1. What makes your store unique?
The Maturango Museum store caters to the natural and cultural history of the upper Mojave desert region, including the Native American Rock art the abounds in our canyons. Many of the items we sell have the tribal art motifs on them, including glassware, mugs, pottery, T-shirts and stickers.
2. What is your retail background?
I have been in retail for more than 28 years. I began in apparel as a buyer and sales person, then opened my own independent bookstore, followed by a home décor gift shop. I taught retail sales at the high school level and also worked as the U.S. Marketing Director for an importer and opened their showroom in Atlanta. Now I am the manager and buyer of our museum gift shop. We just moved into a newly built and much larger gift shop of 1,500 square feet!
3. What is the most popular product you sell?
Presently, our top five best sellers are postcards, rocks, locally made pottery and locally made small vials of real gold.
4. What are your top three retail tips?
Do not allow merchandise to get stale. Get it in, and if does not sell out within six months, mark it down — get your investment back and re-invest in something else that will sell. The trick is to keep the merchandise fresh and new. For those items that you sell all the time, always keep stock on hand. Never say no to a customer and always find a way to accommodate even the craziest requests. Customers will remember that you went the extra mile.