As we focus on becoming better local sellers, our top independent sellers share their tips and tricks of the trade. Hats off to our All Star Sellers! Next up in this series is Kyla of Adaptations, a seller in Brooklyn, New York with a studio full of fantastic finds! Kyla shares her photography tricks and how style listings to sell.
Hi Kyla! How long have you been selling? And how did you get started?
I’ve been selling for about 2 and a half years. It started as a hobby, because people were constantly admiring my own stuff in my home. I started buying stuff on Craigslist and selling it, and it gradually gained momentum. We’ve been in this space for a year and a half, and are now looking for our own storefront. But I got started on my own, there was no back-up money or anything.
Who would you say is your target buyer?
Our ideal buyer is someone who is ready to move past buying from Ikea, to create their own style and to add personality to their home.
Any tips for creating your brand identity?
Your brand should be a reflection of your personal style. I feel that everything in my store reflects who I am and what I like. You want your customers to know what they’re getting into when they visit your store, be consistent.
How do you create a repeat buyer?
I try to spend a lot of time with my customers. to connect with them. Buying a piece becomes more than a business, it is an experience. I always try to be as genuine as possible. I want them to use me as a jumping-off point to build their own style, but would never force a customer to buy anything.
How do you keep your overhead costs down?
It’s a real struggle because there are a lot of overhead costs. We try to plan everything ahead of time, scheduling, etc.
How much inventory do you keep on hand?
Well as you can see, we keep enough so that customers can still squeeze through the space. We have about 300 items on hand at any given time, but it’s hard to estimate because we turn pieces around very quickly. I don’t like to hold on to anything for too long.
What do your listings on Krrb need to have in order to sell?
Multiple photos, an accurate description, and measurements. They also need to be very clear about when our hours are and how they can contact us.
Do you sell at local flea markets or pop ups? If so, how do you get the word out?
We’re actually having our first pop-up in two weeks! It’s gonna be over a thousand square feet of space on Greenpoint Ave and Franklin St. We’re going to put up flyers, reach out to artists, and use Krrb to get the word out. Word of mouth is a huge way that we spread the word, because our customers tell their friends about us. There’s a real sense of community.
What is the most difficult item you’ve had to sell?
We had a huge locker that weighed 450 pounds. It was just so large, had so much mass, and was so hard to transport that it took a while to sell.
Tell us about the best sale you’ve ever had.
My best sale happened in Tribeca. There was this guy who wanted to buy a lot of my stuff, so I basically set up a pop-up on the street. I had only been selling for three months, and people started lining up on the street, asking to buy my pieces. That’s what really got the ball rolling and made me think that I could start selling on a larger scale. That sale wasn’t my biggest or most expensive, but it was a really cool and eye-opening experience.
How do you factor your price?
I try to price something based on what I would pay for that item. Obviously I have to factor in what I paid for the item plus my overhead costs, and how rare the item is also makes a difference. I try to keep my prices fair and affordable.
Do you ship? If so, tell us your process.
We ship smaller items but we don’t have a carrier to ship larger things. Most of our customer base is from the area.
Photographing an item to sell is tricky. How do you best show off your inventory in photos?
Lighting is very important, we try to photograph our items in natural light. Morning light is the best! It’s also important to have several photos in the listing, close-ups and not. We also try to take one photo with the item staged in a room and one with the item by itself.
How reliant on social media are you when it comes to selling?
We use Facebook and Instagram to spread the word and post listings. And we just recently hired someone to do our Pinterest for us.