure you that I did look at every piece. We
always take everything that we think we can resell.”
(Continue if necessary) “We do have a niche in the resale market, and our customers
look for items that they can pull off the rack and buy without inspecting, knowing that it will be
in excellent condition.”
“YOU CAN’T TAKE THIS! THIS IS BETTER THAN A LOT OF THE THINGS THAT
YOU HAVE ON YOUR RACKS.”
Response: “That is a nice piece. Unfortunately, it has a small stain here. Our customers are
very particular about staining. Some of the items on our racks may not be as bright as they
were when they were new, but our customers find that acceptable, especially for cotton items.
We do not resell items with any stains, no matter how small, except in our playclothes
department. If you saw a stained or ripped garment on the racks, we would appreciate it if you
would point it out to us so that we can remove it. As careful as we are, we do make mistakes.”
“I CAN GET MORE THAN THAT AS A TAX DEDUCTION IF I DONATE THEM TO
CHARITY.”
Response: “Actually, you can have the best of both worlds if you sell the nicer things to us
and donate the items that we were not able to take for a tax deduction.”
Or if that response doesn’t work: “Unfortunately, used clothing is worth a very small
percentage of what it costs new. With over 15 years experience, we know how much the items
are worth. Our offer is a fair value for the items, but resale is not for everyone. If you are not
comfortable with our offer, I understand. Thank you for bringing in your items.”
“YOUR COMPETITOR OFFERED ME MORE FOR THESE ITEMS.”
Response: “We pay very fairly for the items that we are able to accept. Our competitor is not
as selective as we are so they may have been able to buy more pieces.” Note: We compare
ourselves ONLY against another shop that pays cash. People can get more in a consignment
situation but most of our customer’s don’t want the wait or hassle. Important: We have an
optional “Cash Plus Guarantee” program in which we agree to beat any written quote by 15%
on items we want.
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“LAST TIME I SOLD TO YOU, I GOT A LOT MORE MONEY.”
Response: “When pricing, we consider the brand name, quality, and condition. You may
have had more brand names last time or more expensive pieces such as dresses, coats, and
suits. We use a system that is completely fair because it consistently pays the same amount for
similar items. Even if a different buyer looked at your items, the offer would be about the
same.”
“WHAT! YOU CAN’T TAKE ANY OF THE ITEMS THAT I BROUGHT IN!”
Response (based on wear): “You had a lot of nice things. Unfortunately, they had more
wear than what we can resell. Kids get so active at that age that they really wear out their
clothing.
Note: “At that age” is any age the age of their child is.
Response (based on dirty clothing): “You had a lot of nice things. One of our
requirements is that the clothing be freshly laundered so that we can put it right out in our
store. It was apparent that these had not been laundered. If you would like to launder them
and bring them back, I’d be happy to look at them again.” (Be firm but polite.)
“I CAN SELL THEM FOR MORE THAN THAT AT MY GARAGE SALE.”
Response: “Really! That’s very unusual. Most of our sellers tell us that we pay quite a bit
more than they can get at a garage sale and it’s so much easier. You must have a very unique
situation. Well, that’s great! I hope that you can get what you want for them. If not, please
bring them back in. We do pay very fairly.”
Note: It’s important to throw that last part in, in case they are thinking of going to a
competitor.
“WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS?” (something outdated or unpopular)
Response: That is in good condition, but we find that those don’t sell.”
“WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS?” (maternity)
Response: “We find that our customers are VERY particular about maternity clothing. The
items must be almost perfect. The only things that sell well are contemporary career wear and
very nice casual outfits. We don’t have a market for basic panel pants and T-shirts.”
WHAT TO DO WHEN A SELLER BRINGS IN SEVERAL BAGS/BOXES AND 1-2
ITEMS ON HANGERS WITH A DRY CLEANER’S BAG OVER THEM.
Response: “It looks like you have some very nice things here. I see that you have a
Rothschild coat (Laura Ashley dress, etc.). I would really like to buy that coat, but I want to
point out to you that there is a limit to what people will pay for resale clothing, regardless of
how much it cost when it was new. If I can take this coat, I will be able to pay you $25. Why
don’t you think about it while I look through the other items?”
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Note: Only use this method if you get a strong feeling that the seller is really concerned
about this item. You don’t want to routinely discourage people from selling you nice items, but
you also don’t want to lose the whole buy over one item.
“I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU AREN’T TAKING THIS EVEN THOUGH IT WAS NEVER
WORN (OR STILL HAS THE TAG ON IT).”
Response: “That’s a shame, because unfortunately, it has a stain right here. It’s frustrating;
sometimes things come from the store new and have a stain on them. Since the stain is
noticeable, I wouldn’t be able to resell it.”
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BUYING TOOLS
You will see just about everything under the sun made for children come through your
store, and you’ll see just as many people! How do you keep it all straight? As a Children’s
Orchard owner/manager, you are provided with the tools necessary to do so!
1. Seller’s Card (See Example #1)
The “Seller’s Card” is a multi-function tool, used for personal information on the
seller, confirmation of the purchase, as well as rating the quality of the inventory the
seller brought to you.
A. Personal Information – The seller’s name, address, email address and phone
number are pertinent, not only to identify the seller, but to create an email list for
acquiring inventory. The number and ages of children give the owner/manager
an idea of how long you can expect this seller to provide you with inventory.
Remember to date the top left-hand corner of the card.
B. Confirmation of Purchase—Upon completion of the buy, the amount paid to the
customer is recorded on the backside of the card. The seller signs the card each
time inventory is purchased from him/her. The seller acknowledges with his/her
signature that the inventory is now property of Children’s Orchard. This step
eliminates any misunderstanding between seller and store owner as to the
intentions of the store owner to sell the merchandise purchased from the seller.
C. Rating the Quality of Inventory—We look at the seller as our vendor (a source of
inventory), thus we want to know what we expect from this source. After the
seller’s inventory is purchased, we rate the quality of the merchandise – poor
(one apple), good (two apples), very good (three apples), excellent (four apples).
The rating is based on the amount of A+, A, B, or C quality clothing as well as the
condition of the clothing brought to you. For example, a customer could bring in
all “A” and “B” quality clothing. You purchase most of the inventory, thus
grading that customer with three apples (as in Example #1). On the other hand,
the customer could have brought in the same inventory, but due to poor
condition (stains, tears, wear), you could only buy a few pieces, thus her rating
would drop down to one apple. Rating the quality of a source is very important
when using your seller’s mailing list. You can eliminate poor sources and solicit
good quality inventory by this simple system. The card should be kept on file and
used each time the seller brings in inventory.
2. Accu-Fair Receipt
The Accu-Fair receipt can be used for totaling the seller’s buy. This tool is
confidential and should be kept out of view of the general public. It should be used for
verification of inventory purchased in the event of an Internal Revenue audit of your
business.
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3. Accu-Fair tape (Example #2)
The Accu-fair Buying Computer tallies each buy for you. The “X” or “Z” tape that
you run daily will show you how many pieces you brought in each resale category as well
as the dollar amount spent on buying in each category.
EXAMPLE #1
SELLER’S CARD
Name: _______________________________________
Last
First
Address: _____________________________________
City ________________
Zip Code _______________
Home Phone: __________
Work Phone: ____________
No. of Children _________
Sex/Age ________________
________________________________________
Email Address _________________________________
Date
Signature of Customer
Amt. Accepted
By signing this card, I accept the value offered to me by Children's Orchard for my
goods. I understand that by my acceptance of the check in the stated amount, the
merchandise becomes property of Children's Orchard.
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Example # 2
Accu-fair Buying Tape
Sample Buy Register Tape
Samsung 5200
ANN ARBOR, MI
WE PAY CASH
DATE 10/31/2005 SAT
TIME 19:55
Z1 REPORT
00012
LAST REPORT
10/25/2005
GROUP
GROUP: 1 USED CLOTHE
CNT
844
SALES AMT
$789.35
GROUP: 2 ADD ON
CNT
38
SALES AMT
$24.00
GROUP: 3 EQUIP/TOYS
CNT
75
SALES AMT
$379.50
GROUP: 5 PLAY
CNT
84
SALES AMT
$12.65
GROUP: 6 ST CR BONUS $
CNT
5
SALES AMT
$17.00
GROUP: 9 MISC. ITEM COUNT
CNT
25
SALES AMT
$10.00
**********************************************
TOTAL CNT
1071
TOTAL AMT
$1,232.50
CLERK 1
000023
00001
DATE 10/31/2004 SAT
TIME 19:55
Z2 REPORT
LAST REPORT
FINANCIAL
+PLU TTL
00012
10/31/2004
1071
$1,232.50
ADJST TTL
1071
$1,232.50
$1,232.50
Number of Pieces Bought ST CR BONUS
15 No. of % St Credit Bonuses
Dollars Bought
$119.65 Dollar Bonuses
TOTAL BUYS
49 Number of Buys
$1,352.15 Total Dollars Bought
RETURN
1
-$7.50
ERROR CORR
7
-36.50
PREVIOUS VD
1
0.10
VOID MODE
-3
-50.25
1
No. of $ St Credit BonusesCANCEL
Dollar Bonuses
$2.50
$239.63
-1
-$41.50
DRP OFF PAID
4 Drop Offs Paid For
Total Items Bought
$71.50
NOSALE
1
NONADD #
0
CASH BUYS
3
$30.00 Cash Buys
CHECK BUYS
1
$75.00 Check Buys
3
$159.38
4
$71.50
ST CR BUYS
3
$159.38 Store Credit Buys
DRP OFF RUNG
4
$71.50 Drop Offs Rung
$260.88
*****************************************************
GRAND
$3,176.92
CLERK 1
000024
00001
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Buying & Pricing
DROP–OFF PROCEDURE
Because we are constantly seeking resale clothing, we need to make our buying as
convenient as possible to all sellers. Drop offs are a service we provide to those customers who
find it difficult to schedule an appointment. Below is a step-by-step procedure for handling
drop offs.
WHEN THE ITEMS ARE DROPPED OFF
¾ Explain our buying policies and procedures and give the seller a Buying Policies
flyer.
¾ Ask the seller if they have sold to us before.
¾ Yes – pull card from file
¾ No – ask seller to fill out a buy card
¾ Ask the seller to fill our a Drop Off Form
¾ Point out to the seller that they need to choose the form of payment they prefer
and mark if they want to donate any items we are unable to purchase.
¾ Explain that we will call them as soon as the buyer has gone through their things.
When they come back, we will pay them for the items we can buy and return to them
the items we cannot. (Note: Do not promise any specific time frame. If they are
anxious to have their things looked at, they need to schedule an appointment.)
¾ Thank them for bringing us their things.
¾ After the customer leaves, put their merchandise, buy card, and drop off slip into one
of the pre-numbered drop off boxes.
¾ Log the buy in on the drop off log, noting the box number in which you placed the
merchandise
PROCESSING DROP OFFS
¾ Check drop off log to find next customer
¾ Complete buying procedures
¾ Check drop off form for payment type
¾ Cash/check payments, place payment in envelope and ring as cash paid or check
paid on register
¾ Store credit payments, complete store credit form and place in bin with
customers card. Ring as Store credit buy.
¾ Receipt must have customers last name at top and be placed into drop off slip box –
do not leave with buy!
¾ Return all items to the same bin #
¾ Mark which items you can buy, and what you are passing on very clearly. Tie all
play clothing items into knots or mark clearly.
¾ Date the drop off log with completion date.
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WHEN THE DROP OFF IS COMPLETED
¾ When the buyer has completed the drop off, the date will be noted on the drop off
log. Please check during each shift for drop offs that are done and call the seller.
¾ Call each seller every three days until they pick up.
¾ When you call, note the date and your initials. If you leave a message rather than
speaking to the seller, note “M”
¾ When you reach the seller, simply say “This is
from Children’s Orchard, and I am calling to let you know that our buyer has had an
opportunity to look through your things and you can come back any time”. (DO NOT
tell them how much they will receive.) If they ask, you should say, “I don’t have that
information in front of me right now”. If they are persistent, say “I am sorry but we
are not able to give that information out over the phone, because it is meaningless
until you can see what we could take and what we couldn’t take”.
¾ Look daily at the log and continue to call those people whose drop offs are done. If
they have been talked to and still did not come in after 3 days, please call them again,
noting the date and your initials. If they still do not come in, we will make a third
call two weeks after the first call to say “This is
from Children’s Orchard calling. We need to have you pick up your drop off by
Sunday, or we will need to donate your items, as our space is limited.”
WHEN THE DROP OFF IS PICKED UP
¾ When the seller comes in to pick up their items, you should first double-check the
drop off log to be sure that the drop off is completed.
¾ Look for the box number where their drop off is located.
¾ Cross the seller’s name off of the drop off log.
¾ Locate the box containing their drop off.
¾ Put the items that we can buy, in the to be sorted bin so that the buyer knows they
have been paid for.
¾ Take the items that we could not buy out to the customer. Say to the customer
“These are the items that we were not able to buy The total came to $
for the things that we could buy.” Also, tell them anything that was written on the
drop off slip (in your own words) such as “sizes too large” or “very subtle stains”,
indicating that the buyer left that information for the seller.
¾ If the customer wants to see what we bought, show them.
¾ If they wish to take back an item, tell them “I did not do the buy, and I cannot alter
the offer. You will need to talk to one of our buyers. Would you like for me to have
her call you?” If you are the buyer, make the price adjustment and quote the new
price to the seller.
¾ If they question the items we couldn’t take, say, “I’m sorry, I didn’t do the buy, so I
don’t know specifically why we couldn’t purchase those items but we do buy
everything that we feel we can resell.”
¾ If they are upset by the amount of money, say “I didn’t do the buy, but I know that
we pay the highest prices in town and more than most people can get at garage
sales.”
¾ If the offer is accepted, ask the person to sign the buy card on the back. Make sure to
fill in the date and amount before they sign it.
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¾ Pay them. You will find either an envelope with cash, a check or a store credit with
their card. The customer is not able to change the payment form at this time.
¾ Thank them for bringing us their things and ask them to come back again soon.
¾ After the customer leaves, write “paid” and the date on the drop off form and put it in
the buy register open drawer if a buyer is not present.
¾ If the customer refused the offer, place the payment and drop off form in the drawer,
write “refused” on form.
FINAL STEP
¾ Each morning, the buyer is to pull receipts for all drop offs in drawer.
¾ Paid slips can be turned in with the daily buys.
¾ Refused slips must be voided – simply re-ring the buy, using the void key in the
void mode. Cash goes back into the drawer, Checks get voided and stapled to the
check log. Store credit forms should be voided and turned in with daily balance
sheet.
EXAMPLE #3
DROP OFF RECORD
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EXAMPLE #4
DROP–OFF LOG
Please log in each drop as it is received. During each shift, call the customers whose
drop offs have been completed, as indicated on the log sheet. Note in the appropriate column
of the date of the phone call and your initials. Indicate those homes where you left a recorded
message by denoting "M” next to the date called.
Date
Customer Name
Customer
Phone #
Bin #
Date
Completed
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Date Called
& Notes
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WALK-IN CUSTOMERS
As mentioned in the “Drop-Off” section, prompt, efficient service is our goal. If a
customer “walks in” with inventory to sell, be sure to do the following:
1. Ask the customer if they have ever sold to us before. If not, explain buying procedures,
emphasizing the need for the inventory to be clean and freshly laundered.
2. If time permits, do the buy right then. Should your schedule conflict, ask the customer
if he or she would like to leave the goods, and you’ll do them as a drop off or schedule
their buy in the next available appointment.
3. Ensure customer of prompt service and thank them for their patronage.
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Buying & Pricing
HOW TO PREPARE INVENTORY FOR SALE
Once you have completed an inventory purchase from your customer, the merchandise
becomes Children’s Orchard’s property. We have found over the years, our special attention to
merchandising sets us apart from the competition.
Here at Children’s Orchard we have specific guidelines for tagging, hanging, and
categorizing the inventory, which benefit both you and your customer. Following these
guidelines will enable your customer to conveniently shop in the store, and most of all, it will
help to keep your business profitable.
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PROCESSING PROCEDURES
A price point bin is taken from the back room to the processing area, and the following
should occur:
1. The label of the garment is inspected for size, brand and fiber content.
2. The pre-priced ticket of the appropriate color should be applied to the right side of
garment (as you’re looking at it) with the tachit gun (Example #6). Refer to monthly
ticket chart for color rotation of tickets (Example #10).
3. At this time, the size is indicated on the ticket as well as any other pertinent information
- - i.e., 100% cotton, multi-piece set, designer name (Example #6). To assist you with
the proper sizing of those items that are not clearly marked, we have included sizing
charts (Examples 7, 8 & 9).
4. The garment is placed on a hanger and put into its size on processing bar. Be sure to zip
all zippers, button all buttons, snip threads, brush off lint, and de-pill, if necessary.
When all garments are processed from the bin, a second price bin should be retrieved
and the preceding steps followed until the processing bar is full.
5. When the bar is full, the steaming process begins.
A. Steaming—Preheat steamer. Using swift up and down sweeps, cover the garment
several times until all wrinkles disappear. Rubber gloves can save hands from hot
steam and water. Never leave steamer on and unattended.
B. Merchandising - - (See Categorization and Colorization, Example 12). Now the
current inventory is ready for sale.
6. “Off Season” inventory should be stored in an off season storage bin in back room. Bins
should be inventoried using the Off-Season Inventory Sheet (Example 11). Each unit of
off-season stored inventory must be logged on to the Off-Season Inventory Master Log
for an accurate accounting (Example 11A). Be sure to hold aside specific promotional
inventory.
7. Processing should continue until all price bins are empty.
8. Any defective garments should be marked down in red and placed on “clearance rack”.
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EXAMPLE #5
APPLICATION OF TICKETS
Short Sleeve Shirt
Shorts
Multi Piece Outfit & Shoes
GAP
SIZE: 4T
PRICE: $6.99
Long Sleeve Shirt
Girls Blouse
Overalls
Pants
Dress
Skirt
100% Cotton
SIZE:4T
PRICE: $18.99
SIZE: 4T
PRICE: $4.99
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EXAMPLE #6
WEIGHT/SIZE CHARTS
WEIGHT/ SIZE CHART
11-18 lbs.
9 Months
19-22 lbs
12 Months
23-26 lbs.
18 Months
26-31 lbs.
24 Months – 2 Toddler
30-33 lbs.
3 Toddler
33-37 lbs.
4 Toddler
Centimeter Conversion Chart
60 cm.—Newborn
- 0-16 lbs.
70 cm.—6-9 Mont
- 14-21 lbs.
80 cm—12-18 Mo
- 20-28 lbs.
90 cm.—24 Months – 2 years
- 26-33 lbs.
100 cm.—3-4 years
- 31-40 lbs.
110 cm.—4-5 years
- 37-48 lbs.
120 cm.—5-6 years
- 45-55 lbs.
130 cm.—6-8 years
- 52-64 lbs.
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EXAMPLE #7
SIZING CHARTS FOR A PERFECT FIT
Infant and Toddler’s Sizes
Babies grow at different rates, so your baby’s
correct size is best judged by weight.
Remember: infant’s clothes are designed with
plenty of room for diapers, while toddler’s
clothes need less room for diapers. Use the
chart to the right as a guide.
Size
Baby’s Weight
Layette, 3-month size
6-month size
12-month size
18-month size
24-month size
2T
3T
4T
Birth to 13 lbs.
14 to 18 lbs.
19 to 22 lbs.
23 to 25 lbs.
26 to 28 lbs.
26 to 28 lbs.
29 to 32 lbs.
33 to 40 lbs.
Boy’s and Girl’s Sizes: 4-5-6-6X-7
After toddler sizes, height becomes more important. Remember: Little boy’s and girl’s clothes have no allowance
for diapers.
Size
When height
And weight
Chest
Waist
Seat
is (inches)
is (pounds)
(inches)
(inches)
(inches)
4 regular
39 - 41 ½
32 ½ - 37
22 ½ - 23
21 - 21 ½
22 ½ - 23
5 regular
42 - 44 ½
37 ½ - 42
23 ½ - 24
21 ½ - 22
23 ½ - 24
6 regular
45 - 46 ½
42 ½ - 47
24 ½ - 25
22 – 22 ½
24 ½ - 25
6X or 7 reg.
47 – 48 ½
47 ½ - 54
25 ½ - 26
22 ½ - 23
25 ½ - 26
Boy’s Sizes 8 to 16
Reg. 8
48 – 50 ½
Reg. 10
51 – 54 ½
Reg. 12
55 – 58 ½
Reg. 14
59 – 61 ½
Reg. 16
62 – 64 ½
26 – 27
27 – 29
29 – 30
30 – 32
32 – 34
23 ½ - 24
24 ½ - 25
25 ½ - 26
26 ½ - 27
27 ½ - 28
26 ½ - 27
28 – 28 ½
29 – 30
30 ½ - 32
32 ½ - 34
Girl’s Sizes 7 to 14
Reg. 7
49 – 51 ½
Reg. 8
52 – 53 ½
Reg. 10
54 – 55 ½
Reg. 12
56 – 58
Reg. 14
58 ½ - 60 ½
25 ½ - 26 ½
26 ½ - 27 ½
28 – 29
29 ½ - 30 ½
31 – 32
22 ½ - 23
23 – 23 ½
24 – 24 ½
25 – 25 ½
26 – 26 ½
27 ½ - 28
28 – 29
29 ½ - 30 ½
31 – 32 ½
33 – 34 ½
Sock Sizes – Toddlers and Children's Orchard, Inc.
Sock
size
3½
4
4½
5
5½
6
is
Shoe
Up to 1
1½-2½
3–4½
5–5½
6–6½
7–7½
size
is
6½
7
8–8½
9 – 10
7½
10 ½ - 12
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8
12 ½ - 1 ½
8½
9
2–2½
3-4
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EXAMPLE #8
GAP & GYMBOREE SIZING CHARTS
BABY GAP
Up to 7 lbs.
Preemie
Up to 17”
Stage 1
Up to 3 months
7-12lbs.
Up to 22”
Stage 2
3 - 6 months
12 - 17 lbs.
22”- 26”
Stage 3
6 – 12 month
17-22 lbs.
26” – 28”
X SMALL
Up to 3 month
7-12 lbs.
19” – 23”
SMALL
3 – 6 month
12-17 lbs.
23” – 27”
MEDIUM
6 – 12 month
17-22 lbs.
27”- 29”
LARGE
12 – 18 month
22-27 lbs.
29”- 31”
X LARGE
18- 24 month
27- 30 lbs.
31”- 33”
2XL
2 years
30- 33 lbs.
33”- 36”
3XL
3 years
33- 36 lbs.
36”- 39”
4XL
5XL
4 years
5 years
36- 40 lbs.
40-46 lbs.
39”- 42”
42”– 45”
XXS
XS
S
3 years
4 years
5- 6 years
GAP KIDS
36”- 39”
39”- 42”
42”- 49”
20-21”waist
21- 22”waist
22- 23” waist
M
7- 8 years
49”- 55”
23- 24” waist
L
9- 10 years
55- 57”
24- 25” waist
GYMBOREE
Up to 19”
19- 21”
21- 24”
Preemie
0- 3 month
3- 6 month
Newborn
0- 3 mo.
3-6 mo.
Up to 8 lbs.
8- 12 lbs.
12- 17 lbs.
6- 12 month
6- 12 mo.
24- 28”
17- 22 lbs.
12- 18 month
12- 18 mo.
28- 31”
22- 27 lbs.
24 month
3T – SMALL
1 ½- 2 years
2- 3 years
31-34”
34- 38”
27- 32 lbs.
32- 35 lbs.
MEDIUM
3- 4 years
38- 42”
35- 41 lbs.
LARGE
4- 5 years
42- 46”
41- 50 lbs.
X LARGE
XX LARGE
5- 6 years
6-7 years
46- 50”
50- 54”
50- 58 lbs.
58- 65 lbs.
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EXAMPLE #8A
OTHER SIZING CHARTS
LANDS END
LITTLE GIRL
S
M
L
LITTLE BOY
4
5/6
6X
S
M
L
GIRLS
S
M
L
XL
BOYS
7/8
10/12
14
16
LL BEAN KIDS
XXS
4
XS
6
S
8
M
10/12
L
14/16
XL
18/20
SHOES
EURO
18
19
20
22
23
24
25
27
28
29
4
5/6
7
USA
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
S
M
L
XL
8
10/12
14/16
16/18
HANNA
50cm
60cm
70cm
80cm
90cm
100cm
110cm
120cm
130cm
140cm
150cm
160cm
0/3m
3/6m
6/12m
9/12m
18/35m
2/4
4/5
5/6
6/8
8/10
10/12
12/14
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EXAMPLE #9
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Children's Orchard Operations Manual
Buying & Pricing
EXAMPLE #10 - OFF SEASON STORAGE INVENTORY SHEET
Season
Date
Box No.
.99
Actual
Cost
.15
1.99
.25
2.99
.50
3.99
.75
4.99
1.25
5.99
1.50
6.99
1.75
7.99
2.25
9.99
3.00
12.99
6.00
14.99
7.00
18.99
9.00
21.99
11.00
24.99
12.00
27.99
14.00
29.99
15.00
1.00
.15
2.00
.15
3.00
.25
4.00
.25
Price
Total
Retail
No. of Pieces
Wholesale
Value
Other
Totals
DATE: __________
XXXXXX
TOTAL PCS
_____
TOTAL WHOLESALE $ ________
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EXAMPLE #10A – OFF SEASON INVENTORY MASTER LOG
Season
Date
Stored
Totals
Box
No.
XXX
Location
XXXXXXXXXXX
Size (s)
No.
Pieces
Retail
Value
Wholesa
le
Value
XXXXXXXXXXX
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CATEGORIZATION AND COLORIZATION PROCEDURES
(See Example #11)
This part of the processing procedure is one of the most important steps to running an
efficient and profitable business. Categorization and colorization are the tools needed for:
1. Controlling inventory – A store owner and/manager can visually assess stock level in
particular categories -–i.e., overstocked in 3 month stretchies, slim in Size 3 overalls.
2. Increasing productivity of shopping time – our customers are busy people with time
restrictions (tired, cranky children, school buses to meet, hour lunch break, etc.). By
carefully categorizing and colorizing all the many garments, a customer can see our
inventory clearly. He/she can quickly make a selection from a particular category and
perhaps even enhance that item with others (i.e., customer comes in for pink Oshkosh,
then adds a white cotton polo shirt and spots an adorable pink sweater to coordinate the
outfit – all in 4-5 minutes).
3. Eliminating missed sales – Often a customer will call or come in looking for one specific
item. Staff can easily point out or retrieve the item for the customer. Keeping inventory
in a specific order saves time and offers superior service to your customers.
Lastly, having inventory categorized and colorized gives an overall feeling of
neatness and organization to the store. It’s a professional statement to your customers
that you care about your business and them.
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EXAMPLE #11
CATEGORIZATION/COLORIZATION CHART
Leotards - short sleeve, long sleeve
Swim wear - Trunks, 2 Pieces, 1 Pieces
Cover-ups – beach style
short sleeve, long sleeve
Undershirts - short sleeve, long sleeve
Onesies - as an option, you can place all of your onesies into a wire basket and hang it near
the end of the infant wall
Tops – this will include all tops, shirts, blouses & sweatshirts, except sweaters
Tank, short sleeve, long sleeve
Sweaters
Skirts
Skirtall – looks like overall with a skirt at the bottom
Skirtall sets – same as above with a shirt
Slips – if you get many slips, sort by half than full slips
Dresses - Jumpers, Short sleeve, Long sleeve
Short sets – 2 piece outfits with shorts
Sun suits - sleeveless rompers, very light weight
Rompers – all other short legged one piece outfits
Shorts & skorts
Capri pants
Pants
2 Piece outfits – any outfits of 2 pieces with long legs
Shortalls – look like overalls, but have short legs
Shortall sets – same as above and include a shirt
Overalls
Overall Sets
1 Piece outfits – long legs only
Pajamas
1 pc short sleeve, 1 pc long sleeve
2 pc short sleeve, 2 pc long sleeve
short sleeve gowns, long sleeve gowns
Blanket sleepers
Bathrobes – house coats
Jackets – waist length
Coats – longer, hip and ankle length
Pram Suits (fuzzy looks like a heavy weight blanket sleeper with a hood and mitts)
Snow Pants
Snow Suits - 2 Piece, 1 Piece
COLORIZATION CHART
White - Lt, Grey – Yellow – Orange – Pink – Red – Purple – Blue – Green – Brown - Dk Grey - Black
Merchandise all inventory by size, then category first, colorize each individual section, light to dark.
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OFF-SEASON INVENTORY
“Off-season” inventory is all inventory not current and/or promotional inventory. (For a
complete list of Children’s Orchard seasonal clothing classifications, see example #13). Off
season inventory is tagged in the same ticket color as the inventory that is going out onto the
selling floor during the current month. However, instead of hanging the off-season, it is
inventoried by price point and stored until the appropriate season.
For example, in September all resale clothing purchased is ticketed with yellow tags. The fall
and winter inventory is put out onto the racks. The spring and summer inventory is stored in
bins by price point. Each piece of clothing is tallied onto an Off-Season Storage Inventory
Sheet (example #10) , of the same color as the current month’s tags (yellow).
Once a storage bin is full, the inventory sheet is totaled. The totals are transferred to the OffSeason Inventory Master Log (example #10A). Then the bin is taken to off site storage.
At the end of the fiscal week, the total number of pieces of off-season inventory that were taken
to storage, is entered on the Inventory Tracking Form.
Once the next season arrives, bins of inventory are brought back from off-site storage and put
onto the racks. Inventory is put onto the selling floor by tag color. The tag color brought from
storage should match the tag color currently in use. This is important since inventory is dated
and targeted for markdown using the tag color.
Promotional inventory (Big Brand, Holiday, Snowsuits, Halloween, etc.) is ticketed in the tag
color that will be current when the promotional inventory is brought out of storage and put
onto the racks. In other words, the tag color should match the color for the month of the
promotion. For example, Halloween costumes are tagged in yellow, since the Halloween
Promotion is in September, a yellow tag month.
Promotional inventory should be labeled and stored separately in off-site storage, so it is easy
to locate at the time of the promotion.
When inventory from storage is put onto the selling floor, each box should be crossed off of the
Off-Season Inventory Master Log. At the end of the fiscal week, the total number of pieces
brought from storage and put onto the racks, should be entered on the Inventory Tracking
Form. The inventory sheets can then be discarded.
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EXAMPLE #12
SEASONAL CLOTHING CLASSIFICATIONS
What is summer ONLY merchandise:
-
ANYTHING that is lightweight, pastel, and short sleeved
Shorts
Sleeveless/tank tops
Very lightweight, short sleeve tops
Sleeveless dresses
Light colored, lightweight, short sleeve dresses
Sleeveless or short sleeve rompers or sunsuits
White pants or skirts
Bathing suits
Baby doll or lightweight, short sleeve pajamas and nightgowns
Sun bonnets/lightweight hats
Sandals
Shortalls, unless denim, corduroy, or velvet
Windbreakers other light jackets
What is winter ONLY merchandise:
-
ANYTHING that is corduroy, wool, or velvet
ANYTHING that is heavy and dark
ANYTHING with Santa, Rudolph, or snowflakes on it
Long sleeve sweaters (except cotton)
Slippers
Wool hats, mittens, scarves
Boots with fleece lining
Long sleeve medium – to heavy-weight dresses
Snowsuits and heavy jackets/coats
Blanket sleepers
Flannel pajamas and nightgowns
Thermal underwear
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CHILDREN’S ORCHARD ACCU-FAIR
USED PRODUCTS BUYING COMPUTER
After months of research, trial and error, Children’s Orchard was able to prove that
sophisticated point of sale computer systems, using bar-coding, linked to back room
computers, etc., were not cost effective for our store operators. Sound backwards? Maybe, but
we are more interested in “street smart” strategies that either add sales or reduce costs than we
are interested in glamour.
Thus, we developed the ACCU-FAIR system. It looks like a cash register at McDonald’s,
acts like a low-end computer, and makes life easy and profitable for the buyer.
Once a cash register, the ACCU-FAIR is now a reverse cash register, from which money
flows out as we buy from local parents. When we want to ask it for a report, it answers in a
nice, but funny way. It tells us all about our buying for the day, week, month, and/or year-todate, but it tells us on a little skinny tape.
If you can figure out which product brand class (A+, A, B, or C) an item is, and if it is
clothing, then touch one key and the rest is up to the ACCU-FAIR. It tells you which bin to toss
the item in, and it calculates the pay price.
It keeps track of the amount bought of each item, and many other things. At the end of
a buy, it tells you the total to offer the seller, and prints it out in detail.
You will learn how to operate your ACCU-FAIR in our Basic Training program.
In the following pages, you will also find the forms necessary to keep all your accounting
records when using the ACCU-FAIR. A detailed explanation as to what key you’ll ring in each
item follows the forms.
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BUYING REGISTER USER’S GUIDE
SAMSUNG 5200M
The backroom buying register has been developed to simplify buying. Prices are
programmed according to the Children’s Orchard buying system.
Basic Operation
Clothing:
-
-
After examining the item and determining it does meet Children’s Orchard’s
standards for quality and condition, the next step is to determine the brand level (A,
B, C) and whether it is infant (o-12 mo) or larger.
Touch the key that indicates the correct brand level and then touch the item key.
(The register will default to level C if no other level is selected.) The register will
automatically ring up the amount that you should pay the seller for that item. Then
place the item in the bin as indicated on the key.
Play clothing is indicated on the keys by bin number, play bins 1, 2, 3, or 4. Use the
Misc. Play key for higher priced items.
Owner’s bin clothing is programmed into the third (or A) level of the register. To
ring a clothing item and pay 50% of the selling price for that item, touch the
A/CLOTH key on the right side of the keyboard and then the key that indicates
the price you will SELL the garment for ($.99 ending). The register will calculate
50% of the selling price as the amount you will pay to the seller.
-
-
Advanced buyers may prefer to ring an item by bin. Use the Advanced Buying keys
for this purpose, ringing the item and then placing it in the appropriate bin number.
To ring a clothing item for which there is no key, enter the price that you will pay for
the garment and then the misc. clothes key.
To ring up multiple items, hit the number of items, X/time key, and the item key. To
ring multiple items when using the “A” or “B” level, hit the level key first, and then
ring as above.
If the buy is a drop off, ring the entire buy as usual and then touch the “Drop Off
Rung” key. Write the seller’s name and the words “Drop Off” on the receipt and file
by the seller’s last name. When the seller comes in, enter “Drop Off Paid”, ring the
total dollar amount of the buy, enter the method of payment (cash, check or store
credit), followed by the “Drop Off Paid” key again. Write the seller’s name and the
word “Paid” on the receipt and staple it to the original buy receipt from your file.
If you prefer, you can finalize the drop off when you ring it. After ringing the buy,
enter “Check Buy”, “Store Credit Buy”, or “Cash Buy”. Put the cash, check or store
credit into the storage bin with the drop off slip. Label and file the drop off receipt as
indicated above. DO NOT put the drop off slip with the buy. This is the
recommended method.
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Notes on clothing
-
The numbers at the bottom of each item key indicate the bin number the item
belongs in for final pricing. For example, the first key labeled “tops” “1 3 5” tells you
that the item goes in either bin 1 (C brand), bin 3 (B brand), or bin 5 (A brand).
TOYS AND EQUIPMENT
-
Once you have determined that the item meets Children’s Orchard’s standards and
have decided what price you will sell the item for; you are ready to ring.
To ring a piece of equipment, touch the C/EQUIPMENT key and then touch the key
that indicates the selling price of the item. The register will automatically ring the
amount that you will pay the seller.
Use the same procedure for ringing toys except use the B/TOY key.
To ring an item, for which there is no selling price indicated, enter the amount that
you will pay the seller for the item and then the misc. equipment or misc. toy key.
Miscellaneous Notes
The “add on $ amount” key will add any amount to the total of the buy. Ring the buy as
usual, subtotal, and then enter the amount of the bonus followed by the add on $ key.
The “error corr” and “void” keys are used to correct errors when ringing the buy. To
take off an item that you just rang, hit error correct and it will take off the last item rung. To
take off an item that you rang previously, hit “clear”, “void”, and the key for the item you wish
to take off. Errors can be corrected at any time up until you finalize the buy. It will be best to
hit subtotal, make your offer to the seller, and then hit cash, store credit, or check after the
seller has accepted your offer so you could still remove an item if necessary.
To correct an error when a discount was taken, you must hit the “refund merchandise”
key and then ring the item exactly as you rang it originally.
To correct any error after you have completed the transaction by hitting “cash”, “store
credit”, or “check”, put the “VD” key in the “void” mode and re-ring the transaction exactly as
you originally rang it.
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Cash to pay for small buys can be kept in the register just as you do for selling, and the
seller can be paid right out of the drawer. You can use the “Check Buy” key on the register to
denote buys that were too large to pay in cash and write them a check.
We also offer the seller the option to accept a store credit instead of cash. We offer the
seller 40 or 50% more if they accept the credit. Ring the buy as usual. Calculate the amount of
the store credit bonus (40 or 50% of the total amount of the buy). Give the customer the total
amount you will pay in cash and the total amount they will receive if they accept store credit.
Emphasize that the store credit can be used all at once or a little at a time.
Enter the bonus by keying in the percentage you will add on the number keys and then
touching the Store Credit Bonus % key. Hit subtotal again and then finalize by using the Store
Credit Buy key.
You may also add a dollar amount as a Store Credit Bonus, instead of a percentage. This
is used to split a buy, paying part in cash or check and part in Store Credit. We recommend
that splits are offered only on buys totaling $80 or more, with at least 50% accepted in credit.
You can also use this key to ring a Drop Off Paid, adding a bonus.
To add a dollar bonus, first ring the buy as usual. Then use a calculator to figure the
amount of the Store Credit Bonus on the part of the buy that the customer will take in credit.
Enter the dollar amount you wish to add and hit the Store Credit Bonus $ key. Then enter the
dollar amount you wish to pay in cash or check, followed by the Cash Buy or Check Buy key.
Finally hit the Store Credit Buy key and the balance will be recorded as a Store Credit Buy.
The “cancel” key will delete the entire transaction. This can be used when a seller
refuses your offer.
The “Drop Off Rung” key is used when a drop off buy is completed but not picked up,
instead of the cash or check key.
The “Drop Off Paid” key is used when the drop off is picked up and paid for.
The “No Sale” key is used to open the drawer.
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BUYING REGISTER OPERATIONAL GUIDELINES
Samsung 5200M
The following information will guide you in setting up procedures that will allow you to
track buying data efficiently and accurately.
Daily Procedures and Balancing
-
-
-
-
-
Record on each buy receipt the customer’s name. If the buy is a drop off, write “drop
off” on the receipt. Keep a file of buy receipts near the buying register throughout
the day. (The receipts can later be compared against the report, in the event of an
error, to trace any discrepancy.) Secure each individual day’s receipts together and
label clearly, by date, when you have finished balancing for the day and file them
away.
To balance the cash in the register at the end of the day, you must keep all receipts
that were rung that day together until you have closed the register (including drop
offs done during the day).
After you are finished buying for the day, turn the “Z” key to the “X” position and
touch the “Daily Report” key. Then turn the “Z” key to the “Z” position and touch the
“Daily Report” key. This procedure will produce an “X” and a “Z” report, similar to
those on the store register, called the group report and the financial report. These
reports show the number of items and dollar amounts bought by category, the total
number of pieces bought, and the dollar amount spent on buying. The report also
shows how much was paid out in cash and how much was written in checks and store
credits, the important figures necessary for balancing the drawer. Any voids or
merchandise returns rung will also be indicated on the report (see attached sample).
Count the cash in the buying register. The amount of cash should be the beginning
balance less the total of all cash buys paid for that day. Verify the amount paid out
by checks by totaling the checks written and comparing that total against the
“CHECK BUYS” total on the “Z” tape (see attached buying register closing sheet).
After balancing (see instructions page 76), take the receipts for drop offs that were
done that day but not paid for, and file them in a file box alphabetically, by seller’s
last name. When the drop off is picked up, record the date paid for on the receipt
“paid” and file with that day’s receipts.
If a drop off offer is rejected, enter your clerk ID first, then turn the “VD” key to the
“void” mode and re-ring the buy exactly as you had originally. Note “rejected drop
off” along with the date on the refund receipt and use that to balance the drawer.
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Miscellaneous Procedures
When buying toys, equipment or Owner’s Bin items, write the selling price on a piece of
freezer tape or masking tape and attach to the item as you ring it to prevent double handling.
You will want to follow the same procedure for owner’s bin and any other items that do not go
into a standard bin for final pricing.
BUYING REGISTER DAILY CLOSING PROCEDURE
Samsung 5200M
Daily balancing of the register is important to maintain control of your reports and to
locate any errors before they are compounded. Use the following procedure:
-
-
Throughout the day, or at closing, enter each cash, check, and store credit buy into
the corresponding column on the worksheet. Each columns total will populate into
the appropriate section of the closing sheet.
Enter the Date
Enter the original bank amount
Enter any Transfers In our Out of the register
Enter the number of coins and bills from the drawer
Enter the “Total Buys” from z-tape
If the balance difference does not equal $0.00, an error has been made.
From the Register z-tape enter the piece count and $ amount for each category; used
clothes, play clothes, equipment, Add ons, and store credit bonuses.
Total Buys should match z-tape, if not an error has been made.
Enter the number of buys not accepted or that no offers were made on.
Enter the number of buys accepted.
From the z-tape enter “cash buys”, “check buys”, and “store credit buys”.
The balance difference will display the Drawer total and Tape total. If the difference
between the two is $0.00, the drawer balances.
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BUYING REGISTER WEEKLY CLOSING PROCEDURE
Samsung 5200M
A weekly Z2 report will summarize all of the buying for the week. You will use this data to
complete your weekly report and the Business Planner.
-
Turn the “Z” key to the “Z” position and touch the “Weekly Report” key.
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ANN ARBOR, MI
WE PAY CASH
SAT
DATE 10/31/2005
Buying & Pricing
TIME 19:55
00012
Z2 REPORT
10/25/2004
LAST REPORT
GROUP
GROUP: 1 USED CLOTHES
CNT
869
$799.35
SALES AMT
GROUP: 2 ADD ON
CNT
38
$24.00
SALES AMT
GROUP: 3 EQUIP/TOYS
75
CNT
SALES AMT
$379.50
GROUP: 5 PLAY
CNT
84
$12.65
SALES AMT
GROUP: 6 ST CR BONUS $
CNT
5
SALES AMT
$17.00
*****************************************************
1071
TOTAL CNT
$1,232.50
TOTAL AMT
CLERK 1
000023
DATE 10/31/2004
SAT
00001
TIME 19:55
00012
10/31/2004
Z2 REPORT
LAST REPORT
FINANCIAL
+PLU TTL
1071
$1,232.50
ADJST TTL
1071
$1,232.50
$1,232.50
ST CR BONUS
15
$119.65
TOTAL BUYS
49
$1,352.15
ERROR CORR
7
-36.50
PREVIOUS VD
1
0.10
VOID MODE
-3
-50.25
CANCEL
1
$2.50
$239.63
-1
-$41.50
DRP OFF PAID
4
$71.50
NOSALE
1
NONADD #
0
CASH BUYS
3
$30.00
3
$159.38
4
$71.50
ST CR BUYS
3
$159.38
DRP OFF RUNG
4
$71.50
DRWR TTL
$260.88
*****************************************************
GRAND
#REF!
CLERK 1
000024
00001
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CHECK LOG
Check
Number
Name
For
$
Date
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Employee
Initials
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CHILDREN’S ORCHARD CA$H PLUS GUARANTEE
What is it? It is a potentially powerful competitive tool, when one is up against a large
consignment store or a large, well-run resale shop. It is a guarantee that you will pay more
than anyone for brands of clothing you want, if in good condition.
Why do this? Competitors are increasingly installing PC’s and using software that
permits handing a potential supplier a “quotation”, detailing what is being paid for each item.
Most of these people pay 40% to 50%, and many of them will fail in due time, because of low
margins.
We do not want to lower our margins much, because we then have to increase our
customer count to keep from losing at the bottom line. Our average cost of goods (clothing) is
down around 30-35%. So, how can we manage to compete?
If we avoid giving out quotes, even though we can print them off the Accu-Fair units, we
give people no paper to take to a competitor for comparison. If we guarantee to pay a
competitor’s price plus 15%, we incur one poor margin buy, land a supplier, and keep goods out
of the competitor’s shop.
How does it work? We can require that they bring a printed quote on another store’s
actual form and present it up front. We then say the following:
“I will process this buy. If I come up higher than the other quote, I will pay my price and
make an adjustment if necessary to bring your payment up to the competitor’s quote plus 15%.
If my purchase price is lower than the competitor’s, I will pay the same as the competitor’s
quote plus 15%.
“Why might I come up lower? Every buy is different. The things I want to sell may be
different than what they want. I may be a bit more demanding on quality or need few of
certain products right now. Either way, you win! I want your business!”
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Handling questions and challenges:
How does this help me, a regular supplier of yours? Are you making me go to a
competitor for a quote just to get a fair deal?
We already give our regulars 10-25% premiums for the better brands, in good condition.
I need to attract new suppliers, so I will have more inventory for you when you shop and to
ensure my business success so I will be here for you.
I see the quote at your competitors, but they will not give a copy unless I sell to
them. I have no way to test your guarantee!
I am sorry, but what can I do? Unless I see something in writing, I have nothing to go
by.
Why don’t you give me a copy of your computer printout?
We are part of a national franchise. As a franchisee, I am not allowed to show people our
proprietary pricing and markup system. We do not want competitors to have it.
Why do you not tell me exactly what you paid for each piece, like your
competitors do?
We do not use traditional resale single piece pricing. Our system tabulates value points
according to the style, brand, condition, and season of items you present to us, and comes up
with a lump sum offer to you. (Accu-Fair users can honestly say, “I am not aware of the value
going in for individual items, because my computer register calculates everything for me.”)
The key point is our franchise researches nationally and adjusts our sell prices according
to regular retail prices. We then pay you depending on the brands and quality you bring in.
We intend to pay more than anyone for the top quality pieces and be competitive on the rest.
How can I be sure I am getting top dollar? All this sounds like so much smoke
and mirrors.
Selling to a franchise that has stayed in business since the early 80’s gives some
assurance that you are getting a competitive price. If we did not pay right, we would not have
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lasted this long. Beyond that, it is not easy. Pricing is complex and buying takes a long time to
learn. Beware of anyone who claims a flat rate is paid. In the end, they will fail for not
recognizing the value of a range of brands and conditions.
I do not have just top brands, so you will pay me less right? If so, I can get more
elsewhere.
On balance, we find we pay very well compared to the real net amount people end up
with at competitors like consignment stores and yard sales, but if everything you have is
discount store brands in only fair condition, you could be right, as our strength is in marketing
name brands. However, let me point out two advantages to selling here: We can give you a
proper tax filing receipt for the things most resale shops would turn down if you donate them
to charity. What’s more, because of our unique playwear section (where we sell clothes that are
less than perfect, but great to play in), we buy many slightly flawed fine quality items that our
competitors may not accept at all.
Always say: “The bottom line is – I want you as a long term supplier, and I
will pay to get your business!”
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NEW MERCHANDISE
New merchandise has a variety of purposes in our stores. It provides a bright and
colorful display at the front of the store, for a great first impression. In this manner it serves a
decorative function.
New merchandise increases the level of inventory and selection of products, including
some products we are unable to stock or would not want to resell. In this way we utilize new
merchandise to meet the needs of our customers, as a service to prevent them from shopping at
a competitor such as Target or Wal-Mart.
New products enhance our upscale resale image, generating positive word of mouth
marketing about our unique niche in the resale market.
Finally, by expanding our mix of products, new merchandise adds to our sales and
profits.
New merchandise can only be ordered from representatives in our Preferred Vendor
program. The PV Program gives us more buying power and leverage to negotiate better prices
and terms. Both of these benefits will translate into a stronger bottom line for your store.
By stocking items from Preferred Vendors we maintain consistency from store to store.
Suggested orders for these vendors are updated seasonally and can be found in the download
directory of the web site.
Suggested orders include recommended styles, quantities, wholesale cost and suggested
retail selling prices, and payment terms. The mark up on new merchandise can range from
20% to 100%, depending on the nature of the products and their purpose in our mix.
When pricing new merchandise we try to keep our retail prices at or below our
competitors’ prices for good quality products. Some products with low mark ups are used in the
store to create excitement and word of mouth marketing while providing a small profit.
Examples of this type of product are new clothing and new equipment.
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Most of the basic products, items customers need like sock and tights or hats and
mittens, have larger markups, up to 100%. In addition to increasing our sales and profits,
these products prevent customers from shopping elsewhere for basic items.
Impulse items, like toys, novelties and jewelry, typically have moderate markups of 5090%. These are used as add ons or for suggestive selling to increase the size of the average
transaction. They also make the store fun and bright.
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VENDOR
Date
Qty.
Ordered
Qty.
Received
Description
Style #
All information contained on this page is proprietary and confidential information of Children's Orchard, Inc.
$
Amt.
$ Total
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Children’s Orchard Charity Program
The aim of this program is twofold – to get resale clothing from affluent people in the
community who have preferred in the past to donate rather than sell and to allow sellers to
leave our stores with fewer or no returns.
The program offers us new suppliers, makes more usable clothing available to needy
families, and offers our sellers the best of both worlds. They can sell us their nicer items and
donate the remaining clothing, receiving an income tax receipt for the full value of the items
that they donate.
How to Set Up Your Charity Program
The following approach may work for any number of other charities slightly modified.
However, at the Salvation Army only one person usually is worth talking to if you want
approval and support, and that is the major assigned to your local region. Majors get moved
often, so you could run into a person who will ask you to wait until his replacement arrives.
It is very important to approach this subject in a specific way:
-
Ask for an appointment. Tell the charity that you are with a national franchise who is
working with the charities around the country providing screened clothing for sale in
their stores or for distribution to needy people.
Simply say that we advertise (take Buying Policies and ads along) for clean, good
clothing. We buy the very excellent pieces, and turn over the remainder, up to 60%, to
the charity.
We request receipts to pass along to our customers for a tax deduction, and regular (at
least weekly) pick up of the donated items.
The advantage to the charity is screened inventory, clean, and not like the junk others
dump on them.
You will be very well received and enjoy the experience if it is typical of our other
experiences with charities. One franchisee works with three charities.
Charity Program—Employee Phone Script
When a customer calls and asks about selling items to us, we say the following:
“Thank you for calling. Let me tell you how it works:
We do our buying by convenient appointment or by our drop and run service.
We buy all seasons of clothing from newborn through size 8.
The clothing must be in good condition; no stains, obvious wear, or defects like
missing buttons or broken zippers. It must also be freshly laundered.
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We also buy toys, books, and baby equipment in good condition.
Our buyer will look at your items and will pay you cash on the spot for the items
that we can accept. We will pay you 50% more if you accept store credit instead
of cash.
We can give you a receipt to file with your income tax for the full value of the
CLOTHING items that we cannot buy, if you would like to donate them to the
(charity).
Would you like to schedule an appointment?”
You all know what to say if people need further information about toys (i.e., batteries, all
pieces, appropriate for kids up to first or second grade, clean) and equipment (i.e., less than 5
years old, clean and stain-free, working order, etc.)
Charity Program—Buyer’s Guidelines
Here’s how the program is implemented:
-
First, have your staff promote it to all of your customers.
Email your M.O.M.S Club members occasionally to remind them of this service.
Once a seller is in the store:
-
Explain the option up front and ask them to decide whether or not he/she wishes to
donate.
Next, do the buy as usual.
After the buy, offer the seller the normal amount of money for the items accepted and a
receipt for the donated items. If approved, ask him/her to sign his/her card for the
cash.
How to handle the clothing being donated:
-
When merchandise begins to accumulate, call the charity to arrange pick-up. You may
be able to prearrange weekly or biweekly pickups.
Some possible problems and solutions:
-
People will dump on us (tons of poor quality women’s and men’s clothing, etc.).
Solution: Continue emphasizing our quality standards over the phone. Carry it one
step further when people indicate that they want to donate by reiterating that they
should only bring in items they think we may want to purchase. When going through a
really bad buy, tell the seller that next time we will not be able to accept their items for a
donation unless they presort. Explain that we are NOT a drop off point for the charity
but are helping the charity and our customers by passing along the few items that we
cannot use. We are not equipped to handle large quantities.
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People will no longer launder. Solution: Same as above, stressing the need for
laundering on the phone for ALL items. Refuse to go through buys that are really dirty.
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BUYING QUIZ
1) You are trying to communicate a lot of information to a seller when they call to schedule
their first appointment. Please mark the three or four things on the list below that you want
to make sure they hear.
____ Sizes 0 - 8 accepted
____ All seasons accepted
____ Condition; no stains, rips, pilling, fading, etc.
____ Charity program
____ Cash Plus Guarantee
____ Clothing must be freshly laundered
____ Toys, books, and baby equipment accepted
2) What are some of the reasons that parents might want to sell their children’s products to
your Children’s Orchard store? ________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
3) True or False.
____ Never let an “A” seller walk out without selling to you.
____ A seller who brings you a small bag with 3-4 very nice things is wasting your time.
____ Always sell your top brands at the highest possible price.
____ Pay every seller as little as they will accept for their goods.
____ Always buy by appointment. Walk-ins and drop offs are too much trouble.
____ If a seller brings you something very expensive and you don’t think you can sell it for
as much as they want, you can put it on consignment.
____ You should buy every piece of resale clothing that is in good condition.
____ You can be very lenient on condition for infant clothing.
____ It’s not important whether or not your sellers come back. There are plenty of parents
in your community who want to sell to you.
____ If a seller asks what you will pay for her crib you should say, “I can’t tell you because
this is a franchise”.
____ Never let customers into your backroom buying area.
4) Which mistake is more costly: A) Buying a garment and then finding a hole in it, or
B) Sending a good seller away unhappy?
____________________________________
5) Fill in the blank. Buying resale clothing should always be my _____________ priority.
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6) The gross margin on resale clothing is between__________ and _________ percent.
7) We pay _____________ of the sell price on equipment and ______________ on toys.
8) Classify each piece of clothing described below as either regular (RG), play (P), or reject
(RJ).
Gap one-piece in excellent condition with a minor stain on the leg _________________
Osh Kosh overall set with the tag attached in perfect condition ___________________
Polyester bell bottoms in perfect condition, size 6 ____________________________
Gymboree one-piece that is quite faded but in good condition ____________________
Generic brand diaper set with plastic lining ________________________________
Orange and green plaid A-line jumper in excellent condition ____________________
Wrangler jeans in good condition, slightly faded knees ________________________
Sarah Kent velvet dress, excellent condition, bow missing ______________________
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INVENTORY QUIZ
PROCESSING AND SET UP
1) Which of the following belongs on each price tag? Check all that apply.
____ size of garment
____ season
____ brand name
____ fabric content
____ store name
____ price
2) How do you know what color tag should be used for each garment? ________________
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
3) Where do you attach the price tag to each type of garment listed?
Long sleeve top or dress _____________________________________________
Short sleeve top or dress _____________________________________________
Skirt or pants ____________________________________________________
Overalls ________________________________________________________
2 piece outfit _____________________________________________________
Bathing suit _____________________________________________________
4) How do you know what price to put on the tag?
5) Please check all of true statements below.
____ A garment will sell better if the zippers are zipped, buttons done, etc.
____ You should carefully steam each garment to remove every wrinkle.
____ If you can’t find the size inside a garment, just guess.
____ Categorization increases sales by making it easier for customers to shop.
____ Colorization is more important than categorization.
____ All seasons of clothing go out on the rack.
____ Once you set your store up and arrange the sizes, you will never have to move sizes
around again.
____ When you set up your triple rack, the top rail will be sizes 0-3 month and 6 month,
the middle rail 9 month and 12 month, and the bottom rail will be 18 month.
____ Always fill the wall racks first, with 18-22 pieces to the foot, and then add rounders as
needed to hold the rest of your clothing.
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BUYING QUIZ
1) You are trying to communicate a lot of information to a seller when they call to schedule
their first appointment. Please mark the three or four things on the list below that you want
to make sure they hear.
X
_X_
_X
_X_
Sizes 0 - 8 accepted
All seasons accepted
Condition; no stains, rips, pilling, fading, etc.
Charity program
Cash Plus Guarantee
Clothing must be freshly laundered
Toys, books, and baby equipment accepted
2) What are some of the reasons that parents might want to sell their children’s products to
your Children’s Orchard store? __RECYLCING, HELPING LESS FORUNATE,
MONEY, GET RID OF ITEMS, SEE THEM USED BY OTHERS
3) True or False.
_T__ Never let an “A” seller walk out without selling to you.
_F__ A seller who brings you a small bag with 3-4 very nice things is wasting your time.
_F__ Always sell your top brands at the highest possible price.
_F__ Pay every seller as little as they will accept for their goods.
_F__ Always buy by appointment. Walk-ins and drop offs are too much trouble.
_T__ If a seller brings you something very expensive and you don’t think you can sell it for as
much as they want, you can put it on consignment.
_F__ You should buy every piece of resale clothing that is in good condition.
_F__ You can be very lenient on condition for infant clothing.
_F__ It’s not important whether or not your sellers come back. There are plenty of parents in
your community who want to sell to you.
_F__ If a seller asks what you will pay for her crib you should say, “I can’t tell you because this
is a franchise”.
_F__ Never let customers into your backroom buying area.
4) Which mistake is more costly: A) Buying a garment and then finding a hole in it, or
B) Sending a good seller away unhappy? B
5) Fill in the blank. Buying resale clothing should always be my __TOP OR #1_ priority.
6) The gross margin on resale clothing is between___15_____ and ___50____ percent.
7) We pay ___50%_______ of the sell price on equipment and _____33%_____ on toys.
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8) Classify each piece of clothing described below as either regular (RG), play (P), or reject
(RJ).
Gap one-piece in excellent condition with a minor stain on the leg. P
Osh Kosh overall set with the tag attached in perfect condition. RG
Polyester bell bottoms in perfect condition, size 6. RJ
Gymboree one-piece that is quite faded but in good condition. P
Generic brand diaper set with plastic lining. RJ
Orange and green plaid A-line jumper in excellent condition. RJ
Wrangler jeans in good condition, slightly faded knees. RG
Sarah Kent velvet dress, excellent condition, bow missing P
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INVENTORY QUIZ
PROCESSING AND SET UP
1) Which of the following belongs on each price tag? Check all that apply.
_X__ size of garment
____ season
_X__ brand name (IF A OR B)
_X__ fabric content (IF 100% COTTON)
____ store name
__X_ price
2) How do you know what color tag should be used for each garment? ______________
TICKET MARKDOWN CHART
3) Where do you attach the price tag to each type of garment listed?
Long sleeve top or dress
Short sleeve top or dress
Skirt or pants
Overalls
2 piece outfit
Bathing suit
BOTTOM OF LEFT SLEEVE, IN SEAM
BOTTOM OF LEFT SLEEVE, IN SEAM
TOP OF LEFT SIDE SEAM
LEFT SIDE SEAM NEAR THE SNAP OR BUTTON
TAGS ON BOTH PIECES, PRICE ONLY ON TOP
TOP OF LEFT SIDE SEAM
4) How do you know what price to put on the tag? BIN OR PRICING GUIDELINES FOR
OWNER’S BIN
5) Please check all of true statements below.
_T__ A garment will sell better if the zippers are zipped, buttons done, etc.
____ You should carefully steam each garment to remove every wrinkle.
____ If you can’t find the size inside a garment, just guess.
_T__ Categorization increases sales by making it easier for customers to shop.
____ Colorization is more important than categorization.
____ All seasons of clothing go out on the rack.
____ Once you set your store up and arrange the sizes, you will never have to move sizes
around again.
____ When you set up your triple rack, the top rail will be sizes 0-3 month and 6 month, the
middle rail 9 month and 12 month, and the bottom rail will be 18 month.
_T__ Always fill the wall racks first, with 18-22 pieces to the foot, and then add rounders as
needed to hold the rest of your clothing.
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LAUNDRY RECIPES
(Courtesy of several East Coast franchise owners)
Do other people’s laundry, are you kidding? Seriously you can make a lot of extra
money this way. Buy only wonderful A brand coats, snowsuits and garments with
small stains. Pay play wear prices. Spot treat and launder them. Sell them for
our regular selling prices for a huge margin and more inventory on the floor.
AGENT FOR SPOTS
Super Clean Castrol engine degreaser (purple bottle)
Great for greasy spots. Spray it on the spot after you buy the item and toss in your laundry pile.
Okay to leave on until you launder. Use the washing formula below.
SPOT REMOVAL FOR OILY STAINS (“French fry spots”)
Sprinkle baby powder on the oily spot. Scrub it with a toothbrush. Shake the
powder off and the stain is gone.
WASHING FORMULA
2 cups bleach
½ cup Cascade dishwashing detergent (powder)
Wash in hot water, testing the fabric first. Works on most fabrics including cotton, cotton
blends, Polartex, etc. Do not use on wool, dark red or blue fabrics.
If you have other recipes please share!
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