Saturday, July 9, 2011

Catsuits and Open Pricing

This is a picture of my friend Stephie after she bought herself eighteen latex catsuits.  Isn't she cute?  She has a thing for latex.  I'll leave you to interpret the look on her face.  I already know what she was thinking.

The makers of the catsuit, Powers of Creation, offered it with open pricing.

I find the concept of open pricing interesting, so I invited two SL merchants who have used open pricing to post about it on gotVirtual, Vicky Aura and Roslynd Turbo.

Lee said:
"We were wondering if you would be willing to... tell us about the concept and how it is working for you. We were mainly wondering if you felt you were receiving fair payment and if more people were paying you than not. do you see "Open Pricing" as an experiment or as a regular way of doing business that you have adopted?"

This is one of Vicky Aura's posts on the subject:
"Hello everyone,
I just got a notice regarding this thread, that you´re interested in the concept of open price.

My store had regular prices first.
Every color had to be bought separate. Like you see it in most other stores.
A few releases later I was at the prim limit of my 1024 sqm land.
Getting bigger land so that I don´t hit such a limit again in the near future would have resulted in something like US-$ 8 - 10 per week (roundet).

I´m running this store because I have fun doing that.
I like it when I´m getting messages from people telling me that they like what they´ve got from me and/or paying my Open Price Terminal (or me directly) as this tells me that they like it.
A nice warm feeling
But well ... SL costs money for me too, so I need the "Open Price" payments too.
If I don´t get enough donations for paying my own bills, I would probably close the store at some time.

Offering everything at "Open Price" has some nice advantages.

No people complaining about failed marketplace deliveries
No people complaining that they don´t like it and want their money back
No reason to rent a satellite store anymore. Or better say: only in rare cases.
Having that warm feeling when I receive a payment - telling me that the customer likes it.

And ... I always hate it when I can´t try out clothes by myself before buying them.
I´ve seen to many salepictures in the past that were pimped with photoshop a lot.
With Open Price people can try everything out and combine them with other things before paying for it what they think is appropriate.

And don´t think too much about the amount to pay for.
Some people have more money, some others have less.
Any amount is ok.
If you´re currently low on money and want to pay more, I´m not stopping you from coming back and pay again
But that´s completely up to the customer.

The disadvantage of Open Price is that I entirely depend on the fairness of the customers of course.
But until now, I´ve no plans to drop the Open Price model for my store.

Stephie mentioned Plausible Body a few posts before.
I got the Open Price idea from them.
The Owners of PB and I are great friends and not into competition with our stores.
As far as I know, we have the only stores so far that are using Open Price."
This is a picture of one of Vicky's dresses:

Roslynd Turbo said:
"Vicky (we're good friends) just passed along this thread to me as well - Always glad to see the open:rice concept getting discussed - and yes it is sustaining Plausible Body really well - and best of all it's really fun and we get to meet so many great people - but Vicky really summed it up well in her post. I mainly just popped in to say Hi  :)

ok let me see what I can do to answer all this:

As for Men's stuff - we have some shoes that work unisex - I have one male shape in our new av pack (not even on the wall) but so far that's all - Working on a male skin but it's not done yet.
Started PB in roughly November 2008 (wow - can't believe it's been that long) we started with open:: price very early (probably a month later) on because we started PB mainly for fun - open:: price was a great way to make it possible to have the store stay fun and also earn enough to cover costs and have a bit of land. It works well for us but I have nothing to compare it to so I've always wondered how it "compares" but I can't see us ever changing. We keep our skins, shapes, and Eyes regular price so it's almost like two in one - but the open:: price is our main volume - obviously.

Average payment is about $L100
Most we ever saw was L$2500
we get the odd L$1 but it's rare

I don't have a hard and fast stat about what percentage of people make a payment - but I believe it's around 5-10% (including marketplace) and more like 30% looking at only in-world.
there did I cover everything?"
A picture from Roslynd's Plausible Body blog:


Powers of Creation slurl -
Powers of Creation blog -
Powers of Creation "A shiny update" blog post -
Second Thoughts open-pricing discussion on -
Vicky Aura's blog, VA Creations -
VA Creations, Vicky's inworld store -
VA Creations in the Marketplace -
Plausible Body, Roslynd Turbo's blog -

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