Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

  1. #1

    Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Hello all, I want to start off by saying that the work provided on what I have received has been well made and well worth the wait in most cases. The quality of work is top notch. I'm glad that the items I have purchased were made.

    That being said, I would like to offer some feedback across the board and not about any specific seller, but from a client's perspective.

    As a crafter, you expect us to pay upfront for an item that is based on credibility from other people's comments that your product is what we want.
    However, there have been threads, and sometimes there's PM contact regarding where the order is after it is palced and when it should be received.

    I understand that we, as customers, are paying you for a service, your labor and your materials. However, as a customer sometimes communication regarding the progress is imperative to ensure that we are getting what we paid for.

    Case in point, a recent order was placed on 2/14 for a flightsuit and flak jacket that was maade. While I felt like I was "badgering" the crafter, and their issues were out of the ordinary, a period of 4 months is a long time in my opinion to complete a fabric order. I'm not faulting the crafter on this, however what concerns me the most is that if I had not kept in contact with the crafter, I wouldn't know the status. THIS IS A HUGE OPPORTUNITY.

    I'm not saying that you crafters need to keep a step by step report on it, rather two things: An acceptable timeframe upfront (I've seen some do this) and periodic progress reports proactively to the clients.

    This will both help your reputation to provide work to your clientelle within desired timeframes and increase your reputation as a valued crafter. This will also relieve your cusotmer's on fears about being "ripped off" or wondering if we made the right decision.

    I know I am saying "we" a lot in this, but in the end, this is a message about information that I think we can all relate to.

    Please take these items into consideration and this is not a "megative slam" on any crafter whatsoever. Just an opportunity to be better.

  2. #2
    formerly Woodman woodman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2008
    From
    LR,Arkansas
    Posts
    1,331
    At any time I have 50+ orders going and if I take time out to send each one a daily update just to say "hey you're stuff will be ready soon" it would never be finished.
    Quote Quote Posted from Android app

  3. #3

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Woodman, firstly thanks for responding. Second, no one is expecting a "daily" response, I wouldnt expect that from anyone. However, an upfront timeframe and progress reports are desired as mentioned in the previous post.

  4. #4

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Under promise and over deliver.

    If its going to take 6 months to deliver an order to me I'd much rather you tell me it's going to take 9 instead of telling me it's going to take 3.

    Sent from my SM-G900P using Tapatalk

  5. #5
    syllander's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 2013
    From
    Douglasville, Ga.
    Posts
    636

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Agree with above. More important about the timeframe being communicated pretty clearly. Nice getting a particular month named as the target too. That gives a decent 30 day window to operate in as well. And there's nothing wrong with plan B. Everyone has to replan at times and often times.

  6. #6

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Agree with all of the above from a sellers point of view and a buyer.....
    There are always 2 sides to every coin, BUT good communication removes ALL angst with such situations.
    1 million percent agree under promise, over deliver and then no one is under pressure to get an order done in a rediculous time, and the buyer is extra happy when they get their items a month earlier


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2010
    From
    USAF Utah
    Posts
    5,160

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Heres the thing MOST, if not all "crafters" are 1 man shows...not a full time buisness, nor are they their primary job. The people who do this stuff have normal lives and real jobs. Like woodman said, for the people who have MANY customers updating them on how things are going is tough, if not impossible until the item is ready to ship. Telling someone 6 months for something REALISTICALLY and adding on a month or two can be detrimental to buisness as well. As solely a painter its not hard as I typically only work on 1-3 peoples stuff at a time and can update as I go easily, but people who do things like soft parts and armor have many many orders and can bang them out quickly but theres a line literally that youre in a queue if you will...and these pieces are built to order...its not walmart theres no little kid in china making these things (for the most part) and theres nothing ON THE SHELF. These people literally turn nothing into something. Be thankful they do what they do and you can take advantage of their work as they make enough to stay afloat and do the next project.

  8. #8

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Like woodman i have alot of stuff going on at once as well. Im painting helmets and armor, jetpacks, building shin tools, casting helmets and building Stormtrooper suits all at the same time...as well as working on my own personal stuff, and having a family life and real life job (i am out of work right now, but usually i do have a full time job). Its hard to update everyone as much as id like. However i tell all my customers that they can e-mail me anytime and i'll get back to them within 48hrs, and in most cases, i reply the same day. I will periodically send updates when i can, but sometimes its not always practical, but i do reply to my customers as quickly as possible. It is in fact something i try to keep in check as much as my work, because i am a buyer as well, and if i have to wait longer than expected, i dont mind as long as you let me know, or if i ask, you get back to me. Because of this, i try to keep the same thing going for my customers as i would expect from any seller.

    That said, F4R, is right on the money with what he said.

  9. #9
    Cruzer's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 2004
    From
    Porterville, California
    Posts
    2,744

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    As a prop-maker and single father who has his kids the majority of the time, I know I try to work on orders when they're not with me. However, life's obligations just get in the way of prop making at times. I'm pretty sure I shipped your parts later than expected because frankly, I'm always running behind. So I apologize for shipping your parts later than expected.

  10. #10

    Re: Feedback for Crafters: my experience with upfront payments and expectations

    Just to be clear, most of the work I have received is in top notch condition and I have not been tremendously disappointed. This was more of an overall awareness thread

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