Well…Summer is coming if you live outside the UK.
Here I am sitting in my summer house minding my own business (It’s almost May) and down comes snow!!! SNOW!!!
I quite like the snow, but not at this time of year!!!
It got me thinking though, about supply and demand.
When I was about 16, we had a very bad winter here in my tiny part of the country. Now if you’re not from the UK, You can’t appreciate how ill equipped we are to deal with extreme weather! One snowflake and our entire country closes!! Ok, ok it’s not as bad as that but you get the picture.
Anyway, back to my story. This particular snow storm was very bad and lasted for some time. Roads were closed, public transport ceased, schools shut. It was a drama to get to the local shop even. And everywhere…I mean EVERYWHERE had sold out of snow shovels.
People were desperately trying to clear their drives to get their cars out, and nowhere had any snow shovels. So we had an idea!
We jumped online and spent our savings on some snow shovels to be flown in from China. The snow was scheduled to last at least another week, maybe more, we could get these in within 4 days by air express and we would make a killing. Supply and demand. Right?….
Well, four days passed and there was no sign of said shovels. Five, six days passed…SEVEN days passed. We contacted the supplier, everything had been shipped on time, they were with the courier in the UK. After much ringing around we eventually got through to someone who could tell us where our goldmine was.
They were stuck at the depot because the delivery van couldn’t get to us for the snow!!! DOH!!!!
After another few days, the snow melted away to slush and then water, and our shiny red snow shovels turned up. Rookie mistake. We knew the demand for the item would be great, but we didn’t anticipate the reason everywhere was out of stock!
What did we learn from this…
1.Imagine if you can predict those “Snow storms” in advance and have stock in ready. YOU CAN!!!!! Product research including trends is VERY important!!!
2.Think about the reason that people aren’t selling an item-there’s usually a bad reason! In my case it was because at that time, it was impossible to get that item, However, Most items or businesses have now “been done” there are very few that have not. When a product or service business fails, it’s for one of two reasons. Either… They didn’t know how to market it correctly or it’s a bad product! A little competition is actually a good thing! Remember that in whichever business you go into!