1LessSeller I used to love Reverb until they got so big. The quality of buyer was quite high and it actually helped us sell gear. But it has gone sour for us. My list of policies reads like a manifesto just to protect us from buyers who try to get discounts for various reasons after the sale. Selling new gear is hopeless because I am competing with so many other stores who have the very same item we do. Pay for “bumps?” No, I’ll pass.
gear.abby @1LessSeller From a business standpoint, Reverb.com is genius. They really tapped into what the market was demanding. Huge selection and many stores in one place to add competition and thus leverage low pricing for buyers. But that is not the best situation for a store whose main goal is selling things and making a profit.
They haven’t done anything wrong, they just gave the market what it wanted. It’s really smart business, to be honest. The problem for the music industry, since the advancement of the Internet, has always been an oversupply of product as well as an oversupply of places to buy the glut of oversupplied product. Supply is far beyond the natural demand that exists.
Reverb doesn’t have to invest in any inventory so they are not affected by oversupply. In fact, the solution to oversupply is lower prices, and lower prices means more volume, and they cash in when more product move through their website. Did I say genius before?
The “Pied Piper” of the Music Industry
I know this doesn’t help you. You made a point that Reverb “used” to be great. You were an early adopter of the platform and benefited from being ahead of your competition. But as soon as thousands of small music stores saw the same opportunity as you, that advantage went away.
In terms of music stores’ relationship with Reverb, it has really been a Pied Piper type story. Stores all follow the beautiful tune of the pipe, with dreams of where the pied-maestro will take them (lots of sales,) only to find themselves in a very precarious situations later, because there was not enough “pied” to feed all of the mice that were also lured to the “promised land.”
Bad and Dishonest Buyers
Where bad and dishonest buyers are an issue, this is simply a statistical reality. There are always a certain percentage of them, and as the platform adds customers, they add good and bad ones alike. When a platform is very price driven, you can expect that a higher number than normal will also be difficult to work with.
Every retailer on the planet will tell you that price buyers are also the most work and the hardest to please. It’s ironic, but it’s a reality. Retailers should charge those customer more, but with the supply/demand ratio as poor as it is for the retailers, they have no choice but to take the deals as they come.
Yeah, as a store, which it sounds like you are, you need to realize that the Revberb.com party is over and do what is best for you.