Let’s Talk About Your Holiday Decorations…

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… but can we talk about your holiday decorations? Every year, I look forward to the weekend after Thanksgiving with both excitement and trepidation. The neighbors rummage through their crawlspaces, basements, garages and storage sheds and drag out all the Christmas bins. They hang a wreath on the door and lights from the eves. They install the Christmas tree in the front window. By mid-Saturday morning, the yards up and down the street are looking fabulous. (more…)

Tiny Java and the Challenges of Entrepreneurship

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

This week the articles on the Signs.com blog have been all about home-based entrepreneurship. Brad Manuel’s guest article on Monday told us about Nothing Knew, the business he started from his home in order to keep track of his three busy teenagers. On Tuesday, our copywriter Catherine interviewed the owner of Pear Tree Preschool. Libby Monson’s in-home business allows her to spend the day with her four-year-old and be finished with work in time to care for her two school-aged boys. On Wednesday, Catherine shared seven of the traits she’s seen time and again while interviewing successful small business owners. (more…)

Harper Grey: What We Are Thankful For

Harper Grey: What We Are Thankful For

 

My job at Signs.com involves writing a weekly column for the blog that provides readers with an insider’s view of my shopping escapades, eating-out adventures and experiences with customer service, both good and bad. I love to shop (that’s why I landed this super-sweet gig). I love to eat out. I love to indulge in services—everywhere from the nail salon to the carwash. I’m a consumer—it’s one of my best skills, according to my husband. Even though I am very talented at spending money (and then writing about it here), life’s not ALL about the stuff. Sometimes it’s about something more. (more…)

Harper Grey: A Better Idea for Black Friday

 Retail Insights with Harper Grey

I write a column every week about shopping. Obviously, I like it. A lot. Too much, some (read: my husband) might say. I enjoy browsing through shops, looking for great clothes or fun gifts. And I love, love, love a bargain. But what do I NOT love? Black Friday.

I don’t do the wake up at 3:00 a.m. and stand in line in the freezing cold just to save $10 on a video game thing. I’d much rather stay in my nice, warm bed and do my shopping at a more reasonable hour, thank you very much. (more…)

Is Your Sign Vintage or Just Old? 5 Ways to Tell

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Oooh I just love vintage stuff. Maybe I’m just a sucker for nostalgia, but I love everything about vintage (real or just copycat). Shows like Mad Men have many of us wishing for the “good old days.” Not that they were really that great. I mean really, do we want to go back to the time period when everyone smoked a pack a day and women were expected to land a good husband and quit her secretarial job so they could move to the suburbs, have babies and rely financially on men? But you have to admit, some of those vintage signs were pretty darn awesome. (more…)

Harper Grey: The Signs.com Test Drive

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Since Signs.com announced the release of the new website this week, they asked me to look it over and review it from a consumer’s perspective. This worried my husband, who had heard stories about my first few jobs in clothing stores where I spent more than my paycheck on the merchandise. But I figured, “Hey, it’s signs. Surely I won’t have a shopping addiction on Signs.com’s website.” (more…)

Harper Grey: What You’re Doing Right!

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Often when I sit down to write this column, I find myself thinking of all the things store owners and their employees are doing wrong. My job is to give you an idea of what your customers are thinking and feeling as they shop in your store and help you fix what’s wrong. The goal is for you to have happy customers that ultimately drop more cash in your store and make you more successful. But sometimes I feel like all I do is tell you what you’re doing wrong. So today, I’ve resolved to be more positive and instead, tell you what you’re doing right.
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Why I “Like” Your Facebook Page…& Why I Don’t

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

I’m not one of those people who has to “check in” on my Facebook page whenever I go out with friends. I don’t update my status to tell people what I ate for breakfast, if I have a headache, or if I’m excited about the latest TV show. I don’t post an Instagram of my dinner when I go to a restaurant. But I do use Facebook to keep up with friends and relatives. And I have “Liked” some companies, musical artists and organizations.

I see signs in stores and restaurants all the time, asking me to “Like” their Facebook pages. And most of the time I don’t do it. But every once in awhile, I’ll whip out my phone and “Like” a company on the spot. What compels me to action on these occasions? I’ve come up with a few reasons. (more…)

Harper Grey: When The Wait Is Worth It

 

Retail Insights with Harper Grey

Some people don’t mind waiting. They stand patiently in long lines, sit in the doctor’s office waiting room for hours, wait in the lobby of restaurants to get a table. All without complaint. They must be meditating or employing some kind of zen technique that keeps them cool and calm. Other people . . . well, let’s just say that I don’t like to wait. I tend to get a little grumpy when I run into delay. But I’m trying to become more like my zen-like colleagues. I’ve been reflecting on the various times in which the wait is worth it.

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