MSA Member Dispatches from Home: Morse Museum of American Art
By Ava Maxwell
Or in my case, deliveries from home!
When we had our new POS system installed in February, I never guessed that the Museum and Museum Shop would be closing abruptly just two weeks later, with barely enough time to really "learn" the system, let alone have everything set up for "remote" sales. Shortly after we closed, I was able to convince our Director to allow us to offer our selection of custom Morse Museum puzzles for sale on our website (this is our first attempt at website sales.) We spent hours developing the site with images and descriptive text, ordering packing and shipping materials to be delivered to my home, and loading up hundreds of puzzles to bring to our "temporary" home warehouse. With that -- we were ready to go! Website launched - and with the arrival of our first order, while I was rushing from our warehouse (formerly my son's bedroom) to the shipping department (formerly my daughter's bedroom) to our loading dock (our dining room), I rolled my foot, tore the ligaments, sprained and broke my ankle.
Within a few hours, we had orders for 40 puzzles. At this point, on crutches, foot in a boot, elevated and iced, and determined to fulfill these orders, I found myself needing the assistance of a shipping associate -- someone available right away. Pictured above, my husband, (temporary shipping associate), preparing an order for UPS. Our 200 puzzle orders have necessitated daily visits to UPS. We have quietly labeled our enterprise "AVAzon Prime!" Orders continue to arrive, and for some reason my volunteer shipping associate has put in for vacation time. He's only been working here for three weeks!
Seriously though, the sales of our custom puzzles have been staggering.
Earlier I mentioned not being set up for remote and/or website sales. Since
our system is so new to us, we have not yet finalized the process to accept
payments remotely. For each sale, we have needed to contact the customer, secure a credit card number over the phone, and then ship their puzzle. When we are permitted to return to the shop, we will finalize the transaction. Once completed, we will email each customer to inform them of their credit card charge.
Our museum puzzles are beautiful. Our customer service is unrivaled. Look
out Amazon- AVAzon's here!
Ava Maxwell is the Manager of Retail Operations at The Morse Museum of American Art in Winter Park, FL. The Morse Museum houses the world's most comprehensive collection works by Louis Comfort Tiffany. The museum's holdings also include American art pottery, late 19th-early 20th century American paintings, graphics, and decorative art.