Why an Experimental Pottery Lottery?

Increasingly, my online sales have become a chaotic scramble for buyers. The last one sold out in 3 minutes. The buying experience is unpleasant for many and disadvantages those who are a little slower or want to take more time looking at work before buying. I have made this change guided by the importance of equity in regards to ability and a desire to make the buying process less stressful.

Pottery Lottery
May 1 at 12pm ET

General Sale
May 1 at 12:30
pm ET

How To Enter the Lottery

-Sign up for my mailing list
-Complete the Google form sent in response to the sign up
-Names will be drawn using a random number picker
-A password will be emailed to ahead of the Lottery if you name is chosen.
-Preference will be given to those who don’t have any of Ayumi’s work.
-An email will be sent if your name was chosen. If it wasn’t, the General Sale is open to all.

An Experiment Explained for Buyers and Other Makers

The Problem for Buyers:
-Low supply. I don’t make much work anymore, esp since the pandemic started
-High demand
-Online sales have sold out in 3 minutes or less
-Checkout needs to happen so quickly that people who are slower to move or make decisions, lose out, making frustration high
-In the past, if multiple buyers have the same piece in their carts, the first person who completes check out gets the piece, i.e. pieces will disappear from the carts of other buyers no matter where they are in the process. 
-Buyers scramble to buy something, but it’s not necessarily what they want because there’s not enough time to look and make decisions
-Many buyers have given up participating, because it is too stressful

Drawbacks for the Seller:
-It is not economical, because there is more backend administrative work, more packing labor, and more material expense. Because of this, handling will go up a nominal 4 dollars. 
-the lottery drags out the process, esp the process of packing. It’s more efficient to pack everything at once, because I only have one space to both make work and ship work. I want to avoid having things trickle out the door, because I find it disruptive. Having the lottery and regular sale all on one day should mitigate the problem.
-Instead of having work sold by lottery, there will be a general sale as well. Just having a Lottery sale would severely constrict the number of buyers for non-pottery items like tenugui, clothing, and prints. This peripheral work has been generating more revenue than I expected, so I didn’t want to cut into those sales.

The Benefits:
-a process of selling that is more fair and more equitable, no matter the age, ability, and time
-less stress in buying
-creates new buyers and a broader distribution of work
-increases value of old work, because there are more buyers to support the resale market

The Details

-1 pot per buyer (this rule does not apply to tenugui, clothing, prints, or the regular sale) 
-50 pots for 50 Pottery Lottery folks at  12 noon ET on May 1, 2022.  A general sale will follow the Lottery at 12:30pm
-The store will be password protected 
-each buyer will be assigned a number on a spreadsheet
www.randomresult.com will be used to generate random numbers which will correspond to buyers on the spreadsheet (I do not want to put actual names into any third party website
-as usual the sale will take place on my shop

Thank You For Giving It a Go!

Thanks for understanding that this is a new process and that technical glitches may occur. I’m curious how this will go and will decide whether to have lotteries in the future based on the outcome of this sale. I’ll share my experience later online and would love feedback from buyers as well. I ask for the patience and understanding of longtime buyers, who have supported me and my work over many years. As always, I have a running wishlist from people and am happy to take on commissions, though I am generally pretty slow.
Thank you,