Art by Pixabay
As the 50th anniversary of the DASB Senate Flea Market approached this spring, the COVID-19 pandemic forced the flea market to transition online.
The DASB Flea Market that normally takes place the first Saturday of every month, is now made up of a list of 16 vendors on the De Anza College website, who are selling their products through their online stores.
The online flea market offers vendors an opportunity to continue to sell their goods, as many have been financially impacted by the shelter in place order.
“I think we should all do what we can to support small business owners and make sure that we still have a sense of community,” said Sofi Tofte, interim DASB Flea Market Coordinator.
Bell Hernandez, vendor of Bell’s Avon On Wheels, has participated in the local event for the past seven years and is now a part of the online flea market. Both Hernandez and her husband are full-time sales representatives for Avon, a beauty company that sells a variety of products from fragrances to personal care.
“We can’t take our trailer or mobile store out because we can’t do social interaction,” said Hernandez, “If you talk to a person on the phone or email or text, it’s not the same thing as them actually seeing the products.”
She and her husband have been trying to get online orders as they are not able to carry out their regular approach of selling and recruiting customers.
Jonathan Hotchkiss, the vendor of FeelGoodz, He has been selling his sports gear at the DASB Flea Market on and off for the past two years, and running a Depop account simultaneously for his merchandise.
J He said Participating in the online flea market has sped things up for his side-business venture because many are sheltering in place.
Hotchkiss said he prefers in-person sales as he gets to witness the customers’ joy when purchasing an item.
“You get actual emotion come from the person,” said Hotchkiss “you don’t really get that when you sell something online to a person.”
The DASB Flea Market’s main focus has shifted to supporting vendors during this unprecedented time.
“Without vendors, we don’t have any flea market which means less funds to support the students, so we want to do what we can to ensure the wellbeing of our vendors,” said Tofte.