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Company’s Fertilizer Deal Accidentally Grows Sales By ‘31,500%’

An accidental move by local startup Upcycle resulted in the company selling over half its inventory overnight and ranking in the top 1 percent of all related products on Amazon.

The company sells an eco-friendly fertilizer for home gardens that’s primarily sold in small home and garden centers in San Diego, and online through Amazon. In an interview last month, founder Jared Criscuolo said he had about 40,000 bags in his inventory, and was about to order 100,000 more to fill.

Criscuolo said he set up a “flash sale” on Amazon with a steeply discounted price to see how much product it would move.

“The accident was that we forgot to set the limit on number of bags we’d sell at the discount,” Criscuolo said.

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The event boosted the company’s sales by “31,500 percent” and rocketed the company from obscurity to the top 1 percent of all Amazon Home & Garden products, Criscuolo said. Although the product sold at a discount, Criscuolo was upbeat about the sales, saying he was excited that the company “hacked into the top 1 percent of its category within three months of being in business.”

“It’s a pretty exciting spot to be in,” Criscuolo said. “And it gave us some ideas on refining this approach for the future to help keep our rankings high while we build the brand.”

Criscuolo would not disclose the flash sale price, but said it was a lesson learned.

“We won’t be running it that low again; still figuring out where the best point is to offer those discounts to bump sales,” Criscuolo said.

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