How did you decide on what to sell, and how did you source your products?
Christmas-themed bar crawls and Christmas sweater parties are the norm these days, but people often end up having to take off their sweaters just to cool down. We sell Christmas shirts as a cooler alternative.
I sourced my products on Alibaba. Once I found a suitable manufacturer I worked on building strong relationships and quality shirts.
Which channels are now generating the most traffic and sales for you?
Most of our traffic comes from social media, namely Facebook and Twitter. We also see a lot of traffic from Google search, which is where we also see the the majority of sales.
Tell us about the back-end of your business. What tools and apps do you use to run your store? How do you handle shipping and fulfillment?
I use an array of Shopify apps to run my store on the back-end. I use Order Printer to print invoices and shipping labels, PluginSEO to check my SEO setup, and my favorite, Shopify Mobile, to I check my shop on the move.
What are your top recommendations for new store owners?
Engaging in customers
Engaging your customers is the one true way of finding your unique value proposition. It can show you why people buy your product rather than someone else’s. Your findings might be surprising!
Keep track of costs
It sounds obvious, but it’s easy to lose track of spending. Have a plan, with contingencies, and stick to it. Not only does a solid plan remove the worry from your day-to-day thought process, it gives you something to refer to in times of doubt. You can make decisions in a split second, rather than mulling over them for hours.
I used to think haggling was something that belonged only to history, but once I started my own business I realized it’s still very much alive in the B2B world.
I was recently negotiating a retail space rental and was handed a pricing sheet. After looking it over, I told the retail unit owner I could offer her a better deal. She opted to be mentioned in my advertising campaigns in exchange for selling my products in her shop for free. All the promoting I did for her store increased my own sales as well!