Backorders & Production, Why Does It Take So Damn Long To Get Some Soaps Out?
Posted on April 15 2015
You may wonder why sometimes a soap description will say "Will ship before May 1st," but if you're on our Facebook Page, you might notice I say things like "Some of the orders scheduled for May 1st are shipping now!"
It's not just me trying to fuck with your emotions, it's because we have huge production bottlenecks and when we resolve production bottlenecks, it usually takes a month for that activity to reveal itself.
So, for example, last month, Russ and I looked at our inventory (empty) and our upcoming soap shipments (many) and thought "OMG WE NEED MORE HANGMAN'S SOAP." So we got to the work of making three batches of the stuff STAT.
But after that hustle, we have to sit around for a month waiting for the soap to cure.
Of course, we're not sitting around for the month, we're saying "OMG WE NEED MORE BLAZING SADDLES" and "OMG WE'RE OUT OF ORANGE GROVE... WHAT DO YOU MEAN THE GRASS FRAGRANCE IS BACKORDERED?!" and "LAUNDRY ON THE LINE SOLD OUT IN ONE WEEK?!? AAAAHHHSOME.... BUT WE'RE STILL OUT OF GRASS FRAGRANCE" (we use a lot of all caps in our workshop).
Meanwhile, we're only two people with four hands (collectively, not each), so physically making all that soap takes some time.
And then we handle all the shipments in house, so we're also shipping orders... and so sometimes we need to build a little extra padding into our shipping estimates just so you don't wait for your soaps to arrive when they're actually sitting next to the shrink-wrap station waiting to be wrapped.
People have recommended different approaches... some have recommended that we pull back on marketing until we can catch up, some have recommended that we don't sell wholesale, and some have recommended that we outsource parts of that process.
To the first two, no. We want to BUILD our business, not get stuck in some mid-range production limbo. And for the third, yes, definitely, but we don't have the money for that right now... and this is the exciting part about starting a business: It's trial and error and trial and success.
Thank you for being on this journey with us, and may every soap greet you at your mailbox.