September 1st 2008, The virtual doors of my company opened for business. We offered exactly 5 products for sale. All Wuhan cymbals 3 "S" series splashes and 2 china's the 12" and 16" models. Not really to much to crow about sorta speak, but they say a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. That was C&S's first steps. It's not really anything to brag about anyone with an idea and a half a brain could accomplish what I have. In fact I think most of you would be far more successful than I. Whether we are a success or not is still a very much open question, I'm just happy that we are still in business.
In the two years we have been a company we have completed several thousand sales. Although are Ebay feedback is only now approaching the 550 mark. Even an Ebay rep I recently talked to remarked that despite what she said was " above average satisfaction" My company had a below average feedback response. Both she and I found that to be a bit curious. Over 99% positive feedback, yet so few bother to even give us feedback. I suppose it's just a quirk of doing business on line. The experience has offered me both elation and bitter disappointment. Overall it's been way more satisfactory than not, I have become friends with many customers. I have meet some extremely cool people and when they say how happy they are with their purchase it really gives me a sense of accomplishment. A satisfaction that really is hard to describe.
Since we opened our doors our steady in stock line of products usually is between 100-125 products. We've opened 2 ancillary sites a Blog www.cymbalsandsnares.blogspot.com/ and a You Tube channel www.youtube.com/ilduce61 Both serve as a way to communicate with customers and other drummers allows us to give really decent product video's and pretty pertinent written info. I set out into the world of E-commerce with an idea of building a community of drummers where information could be exchanged and a store at it's center to tie everything together. Has This ambition been achieved ? I suppose the jury is still out on that one, My own personal feelings is that we should be doing better and be bigger than what we are. Yet I cannot ignore the heartfelt support C & S has received and the number of people who have signed on as a friend, subscriber or however you'd like to refer to these people. On our 3 sites, It gives me reason to pause and say perhaps I am on to something, and two years is hardly time enough to declare success or failure.
So we plod through day after day trying to attract new customers and friends to be part of the C & S world. Statistics don't really mean squat they can be easily used for or against an argument just as easy, depending on your viewpoint. When you run a business whether it's an online or physical store you deal with tons and tons of numbers. The numbers of sales you made, the amount of each sale, how long was someone in your store, where did they come from, it goes on and on. It's really way more than I signed on for but I'm in the thick of it now so there's no going back. I wouldn't have it any other way, I enjoy it too much. I just want C & S to grow and grow and slowly but surely we have.
The central theme of C & S has been and always will be "The home of the Other Name Brands". It gives me great satisfaction to help promote and turn on drummers to excellent little known brands or products, and have them be completely satisfied with them. I get a sense of accomplishment doing that, seeing and building a company based on an idea you had and watching it embraced and supported by drummers all over the world is a good feeling. It has been successful enough to keep this entire operation a float for the last two years I hope we can keep on going as strong as we have been.
I don't have any plans on going anywhere anytime soon. I hope those of you reading this feel the same. We have some big plans for the future what company doesn't ? There are some very solid opportunities and avenue's we are exploring, there's a lot of hit and misses when you try and be the "alternative source" for percussion products. Not everything we order or try out makes it to the store, for various reasons. Quality, need, pricing there are as many reason for something not making it through are screening process as their are products. Still we try and are consistently looking for product's from the "Other Guys" to bring to you. There is just so much out there it's overwhelming at times. Quite frankly it wears you out at times. Sometimes I wonder how much easier it would be just to sell mainstream well known brands, But then we wouldn't be us and we'd be just another percussion site.
I could go on forever but I need to wrap this up. I would at this time like to thank every single person who has supported C & S either through purchases participation in our 3 websites or simply just talking to your friends about our company. Were Two years old today and I suppose in the scope of things it really is a little pre mature to talk in terms of success or failure. Just the fact I'm writing this must mean something what exactly that is I do not know. I do know that I will keep on doing what I have been for the last two years and with a little luck we will keep on growing and keep on doing what we have been. I sincerely hope you all stick around for the ride. Till next time my friends. T.