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Wed July 17 2013 11:12:31

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

By: Julia Wilkinson

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When I blogged about the results of the Multi-Channel Poll results, I was intrigued by one seller, David Salerno, who wrote, "I currently have well over 100 active storefronts, so if you need a list of alternative sites just let me know!" Salerno runs Salerno's Jewelry Stores in Summerfield, Florida, and among his online stores, his main ones are salernosjewelrystore11 on ecrater and jewelrymandave on Etsy.

I spoke with him about alternative auction sites, but I also wanted to ask about how he managed and marketed presences on so many different sites. Today he shares his tips on how he does it, and also talks more about the benefits of trying out smaller and upstart auction/selling sites.

Managing Inventory on a Zillion Sites
Salerno is old-school when it comes to record-keeping. (Hey, it hedges against computer crashes and disk rot!). "I am a black and white kinda guy, and I have to have everything in writing, " said Salerno. "No computer files here! I keep a journal listings all my  merchandise, where I have it listed, amount in stock, retail price, etc." He says  there are also programs you can purchase, but pen and paper seem to work well for him.

Driving Traffic to Smaller Sites: Marketing

Sellers who list on smaller sites know you can't just list it and let it sit. You have to get the word out.

Salerno uses multiple social networking sites: "I use all of them! Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google Plus, LinkedIn, Manta, MySpace, Bebo, Tumblr, etc." he says.

He also uses the paper.li daily newsletter service and bufferapp to "get the word out" about new arrivals to his inventory. He also uses community sites like Ocala4sale and eBayclassifieds, Manta and Storeboard.
 
Which one is most effective? "Pinterest is far and away the best for driving traffic to my sites. I run a Google analytics every evening for my main store at eCrater and a typical day I will see around a thousand hits with nearly 700 of those hits coming from Pinterest alone!" He says Twitter is usually second with 50 to 100 hits, followed by Facebook with 25 to 50 hits, and Google Plus fourth at around 10 to 25 hits.

Blogging
He also blogs regularly. Although he says "I am not much of a blogger," he says he tries to post at least once every morning. (I'd call that pretty regular). "Usually an informational-type blog associated with jewelry, like The History of the Citrine Stone, or The Meaning of the Infinity Symbol, something along those lines," he says.

Salerno likes the smaller sites and usually tries out the new ones, he says, because he can be a big fish in a small pond, and there is also often less competition on the newer sites. (You can visit his listing on EveryPlaceISell where he links to his main storefronts and Pinterest boards.)

I thought it was interesting he is old-school in his inventory management; I myself keep handwritten or paper receipts and keep them all in a file. Later I try to convert them to electronic in a spreadsheet or other accounting software.

How about you? Any sellers out there use paper records?

Do you use blogging and a lot of social networking sites like Dave, or stick to a few main ones? Also I'm curious if any others of you find Pinterest is the most effective site for driving traffic to your listings? Post a comment here!




Comments (10) | Permalink

Readers Comments

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: Jim S. This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 17 15:08:07 2013

Pen & paper record keeping in this day and age? My word. Maybe it works if you have low number of SKU's and/or extremely low sales velocity, but, I can't imagine going back to that with 1200+ SKUs. Come to think of it, I've never not used a computer for record keeping in some manner (spreadsheets before database). His Pinterest comments are interesting.

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: JoyfulA This user has validated their user name.

Wed Jul 17 18:54:39 2013

I've never seen or heard of anyone using paper.li, but what a great idea. It would be great for me.

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: Digmen1 This user has validated their user name.
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Thu Jul 18 00:49:29 2013

Wow!
His comments about being a big fish in a small pond is probably a valid one that many of us disregard.
I can believe his statemnt about Pinterest driving a lot of traffic for him as he sells jewellery which I'd imagine many Pinterets users would like.
He did not mention Google organic or Google shopping.

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

This user has validated their user name. by: juliawww

Thu Jul 18 10:32:14 2013

Hi digmen, I thought the same thing about the big fish in small pond idea..I hadn't really thought of it. Good reason to try smaller sites IMO. For me it's a matter of time as my 3 presences seem to be all I can handle now. ;) I think it's great Dave blogs so regularly. He did not mention google organic but I bet that helps..I'll ask him about it next time we communicate.

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: FREDDY This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 19 09:19:54 2013

This gentleman has a good thing going. Old school method worked for how many years in commerce??? Can you youngsters image that Ford Motor Company at one time didn't have a computer????
Think what the world is coming to is that you have to use all the social type networking to get any business. No longer can you rely on sites like ebay, ecrater, bonanza, and etsy, etc., to drive any traffic to their site.
There are a lot of people out there that barely know how to turn on a  computer, let alone find the right items they may have an interest in. Those are the people that are possibly retired, have income, have funds just sitting there. They also have time on their hands.  I have a friend that is in that situation.   However due to the distance I am unable to be of much help. In addition, I am not one for the social networking.  Are there any classes out there to teach - hands on????

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
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Fri Jul 19 10:19:15 2013

I use a computer because keeping track of it all with pen and paper is to hard on arthritic hands and I like to run my end of the month numbers and be done with it in half and hour. I can't imagine how unwieldy it would be. Back when people did everything on paper they had either employees that did a lot of it or a low amount of inventory. No one tried to run 100 different stores on there own.

I don't know the size of his inventory, but WHY a 100 different stores? Is he duplicate listing everything everywhere and if not how does he choose what to list where? I list and sell off of two places and that is more than enough for me even with the use of computers.

I do believe him on the Pinterest angle as I know I'm increasing my Pinterest followers daily and Google Analytics shows I'm getting many hits through there.  

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: CK2 This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 19 11:56:43 2013

I'm looking to hear how he handles the workflow.  

If payment is to one source, or various sources, how does he know which site generated the sale?  Paypal, as one payment source, offers a half a dozen or so unique email identifiers as to the payment address, but having numerous sites, with even one email payment address can be impossible to manage with customer comments at checkout, potential uniqueness of the item offered between sites, etc... When a single email 'paypal' payment arrives, it does not designate source. I assume he doesn't log in to each site to review details. Does he manage from only the payment side:  PayPal, merchant account, google checkout, etc...?

How does he handle the sales/inventory/fulfillment workflow and do it fast enough to meet or exceed customer expectations? Are their unique SKUS for each site identifying source, and item(s)?

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

by: JKarsen This user has validated their user name.

Sun Jul 21 01:03:49 2013

Since he's old school, I believe he's using an old mail order standard way of tracking, coding each of his sales sites inside his Paypal account by the store number and not the name of the site.  It's how I'd do it.

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

This user has validated their user name. by: Tula

Sun Jul 21 14:23:18 2013

If I have to do any paper-like task more than once, I find a way to automate it on the computer. A little extra time up front can save a load of time later.

@Moonwishes: My arthritic hands, with their artificial knuckles made of silicone, agree with you wholeheartedly :-)

How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets   How Do You Manage 100 Storefronts? Salerno Spills Secrets

This user has validated their user name. by: thehosst
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Wed Jul 24 12:17:23 2013

There are a lot of useful apps but they are limited or pricey when you start adding features or number of items. You know, the silver, gold, platinum plans. I can't wait to see an app or service that can help sellers manage different stores and marketplaces as well as social marketing, but affordable.  



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