Thursday, February 22, 2018

The Story of Our Little Organic Shop: Pros/Cons of Owning a Store after a Year

We opened our first brick and mortar shop late November 2016. This means we've been open a year and 3 months now! It's been amazing to look back at progress so far with AJ. We have a long way to go of course, business is fluid and ever-changing especially in the early years, but it's transformed so much from the start.

So some positive facts:

- Last weekend we made more in a day than we did January 2017
- 3-5 Markets & Events per day or weekend isn't uncommon anymore
- We keep breaking sales goes left and right it's honestly kind of status quo now
- We consistently have more events and requests than we can keep up with
- We actually 1.5 shops, now (as we call it, haha) we're renting a space with another shop nearby
- By now we've collaborated with dozens of markets and people by now, still rounding up those numbers
- We have products in 4 stores and we're working on more actively
- Sometimes I get to travel and go on neat business trips
- We're helping LOTS of people find natural products that -really- work well
- I meet awesome artisans, hippies, creative business owners and just generally interesting creative people and get unique invitations often :)

Some struggles:

- We also have to spend a LOT (SO much, OUCH) to scale and grow and this is hard to accept as a frugal soul

- I also never know how far I should "let myself go" with making things, expansion, and adding new sections and fun products. It's a tough balance because I want to go for it but on the other hand we're already doing so much.

- Time for traveling is rare and nearly impossible right now, or just seeing people. We get some free time during the weekdays when most people work and our weekends are packed full. - Although stealth bonus our hours are flexible and we sleep in more days than not which is awesome!

- Just general life balance amid the chaos and managing my stress and overwhelm.

At the moment we're actually actively looking into yet another location (eek!) although with the acceptance that this could be now, later in the year, or next year, and we're busy enough that it's totally okay no matter what time. I'm plotting some interesting new curations beyond body care. Every day we're learning, growing, and getting so much better. I look back at Spring last year and how I struggled to do my first solo market and how I now can handle one on my own with little sleep and break previously held sales numbers while I'm at it. I know when we look back at this time now we'll be amazed again and how we've grown from the time we're at now.

I just wanted to brain dump some honest progress and feelings about our new business. Honestly it's going AMAZINGLY well and we are living the dream and getting to grow and do so much we've always wanted to, now we just have to add some more structure and learn to cope with the stressful parts, haha. :) I'll of course follow-up on ways how I've overcame on the organization front.

*For behind-the-scenes check out my business & personal Instagram feeds. 

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*For behind-the-scenes check out my business & personal Instagram feeds. 

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