The E-quip.Us Store is completely new. There is no old store, so there’s no risk of anyone saying, I wish they hadn’t changed _______ (whatever). But a few helpful words are in order. AND… I must admit operator error on the Launch Helpers reply link in yesterday’s post. A better version is included in this post – please feel free to share it! Now, on to the store!
Why have an online store? What is in it? Why is that important. Those are all good questions to ask and answer. So let’s start with the Why? question.
One answer is good stewardship. Really! Your faithful support enables many things. As I have mentioned multiple times in recent posts or emails, your support enables me to create study materials that have proven a blessing to many. And that trend continues. So I would be remiss not to say Thank You as I mention that.
So making the most of what your support has made possible is a matter of stewardship. We don’t just use things once, pitch them out, and start all over. It’s really quite the opposite. The materials get refined, edited, added to, taught for the second or third time (different groups, locations), and revised upward. Along the way, some of that work winds up on the blog page. But most of you already know that last point!
And we have the tools to turn these resources into books. In turn, that opens up some other opportunities. First, the books can be good equipping tools for ministry members. Second, the books can be made available to individuals and/or churches who don’t currently support this ministry. Ministry leaders are always looking for good resources. This is another way our members extend an equipping ministry to others.
Store Content – What’s In The Store
The comments above only address resources created through this ministry. However, there are many other helpful equipping resources available in today’s world. And the world has changed a great deal since any of us had to go to a bookstore to buy a book. Let me use one word: Amazon.
We are all familiar with the online shopping giant. What you may not know is one of the things that contributed to their growth and success. Every product in the world has a marketing cost built into its price structure. One huge innovation by Amazon was to take advantage of that fact. And rather than pay the traditional marketing fees to the traditional middle men, Amazon allowed website owners to market Amazon products on their own sites. Traditionally, the price for any given product was the same whether it was found on Amazon or some other site. And Amazon just paid part of the marketing costs to the websites that advertised their products. This whole process has a name. It’s called Affiliate Marketing.
For some time I have posted Reviews and Recommendations for readers. I included links to recommended resources (usually books) in my blog posts. Any one of my readers could click one of those links and buy whatever I was recommending at the Amazon price. The price wasn’t marked up on this site. But those purchases would return a small amount to this ministry (usually one dollar or less per purchase). That doesn’t sound like a lot, but it can add up depending on the number of readers or subscribers a site may have. So there will be a number of reviewed items (with Amazon links) in the E-quip.Us Store. It’s just another way to fund ministry.
E-quip.Us Store – Importance
The items above really address this point, too. But the need for the store points to another goal in remaking the website. The base of volunteers and the support base needs to expand. Fund raising is a requirement of what we do. That said, I’ve never considered myself very good at it. So it seems a good idea to me to just ask people to partner with us in the Biblical mandate to equip saints for the work of the ministry. That is easily recognizable as a divine imperative. So if we do it together we working alongside each other, encouraging one another, and demonstrating obedience. It seems like a win all the way around. To encourage people to engage in this ministry, and to equip themselves to be better ambassadors of Christ, many of the resources found in the store will be free or heavily discounted to supporting members.
That’s it for the store (for now!). Questions/suggestions? You know what to do.
OKAY!!! For those that responded yesterday, I apologize. Please respond through THIS LINK and it should all work just fine. And, feel free to put this post on your social media sites. Email this post to a friend. That’s how we get more folks involved. Have fun.
Soli Deo Gloria!