I would love to introduce you to #teamsmartdoll ! The quality of our Smart Doll products is what we want to be known for which is why I believe that to be truly customer centric we need to be unconventional and build a business around employees instead of customers. Focusing on employee welfare and the working environment contributes to their creativity in producing a high quality product and service which is what we want for ourselves and what our customers seek.
Japan is under voluntary lockdown - most companies including us are following heed with a reduced working schedule. Mirai Store was a large revenue source for us but is now closed to walk-in customers.
Vendors who we work with are also on a reduced schedule which has affected materials and components that we acquire from across Japan.
While Smart Doll sales have been doing well, keeping up supply with the crippling covid-19 situation has increased costs all across the board - not just DHL shipping costs. We can easily reduce costs through a reduction in quality or increasing working hours of our staff but unfortunately I'm not now or ever willing to do this. Given such a situation something has to give and unfortunately that's the raise in prices in some products. Margins on the regular line of Smart Doll is the smallest but I'm trying to keep their price the same.
However, customer contacts regarding our price points have gone up ranging from "my family cant afford one so send one for free - here is my address" to "can you make the smart dolls at least 100 USD and the clothes 20USD?" Today I got mails signed by various parties stating that I should at least warn them not only when I'm about to raise prices - but also when I lower them too because the last time I reduced prices on items they missed out and were "disappointed." I was also given a formula for "properly" calculating price increases.
As I mentioned the other day - in this case I only give sheeps to my team and quality of Smart Doll but posts like this helps in deterring folks thinking of buying a Smart Doll who are unaware of our "unprofessional" employee-first customer-second practices. #smartdoll