Product Changes & Updates
Hello, Candle Buddies!
After going through our feedback on the 2021 wrap up survey, I've put some thought into what changes I can make to help run the shop more efficiently.
Several things were mentioned enough times in reviews for me to take a look at how we will try things in 2022 or need to address (since we already can do it):
- Items not in stock enough
- Too many size options
- Filter on collection pages too cluttered
- Search By Fandom
- Search by Scent Notes
- Custom items
- Not Knowing When Items Will Retire
I'm going to address the first three points together.
Item's Sold Out A lot / Too Many Options / Samples
This is definitely something I want to improve for you in 2022 and the way to do it will be narrowing down the size options offered. With having a finite amount of time to make products, things do get bogged down having to switch gears constantly working on different product sizes.
When it comes to product sizing, I am going to go with what we do for conventions: only two candle sizes and testers. This received positive feedback in person at events.
Here's the model we are going to transition to through 2022:
13oz Double Wick Jars
Sample Containers (these are wickless and can be used as wax melts)
All candles will have the sample option once we update the website (this may take us a few weeks). Samples will be made when I am pouring candles. I will make an effort to pour 2-3 samples every restock. Be sure to use the 'out of stock notification' feature to let us know what samples you want. We review this feature several times a month to plan our restocks. And based on demand, I may do special sample pours.
I will also make a better effort to get our sampler tea light packs made. I will do this via preorder events approximately every 3 months. When I make the items preordered, I will also make a few extra to put in the shop.
You may ask why I dropped the 7.5oz and 4oz candle sizes. Both the 13oz and 6.5oz tin model has received positive feedback at conventions in 2021 so I am confident it will translate well to the shop. I feel like you also get the most value out of these sizes based on how long each burn. Having only two sizes for me to focus on means I will be able to keep items in stock more consistently.
Please Note: 4oz tins will remain available for our wholesale customers and during our preorder events but will not be offered during regular restocks.
We also plan to have more candle preorders. Each month will have one themed preorder with 4oz and 6.5oz tins. The theme will include regular stock blends and some limited edition/retired scents. This way you can get your hands on something that you've been waiting for or hoping would return. (For example, January was Witcher and February will be Destiel themes)
Filtering on Collection Pages is Too Cluttered
This is the beauty of the surveys. I literally had NO idea how cluttered the filter option was until it was mentioned here. I don't use it so I didn't realize it pulled every single tag we have EVER used for our products in the last five years. This month, I went through all of our product history and deleted unused and redundant tags. As of today, you should see an improvement to the filter menu. I am continuing to update tags to make it better.
Search by Fandom
This is something we are asked for a lot and I've been hesitant to implement it because of copyright issues. I will continue to NOT use fandom names on product listings, descriptions and candle titles (as best we can); however, I will try and update our tags that appear on the filter list (mentioned above) so that you can try to hone in on what you're looking for. If we ever run into an issue with a copyright holder, I will revisit this and remove them. I will also try to break down our "Themes" menu into more sub categories so things like "TV" isn't one huge listing of blends.
Search by Scent Type/Notes
This was mentioned by a few survey takers and it's something you can already do on the website. There are two ways:
- You can search by any ingredient via the search tool. It will show you listings that have 'apple' in it, for example. If you want to eliminate an ingredient from a search, use a - sign. So if I don't like lavender, I would search with "-lavender" and all listings without lavender will appear.
- Under the "Themes" menu, there is a "Scent Type" option. This lets you see all blends that fall under categories like 'citrus', 'spicy' and so forth.
Unfortunately, we still are not able to bring back custom items on a regular basis. The shop is essentially run by one person (Amanda) which includes all product creation, packing, shipping, marketing, etc. In the last two years, there haven't been enough hours in the month to open up custom orders without hurting our regular restocks, convention prepping and family time. We've been making an effort not to work in the evenings and most weekends in order to keep a healthy work/home balance.
Custom orders CAN be made in a bulk purchasing situation (usually 10 or more of an item). I will establish better rules on this over the next few months as we're hoping to expand our wholesale reach.
Displaying Retired/Last Run Items
This is already a feature on our website. Under the "All Products" menu, there is a Retiring listing. We will make a blog post in the coming weeks with a full list of items that are retiring this year and ones that are on the verge of retiring if sales don't pick up. This will give you a better heads up on where your blends stand.
The last (almost) two years have seen a lot of changes to the way this shop is run and I appreciate all of your patience. Supply chain problems have really caused a bulk of the changes when it comes to jar and bottle types. The shop also has grown at a consistent rate and I always have to find new ways to keep up with the demand. We'll see how this goes through 2022 and if something isn't working out, I'll always find a way to do it better for everyone.
You all continue to be the best customers a shop can ask for.