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Message: 'I am becoming increasingly con...' with Replies

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  • I am becoming increasingly concerned about some supermarkets and retailers not accepting cheques. Is the bank cheque going to become obsolete? I do hope not. I am concerned that consumers might get out of the habit of carrying their cheque books. So what happens when you're at a craft fair and your customer has not enough cash? People don't carry cash these days either. They rely on their credit or debit cards. Cheque book? The problem is without cash or cheque book the customer will not be able to purchase my product.
    5 July '07 - 12.13pm
  • It's a really difficult problem for us small makers...people don't carry enough cash or no cheque book and the charges for having card processing terminals are extortionate.

    The banks are getting away with charging a large percentage on each transaction and want a large monthly or yearly turnover that is impossible for a makers selling their own work.

    I also know of someone who sold almost £1000 worth of items to a very respectable looking middle aged lady who paid him by cheque. Of course when he went to bank it, it bounced even though he had written the card details on the back. It turns out the cheque book AND card were stolen and the lady in question did a good forgery of signatures. So relying on cheques for large orders is also difficult.

    I have set up a system for online purchase of my items from my website for my production pieces (bowls, coasters etc) but if you make large and/or unique items, then it makes it difficult to sell online.

    So what to do? Perhaps the show organisers could look into providing cash machines at venues for buyers to take cash out?
    6 July '07 - 2.12pm
  • I think hardly anyone carries a cheque book these days. If you are to be taken seriously you must take credit/debit cards etc. There are inexpensive and reliable systems where you can use your mobile phone using texting or the GPRS to get authorization on a payment from the bank and you don't have an expensive monthly subscription.
    11 July '07 - 8.27pm
  • Just thought I'd add something to the credit card option - We joined FSB (The Federation of Small Businesses) and part of the benefit package is a great dael on renting a credit card machine and the interest percentage for the cards is the lowest I've heard of.

    I don't know what your turnover is, but we consider the cost of having a credit card machine part of the cost of doing business, and I can say that easily half to three quarters of our sales are by card at some shows. One can argue that we get more card sales partly because people see our sign and save their cash for booths that are cash-only, but we sell some large pieces, and get more impulse and multiple buying this way in general.

    My mother always said "you have to spend money to make money!" Look into it, at any rate. The only concern I would know of for using the mobile phone option is lack of reception. The mobile credit card machine we have (123Send) uses satellite technology, and we've never had that problem.

    Good luck! LKB
    21 July '07 - 1.28pm
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