Corner samples, free or not

Rock

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Joined
Jul 15, 2004
Posts
172
Location
Frankfort, IN
I've got one company that I have around 25 samples from. Needless to say, I have so many others from different companies on the wall that these 25 get overlooked a lot. I have been offered more samples from this company( around 60) free if I pay the shipping to get them to me. I realize it costs money to make and send these samples. Would you pay the shipping to get them or use the free ones including shipping most others are willing to send? The company I am talking about is ok, it's just that I was wondering what others would do in a similar situation.
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Rock
 
Free corner samples are not to be expected. I would pay the shipping, and be grateful for the FREE samples.

I don't ask for free, but if they are offered for free, I gratefully accept. Provided it is something I think I would show and sell. I would never assume they are going to be free!

Otherwise, we'd be burning them like Ron, and well, you know what happened there....

Others will vehemently disagree with me. This topic is, after all, on the top ten "most heated discussions" list for this forum.
 
I checked some of the past posts on the issue and can see where there are disagreements. So far I have been fortunate in not having to pay for any but from one supplier. And free is good when you can get it. I guess if a person thinks they are worth the cost, I can see buying them. I'll think more on it. Thanks for your input.
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Rock
 
I think we should pay for the samples cause nothing is free.

If there is a single framer out there getting them for free, I will also. If there is a company offering them for free to anybody, then they must have them figured into the cost. Why should I pay for them twice?

Sometimes just for fun I like to contradict my self on Mondays.
 
Me pay? Ohh no. I did once to get started. I haven't since.
 
Lets see I have to find 60 spots on my wall to put your frame samples, in a prominent spot, so I can sell your product and I should buy the frame samples? Maybe I should start charging for estimates.
 
Rock,

Most framers are confusing their costumers with huge selections of more or less appealing and redundant corner samples on display. Somehow (by free samples among others) framers are encouraged to believe that their customers would measure and respect their frame shop according to how many billions of possible shape-color frame combinations arebeing there in sock. This is also a BB relateded complex: carrying everything, for every occasion and any budget, all in one place.
If corner samples were being sold for a (modest) price each, I bet that framers' shop would be less clumsy, more distinctive and different looking than they are today, yet be functioning just as well. Honestly, how many of your say 1500-3000 corner samples would have made it up onto your walls were they worth some $5 each?
Look at you, you are being offered 60 free corner samples for the only cost of shipping alone and you are hesitating as if you were offered 60 costly corner samples and free shipping. Are you for real? If that supplier only knew what dilema is working you up, he may very well have saved the call he gave you.
You either know what those corner samples look like or you don't. If you do know, like and need them, then shipping cost is irrelevant just like the buss fare would when going to see clients or your loved one. If you don't need them, then you ought to declin the offer regardless how much the transportation cost is, and not further waste that suplier's time, effort, money and hope of doing business with you. You are a businessman, not a passage wall, and you must know what sells or at least what you'd like be selling in your store. Don't pretend that by taking unsolicited samples up you make that spplier a favor by way of giving him a larger exposure with possible future business rewards. We all know that in this bsiness there are a few true winners that sell themselves and, unless you trust, like and push those other frames, they are not going to be noticed, much less sold in your 1000 plus free corner sample rich shop, right?

Other than that Jay was right. Nothing is really for free. Corner sample cost is hidden in molding's price. Where it isn't you must pay for samples or else.


Mona,

You do charge for your estimates. Don't you get a salary? Aren't you being paid for opening the shop's door and keep it clean, or for answering the phone and give estimates among many other things? Don't you take money home when sick or slow weeks are occurring? Why then (ironically)pretending otherwise? Did you really believe for a moment that your estimates were given for free??

Secondly, I envy you for having such a terrific "prominent" spot on your wall able to turn any 60 corner samples into instant winners. You'd beter build a casino there right up.

[ 08-30-2005, 04:17 AM: Message edited by: Whynot ]
 
One of the few things I've learned about the business of framing since closing my store front: Having several thousand corner samples on the wall, while it made people say, "Wow, look at all those corner samples on the wall," did not really help my business.

Most of my samples ended up in the landfill (after an disastrous attempt at heating my workshop by burning them in the fireplace.) The ones that survived are mostly in boxes. I have been working through my stock mouldings - most of which were lost in the forest of chop samples for many years.

Nobodies framing has suffered from the change in approach. I haven't ever looked at the finished frame and thought, "This is okay, but I wish it were 1/8" wider or a half-shade darker."

And the only mat samples I'm showing or using are the ones I have in stock.

I am interested in the notion that corner samples should be free because they help us sell the vendor's product. For most of us, a better store location would help us sell more product. Perhaps the vendor should pay our rent.

Any time I sell a moulding, I do it to help me make some money and I do it to make the customer happy. I would never do it to help the moulding vendor sell more moulding.

(I can't believe I'm getting into yet another argument about free corner samples. Of all the things to care about, why this?)
 
"For most of us, a better store location would help us sell more product. Perhaps the vendor should pay our rent."

Now that’s funny. I agree.

Cornel, are we agreeing? (shudder)
Actually I have 3 4x8 spaces where I show mouldings. Recently I re-did my wall. Its looks beautiful. I still get comments on my selection (its about 420 samples). I'm a bit handicapped at the design counter with those few samples but I have decided to NOT increase the number I show. Instead I'm going to just show better samples. Yes it’s a challenge but the better way to go IMHO.
 
Whynot,
Now that your through rambling on about how many samples I am showing without knowing, and what my business is all about, with knowing, and seeing your a vender, I can see you have no knowledge of what I asked. Yes, I'm very much for real as you say. If you re-read my post, I was asking people what they would do, not what you have in mind for people to do. There are suppliers who do care enough about my business to send a sample of their product for me to sell and make money for them. Also if you read the post again, (not between the lines, there's nothing there) you will find I said I realize corners cost money to make and send, so I wasn't bad mouthing the company in question. And for your information, I only have around 550 samples, not thousands. I like to give people a choice just the same as others do and I feel that many just about does it even though I could show many more if I wanted to. Like others on the forum this has been hashed out before, so I'm not going to argue about it. It's up to each individual frame shop, not the venders, on how many corners they care to show in their shop. There are more than enough quality venders out there willing to send free samples. And more information for you, I have bought more than half the samples I have on my wall. If I can get some for free, I will do it. Matter of fact, I wouldn't buy another one, no need to, I have plenty and have been offered more for free from other venders if I wanted them. But after thinking it over yesterday, I have decided to take the 25 off the wall I am talking about (of these 25, I ordered 27, payed for some of them, and only received 22), box them up and tell the rep I decided since they are not selling very well that he can have them back and for them to keep the 6o others they were going to send. I could just throw them away, but I figured they might want them back. So before you go throwing stones at frame shops wanting free corners, maybe you need to know all the facts instead of thinking you know all of them. You obviously don't.

Rock
 
Originally posted by Rock:
... Would you pay the shipping to get them or use the free ones including shipping most others are willing to send? The company I am talking about is ok, it's just that I was wondering what others would do in a similar situation.
shrug.gif


Rock
In 25+ years, we've never had to pay for any corner samples. Whether one should or not pay for samples is another question, but in regard to this particular inquiry...


How badly do you want these particular samples? I agree with others that more samples does not necessarily translate into more sales. Having said that, if you think these samples will generate extra income for you, Rock, would it not be foolish NOT to pay the shipping?
 
Last week I returned to boxes of corner samples to a very respected vendor. I called in advance and wanted to make sure that the company understood clearly that this return had in no way anything to do with the quality of the product, nor the great service we had received from the sales rep.

It was simply a matter of housekeeping and doing business professionally. We simply don't need another vendor. We have about 2,400 corner samples from 6 vendors. Three are primary (80%) and three are secondary (20%). Enough samples - Enough vendors. We want to make sure that we have a "real" relationship with each vendor in which we do business.

Whynot - GREAT posting!

As pointed out, the cost of these FREE samples is borne by the overall cost of that product. Distributors have created this problem, themselves......sort of like "Free" delivery! Once a week....then once a day.....then twice a day.

Regards,

John
 
originally posted by printmaker:
In 25+ years, we've never had to pay for any corner samples.
Nuff said


And by the way John, I agree with you too. I try to have a good relationship with all vendors I do business with. It pays in the long run. That's why I plan on returning the samples in question. I doubt if many would take the time to do that.

Rock
 
Originally posted by Rock:
I have decided to take the 25 off the wall I am talking about box them up and tell the rep I decided since they are not selling very well that he can have them back and for them to keep the 6o others they were going to send. Rock
Sounds like a good idea. If you only had 25 samples out of the 500 or so on the wall, then that company is not a major part of your operation.

At one time I purchased from 12 different companies. There were weeks I had to call in 12 different orders and write out 12 different checks. I now have my suppliers narrowed down to 5 and one of those I rarely order from. I love their product, it just doesn't sell. Soon my walls will be down to 4. My goal is to be at 3 suppliers for all my framing material needs.

How many suppliers do you have?
 
Thanks to everyone for all their comments and answers to my post. I suppose if there was a poll asking if anyone has ever recieved free corners, you wouldn't get many people who haven't. That being said, I respect the people who buy all of their corners and the people who don't. Like I said, I've bought my share of them in the past, probably more than most people have, mainly from one supplier, and that makes up for half of my samples. I only have 4 suppliers and that is enough for my shop at the monent. One thing I have learned from Ron, never try burning them.


Rock
 
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