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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Our Website Is Now Online and Open For Business!!

When I originally started designing my website over a year ago, like all perfectionists, I thought I would wait until it was completely finished before unveiling it to the world. But as time has worn on it became clearer and clearer that if I didn't get it online and actually start signing up customers and building traffic, it was just never going to happen.

So last week, I made a push to get all of the essential functions on the site working properly, and to edit enough listings that had been imported from E-bay, to at least make a start.

So I started with the item categories. Previously, I had designed a basic one-direction tree structure for  product categories that listed all of the stamp issues from 1851 in order. This is better organization than one usually sees on most stamp websites. But I realized that it could still be made even better. I wanted a navigation system that would allow the customer to casually browse as many different categories as possible, without having to rely on search. So I spent the next few days adding catalogue numbers to the titles, creating additional layers of categories and adding entirely different classes of product, such as collections, year sets and complete sets. My goal was to ensure that no matter what a collector is interested in, they can find it easily. I am particularly proud of what I came up with. A collector can now browse:

  1. By issue.
  2. By condition and grade.
  3. By price range.
  4. By catalogue number - both Unitrade and Stanley Gibbons.
  5. By lot type - single stamps, FDC's Covers, Cancels, complete sets, year sets and revenues.
They will be able to look through enough items to interest them, but not so many as to overwhelm them.

After completing the item categories, I verified that the other pages were all correctly set up and functioning, and then I re-directed my domain name to point to the website. We were now online and open for business.

Then I began setting up the Google product feeds, and the Adwords account. Of course there have been some hiccups, as there always are with these kinds of changes. But I haven't worried about E-bay now for well over a week. I still had some sales there this past week, but I am done with getting angry at them or worrying about what they are going to do next. It has been wonderful not having to care about them or think about them.

At present, there are only a modest number of stamps listed, but over the next 8-10 weeks, I will be transferring some 6,000 stamps from my E-bay store to the website. So lots of new items will be appearing continuously. After this is done, I will continue listing items until all my inventory is listed, which I expect will be about 2 years. When it is finished, this will be one of the largest, if not the largest online retail source of Canadian stamps in the world. I have also considered the possibility of expanding beyond Canada as well eventually. But for the moment, my focus will have to be on Canada.

I would encourage you to take a look at the site to get a feel for it. These sites are a lot of work to set up, but it is nothing that most people with a computer and the ability to follow instructions can't handle. It just takes a lot of patience.

The Website URL is www.brixtonchrome.com, and can be accessed by clicking the following link:

www.brixtonchrome.com


Also, customers that sign up for a customer account through the login screen on the site, and do so before July 31, 2018 will become a VIP customer automatically. VIP customers benefit from enhanced order discounts, which never expire and are as follows:

Orders under$10 USD: 5%.
Orders between $10-$20 USD: 10%.
Orders between $20-$50 USD: 15%.
Orders between $50-$100 USD: 20%.
Orders over $100 USD: 25%.

I believe this is an excellent enticement to a prospective customer. I am hopeful, and am looking forward to building this site and making it a success.