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Message started by Slingky on Aug 5th, 2019 at 10:36pm

Title: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 5th, 2019 at 10:36pm
Although I've been handcrafting and selling slings on eBay and Etsy for about a year now, I'd like to explore selling on Amazon as well. I also want to do something for those who visit this forum that I don't do for any of my other customers. Here's the details: I'm offering $1.00 off the normal price for the three diffrent styles that I sell on Amazon and including free shipping to US addresses. Here's the links to the Amazon listings:
Black Pouch w. Black Cords reinforced with brass grommets [Pouch is 3"X5.5"] (Picture 1 below): $10.99 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07TZWTZ38?ref=myi_title_dp
Beige Pouch w. Desert Camo Cords reinforced with brass grommets [Pouch is 3"X5.5"] (Picture 2 below): $10.99 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07TTYHVJ8
Black Pouch w. Desert Camo Cords & Decorative Stitch [Pouch is 3"X5.5"] (Picture 3-5 below): $12.89 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07W45M2C8/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Shepherd+Sling+%2F+Rock+Sling%3A+Black+%26+Desert+Camo&qid=1565056880&s=handmade&sr=1-1
Celtic Rock Sling w. Desert Camo Cords [Pouch is 3"X6.5" and the pinched up sides are ideal for holding tennis balls & rocks more securely in the pouch.] (Picture 8-10 below) $13.99 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WCHMTNW/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Celtic+Rock+Sling+%2F+Tennis+Ball+Sling+-+Desert+Camo&qid=1565468517&s=gateway&sr=8-1

Also, for anyone who orders 10 or more of any combination of slings, I'll throw in 1 Troy Ounce of pure silver for free (see picture 6 below). This is only for those who are shipping to a US address, order through Amazon (10 or more slings in a single order), and send me a PM with their mailing address and email address prior to ordering on Amazon. (This way, I can tell which of my Amazon orders is from this forum and include their silver if their order qualifies). 
If you're interested in other styles not listed on Amazon, you can check out my Etsy store at: https://www.etsy.com/shop/From12Another?ref=shop_sugg
If you're interested in the 2 sling set pictured below (picture 7)for $19.99, you can find it at: https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-Shepherd-Slings-Survival-Gear-Handmade-in-the-USA/283557133806?hash=item4205527dee:g:QkIAAOSwwCJdNkEl
(When you're at this eBay listing, you can click the link titled, "see other items" to see some of the other slings that I sell.)
Once I get established on Amazon, I'm considering selling direct here, and keeping a tidy discount for members of this forum.
I maintain a 100% positive feedback on eBay & get lots of good feedback on the quality of my slings from customers.

With many thanks, Slingky
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Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by vetryan15 on Aug 6th, 2019 at 11:40am
You do know that silver is about $17 an ounce right now. Doesnt seem like a good incentive to me.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by TheJackinati on Aug 6th, 2019 at 1:26pm
I once thought "You know what would be a good incentive to get sling buyers... I should package a sling up with some lead glandes!"...

But then that might run into legal issues so I thought nah.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 6th, 2019 at 9:05pm

vetryan15 wrote on Aug 6th, 2019 at 11:40am:
You do know that silver is about $17 an ounce right now. Doesn't seem like a good incentive to me.

vetryan15... Thanks for your thoughts! You're jumping right into the middle of a dilemma that all sellers / business people face - myself included  ;) That is, if I want to offer discounts or incentives, how much do / should I discount before selling this item isn't worth the effort that I put into it? For me, I'm real close to my own red-line now, as I typically work 48hrs / wk. and at my regular job and make 3-4 X less per. hr. making and selling slings than I do at my regular job... Come to think of it, once Uncle Sam hits me up, I'm in worse shape than that  :o
There's a very real sense that if a customer only wants / will use 1-4 slings, they won't want to buy 10 of them so that they can get the free oz. of silver. While I'd love to sell them 1-4 slings, it probably wouldn't be in their best interests to pick up 10 for an ounce of silver if this is their situation.
The buyer that might be more inclined to the 10 sling offer would be someone who has their own gift shop / survival gear store / or small business outlet / context where they could buy for about $9.34 (with the price of the silver accounted for) and resell for $12-$20 in their own context or store. (As a side note, the first shepherd sling I sold on eBay was one of this same style [without decorative stitching], except it had been made with a repurposed leather pouch instead of the leather that I currently use. It sold for $20.).
Another buyer that might be attracted to the 10 sling offer is someone who had a bunch of birthdays / holiday gifts to shop for and wouldn't mind picking up 10 solid handmade gifts (and a free oz. of silver) for around 11 bucks a piece.
At any rate, $10.99 (w. free shipping) is still a solid, competitive deal for a hand-crafted leather sling of this quality, and if you don't want 10, you can always pick up 7 or 8  ;D
Just teasing...  :)
Looking forward to reading more of your thoughts on the board. The San Juan islands are beautiful indeed and many thanks for your kind welcome & critical interaction!

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Genghisken on Aug 7th, 2019 at 10:58am
Who wouldn't want to buy 10 slings around a gift giving holiday.  Its an excellent hobby, a great survival tool and a skillset similar to juggling which has been proven to help prevent alzheimers.  I would totally buy 10 slings and most likely will around Christmas-time.  Besides, If I have slings tucked in various places then I won't have to carry one around for a long period of time. 

From a business stand-point I don't think you need to offer free things to encourage purchases.  Desire for an item is created by social hype and perceived value, and scarcity. 

10 slings is already better than 1 sling.  one for the car, the boat, the garage, the back bedroom, the bug-out bag, the camping gear, etc. 

The issue you face I think is that people talk themselves out of buying a sling for a couple of reasons:

1-  most yahoos in the age of Home Depot and Youtube look at a thing and go "bah I can make that myself" - except that most won't and many simply can not regardless of how much they think they can.

2 - Your slings are priced very low.  Great for my budget but honestly the two I ordered from you were only in the neighborhood of $10 each, I suspect the USPS made more money on that deal than you did.  Try doubling your price and see how well they sell.

3 - Demand.  There are no HBO television series glorifying battalions of Peltasts.  There's no hero shots in" Revenge of the titans VII - Revenge of the revenge of the gods and Zeus aint dead yet" or "Troy II the counterattack" wherein Brat Pidd all oiled up and buff is about to nail a cyclops in the eye with a sling.  Therefore, people don't think they need or want one.

I remember when Rambo III came out, and bow sales went through the roof, people all wanted that compound bow that shot exploding arrows (even if they couldn't get exploding arrows). 

Slinging takes vision, commitment and dedication.  Most people won't appreciate having a gilded sling to hang on a fancy wooden plaque on the wall to celebrate their escape from mom and dad's basement into their own apartment.

in short "slinging is haaaaaaard" (please say in a whiny voice for proper effect) and they don't see any of their Hollwierd heros using them so they don't know how useful and effective they are.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 7th, 2019 at 7:40pm

Genghisken wrote on Aug 7th, 2019 at 10:58am:
Who wouldn't want to buy 10 slings around a gift giving holiday.  Its an excellent hobby, a great survival tool and a skillset similar to juggling which has been proven to help prevent alzheimers.  I would totally buy 10 slings and most likely will around Christmas-time....

@Genghisken
Shoot, if the world were more full of folks like you, I'd be workin' 10 hrs a day at my regular job, then 4 hrs. a day making slings, and then retire when I'm 85 instead of 105 :). The Post Office and Uncle Sam would be able to retire early too.
Thanks for your thoughts. I'll definitely chew on them. If silver keeps jumping like it is (who knows what it'll do...following it is like riding a bucking bronco...right now it's up over .60 cents an ounce over yesterday to $17.15 / oz.), I'm either going to be: a) kicking myself for giving them away. b) still happy that a customer got a good deal c) if it gets too crazy (like 2010-2012 where it went to around $48 / oz.), take your advice and end my offer.

Anyhow, in the meantime, the offer's still good. I'll just revise / modify the listing when the offer ends.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Genghisken on Aug 9th, 2019 at 7:44am
I got my slings yesterday which in and of itself is lightning fast.  Adding to that is how very nicely made they are.  Your attention to detail is exquisite.  Every "I" dotted and every "T" crossed.  The sling feels good to use.  The weight of it, the whooshing sound it makes and the length is exactly what I wanted.  The pouch is generous and grips nicely while also offering a smooth release.  These slings are outstanding and at $10 bucks each I feel like I should be wearing a ski mask when I order them from you.  I am beyond happy with my slings brother, thank you.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 9th, 2019 at 7:37pm
@Genghisken,

Thanks for the great feedback! I like the finger-loops as well, and I actually stumbled on the design by a fluke. I was disc golfing at a local course that was by a lake and ran into a nice stranger who was slinging rocks into a lake. I complemented him on his slinging and he eagerly encouraged me to give it a try. When I put it on, his sling had a leather disc on the cord that you grip with your thumb. I really liked the soft tug feel of the release, because it didn't chafe my finger like a straight paracord knot does. Not having to deal with chafing also allows you to generate a good load of pressure on the end of the sling for better distance. After getting the feel of his sling, I was thinking, "Dude, I've got to try making something like this and then get a leather loop for my middle finger too." Put together, the loop and buttons feel really good on the fingers.

The kind stranger encouraged me to pitch some rocks with his sling and he was puzzled / perplexed / amused that I twirled it around my head like a helicopter before releasing it. I was equally puzzled that he could pitch his rock a good ways without even doing a full circle with his sling. He'd just rock the pouch behind to his rear-left and then just do a quick overhand whipping motion with his shoulder / arm and launch his rock a good distance into the lake. He seemed to be pleased with my distance as well.

I still can't get the mechanics right myself for the straight overhand fling (and would like to learn it someday), but we parted ways with some good memories, some new ideas, and the mutual satisfaction of having met a kind stranger.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Blue Raja on Aug 10th, 2019 at 12:08pm
Interesting that you mentioned disc golf.  I usually play with a simple seatbelt sling and a bunch of practice tennis balls.  Is your pouch large enough for a tennis ball?

I am a volunteer archery instructor at a local middle/high school.  I am thinking about placing an order for the archery club.  Again, I am limited to slinging tennis balls with my students. 

I could not fund a description of pouch size on your Amazon page.  Maybe I missed it?

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 10th, 2019 at 5:09pm
@Blue Raja,
Thanks for the great questions! While the shepherd slings have 3"X5.5" pouch (which is a half-inch longer than other tennis ball pouches), I wanted to make sure that I had something available that would be more ideal for your application. Consequently, I did a few things in response:
1) I added a Celtic Rock Sling listing to Amazon and then modified my original post above to include pictures of the sling and a link to the Amazon listing where they're sold. See above for photos and link. I added this listing, because, while the dimensions of my shepherd sling pouches are 3"X5.5", the Celtic Rock sling has a bigger pouch (3"X6.5") and pinched up ends, making the pouch & sling more ideal for slinging tennis balls.
2) I included the same discount ($1.00 off) that I put on the other slings - as the Celtic Rock Sling sells for $14.99 at my Etsy store, but $13.99 at my Amazon listing.
3) As long as the silver offer is valid, the Celtic Rock Slings are also counted towards any order of 10 or more slings. *BTW, when the silver offer is gone, I'll simply modify my original post above, remove mention of the offer, and remove the related picture. Hope this helps.
I'll zip this same info to you in a PM for your convenience.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 11th, 2019 at 1:55am
Every once in a while, I'll make a different sling out of some unique leather that I come across and then post it on this thread. This one has a black leather back and a really nice, soft, slate blue surface on the inside of the pocket, finger-loop, and buttons. I touched it up with some gold colored thread at the tie-off points and reinforced the pouch and finger-loop with brass grommets. Pouch is 3"X5.5" and the sling is 31.5" long end to end when folded. If you'd like this, just IM me with your email address and mailing address, and I'll invoice you $11.00 via PayPal to your email address. First IM gets it. I'll update this posting when it's sold.
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Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Curious Aardvark on Aug 13th, 2019 at 12:23pm
what cord are you using ? looks weirdly like shoelaces

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 13th, 2019 at 7:04pm
@CA,

  Thanks for the question! I use 550 Mil Spec 7 in all the shepherd slings that I make. I just looked back in the 4 pictures that I just posted (the black / blue leather w. gold string tie-off) and I can see how you might say that they look like shoelaces  ;) Visually, it might be a combination of the seared ends and the length that I tie off to. The length that I tie off to is really close to the length of a shoelace tip. On a related note, I've been considering changing suppliers for my black cord to the supplier that I use for my desert camo cord, because even though they're both 550 Mil Spec 7, the desert camo cord has something of a more robust or rigid body / feel than the black cord.

With many thanks,
Hans

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 13th, 2019 at 7:16pm
@vetryan15,

  I read an article on an ambitious business promotion today that was pretty crazy  :o  https://thehustle.co/the-worst-sales-promotion-in-history/
  I guess that there's at least three things that we can both say about my promotions:
  One: I'm probably not as generous as Hoover  :)
  Two: While I am relatively new in business, I'm not Hoover new :) 
  Three: Now anyone can look marginally better next to Hoover  :D

Have a good one - and thanks again for your feedback!

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by NooneOfConsequence on Aug 14th, 2019 at 11:02pm
One thing about running a business Slingky is that you have to know your customers and your market. Ask yourself: what problem does my product solve?  Is your value proposition something like “providing a beautiful sling to someone who doesn’t have the time or skill to make it themselves”?  If so, that’s the wrong solution for people on this forum (but maybe not wrong for other customers). We forum slingers tend to be incredibly cheap when it comes to spending money, but the same people who won’t pay $20 for a sling will spend 20 hours making one! 
If $10-$15 is the price that the market is willing to pay, then you will want to be able to make maybe 30 slings in an hour to make it worth your time. If you are cutting each of those slings by hand, you may need to find customers who are willing to pay more.

Title: Re: Handcrafted Shepherd Slings on Sale
Post by Slingky on Aug 14th, 2019 at 11:29pm
@NooneOfConsequence,

  Thanks for chipping in and explaining more about this context. I just found out the "spending 20 hours making one" the hard way this past weekend (you're not exaggerating either) when I tried to make a Balearic sling. I started two, one of which I'll probably pull apart and one that might take me till next year to complete. The more I worked on the sling, the more astonished I was at the work that Vetryan15 does on his slings. He and many others pull off some amazing work.
  There are indeed works of art (and artists) everywhere on this site. Thanks again for your thoughts. -Slingky

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