When the fire came, the store went online

This is a preview of Shira Ovid’s recent interview with On On Tech for Time Subscribers. Sign up to find it in your inbox Three times a week.

Winstrop Mountain Sports has not had to sell its outdoor equipment online for over 40 years. Even the cholera epidemic did not change the owners’ plans. But a wildfire broke out.

Gobs are just a few hours east of Seattle to Winroprop, slip, walk or drive to the beautiful Cassed Mountains. Like many outdoor entertainment stores, sales at Winchester Mountain Sports were strong during most of the epidemic.

Marin Bigson, one of the owners of the store and a former professional biathlete and skier, told me that there were no plans to sell products online now. “We wanted to do something, but we didn’t think we would do it this year,” she said. “Then came the fire.”

Last month, two large wildfires separated Winthrop from the world and engulfed the valley with smoke. The store remained open but did not sell discount boots and shirts to firefighters. Compared to the same month in previous years, sales in July dropped by about 80 percent, Berson said.

In less than two weeks, Wintrop Mountain Sports began selling products on its website to reach customers who may or may not be coming to the store – first to see how it went, with a few simple steps. That will challenge the Winterprop sport of 2021 in the wake of the pirate epidemic and wildfire twin crises.

One of the themes I keep coming back to is the remote ways in which technology makes things better for business owners, educators, rabbis and others. Selling online offers new opportunities for Beaverson’s business boost, but it also implements new loads and puts the store in direct competition with all those who sell out-of-the-box gear on the Internet – including giants such as Amazon and Ray.

The good news is that starting an e-commerce site has never been easier. Borsson, who was trapped by unhealthy weather, said she took the time to post product photos and descriptions on the Winstrop Mountain Sports website.

The store is already using software from Lightspeed to track inventory. If Borserson sells 10 pairs of hiking boots in the store, she will not try to sell them online by mistake. This is not fancy, no, but many small business owners do not have the time, money or skills to post the basics of technology.

Bjerson said she and her staff were still learning how to run a store and an online business. For each online order, they must manually enter the weight and quantities, post the shipping label and deliver the package by UPS or other service. When Borserson returned home, she stated that she was breaking some orders in the delivery warehouse. She and her staff talk to people who want to order online through questions.

He said it would be too soon to know how the store’s finances would be affected if many sales turned out to be online. “It’s a lot of work,” she said. The margin may be lower, but it is better to sell.

Selling online will allow the store to reach customers in new ways and many people expect to be able to shop online, but Wintrop Mountain Sports will not survive as an online store. “We have a shop and a community around us,” she said.

Marin and Eric Bjorson retired from skiing and moved to Alaska in December, after they and other long-time Winterrop sports owners bought them. Simply put, this is an unexpected time to run a retail store for the first time.

“It doesn’t seem like a big summer,” she says. “You can lead a little higher. But it is a little stressful because we do not have it. ” “We’ll have a good winter and forget about it,” said Borsson.

Tip of the week

Our Consumer Technology column when many businesses are vaccinating on VV-19 Brian X Chen Go through the steps to save your digital vaccine record in an easily accessible way on your phone:

Here in California, I recently requested a digital immunization record from the California Department of Public Health. (How to request one varies from state to state – see your Department of Health website for instructions.)

After entering my information, I received a text message with a link to the QR code, the digital bar code type, that contained information about my immunization record. So I had to figure out the best way to store the barcode on my phone.

The quickest method I took was to take a screenshot and attach the image to a note. That way, I could find my immunization record by keyword search or scrolling through my note app.

Here’s how to do it:

On iPhones:

  • Tap the arrow up arrow in the upper right corner when the image editing toolbar appears. Swipe and select the Notes app in the Apps row. Here, save the image to a new note.

On Android Phones:

(My colleague JD Biersdorfer has More tips on keeping immunizations on the phone, And has The Washington Post Another useful guide.)

  • Are you eager to participate in a workshop in a virtual reality? Mark Zuckerberg says you are. My co-worker, Mike Isaac, tried and explained Facebook’s belief in VR and other technology that “gives you a sense of presence.”

  • Helping Afghans know for themselves: The rest of the world generates smartphone alerts about bomb blasts, road closures, power outages and other problems, according to Eteb in Kabul. The founder, Sarah Wahidi, is concerned that the nature of the service has targeted extremist militants.

  • How do you prove an illegal monopoly? In June, a judge told the US government that evidence needed to prove that Facebook was involved in social networking. The Federal Trade Commission reopened the anti-trust case on Thursday, and my colleague Cecilia Kang noted that it may be difficult to apply in areas where technology is not easy to enforce.

Puppies in a cart! Puppies! In the cart!

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