You've likely heard of pre-ordering collectibles before but perhaps you've never done it. Or perhaps an item releases which you'd love to get your hands on, but they've sold out everywhere. This is where pre-ordering is a very sensible option.
At Movie Figures, we've been offering pre-orders on a range of items for some months now. You put a small deposit down for the item you'd like to order (usually around 10%) and we order it in on your behalf. When it comes in, you have 30 days in which to pay the remaining balance. It's a pretty sensible solution, but we thought we should do a blog post to explain why we offer it, what the possible risks are and why you should consider it.
Why we offer pre-orders
Whilst we have a fairly good idea on what people like and what they don't, we don't know for sure whether we'll buy in enough of an item to satisfy demand for it. Also, whilst we have reasonable buying power, just like any company, our funds will only stretch so far. If you commit to a pre-order deposit, that's a good sign to us that you're serious enough to want the item. So we then commit to the full cost of the product and order it from distribution and reserve it just for you.
What are the risks to you?
Pre-ordering comes with a few possible issues. At Movie Figures, we're very honest, so we'll share these with you so you can make an informed decision, whether you choose to pre-order from us or elsewhere:
'Can you be certain my stock will arrive?'
In our experience, it's around 99% certain. On our pre-orders pages, we give you a guide price for each product and when it's likely to arrive. We also close these when our reservations are filled. Occasionally, products get delayed or cancelled by manufacturers. That is totally out of our control, but if it happens we let you know and refund you if an item does get cancelled or give you the option to refund or wait on a delay.
'Can the guide price vary?'
It can, but we try our hardest to not do this. The reason we list guide price rather than a solid price is all pre-order items are manufactured abroad and prices get affected by exchange rate. Sometimes they go up and sometimes down. If they go up, we will give you the option to walk away and get your deposit back. In the past year or so, exchange rates have been fairly stable which has meant shipped pre-orders have all been at the guide price or lower.
'What if I can't pay when the stock comes in?'
We give you 30 days in which to settle the remaining balance. After that point, you are in risk of losing the item and your deposit. Of course, by the time the item has come in, we've paid 100% of the cost and you haven't. We can't wait for ages to get our costs back and we think 30 days is a reasonable enough time.
'What happens if you go out of business before my pre-order arrives?'
That is a valid concern as a number of people have been burnt by other companies in the past. Movie Figures is a limited company which has been around for 3 years now. It is managed by an experienced Director who runs another very successful business and has done so for over 12 years. The company is profitable and cash flow is healthy. If required, Movie Figures also has access to pre-approved further finance. Put simply, it looks unlikely that Movie Figures would run into difficulty, but if it did, any customer deposits would be the first thing we would return.
Why you should pre-order
Brands including Hot Toys and Sideshow do limited production runs which are based on order commitments by resellers and distributors. Pre-ordering ensures you get the figure or statue you want. There are also manufacturers out there who create very low runs of figures and statues. Such items sell out fast and pre-order is really the only option to safely secure you one.
Another nice thing, is if we haven't got an item listed that you're after, you can simply contact us and we'll try and source it for you. There are so many new items coming out, that we can't list everything. But if you want something, we'll do our best to get it for you!
To see our range of pre-orders and for more information please see: