Changes to Postage, Production and Marketing 2024

A number of changes have been made throughout the later part of 2023 and early 2024. We have covered the framing service that we offer in an older blog and this certainly proved popular over the Christmas period.

There have also been a few more changes that have seen the business move forward in the past year. These include the following.

POSTAGE :- We had been using The Royal Mail for ssending items for well over ten years and for much of this period, we had no need to complain or look elsewhere. The advent of Ebay, Etsy and Amazon all requiring tracked delivery was the initial problem. The basic Royal Mail tracking for First or Second Class mail is not fit for purpose and is far inferior to every other courier available. The straw that broke the camel's back was the Royal mail strike over the Christmas 2022 period where items were not getting delivered and due to the inferior tracking we were unable to tell people where or even if their item was going to be delivered.

We did try Evri during this period but that was a disaster. The lowlight being an Evri courier trying to hammer a cardboard tube through a letterbox. They also mislabeeled many items which resulted in overcharging. It was a nightmare caused more problems than not.

In late 2023 we decided to start using Yodel. Now in no way are they perfect, but they have a reliable tracking system, take photographs of where items are left and generally deliver within 72 hours. if something does go wrong, we can now generally sort it out.

We still offer Royal Mail Tracked 24 for those that prefer that option and it is available at checkout.

OVERSEAS POSTAGE :- Once again we have had to change away from The Royal Mail as items were getting lost, damaged and delayed for weeks at customs. Especially in the USA.

We have take the decision to have our overseas orders produced by a print partner, in the country where the customer lives. This is actually a double win for customers. Although we have had to raise the cost of our prints in overseas countries, the reduction in postage charges for domestic couriers, means that items are actually cheaper now. Items will now be sent via DHL in most European countries (DPD in France) and via UPS or Fedex in the USA. Canadian orders will use Purolator and Australia will use Couriers Please.

This also means that rather than taking two to three weeks fororders to arrive, they generally turn up within a week of ordering.

AMAZON :- Although our Ebay and Etsy stores are still live, we decide to ditch our Amazon store. Listing on Amazon especially for custom items not sold elsewhere on the platform, has become too problematic and listing them nigh on impossible. Basically we got fed up of jumping through all of the hoops we were expected to jump through and life is a lot easier without them.

AI SOFTWARE :- Early in 2024 we managed to acquire a new AI image restoration program that is going to be a bit of a game changer. Rather than sitting for hours on Photoshop trying to iron out glitsches and recolouring items, this can now be done in a few minutes with the new software. Our new 2024 collection of posters which will be listed in April have all been restored using this new technique and hopefully, over the next few months I will get the time to give a bit of time to some of our older items that need a bit of love and attention to restore them to their former beauty.