can anyone sell things anywhere on STX?
First, I apologize if this has already been asked and answered, but I've been unable to find it in the archives.
Due to the fact that I'm literally being stopped in stores to find out where I got the shoes I was wearing, I think I've decided to market them a little more aggressively here than just word of mouth. I know that I can't afford to rent space, and I'm not entirely thrilled about the idea of consignment. Everywhere I go I see locals with just a table and an umbrella selling everything from produce, fish and slushees to lottery tickets and Valentine's Day gifts. So my question is, do I need to have a vendor's license and specific permission from someone to set up a table and sell my shoes, or can I just pick a spot and have at it?
Set up a web site and take orders on line.
I see you have a site; if you do your thing on line I do not believe anything is required.
I'm trying to just set up a table somewhere in a high(er) traffic area, rather than sell just online. It would give me something to do when the kids are in school! 🙂
Check with Licensing at Golden Rock by Domino's; you will need a vendors license, business license, etc.
Being a resident here for the past 3 years I cannot believe that everyone of those roadside vendors has gone through the "system" to obtain a vendors or business license. I think most of them have no official vendors license or a business license. My opinion is that you should just go pick a spot, start selling, and see what happens. Worse case scenerio is somebody from the gov't finds out and have you stop selling until you go get a vendors license. Given the way the system works down here god only knows how long it will take to "legally" get a vendors license.
Just do it !
It's easier to ask for forgiveness than to get permission.
Be careful of holding a bunch of cash and shoes at the same time. If you do get busted they might "impound" the shoes! and hold the cash till you get licenced.
Thanks Jumbie and Doug! That was my initial thought, too. Now I just have to figure out the best spot! Anyone need some really cute flip flops??? 🙂
Sell what you can until the local DLCA steps in and then decide if it is worth it to be legal.
Yyyyeeaahhhh.....ok. I try to keep to myself, but, I think I should put my two cents worth in:
The DLCA in particular and the taxing agencies in general don't take too kindly to not getting their juice from the marks down here. It's one thing to be a local and grease the vig, but if you're seen as having the money to pay a fine then it's gonna come down on you hard and fast. "It's easier to ask for forgiveness...?" Does the phrase, "OK! Bend over!" mean anything to you? If you've ever been fined for illegally engaging in commerce then they see you as having "established your turpitude". Do yourself a favor before you take the risk, Call the DLCA at 773-2226, ask them about an Itinerant vendor's license...should cost about $65...plus all of the other fees. They will probably direct you to dlca.vi.gov to get you started.
Last word: there is only one thing so sweet as being able to engage in business with no fear of the dark blues, and that's being engaged in a legal business that legally handles cash during the course of your legal day that legally entitles you to apply for and be granted a legally binding conceal and carry license to legally protect yourself...that you would NOT be able to get if you were EVER convicted of a crime of moral turpitude. Just saying.
Onionhead--I agree, unless you are related to someone at licensing you will probably be arrested.
By the way--I love your popflops and would love to have a few pair.
Popflops: Your web site is cute, but: "Due to the fact that we are no longer located in
the United States, it may take longer to receive your items.
We appreciate your patience. "
Really? Not in the United States! 😛
You will need an itinerant vendors license as well as a placement permit for where you want to sell them. You may want to add the word continental to United States to denote you are outside the contiguous states, as folks may be cautioned to buy things internationally as well as to the fact that you are in the US!
Why not just go ahead and say you are in the US Virgin Islands. That way, people will feel confident about ordering, and you get the added charm of selling "tropical island shoes". I looked at your site a while back, but I don't remember. Do you have kids sizes?
you should list them on Etsy.com too if you haven't already!
Try setting up at Cane Bay Beach on the weekends and see what happens.
the vi government will SHUT YOU DOWN if you do not have a vendors license!!!! And they will FINE you big money!!!!
You really should just bite the bullet and apply for the vendor's license. Plus while in F'sted ask about rental space for the cruise ships.
If you get approved for the cruise ship vendor space, you can set up a lil spot where the passengers will see you 1st coming off the ships & then again prior to boarding. The fee is rather small if I remember correctly.There is a consignment shop in F'sted too, tho you mentioned you didn't want to go that route.
I would also contact the girls at Twin City Coffee on Company street. It's a small shop, but they have great traffic especially locals & shop keeps. Also try Island Tribe...that store just rocks!!! (meaning its busy busy busy...and great clothes)
Go talk to some of the big hotels and see if you can sell your shoes in their gift store's. Plus try cool hang outs like Off the Wall.
Once you have your vendor's license, you can then also set up booths at all the festivals........Mango Melee, & Starving Artist (this my favorite) come to mind.
I suggest you network network network!! Your shoes are cute & should sell if priced right
Good Luck in your venture.
@ Edward, @ Ronnie, @ Juanita: The reason I don't want to be specific as to my whereabouts is that I was served (via e-mail) a Cease and Desist order a couple of weeks ago for using the name "pop flops". Apparently, a couple of women who own a small boutique in Arizona are already using the name for a slightly similar product. Legally, U.S. trademark law is unenforceable in the USVI, which is what I told their representative. I've changed my website a bit to appease them, but I don't need them to be able to track me down and force a lawsuit on me... I just want a little peace and quiet to make my shoes a few pair at a time! 🙂
@ Juanita: Yes, I make them starting in a little girl's size 8/9 all the way up to a women's size 12.
@ boyd46: The shoes you were talking about are by a company called "Hot Flops" and they're cute! (But more expensive.)
@ CAtoSTX: I did have them there when I started back in June. My listing expired at the end of 2009 and, for the same reason I just mentioned above, decided that trying to market them to the US would probably anger these people.
I guess for now, I'll just continue word-of-mouth. I sold 2 pair to a girl who wanted them to wear to AgFair and asked for some business cards to hand out, so we'll wait and see!
Thanks for all the input.
Does anyone know how difficult/long it takes to get a vendor's license like the one the OP would need. If its a basic thing then I don't see what the big deal is about getting one. If it's as difficult and expensive as the business license I had to get when I had a software company here than that is absolutely ridiculous.
The whole "business license" thing reminds me of the old joke "What's the difference between the mafia and the government? The government has a pretty flag to fly outside their office!"