So, I haven’t really posted much about why we are moving. And it’s obvious because most people who come in ask – why did we move?
The simple answer? We had outgrown the old location and needed a larger spcae. This is easily seen by the number of days it took to set-up. Our last move 2 1/3 years ago took us 2 days with 3 helpers on day 1 and myself on day 2. This office move took 4 days, with up to 9 helpers on day 1 and varying numbers for the next 3 days (minimum 5 of us!). So, the amount of work needed to move product out of the old location, move it into the new location, set-up new shelves, build new shelves, etc was significantly higher.
We had built out the old space so tightly that there really was no wasted space left – we figured we could (maybe) squeeze in another 2 shelves before we hit full capacity. If we wanted to grow, we had to move.
Grow or Stay?
From an outside perspective, the easy answer is grow. After all, a bigger space means more stock, more product, more sales. More money right?
Not always. In fact, during the growth stage it means less money. How much less depends on how aggressive your growth targets are (and how long your lease is!). The additional space cost, the set-up cost, the downtime, all of it are expenses. It’s nice to grow, but with growth comes additional expenses. Your fixed expenses balloon and you now have to make more money to cover them before you can get back to your previous levels of profitability.
There’s also another advantage of staying – you force yourself to get more streamlined and efficient. If you only have so much space, you learn to get creative about storage. You watch your inventory like a hawk and move dead product out faster because you need the space for product that still sells. With more space, with higher growth, you can let things like that slide.
For us though (okay, me); the decision to stay still or grow is relatively easy. I have long-term goals and those don’t work for where we are; so grow it is.
I’m not going to post much about the move beyond to say that it was murderous and I made a major mistake by underestimating exactly how much work was involved. We had grown in our old space so well that when we actually made the move, I had not realised exactly how much we had grown – and the logarithmic increase in work setting up the space meant.
All That Space
So now what? If you look at the photos you might see a huge expanse of free space in the back of the warehouse and even in the office.
Obviously, Starlit is going to continue growing. We have plans to expand our miniature and miniature accessories further. I am considering going ‘deeper’ on popular games so that we do not stock-out as often. There’s this entire CCG craze that we are missing (and might continue to miss on purpose).
We also have plans to grow in another direction… but that announcement is going to have to wait 🙂