I have been sitting on this post for quite a while but now, adding, editing, and refining, but now I am 3 (that’s SL years) I am releasing it. No pictures, no fashion, just plain old tips and riffs.
The following is my consumer wish list (or better yet, my tips for designers) and some other stuff:
1. No pose stands enclosed. I don’t need another one. Really. REALLY! I hate dumping a folder on myself and wearing a pose stand as a hat. I DO NOT NEED ANOTHER ONE. No more! Please, no more!
2. One landmark and one notecard only. Only one. I don’t need 4 of them. I don’t need 4 notecards either. One. Enclose the other notecards in THAT notecard. And don’t give me a notecard that says “Thanks for buying my product.” It’s just one more piece in my inventory.
3. Name your items with your brand. The folder and all items. Spell to the best of your ability. Have someone check it over. I understand that people don’t all speak English. I can get that. But if it IS your native language, learn how to spell basic things like “stockings.”
4. Name the folder and each item with your brand at the beginning consistently. If your brand is P.C., always name it P.C., not p.c or p.c; or PC; (You, and now everyone else, knows who you are who does this and drives me nuts!)
5. Explain how it works. If you have a very complex outfit, give me (in your one notecard) an explanation about how to wear it and the ad photo with versions shown.
6. Enclose your full perm ad with the item in your one notecard. This was recommended by people who use those storage closets and just want to slap an image on the container when they put it away. And now I have one of those.. so pretty please?
7. Make sure you update any moves you make in your picks, especially if you don’t use the classifieds. I rely on picks to give me landmarks for my blog, and some unfortunate souls have ended up in private residences when I didn’t poke around enough.
8. Put the image on the outside of the container of the contents if you have a package. I go on shopping sprees in stores. If I rez 5 packages from you that are all the same and all copy, I may get confused. In fact, I WILL get confused.
9. If you make jewelry, make it trans. Or give the option to select trans or copy. (I know this is debatable, but this is my blog and my taste.) You’re losing sales if I can’t give gifts in world.
10. Do not touch up your ads in any way that will misrepresent the item you are selling on the vendor. That means if your prims are out of place, fix them before you sell it, not in the photo. If you have artistic photos in your store, that is where you can do the artwork. I like seeing interpretations of the outfit but when I look at the vendor, I want to know what I am purchasing without filters or airbrushing. One jewelry maker I can think of has gotten very few sales from me because I can’t see what I am really buying.
11. Don’t drop a landmark on me immediately when I enter the store. I already had one or will make one if I need it. I don’t need another damn thing in my inventory.
Smart things designers do:
1. Wearable self-unpacking packages. But skip the animation. Again, one more thing I don’t need in my inventory.
2. Gifting vendors if you have copy/mod/no trans items.
3. Selling on XStreetSL for easy viewing, searching, and gifting.
4. Clear policies in their profiles. Even if the policy is “see my website,” it’s good enough for me. Keep the policy clear and polite.
5. Prepackaged sets in the folder. Shiny Things (among others) is doing this so I can just throw the darn thing in my closet without repacking. Brilliant!
6. Using vendors that can issue no copy/trans or copy/no trans items.Thank you, Illusions.
7. One notecard with embedded notecards and websites. Thank you, Intan Isotoniks!
8. Giving styling notes. Saves the designer from being contacted about “where is that hair from”?
9. Putting the posing stand and bald hair IN the notecard. (Didn’t Elikapeka Tiramisu do this so long ago?)
10. Multiple language announcements.
Smart things consumers can do:
1. Read the maker’s profile for policies, first. MOST creators would prefer a notecard because it is a means to keep records as well as a way not to miss messages. However, some will state they want an IM. I try to honor their wishes. Sometimes I screw it up but usually I rectify.
2. Address creators politely. The vast majority want to help you out. They don’t have to. It’s much more pleasant all around if you don’t steam roll them and act with humility and kindness.
3. Read all enclosed materials (even if there are four notecards.. grrr) before contacting the vendor.
4. Do not hesitate to give honest but unemotional feedback. I rarely ask for a refund but when I have, I have always received one because I stated my issue clearly, honestly and politely.
5. Do not assume a non-answer is bad service. Sometimes SL acts up, sometimes RL really messes up people’s schedules. If you write a notecard, you have a record of contact (in your transactions as well). Resend in 24 hours if you have no answer.
6. Contact a designer with a notecard first if you see a “bug,” unless it’s a show stopper. I have contacted about vendors that are not set for sale, missing items, messed up prims, perms, etc. I WILL IM if I see it’s an emergency. (Like Hair Fair has *just* opened and your new item isn’t set for sale.)
7. Have perspective on things. You spent 250L on something—it’s a buck. One lousy buck. Chalk it up as a loss. Don’t go back if it was crappy content. The time you spend complaining, griping, even writing a notecard was your valuable time too. Ask if it’s worth it. You spent more money on the internet you used today than you did on that content, trust me.
8. Do not complain about freebies, about the frequency of the Lucky Chair, about the Midnight Mania item, about lag in a sim with a bunch of freebie hunters, etc. Ew.
9. Respect that creators are real people. They are not minor deities, they are not playing a game. Many them are deriving a RL income from this that they need and work hard for. They want your business and want to be good to you but in the same token, they are not some bot you go to.
10. Put value on their work. Realize it takes skill, time, resources to make things in SL. Regardless of the supposedly low start up cost for businesses in SL, the increasing costly software and skills needed to make the things we like cost time and money. If you could make it yourself, you would be doing so.