Pros and Cons of In-Person and Online Selling Platforms

You must consider many factors when choosing selling platforms, such as the type of consumers you want to reach. Most importantly, you must consider each venue’s cost of sale.

In the case of online platforms, the level of fees charged against your transactions will reduce your profit. In the case of a trade show or traveling sales paradigm, the level of up-front investment required in travel and time will affect your profit.

The biggest advantages of online venues are broad reach, low costs, and (for the most part) negative working capital. This means you don’t actually pay the sales fees until after you sell the items. In the case of trade shows or other in-person venues, the investment comes at the front-end of the transaction, so you take all the risk. Some shows go really well. Some go very poorly.

The major advantage of trade shows is that you’re generally dealing with wholesale customers who really know what they’re buying. You also know they’ve evaluated the gem in-person and, therefore, aren’t likely to return it. On the other hand, selling to wholesale customers over the Internet can be a challenge. You’ll…