Organizing Items

I am got a good organizer. I have 2200+ items in my store. They come in a variety of sizes and storage methods. Some are in glassines, some in vario pages, some in boxes, some in 102 cards, or other cards of various sizes. Anybody have any suggestions as to how to easily fine a particular item. Right now I do not have a very smart approach. It often takes too much time to locate a specific item. Appreciate any thoughts or suggestions. Tom


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  • If I buy a large lot of, for example, covers from one of the big auction houses, after I weed out what I want to keep for my collections, each cover gets put in a sleeve upon which, with a marker, I place a code. My latest was a purchase from ABC auctions. Each sleeve got coded ABC1, ABC2, ABC3 and so on, which matches the file name of each item I selected as I scanned them. This code is placed in the appropriate box as I do my listings. All the covers from that particular lot go into a single cardboard box that is marked ABC. When an item sells, you see the ABC code, go to that box and pull the cover which is easily found since they're all in numerical order. I do the same with stamps using glassines, 102 cards, and even album pages, simply jotting my code next to the mounted stamp. With that many items in your store, it will be a pain going back to organize things, but it can be done. You'll need to edit each listing to add the item's code number once you select a way to set this type of system up.
  • edited July 1 1 LikesVote Down
    I use a code as part of my personal ID number that tells me where the item is (unless of course I make a mistake), It usually works quite well for me. That ID number can have both letters and numbers, When I have made a mistake it does become quite frustrating. My kids are all grownup now some with grandchildren so I can't blame them anymore.

  • I have a massive Access Database of all of my inventory, so I keep various "storage locations" defined there. Within each storage location, it is alphabetized by country, and then in order by scott number, so pretty easy to find stuff. I'd be lost without my Database (nicknamed "The Borg"), which I've evolved and added to since my version on Supercalc in 1985.
  • I store the listed stamps in 102 cards, which go into the nice red boxes, filed by country and then scott number. Same for the FDC's/covers and postal cards which goes into a pretty box(es). But all are by country and the scott number. For the bigger items they go into a 3 ring binder in vario's or sheet protectors that are safe for philately.
  • edited July 1 2 LikesVote Down

    It all depends on how many items you are looking to get listed in the long run. The more items you have have listed is really what is going to determine what will work best for you. (Some of the suggestions here are fine if you have a more limited stock. It will not work so well when you get to the point of dealing with over 50,000 or more items listed and pulling up to 800 or more items in a day. Between Hipstamp and Hippostcard I have over 140,000 items listed.)

    There is no way that I would have the time to have every thing sorted down to country and Scott number in the listed stock and then be able to pull hundreds of items. (It's double work and it's not really needed to be done that way,and it will slow you done in the long run.) It's far easier for me to have every thing set up to be able to list,pull and package via private ID.

    The more you can batch your listings IE over sized Souvenir Sheets,sets and singles,small souvenir sheets etc and then also via private IDs where you you can have the numbers will let you know where they are at. (When I scan and list the different size souvenir sheets the ones that will fit in a number 4 glassine are given a range of numbers that is different then the range of numbers for the oversized souvenir sheets. The oversized are kept in tubs that will hold a file folder and each file folder has 100 souvenir sheets after they are first listed. The smaller size are kept in boxes that will hold a number 4 glassine.) The thing with doing it that way is that after you get done listing them all you have to do with them is file them at the back of whatever container you are using to file them in. By doing it that way it eliminates 2 steps that can take up time that can be used elsewhere.

    Also when you have the items sorted batch item by size and type. IE sets and singles either in stock books or 102 cards,covers by type and size,etc. By doing it this way it may help you out.

    I made up a template to be able to print my private IDs on labels,that way I don't have to write all the IDs out each time.
  • Thank you Wayne, Doug, Michael, George, and Luree for your suggestions and sharing your methodology. This was very helpful and now, I need to get about my own methodology. Michael, WOW! I spend a lot of time on my minischule 2200 items. I do hope you have some help with your inventory. That is very impressive and you are to be commended. Thank you for sharing your process. tom
  • Tom,

    I do have a helper that sets up the stamps. (I do everything else all the listings,pulling and packing orders and setting up the covers and postcards)

    There was also a benefit from going to a numerical system as opposed to the sorting the items via country and cat number. (I found that out the hard way,the more items you are dealing with,the more likely that items will end up be misfiled,and good luck on trying to find those items in multiple red boxes or whatever you have them filed in,when they have been misfiled. The more times you have to handle them the more likely errors are going to creep in,and if that can be taken care of ahead of time,it helps in the long run.)
  • Of course one could price their items so attractively low that ensuing sales never let one's inventory get out of control. This may only work effectively if other dealer's stock is comparatively priced noticeably higher. I know one such dealer .... but I dare not name names.
  • Don't worry Ron, you can name me anytime:
  • images

    hint, hint .......................................... um, a little higher
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