News

Goings On & New Customer Discount

Well, it has been quite a while since my last blog post.  A lot has gone on since then.  The Stanley Gibbons Marketplace debacle is over.  Mark Rosenberg, who sold bidStart to Stanley Gibbons bought the company back and has re-branded it HipStamps.  A better outcome could not have occurred.  Since HipStamps went live, I have contemplated shutting down this website but I just can't.  I think my formatting,  tagging and search engine is much better than HipStamps.  I just need to get traffic coming to my site and get my buyers on HipStamps to shop here first. I do appreciate the sales on HipStamps but I pay higher fees than if I sold the stamps here.  I have dedicated myself to keep the website going and hope you will return.

 

I created a one time discount code NewCustomer30%.   Please use this code at checkout.  Even if you bought something from me in the past this code will work if you haven't used it before. 

I have been been working on comparing my HipStamp Inventory to my Website inventory.  I was able to add quite a few stamps to my inventory that I somehow missed when doing my original import. 

One of my goals is to always improve the user experience of my website.  I have  been trying to make my listings more consistent in their descriptions.  I have combined some multiple listings and hopefully added some improved explanations for my selling/shipping policies.

 

Well, that's all for now.  I hope to blog a little more often to keep you up to date.  Remember to check my Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest websites to see  my latest listings and promotions.

 

Bob

I Will Be Selling at Whippany, NJ Stamp Bourse on October 17, 2015

I have not been posting much lately, but that does not mean I haven't been busy.  I have been preparing my unorganized inventory for sale.  The good thing about this is that after the bourse, any unsold items will then be scanned and added to the store.  I am also trying to prepare the inventory from my website store for sale in person.  That means I have to label books and boxes appropriately.  

If you are in the area, come on out.  I would like to meet you.

Here is the email blast for the show...

Dealers/collectors offering material with all areas represented, but strength in U.S., U.S. Back-of-the-Book & Fancy Cancels, Western Europe and postcards/postal history coming to northern New Jersey October 17.

A 10-table stamp bourse, sponsored by the Jockey Hollow Stamp Club of Morristown and the North Jersey Federation of Stamp Clubs, will be held at the First Presbyterian Church of Whippany Parrish Hall, 494 Route 10 West, Whippany New Jersey 07981. from 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Parking, located behind the church, and the show admission are free.

Directions: Parish Hall is at 494 Route 10 West — at the light and next to the Antique Railroad Station. From Route 287 exit at Route 10 east, proceed 2.1 miles to the church on the left and go past it to the U-TURN, come back west on Route 10 to the church (now on your right).

For more information, contact Hugh Merritt, at 973-263-9012 or via e-mail.

Published

My article about the 50th Anniversary of the Berlin Airlift First Day Covers was published in the First Days Magazine of the American First Day Cover Society (http://www.afdcs.org/).  It actually made the front cover.  The hard cover has not come out yet but if you are a member of the AFDCS, you can read the article on line. If you collect First Day Covers, I would highly suggest you join the AFDCS if you haven't already.  

I am attaching a copy of the cover.

 

 

Live

It is hard to believe, but my website is now live.  Amazingly, I have already made my first sale from a valued previous customer and friend.  This is very exciting.  I really hope everyone likes it.  I know it's not perfect and I am constantly finding something to fix, but for now it is the best I can do.  Remember to use parkinlotDebut to get your 20% off until April 30th.

Been a While...

Well, it has been a while since my last post.  I have been very busy.  I'm looking back at my previous posts and it is making me chuckle.  I can't believe how little I had gotten done back then.  Unbelievably, I am very close to completing my inventory.  I still have a bunch of FDC, Event Covers, Plate Blocks and Germany to list.  I also have Monaco and Malta complete.  

I was rolling along with my listings and then Shopify changed the layout of the Product Input screen and threw off my Mojo.  The new layout is actually better but it is going to take me a while to get used to.  

I am also trying to learn other applications that I need to operate this website.  Hopefully you will sign up to to receive my Newsletter.  I promise not to spam your inbox.  I will send one or two emails a month when I have something interesting going on.  Just click on the Blue "Subscription" Button at the bottom of my webpage.  I am using Mail Chimp to create my Email Campaigns and there is a bit of a learning curve to get the hang of it.  I'm still learning.  

I also had to set up my Social Media links.  I prefer to post more often on Facebook and Twitter.  Please follow me on these sites for information on the latest listings, specials, promotions and breaking news.  The links are also at the bottom of my webpage.

One of the banes of using Shopify is that their inventory management is woefully lacking.  I have tried to load my inventory on Inventory.com but screwed it up royally.  I have to revisit it.  At least I can export my inventory into an Excel spreadsheet.  I have a basic understanding of Excel, but I need to learn the finer details.  

That's what I have been up to.  I hope to live very soon!!!  I have a date in mind but don't want to post it just yet.  I have a lot to do.  A lot of testing to be done.  Looking forward to my first order.  

Bob

Consistency

I am noticing as I am transferring my items from bidStart, that I am not very consistent with my titles.  This is mostly for my Covers and Plate Blocks.  I sometimes put the Subject of the Stamp at the end of the description, sometimes it is right after the catalogue number.

I am trying not to be so anal about it.  It is going to a very difficult and time consuming to get everything exactly the same.   I think the Titles though are much better here than on bidStart.  I am trying to put a description of every items title.  Some of the older stamps, I am not going to put Victoria on all the British Commonwealth and Great Britain Stamps.  (=

I have been concentrating on the United States.  I am trying to put at least 100 items (if I have that many) in each category.  I finished Back of the Book, Coils, First Day Covers and I am now working Plate Blocks then it is on to Revenues.  Wish me luck!!!

Shooting Myself in the Foot

Barbados (Slowly I turn...) -  I realized as I was seeding Bermuda from bidStart, that I had mis-categorized all my Barbados Stamps under Bermuda.  Before listing them here I had to fix that on bidStart.  Then, when I did list the stamps of Barbados here, I did the same thing.  I had them listed under Bermuda.  Had to go back and fix all of those. 

Then I realized I had made a much bigger error!!!  I mis-spelled the category Caribbean.  I had it spelled Carribean.  See, my spell checker here caught that...  You probably can't see it.  Anyway, I had to go back and change all my Carribean tags to Caribbean.  That took a while.  Quite frustrating.    Didn't I say previously, that I am not perfect?  

Anyway, it has been a while since I posted.  I have finished seeding Australia & Oceania, Asia, Middle East & Africa.  I broke the Caribbean out as a separate category.  I was originally going to have it under Latin & South America like bidStart does but I figured I would have enough countries to make it its own category.  That is finished.  Central America and Mexico are also complete.  I am very close to finishing seeding all of my Stamps Categories.  Then I will seed the Sports Cards and then come back around to stamps again.  I think after 2 rounds of seeding, I can go live.  We will see.

Oh, by the way Happy New Year!!!  Sorry, I should have started there.  So much on my mind. 

Seeding Europe and Starting Oceania

I feel like the Sower stamp from France.  I have just completed seeding my Europe/Eastern Europe Categories.  What do I mean by seeding?  I have put approximately 15 stamps into each sub-category of Eurpe.  Speaking of Eastern Europe, I decided to create this main category because I was getting too many categories under Europe.  Unfortunately, it seems like I cannot rename the Europe Category to Western Europe without a lot pain.  So I am keeping that category as Europe.  I hope you will forgive me.  All stamps from Eastern Europe will show up if you click on the Europe Link as will the stamps from Scandinavia.  

Today is the last day of the Football Season for some of us.  My Dolphins suffered the ultimate humiliation by losing to the Jets today.  Another disappointing season.  I have a friend at work whose nephew plays for the Baltimore Ravens.  They won today and got the help they needed to get into the playoffs.  I don't like the Ravens but will be rooting for them for my friend.

Well, I now need to take a break... Later...

Changing Themes and Listing Europe

I decided to change my website theme.   The main reason I did this is because when you would go into the Product page, you could hover over the image and it would magnify.  I wanted to be able to click on the image and have it pop up enlarged in another window.  My new theme does this.  I also like that the new theme has a black/gray background with white lettering.  It makes the stamps stand out better.  The other advantage is that when you are in a collection, the tags are in a drop down.  The old them, just listed all the tags above the images.  The user would have to scroll down before actually seeing the stamp.  

Had a little trouble with the pop up image.  For some reason it wasn't popping up but going to another window.  I chatted with Jason at Shopify and he escalated the issue to the technical crew and they seem to resolved it.  Awesome.  I have had nothing but great customer support with any issues I have had with Shopify.  Hope it continues.

Christmas Day

I have the day off from work and I am continuing to add stamps to my store.  I am trying to add at least 15 stamps to each category before I go live.  This is a very slow process although I am getting better at it.  I sometimes overwrite an item that I previously created by not using the Duplicate function.  I sometimes put items in the wrong category by duplicating an item and not modifying the Tag.  Please bear with me if you do see something in the wrong category.  If you could advise of anything out of place or mis-categorized please send me an email and I will try to fix it as soon as possible.

 

Today I am focusing on the stamps from Scandinavia and Western Europe.  This is one of my favorite collecting areas.

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