Sunday, November 19, 2017

Biz Behind-the-Scenes: One Year of Brick and Mortar Shop Ownership Success

A showing I did yesterday in collaboration with First Coast Magazine, a quick phone shot
The Friday coming up (Black Friday, we're having a Big Sale at the store, come if you're local! 20-40% off everything) will be the ONE YEAR anniversary of our shop opening! And since we started the growth has been INCREDIBLE! The first months were hard as we adjusted, now we're going through new growing pains...the pains of trying to keep up with demand!

We ordered pizza and beer for our first group work-day, then proceeded to destroy the place making as much product as possible! I'm still trying to get the place cleaned up again, haha. 

Just some random Brick and Mortar Shop growth facts: 

- When we started we had outdoor markets and pop-ups about once a week, twice at the most. Five to seven events per week is the new norm!

- During the early months the stress from keeping up the shop and just having the fewer markets we had kept me in the shop sometimes until 3am every night AND it was SUPER hard for me to sleep before our big showings. I was a raw bundle of nerves. Now I've adapted to the stressors, I consider it a "level up" not unlike a video game, haha.

- And sales! With all these markets we're making so many! We were short of a five figure month last month but not far, this and next month we're projected to hit the five figures and then some.

- ... Of course a lot of that goes back into supplies, market expenses, and employees, but the details are a story for another day

- We started with AJ, myself, and my mom as a part-time contractor helping with our soap and product production. This week we hired our third employee so we a staff of six and a couple of floating part-timers (these are my nieces, they always want to help, haha).


- We tested loads of products and formulations and came up with a winning collection that's developed a devoted fan base! The fan favorites are our aromatherapy inhalers they last six months and heal headaches, lack of focus, anxiety, sinus problems and more, our miracle deodorant that lasts all day, our herbal bitters, and our tooth care collection

I'm excited to make the lines even better! I had to rush the design and product photos but I want more time to get the website/social media/labels to my standards, I've just had no choice but to neglect it because I'm so busy making the stuff!

When we started a year ago I'd have my doubts sometimes, it was a big leap without a ton of pre-planning. The shop and business has taken over our lives BUT we've learned and grown from it so much. No matter how mad a mistake makes me (yesterday while loading our car a $49 investment was stolen when I left it alone for a couple of minutes, and oh, the expensive car troubles this year from frequent car-use), or how frustrating any one situation can be it just doesn't feel like work. We are so satisfied with what we're creating. I'm excited to keep growing this beautiful creative messy thing!

Of course as a business/marketing lover I want to share all the behind-the-scenes details of the steps we took to turn a business that once made $0 at a market showing to regularly making hundreds at them and all the other little things, like running a team, I'll come back to all that in future posts. I miss blogging but I've got a team to steer and I've decided to prioritize sleep over trying to squeeze out posts from stolen rest like I used to. I do feel like I'm getting to the point where I can write again.

How's your business/early holiday season chaos been going? I'm going to step around some mess to get out of the store's office and go actually spend time with people I haven't seen for a bit because although it's been fun this store does rob nearly every hour of my daylight time! It's my first Sunday off in weeks and probably my last 'til Christmas, haha!

Expect some Black Friday/Cyber Monday codes from me soon, too.  I update my Body&Soul Instagram regularly, I also have a personal Instagram. Our store website is here and our online store is here. 
For daily updates, information, & Inspiration: Follow me on Twitter and Facebook and Instagram.

6 comments:

  1. That is so amazing.. so proud of you!

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  2. It's really so awesome to read about your journey, Vanessa:) So inspiring. To be where you are now...it's just the beginning, dahling:)
    All the best, and good luck on Black Friday. It's gonna be cray cray!

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  3. So incredibly happy for you. What you've done is awesome and inspirational. Onward and upward!

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    Replies
    1. Aw, thank you :) Yep we're gonna keep hustling and building up...and hopefully get some time off one day haha

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