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Old 06-09-2006, 09:01 PM   #1
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How long is reasonable for customs?

When I opened I planned to have the customs wait time 2 weeks or less, then turn around after order the same - 3 weeks for appliqued orders. Well, right now I have so many mamas on my customs list there's no way I can keep to 2 weeks. I hate to close for customs since instock isn't selling and most mamas seem to want customs - with applique - but I don't want to get a reputation for long waits.

How long do you think is reasonable to wait for your name to come up? And after you order?

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Old 06-09-2006, 09:24 PM   #2
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

It depends. I think you definately need to be upfront with your buyers... That's the most important part. I recently waited several months for custom wool shorties. I love what I got, though, and have already gotten back on her customs list for the Fall. In general, though, 2-3 weeks is about the limit of what I want to wait for a diaper...
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Old 06-09-2006, 09:31 PM   #3
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

For wool I expect the wait will be a while also. So far though I have only ordered customs from one mama though...

For my dipes I try to keep it to a week before it is shipped. Sometimes I cut it close, and I hope that I dont have to push it back cause I now how painful waiting can be
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Old 06-10-2006, 06:46 AM   #4
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

Be honest with the customers..there's nothing worse than finding out the wahm is lying. I'd say 60% of my biz are customs and I say it can take up to 3 weeks to complete. I close my customs after so many because it can become overwhelming and I fall behind. I open up customs again once I complete some. People don't like waiting for fluff once it's ordered.
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Originally Posted by Zany Zebra Mama
When I opened I planned to have the customs wait time 2 weeks or less, then turn around after order the same - 3 weeks for appliqued orders. Well, right now I have so many mamas on my customs list there's no way I can keep to 2 weeks. I hate to close for customs since instock isn't selling and most mamas seem to want customs - with applique - but I don't want to get a reputation for long waits.

How long do you think is reasonable to wait for your name to come up? And after you order?
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Old 06-10-2006, 09:10 AM   #5
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

I keep it to 3 weeks and they are pleasently surprised if its less that. I don't normally get just a custom order for 1 diaper usually its for multiple diapers and my customers know that the more they order, the longer it will take, I also let them know how many orders are ahead of them and what my schedule is like with children and appointments. If one of the kids is sick, i let t hem know that as well so they know I'm unable to sew that day or 2 while they are sick, LIKE NOW>> UGH Double ear infection. They are always very understanding as long as you are in good communications with them. Also, if I take too long or I feel i've taken too long I throw in a freebie, couple wipes, couple liners, whatever. That always makes them happy. I've even thrown in % off coupons for next time they shop thats when they come back with multiple diapers order. I also take down custom slots so I don't get TOOO overwhelmed.
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Old 06-10-2006, 11:23 PM   #6
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

closing customs may actually increase your instock sells too. If you decide to run a longer custom wait, consider putting a working list (like a spreadsheet) up on a webpage to track the progress of orders. Customers would probably like to see where they are on the list, and expected delivery date, and watch as they progress. You could put a link or note about "can't wait for your zany zebra? Check out our instock items" or something like that.

Hope that helps!
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Old 06-11-2006, 09:35 AM   #7
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

As long as communication is good, I don't think a 2-4 week wait is bad. If I want the dipes bad enough - like I'd love more of yours - I'll wait. If I need dipes NOW than I order something already instock.

Same with wool stuff, but I have less patience for woolen items, I think! I want them NOW!
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Old 06-11-2006, 12:27 PM   #8
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

There is nothing wrong with closing customs temporarily. It is better to close them and catch up than to keep them open and get really really behind.
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Old 06-13-2006, 08:59 AM   #9
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

i think the worst is really when you say it will be X period of time and you go over. i think the other issue is how much of a fee they pay to hold their spot. i always liked the way that daisy doodles did their custom list - a $10 deposit to hold your spot on the list - just enough to discourage ppl from frivolously getting on the list but not a huge commitment so that if it is awhile they're not out a ton of $$.

i personally don't like to run a really long custom list b/c i find it overwhelming. i also really like to have a short wait time - it's nice to really impress your customers with quick service. so i choose to limit my slots. for example, at the beginning of june i filled up 3 slots for immediate work and then had 3 others who i had to order yarn for (so they would have had to wait anyway), so i slotted them in for mid-June. now i'm about to start that batch and will probably start lining up my July orders in a week or so.
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Old 06-14-2006, 07:30 PM   #10
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Re: How long is reasonable for customs?

Thanks for all the ideas mamas! I think I'll change to a 3 week wait time, longer for larger orders or applique diapers and put a note about instock on my custom page (great idea!) I already do keep in touch with my customers via email, and have closed for customs a couple of times. The problem with closing for customs is that right now 99% of my sales are custom orders, and I've had requests for custom slots when I've been closed for customs. Since my business has been mainly customs I hate to turn anyone away, kwim?
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