Sunday, October 7, 2012

Slashed Prices

Today, I was working on putting my new Too Cute to Spook Centers together, and as I littered my dinette with cardstock, I was thinking a lot about blogging and TpT.  When I started blogging in October 2010, I never imagined that I would be writing to such a large audience.  I never imagined that so many people would use my resources.  It hit me that somewhere out there... in this big 'ole world... it was quite possible that another teacher's table was littered with my centers too.  Then it hit me that this is serious business.  Not only do my resources impact MY classroom and MY kiddos... they impact yours too.

So, I started thinking about the whole journey.  Blogging.  Creating. Reviewing.  TpT.  Friendships.  The whole she'bang!  Then, I immediately started slashing prices.  Aside from my dollar deals and freebies, everything else in my store has an adjusted price.  Honestly, pricing products is tricky business, and I have struggled with it ever since I opened my store.  I try to look at what everyone else is doing and consider all of the factors that impact pricing.  I struggle because I don't want to underprice (my most recent centers ended up costing $35.00 to make... and several HOURS), but I also don't want to charge an arm and a leg for resources that still need to be printed out... laminated... and cut out.  (As evidenced below...)  So, to make a very long story short, I've decided to drop prices, permanently.  When it comes down to it... TpT is NOT all about making money.  It's all about helping kiddos and teachers.  I want to make my resources more accessible.  I hope you enjoy my "sale"! I noticed that the prices are SLOWLY showing up, so don't be alarmed if it doesn't show up right away.


Oh, and if you're interested in taking a closer look at the "Too Cute to Spook" Centers... I snapped a few from the work station today!  :)  I trim around everything first so I can laminate three sheets at a time.  I cut them out once they are laminated.  This makes the laminating process faster and less wasteful.  I laminate a lot... but I don't ever want to waste resources that my colleagues use too!  :)  I should also note that while taking these photographs.... I realized that I forgot to print a few of the orange student direction sheets.  Oops!  Guess what I was doing shortly afterward?! Printing those bad boys O-U-T! :)











Eventually, my piles were tamed... materials were put into piles and baggies... and my table was cleared.  Of course, the whole time, I was being watched.  Supervised, perhaps.


Today, I learned why the saying, "watching like a hawk" exists, because THIS GUY watched me the entire time!  Ha!  I tried to creep closer to the window for a picture after the table was cleared, but I startled him.  Drat!   Happy Sunday, friends!


43 comments:

  1. I just want you to know how much I appreciate your artwork! And that I am a teacher in Norway that use a lot of it to teach my students english :-)

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    1. Thank you so much, Mari! I am so glad that your students are able to use my resources all the way in Norway! That is so unbelievable to me. :)

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  2. Thank you so much for thinking of the cost to those teachers buying TPT products. I have noticed that many sellers (especially those doing great business) are increasing their prices. Also many of the products are so much alike I have a difficult time deciding which products to purchase. I really wish TPT had a better way of previewing the products. Again, I appreciate that you have slashed your products. By the way, they are great and now I can buy more!

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    1. You're welcome. :) I suppose I should add that I was browsing the Old Navy website today too, and I thought about how much of a cheapskate I am. :) It's hard to let go of your hard-earned money. I know I've spent a TON on TpT over the past two years. I don't regret a penny I've spent... but I hope I can help more teachers by lowering my prices a little bit! :)

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  3. I just want you to know how much I appreciate your artwork! And that I am a teacher in Norway that use a lot of it to teach my students english :-)

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  4. I agree with the comment made my dbturner. It is nice to hear a teacher who creates products value their customer, another teacher. I think it is great that some teachers out there, like you, share their products. All of us understand that the time you have spent to make items is valuable time. I think it is important, though, that the spirit of sharing is present, because in the end we are all just trying to find the best way to teach kids. There are several bloggers out there that seem to have changed and their sole purpose is to promoting themselves. I am glad you aren't one of them. I have bought products from you in the past and plan to do so in the future.

    EmilyK

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    1. Thanks for taking the time to write such a thoughtful & thought-provoking comment. I don't think sellers intentionally overprice. I think it's difficult, because we spend a lot of real, tangible money creating the resources too. Beyond just the time involved. :) All I know is... I want to make my stuff more accessible... and lowering prices will help me to do that... which will reach more kiddos. Who could ask for more?

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  5. I love how you have made a full circle in your blogging and TpTing adventures. I think setting prices is one of the hardest parts, but now you've made everyone think a bit differently! Thanks for pushing the envelope!

    Mary Beth
    Run Teacher, Run

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    1. Thanks, Mary Beth. :) This is like the online version of thinking out loud! Hahaha!

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  6. I love your stuff, have some of it, and am about to buy your Charlotte's Web pack right now. As a seller, it's hard to figure out the pricing and I've been thinking about "the meaning of it all" as well lately. Thanks for your great work!

    The Science Penguin

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    1. Thank you! :) Pricing is absolutely the hardest part. I spend days on each unit... plus tons of money on clip art... so I always want to make sure I cover the costs on both ends. Like I said, though, I think pricing has to also consider the buyers. We're all teachers. We're all stressed. I don't want to cause more stress! :)

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  7. I would like to add to the sentiments above. I too have spent a ton at TpT over the last couple of years and I don't regret it at all. There are so many wonderful products that add to all of our bag of tricks. I have purchased a bunch of items from your store especially when sales are going on. Now I will have to take a peek again for anything on permanent sale that I "need" for my classroom.

    Thanks for making such wonderful items to share with everyone.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words, Heather! I appreciate it! :)

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  8. Thank you, Amanda! It is hard to pick and choose, but your products are always an easy yes!

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    1. Thanks, Eileen! I can always count on an uplifting message from you! :)

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  9. Amanda these centers look adorable!! I've added them to my wishlist. I want you to know that I love your resources and as I was reading your blog post today, I felt so grateful that you wrote about this. A few teachers and I have been discussing the prices of some of the items on TpT. While we completely understand the hard work and dedication it takes from the creator, it also takes a lot of work, ink, paper, lamination, time, and effort from the customer. It's so kind and thoughtful of you to think about this and make changes. Your work is amazing and you are appreciated :)

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    1. Aww, thank you so much! :) I want YOU to know that you are appreciated too!

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  10. Thank you

    Cindy
    ccfirstteacher@gmail.com

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  11. Thank you for your honesty, Amanda. I love to 'window shop' on TPT but the reality is that since it is coming out of my pocket, I have to use restraint. Especially since after that I have to pay for the ink to print all those centers out and most things for lower elementary use a lot of it.

    I doubt there is any other profession where people pay out of their own pocket to do their job.

    I own your fluency posters and talking the talk and love them both. Thank you again for a great blog...I read you religiously!

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! :) I try not to think about how much money I spend on ink and paper... let alone everything else I buy for my classroom each year. It's amazing what we will all do for our kiddos!

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  12. You are an inspiration, Amanda. I don't comment here often, but I look at your blog as much as I can. Like Suzy above, I love window shopping, but since it's money being spent from my pocket (of a Masters student that's not currently working), I have to put up restraints. But because of people like you, I am able to afford products for my future classroom, so thank you!

    Sara
    Miss V's Busy Bees

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    1. From one Masters student to another, I totally know what you mean!!! :) Thanks for your kind words!

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  13. I love your stuff! I was wondering if maybe you could do a post about HOW your centers are run? I know you are busy but if you ever get the chance I would so appreciate it. Small groups and centers are things I struggle a lot with.
    Gina
    Third Grade Tidbits

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    1. I don't do anything really earth-shattering. I'll try to mix it in sometime this month. :) If I can. And THANK YOU! :)

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  14. Amanda,

    I want to add on to the comments above. It does seem like a lot of the blogging world just aims to create the "wow" and "cutesy" factor in their classrooms. With you, I always appreciate that while your products are adorable, they also are created with the rigor that is so desperately needed. As a fellow third grade teacher who uses Reading Street (The Texas edition, which is only slightly different) I follow your blog because I can clearly sense your expertise as an educator and trust that you create products that will help your students succeed, which in turn will help my students succeed. It's not just about the cuteness- it's about true learning. Dropping your prices truly reflected this.

    I hope you know how truly appreciated you are. Thank you for allowing strangers into your world and sharing your experiences with us- the good and the bad. I hope you will continue to share because you serve as an inspiration to so many others. Hopefully, with the price drop, lots of other teachers will take advantage of the wonderful products you create and your influence as a teacher will spread even further than you ever imagined.

    Thanks again. You deserve the very best!!!

    Kelly K

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    1. Kelly, this is such a sweet and encouraging message. Thank you for taking so much time to articulate your thoughts and feelings. I am so happy to hear that you are satisfied with my products. I really try to balance rigor with child-friendly clip art and activities. I hope you know how much I appreciate teachers like you... for coming to my blog and following along! Thank YOU!

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  15. Thanks...thanks for continuing to make such great products I can use with my third graders, thanks for keeping your prices low, and thanks for continuing to bring the best words of wisdom to us all!
    Tracey
    Third Grade All Stars

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    1. Aww, thanks Tracey! You are too sweet! :)

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  16. Amanda, thank you for your increased awareness and availability of your products. My school no longer has a color printer so ink is now on me - that has definitely impacted my TPT purchases. I too, appreciate the tremendous work that teachers, like you, have put into their products. It's been hard to find the balance. Having fun revisiting your store! Thanks again.

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    1. I WISH our school had a color printer. I spend an outrageous amount of money on ink every year. Luckily I have a very understanding and supportive husband. :) Thanks for taking the time to write such a sweet comment. Best wishes!

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  17. To piggy back on the last post... what kind of printer do you have? I'm looking at your dining room table and secretly hating my printer. I wouldn't be able to print half of that with ONE ink cartridge. I spend an obscene amount of money on ink. I MUST be doing something wrong, or rather, my printer must be crap. Thanks for this post. You actually got me a little teary. Your products are great and you are an inspiration to me as a new TpT seller. :)

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    1. Thanks for your kind words! :) Good luck on TpT! Last year, I traded in my old printer for an Epson Workforce 840. The ink is more expensive for a cartridge, but it lasts longer. It's an ink-jet printer. Plus it scans... copies... etc. I buy the extra high capacity ink catridges. It seems to do the trick. Although, honestly, I still end up buying new ink every month or two. It DOES get expensive... any way you slice it.

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  18. I was wondering what happened to the price of Shout All About America (which I'm persuading my team to purchase!). It's been on my wishlist and I noticed the price drop today! I cannot wait to use it! What a fun unit. You are so creative!

    Kate
    Second Grade Sparkle

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    1. Haha! I didn't even think about that! :) I hope your kiddos enjoy it! Thank you so much!

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  19. Thank you so much for your thoughtfulness in lowering your prices. You make such well-designed, high-quality materials and now they will be even more accessible. You know, even with the ups and downs of our economy, I have never stopped buying materials for my class (even when I should have!) That's just how we teachers are! Thank you for being authentic and a blogging leader!

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    1. Thank you so much, Cynthia! I appreciate your kind words more than you know. :) You made a great point... teachers will do whatever it takes for their students!

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  20. I loved reading your thoughts behind slashing prices. I sell on TpT as well and have noticed prices increasing quite a bit lately, so much so that I recently raised some of mine considering what everyone else is doing plus taking my effort and material being offered into consideration. I've felt quite odd about it as well knowing purchasers are teachers just like me and the amount of work/cost that goes into printing, laminating, and cutting. After reading your post, I'm going to reconsider my pricing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and your fabulous teaching ideas (I love your work!).

    Kayla
    Primary Junction

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  21. I just want to echo the sincere thanks for slashing your prices. I have several of your items on my TPT wishlist but simply cannot afford to buy at my heart's content like others seem to be able to do. While I will definitely do whatever it takes for my students, spending hundreds of dollars of my own money each year is just not an option. I have become so frustrated lately with the amount of TPT sellers increasing their prices and asking for $10+ for some of their items. I really believe some sellers have become more concerned about their profit margin than why they chose to create products to begin with. I know they (and you!) put a lot of work into creating items, but I feel like a lot of teachers have forgotten what it is like to be a beginning teacher with a teacher's salary! I also do not feel like teachers should have to spend additional out of pocket money to acquire quality resources for teaching our children. All that to say.....I have a lot of respect for you after reading this post and will definitely be purchasing more items from you to show my thanks and support!

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  22. I just wanted to take a second to encourage you in your creativity and generosity! Here's the deal: most of us, except for a few sour grapes, don't look at the prices on tpt and think, "my gosh, that's crazy overpriced!". I'd say most of us think, "how in the world did they have time to do that and I'm so thankful that I DON'T have too!". Seriously. Not all of us can create interesting centers, take the time to research and develop, and then actually do it! So, I pay whatever the seller asks without complaint, because your TIME and your EFFORT are worth that, and sometimes far more! You've done the hard work for us...I can print, laminate, and cut like a boss. ;)

    So, I'm thankful that you share your gifts with us, no matter the price. :)

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  23. Amanda,

    I have to admit that this post brought a tear to my eye. I know that you have a wonderful giving heart and you are a seller on TpT for all of the right reasons. You are person of admirable character. :) I appreciate you, your work, and the example you set for teachers and other sellers.

    Love you, girl!
    Nicole

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  24. You are awesome and I adore your stuff! In fact, I'm using your Character Traits Pack tomorrow! I really admire you for what you are doing!

    Adventures of a Third Grade Teacher

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  25. Thanks so much for the wonderful items that you create! It is obvious that you put your heart into everything you share! Thanks for helping to make my addiction of shopping for new resources more affordable!

    Jeannine
    Creative Lesson Cafe

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