The Road to the Expo- Fully Stocked?

Posted by Sarah Kearns on

Today I want to talk about Tabletop Board Game Accessories stock.

Our road to the Expo continues! To recap, we're taking a big step here at BGS this year- our first venture to the UK Games Expo 2024! We'll be bringing our unique range of gaming accessories to the show if you're a fan of Tabletop Board Games and D&D RPG Campaigns, from dice bags and dice trays to card holders, playmats, and more!

In our last update, we mentioned about going down to Airecon to get stall ideas. While that seemed like a good idea at the time, I didn't really give much thought to how much that would cost. A tank of petrol (gas) plus tickets for us to get in was coming out at over £100, which when we look at what we've already spent so far on this, it seemed like that money could be better spent elsewhere, so we're parking the stall planning for now and focusing back on stock.

This morning I've just packed up the bags I made last night, taking us to 170 drawstring bags ready for the show. While they are primarily branded as Dice Bags, we use them for all sorts of Board Game adjacent uses, drawing tiles and tokens, rummage bags for monsters and just general storage for components etc. I'm hoping to show off these various uses on our stall, but not quite sure how to achieve that yet on a 6ft table covered in the rest of the offerings!

Being a first time exhibitor at UKGE, I have a lot of black holes in my knowledge of what to do and while we can get a sense of general stuff from watching youtube walkthrough videos (please link me any ones you know!), I feel like stock is the biggest unknown we have. I don't want to go to all this effort to run out on Friday (although highly unlikely, and it would be amazing!) as I would feel like it was a wasted opportunity, but I also don't want to come home with the car almost as full as it was on the way there! 

Side note, yes we are taking a car (see previous blog post, van or not to van?), as we found out that you can't park a van at the NEC during the show(?), so we'd have to take the car and a van, which seems a pointless expense and more hassle than it needs to be dealing with the van etc.

Our business currently is make to order, so stock is not an issue I've really had to deal with before. Once I make one of an item to photograph I don't have to make anymore until it sells, so at the most I've wasted one item's worth of stock. Looking at the box of 170 bags here, that's almost 50 meters of fabric alone, 170 toggles and lengths of drawstring, and about 48 hours worth of solid work. I said my previous goal was to possibly have 300 bags, so at least I'm over halfway now!

Dice Bag design wise, I've tried to cover the full gambit of designs we offer, from D&D themed bags and Wargaming Bags to more specific themed bags for tile drawing games like Azul and token draws like Arkham Horror, as well as just generic themes like Animals, Zombies, Anime etc. I'm hoping we have something for everyone who wants one! The design choices were ultimately based on what designs sell well online, so at least if we do bring stock home it can be used to fulfil web orders.

That now leads me onto thinking about dice trays. I don't want to take our sewn up bowl trays, as they are awkward to pack and I'd be worried about them getting creased etc packed up. That leaves us press stud folding trays, black wooden square trays and wooden octagon rolling trays. We have over 300 designs available online for dice trays, and with the best will in world I can't see us needing to take every design in every style (although again selling 900 dice trays would be amazing!). I know from website metrics which designs sell well in these, but I'm curious to know if that's just because those listing pages get more views, or if it's because people prefer those designs over what we offer.

So the next task to work on is which designs do we take, ones that sell well on the website, or ones to match the bags? Would people even want matching sets, is that even a thing? I'll update when we know!

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