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Grumpy about a wholesale account and other stuff


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I know, I know, I've only been at this for 1.5 plus years...

It seems that a lot is going on, though. The holidays are coming, I waited too long to try to get some other opportunities in such as more craft fairs in addition to the one I did last month... Fundraisers... etc... All because a wholesale account was supposed to come through and it seems she is backing out last minute... grr...

I've spent hours upon hours of testing for her and even bought glass glow bc of her in a way... I didn't HAVE to buy 55 lbs right now!

I have tons of stock I should have been trying to move but devoted my time to her account. This isn't the first time she's changed her mind, either. I've wholesaled a total of $45 to her in the past 6 months! Who would do that, even for a local retailer? But I did it for her (her unscented tealights probably cost me more than her) to get the business... now she is talking of backing out after saying she'd order 100 tealights, scented, 50 votives, 12 clamshells and numerous 5 oz bulb jars? Grr... It just gets me heated. I've been dealing with this woman for MONTHS about this one order...

Not to mention my feet are killing me lately... I went out to get this 'remedy' that was supposed to help. Ended up buying the one for 'ladies.' It was a joke! The medicated pads were like 1/8 of an inch in diameter, as opposed to the regular ones... Another GRR... BIG time GRR. I am going to call the manufacturer on that one! What, just because I am a lady, means that I have 'smaller' problems with my feet?

Anyway, I digress. My friend (who loves my candles, by the way) told me I should just tell the retailer "screw you" and go on... I am starting to feel the same way. I shouldn't have to wholesale for under $100 minimum! It costs $$$ to make these damned things! I have tested and spent thousands of dollars to perfect my methods and she might back out because she's afraid she will only 'break even?' Get real...

She says she can get her candles for much cheaper elsewhere! Where? My prices are not unreasonable, if you divide my costs by 50%... I am thinking her supposed EO candle supplier isn't giving her the facts...

Well I guess I just needed to vent...

Off to bed so I can work at that 'job' I have again. Yay! :yay::rolleyes2

G'nite all!

Violet

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Stressful huh? But, if your like me, pouring candles and soap and other things just seems to relax it all. I love the anticipation I feel when I know an order of supplies is coming. You should type up a wholesale contract that says 100$ MIMIMUM and state somehow that what they order must be paid for. Try getting half up front.

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Stressful huh? But, if your like me, pouring candles and soap and other things just seems to relax it all. I love the anticipation I feel when I know an order of supplies is coming. You should type up a wholesale contract that says 100$ MIMIMUM and state somehow that what they order must be paid for. Try getting half up front.

Yes it does when I know the order is coming or when trying a new wax/scent... Or when I am pouring for myself... etc...

This lady has put me at wit's end. That's all...

And yes, I've learned much from CT and now I won't take wholesale orders without a minimum order of $100. Especially when I have to buy wicks and stuff especially for their order... 50% and the contract sounds like a plan to me at this point! Enough wasting my time, effort and money for a deal that ends up being next to nothing... she's ordered from me before, as I stated, yet backed out on half the stuff last minute. Why, I've made more on orders via Ebay (surprisingly enough), because of customers who couldn't get enough of my candles, than her.

I will do this! By god, I am good enough and my products are, as well. :P

Ok getting a bit kooky here... time to sleep! :) Thanks Southern!

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Just my two cents, but I would absolutely require non-refundable payment up front for at least the amount you need to cover costs of supplies to fill a wholesale order. If the merchant backs out at least your supplies are paid for and you can sell the final product elsewhere...

If someone wants a special line or product that you need to develop and test, I would also charge for those supplies and an amount for R&D...

This should be built into a contract that is signed when you collect your non-refundable deposit. People will back out if they have nothing invested...they have nothing to lose, but you surely do!

Sorry this happened to you!

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$100?! I'd say that is an extremely acceptable minimum for retailers!! I've seen companies with $1000+ minimums. Just be confident in your own products, don't let 1 retailer dictate what you produce. There are literally thousands of others that I'm sure would have absolutely no problem placing a $100 order with you, but, much to all of our demise, theres no "easy" button so-to-say to get in touch with all of them!!

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LOL special line... indeed, she's been dickering me around about that, too... I won't say her shop's name, but she asked me last week if it was ok to say on her labels "'made exclusively for......insert shop name here' by Violet's Exotic Candles of Kinderhook, NY". I thought it sounded neat and didn't mind, being that the scent-line was her idea, but now? I'm simply irked...

I just emailed her a long email and told her that if she wants to order, she has to order $100 minimum and pay 50% upfront, plus sign a contract.

Probably too late... she's already played too much with me, doesn't want to follow thru and thinks her old supplier was much cheaper... I wonder if her old supplier really used soy and the EO's she thought they did in order to provide her with the candles she thought were natural? EO prices are quite high...

Ah screw it, enough lack of sleep and aggravation!

Thanks guys for supporting me. :)

Just my two cents, but I would absolutely require non-refundable payment up front for at least the amount you need to cover costs of supplies to fill a wholesale order. If the merchant backs out at least your supplies are paid for and you can sell the final product elsewhere...

If someone wants a special line or product that you need to develop and test, I would also charge for those supplies and an amount for R&D...

This should be built into a contract that is signed when you collect your non-refundable deposit. People will back out if they have nothing invested...they have nothing to lose, but you surely do!

Sorry this happened to you!

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I am always amazed at the businesses that complain because they are expected to place wholesale orders with a minimum of more than about $50. I remember reading about a small store here once that complained that her wholesaler expected her to buy $75 minimum, and all she needed was a few items. As far as I'm concerned, if you want to place an order of $10, you shouldn't be wasting a wholesaler's time. As a small business, I'm very grateful that a lot of wholesalers have what I consider to be low minimums per order, usually around $250, there is no way I'd waste someone's time for a few dollars. Set up a minimum amount and stick to your guns. You have to set the rules.

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Maybe I is not too late to find some craft shows to do. I am in the process of doing that now.

I found some craft shows through a local TV station's website. They have activities listed months in advance. Maybe you could find some and call to see if they still have tables left.

Just a suggestion to try to re-coup some of your money

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Wow, How long have you been working on the order for this lady? How did she place her order with you? By phone, via email, her own invoice?? It doesn't make sense why she would be so wishy washy with you. You have a business relationship with this person and need to follow thru. Then she knows your serious about your business. Get your order done within 2 weeks and call her to let her know that her order is done and your going to drop it off. Also let her know the bill amount is $$$ and is due upon drop-off, unless you gave her a 30 Day Net. That should work...

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Sorry this is happening to you....really bites. I only wholesale my melts and have a low minimum order of $50 which I thought was wonderful for those who want to wholesale from me and sell on their websites.....we all know how tight our budgets can be running an online biz. Anyway, this one gal wanted to order from me for wholesale melts but complained that $50 worth of melts too much and she didnt need $50 worth of melts. So, stupid me, just for her I said ok, just order what you need and I will let the minimum amount go for your first order. Not so much as a thank you did I receive. NO MORE, NEVER AGAIN will I do that. Just not worth it. I would follow your friends advice and dump this wholesale lady of yours.....she just jerking you around.

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Violet, hugs for you! Hope things are looking better for you this morning! I would imagine you can still get into some craft shows to try to sell some of that stock. Something will work out! And now, her line of scents will just have to be made available to others since she's no longer interested. :D She's wasted enough of your time.

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She has a business about 15 minutes away and I contacted her via phone last Spring to see if she'd be interested in carrying my products, on the advice of another retailer.

Since then she's gone back and forth with me via email and phone about candles. She's always started out wanting a much larger order, then waffling about this or that and cutting it to the point where she only ended up ordering tealights (unscented ones) instead of the votives, jars, etc, she said she wanted... I didn't know that I should be requiring a minimum at the time, so I let it go but was starting to get pretty frustrated after the second time when she again only ordered tealights with a promise to order jars, votives, tarts in clamshells, etc... once she figured out what she wanted... At the time I had a lot of jars in stock and was prepping them for a craft fair (after realizing after the 2nd order that she probably wouldn't be ordering and instead of hanging onto the stock, I was going to try to recoup my money somehow). When she picked up the tealights, I showed her the jars I had and also told her about the palm wax that I'd been working with. She said she'd be in touch as she really liked the palm wax.

This was back in September. I didn't hear from her for over a month, figured she'd disappeared into the mists again, then she emailed me for a quote on 100 tealights, 50 votives, clamshell tarts, and wanted to know my minimum. I did research, found a site to get the jars for her.... ordered the palm wax, votive wax, wicks... she only had to pick the # of scents she wanted and let me know. I was supposed to have weeks of time to experiment with each scent, as they were scents she was special ordering for use in candles specially made for her shop.

This week she emailed me and complained about the amount of oil I suggested she buy (she still hasn't given me a number for the jars she wants, so I high-balled the estimate about how much oils I would need, plus I have to test each scent first)... She said she would be barely breaking even if she bought that much oil and was I sure I needed that much... I emailed her back explaining about the need to test each scent with each different candle to ensure they will work in the wax. I have yet to even SMELL these oils and do not know where they are coming from, by the way...

In her email, she said that she liked the idea of buying locally, but would go back to her old supplier if necessary...

In my email to her I told her that if she gave me a number for the jars, I'd better be able to tell her the amount of oil... I know that the max oil that soy can hold is 1.5 oz, and palm holds 1, per pound of wax, so I did my calculations based on that and the need to test, but I told her without knowing how many jars or how many scents (she's undecided between 4 and 5), I can't tell her if 16 oz of each scent would be too much. In retrospect, I wish I'd told her that I would not work with her on any sort of estimate until I was allowed to test the oils!

Really, I've never been so frustrated in my life. I've got hundreds of tealight cups that I bought months back because I anticipated her ordering a ton of them... hundreds of wicks, tons of votive wax,, soy wax, 55 lbs of palm container wax (that I don't regret buying because I love it, but still...) and she can't even make up her mind.

I am an even smaller business than her and while I understand having to watch the bottom line, she's been wasting months of my time. I've been testing the jar with the wax she wanted so I'd be prepared for her order, to a degree, with an idea of how to wick it.

The thing that was really frustrating is that she kept going back and forth... First it was tealights, votives, tarts, jars, then well, maybe she'd hold off on the jars for now and just get the tealights and tarts... and wanted to know what my minimum order would be for just tealights/tarts. I told her 100 tealights and 12 clamshells (figuring that put me around the $100 minimum ballpark and would cover the cost of ordering the tealights). I told her I'd order the wicks right away and let her know when they were in and to let me know ASAP when she got the oils so I could start production. Then she seemed to have forgotten about the tarts in another email...

Then I emailed her two weeks ago to let her know that I'd gotten the palm wax in and she got all excited and said she wanted the jars and may as well get the votives too, while she's at it. I asked her if she wanted the clamshell tarts, too? And she said she'd forgotten about the tarts and yes, still wanted them...

Then this email this week saying she may not order at all, after all the back and forth for months (since July!).

This lady went from wanting to order around $300 or more in candles to $30 in July, then again this has happened. I'm really tired of the back and forth.

And really, I don't have much faith in essential oils... Most are cut chemically or they'd cost a heck of a lot more than what she says is 'too much' for her to pay. How am I to know the integrity of the oils, especially when I don't know who her supplier is and haven't even so much as sniffed them? She is big on all natural products... how natural are they, really? Don't farmers use pesticides on these plants? They are processed... things are added. It seems so naive.

There really isn't enough time, at this point, to even test all the scents and different candles to meet her deadline of Thanksgiving, let alone pump out all of the candles she 'might order.' I really need the money (I'm not even breaking even this year as it is!), but really, is all of this back and forth and frustration worth it? All she's given me is headaches and $45 for the tealights she ordered from me over the past 7 months...

I even told her how frustrated this was making me, back in Sept., because she could not make up her mind and I felt like I was being put on hold...

I told her that I decided not to pursue fundraising opportunities so I could focus on her order (which I did until last week, when I once again didn't hear from her and thought she'd probably decided to let the order fall through)... but now, I'm pretty sure it's too late for fundraisers...

I'm about ready to throw in the towel, go to the shop that is about 5 min from me and ask her if she is interested... I've surely learned my lesson now!

There is a huge craft fair the 2nd of December that I have inquired about, but received no response. This fair is so huge, though, you probably have to book 6 mo in advance. I'm still looking...

Enough venting.. gotta get to work...

Wow, How long have you been working on the order for this lady? How did she place her order with you? By phone, via email, her own invoice?? It doesn't make sense why she would be so wishy washy with you. You have a business relationship with this person and need to follow thru. Then she knows your serious about your business. Get your order done within 2 weeks and call her to let her know that her order is done and your going to drop it off. Also let her know the bill amount is $$$ and is due upon drop-off, unless you gave her a 30 Day Net. That should work...
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Goodness, sounds like a disaster all the way around... I would drop her like a hot skillet. Let her contact you and when and if she does tell her you need the money upfront before you do anything. If you can get into any shows you should be able to recoup your costs. I wish you all the best....

Yah, you're right- I should. I just really hoped to have a local retailer order, but not such a wishy-washy one. If I do hear from her, which I probably will, I am going to tell her just that... to stop beating around the bush, tell me what she wants, get the oils to me so I can at least get them to her in 4-5 weeks, pay me so I can recoup my costs before I START testing.... or to go with her other 'cheaper' supplier...

Makes me wonder... maybe she had an out with her other supplier? If she does this with everyone, I can see how she'd have to change frequently!

I don't even know why she's getting me so heated (well, aside from time and money wasted and the headache)... I have many people who buy retail from me who don't give me this many headaches!

I should start my own line of 'essential' candles... haha. Grr...

Thanks guys for all the support.

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This is my best advice to you i've been where you are and it is very upsetting.

I'm with your friend cut your lost and run don't fool with somebody like that it's not worth the stress and expense.

best policy i've found the hard way is to get the money for the order up front that way they have to stick to it .

Plus being so nice and understanding and letting her change her order gets you in trouble everytime belive me i know .

put a policy in place 100 min and order paid upfront non refundable also they have 2 days for changes and thats it or you can go no changes in order too.

I've been where you are and have been out all the money and then they back out their ya are stuck with alot of supplies ya don't need all at once and it's a killer on inventory at end of year too LOL.

hope in some way this helps i feel for you and have been their.:mad:

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Sorry to hear your going through this Violet! I think we can all chime in and say we've been through something like this in the past.

We recently have been dealing with a customer also that ordered her minimum Sept. 19th and was well informed that they have to send a cheque before products leave our warehouse. Well, 2 weeks later, they email me with an addition to their order, then they want an invoice emailed back for a confirmation. Did as I was asked, then they decided that they wanted to omit 2 items off the order, which I waived even though we do have a 15% restocking charge. Then they emailed me again after the invoice was resent their way and wanted to cancel another 10 pillars which are custom and have been made 2 weeks prior on top of 12 pillars that they just added to this order 4 days earlier. I was just livid when that happened so I emailed back and told them that considering those pillars are custom, they will be charged a 15% restocking charge. What do they do next???? They decide to take the original 10 pillars but now want to cancel the 12 they just ordered because they don't want to pay the restocking charge...DUUUUHHHHHHHHHHH! Ok, didn't want to explain that the restocking charge still applies regardless if they take the 1st batch or the second batch. Just figured that some $$$ is better than no $$$ at this point plus this order has not been confirmed or shipped for 1 month. Re-submitted the new invoice with all the box changes in weight, dimensions, repacked everything again for the 3rd time. Finally, they decide to send the cheque, but they sent it for the original amount with the 1st 10 pillars. I cash the cheque (there's a 3 day grace period with the banks), submit a refund (company cheque) back to them and ship everything out 5 days later. Open up my account on the 6th day and BINGO...their cheque has bounced and I'm out product and a refund cheque. I immediately call the bank, put a stop payment on the cheque and call the customer informing them that their cheque bounced. All I got was "Oh WOW, really, the cheque bounced? I guess that was my fault!" No Sorry and nothing about sending out a new cheque immediately. Told them that they have to resubmit the cheque with a $25 NSF fee on top of the total cost.

This is a company that I have dealt with for 10 months and have had to wait over 45 days each time for payment because they don't know how to manage their $$$ and they obviously perform poor business ethics with their wholesalers. We're hoping to get paid shortly and if we don't see payment within 2 weeks, we will get the creditors involved. Pretty sad isn't it.

It is totally unbelievable how retailers (of all people) try to shaft wholesalers around all the time. I don't understand how they can stay in business and if you don't have money...DON'T BUY!!!!!

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OMG! That sounds like a nightmare with the banks involved and everything. I'm going to write up a policy on my website for retailers. To think they think they can dick people around like that... we work hard at what we do and what do they do? Sit there in a shop and collect the $... and this woman has claimed my tealights were made by her shop. Yah... I doubt she has the knowledge.

I still haven't heard from her after my last emails and I doubt I will. No doubt she decided to order from the cheaper supplier who probably doesn't make pure essential oil candles. How else could they be that cheap with what she wanted to order?

I wish I had the money- I'd start experimenting in the oils myself and find GOOD suppliers to use for EO.

I really don't think the market swings that way,for the most part. I think a lot of people are following a trend, and right now it's soy and other natural waxes... Next year, who knows? I've never heard of palm wax before this summer...

The nerve these people have just makes me livid!:mad: If she had not beaten around the bush so much, I could do small claims court... but really, is it worth my time? Probably not... All I have is a slew of emails with her not making up her mind one way or another and me promising to do this or that according to her standards/specs/etc... wanting this then telling me that... blah...

I'm over it...

Hopefully next Friday I'll sell out on my candles (stock) at the craft event I'm doing at the Phoenix ins co.. and then I can just kiss the thought of doing business with this particular retail shop goodbye as a learning lesson. I will never deal with uncertainty and waffling again!

Sorry to hear your going through this Violet! I think we can all chime in and say we've been through something like this in the past.

We recently have been dealing with a customer also that ordered her minimum Sept. 19th and was well informed that they have to send a cheque before products leave our warehouse. Well, 2 weeks later, they email me with an addition to their order, then they want an invoice emailed back for a confirmation. Did as I was asked, then they decided that they wanted to omit 2 items off the order, which I waived even though we do have a 15% restocking charge. Then they emailed me again after the invoice was resent their way and wanted to cancel another 10 pillars which are custom and have been made 2 weeks prior on top of 12 pillars that they just added to this order 4 days earlier. I was just livid when that happened so I emailed back and told them that considering those pillars are custom, they will be charged a 15% restocking charge. What do they do next???? They decide to take the original 10 pillars but now want to cancel the 12 they just ordered because they don't want to pay the restocking charge...DUUUUHHHHHHHHHHH! Ok, didn't want to explain that the restocking charge still applies regardless if they take the 1st batch or the second batch. Just figured that some $$$ is better than no $$$ at this point plus this order has not been confirmed or shipped for 1 month. Re-submitted the new invoice with all the box changes in weight, dimensions, repacked everything again for the 3rd time. Finally, they decide to send the cheque, but they sent it for the original amount with the 1st 10 pillars. I cash the cheque (there's a 3 day grace period with the banks), submit a refund (company cheque) back to them and ship everything out 5 days later. Open up my account on the 6th day and BINGO...their cheque has bounced and I'm out product and a refund cheque. I immediately call the bank, put a stop payment on the cheque and call the customer informing them that their cheque bounced. All I got was "Oh WOW, really, the cheque bounced? I guess that was my fault!" No Sorry and nothing about sending out a new cheque immediately. Told them that they have to resubmit the cheque with a $25 NSF fee on top of the total cost.

This is a company that I have dealt with for 10 months and have had to wait over 45 days each time for payment because they don't know how to manage their $$$ and they obviously perform poor business ethics with their wholesalers. We're hoping to get paid shortly and if we don't see payment within 2 weeks, we will get the creditors involved. Pretty sad isn't it.

It is totally unbelievable how retailers (of all people) try to shaft wholesalers around all the time. I don't understand how they can stay in business and if you don't have money...DON'T BUY!!!!!

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OMG Violet, if I didn't notice that your from NY, I would have thought that we were dealing with the same person. I'm a 1 1/2 hour drive from my so called "Black Listed" retailer, but don't you just want to send someone into her shop in the morning, purchase around $1,800 worth of her stock, than show up just before she closes and ask to return all the products? :P

BTW...I think you'll do great at the craft fair. Live and Learn, don't answer her calls or emails anymore. Cut her loose!

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OMG Violet, if I didn't notice that your from NY, I would have thought that we were dealing with the same person. I'm a 1 1/2 hour drive from my so called "Black Listed" retailer, but don't you just want to send someone into her shop in the morning, purchase around $1,800 worth of her stock, than show up just before she closes and ask to return all the products? :P

BTW...I think you'll do great at the craft fair. Live and Learn, don't answer her calls or emails anymore. Cut her loose!

Holy hell yah I wish I could afford $1800 worth of her stock just to return it at the end of the day!

I hope I do great at the fair too... more of a vendor event. I get to set up and sell between their lunch hour, which goes from 11 until 1:30. It's an insurance company so the employees are used to paying (don't I know, I worked for one once!!! lol... ) and they love candles in Upstate NY. Plus I'm sure my ex-coworker has played me up (she works for a dif. ins. comp. than I did, so that's why this is working out for me...). I did take the day off of work and have to pay a $25 vendor fee, but hey, it's recognition, right? And if I don't have to deal with retailers, fine by me at this point! I'd rather deal retail myself and if I had the money, I'd set up my own shop. :)

And my sister lives in Hawaii- I just talked to her and said if I have a lot of excess stock, I'll mail some to her in flat rate boxes and she can take it to the marketplace. I'll pay her to set up and sell... booth fees table etc... and give her a cut. And because it's Hawaii, I expect most people will accept a higher price because most things are shipped in (I was born and raised there).

And... an old friend of mine with whom I've kept in touch works at a company in CA and has offered to use my products for her yearly Xmas event in December... I only have to ship product to her, as well.

So it will work out, I hope, one way or another...

Either way, though, I will have a whole lot of palm wax unused! But I love it so I am not unhappy about ordering. :)

Thanks!

Violet

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You need to be in control of your own business. YOU need to decide which scents, jars, wax, etc that you will offer, not let some dingbat play mind games with you. If she thinks she can get it cheaper somewhere else, let her go for it. Set your boundaries and stick to them. (this is also important in personal relationships, parenting, etc) Don't let the turkeys get you down!!:P

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You need to be in control of your own business. YOU need to decide which scents, jars, wax, etc that you will offer, not let some dingbat play mind games with you. If she thinks she can get it cheaper somewhere else, let her go for it. Set your boundaries and stick to them. (this is also important in personal relationships, parenting, etc) Don't let the turkeys get you down!!:P

Thanks Crazy Mom! I have decided not to let others dictate anything...

But that being said, I did tell her I could only do the 5 oz bulb jars, as that was the only jar I could wick successfully with palm, aside from mason jars.

Same with kids, too, I agree. I have teenage boys!!!!!!! :rolleyes2

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