From shop-a-holic to smart shopper Gie Ramos Brand manager; Mom to Adriana, 5, and Andre, 3
With a high-paying marketing job that allowed her to travel frequently, Gie Ramos found herself maxing out her credit cards at outlet stores in the U.S. “I had this idea that to travel is to shop. The trip wouldn’t be fulfilling for me if I did not buy anything,” she says.
Gie splurged on bags, shoes, and childcare products. “Before I'd even given birth, I had already spent about P150,000 on baby stuff,” she says. “I have only two kids, but I had four strollers. I was so excited to have a baby that I bought different kinds of strollers in one go.” Gie also bought car seats in different colors, all sorts of breast pumps, baby clothes, and so many more items that eventually, a separate storage area in her home had to be constructed.
Are you a shop-a-holic like Gie? Here are her tips for a better you:
1. Use technology to your advantage. When her parents’ business went bankrupt, Gie needed to find a way to help them financially. “That’s when I realized I had so many strollers, so I decided to try selling one online,” she says. Selling it got the ball rolling for Gie to start her online business of selling pre-owned baby items. She also put up House of Sunnies, an online store selling brand-new signature sunglasses.
2. Sell something that you're passionate about. As a mom, it came naturally for Gie to sell childcare items. She loved to research top brands and products that would be best for her kids. “When you start an online business, it should be something you’re passionate about and something you love. Otherwise, it will be hard to sell anything,” she advises. “If you’re not familiar with the items, you won’t know their prices and the benchmark. You also have to consult someone who has more experience.”
3. Know your market. When Gie sold her first stroller, she learned that there was a market for pre-owned baby items. “Most of the stuff for babies are hardly used. If you want to be practical, you can explore buying pre-owned items from trusted sellers.” Many moms turned to Gie for baby products. “I sold all of my baby clothes—they amounted to P50,000!”
4. Shop smart. Truth be told, Gie still shops, but she has learned to shop smart. “From almost 100 bags, I now keep only five bags on average,” she says. “I don’t buy anything I know I won’t be able to resell.” She also offers this piece of advice to fellow shop-a-holics: “A bargain is not really a bargain unless you actually need it. If you don’t need it, then don’t buy it.”