How to get your products into shops

Untitled design (6)There are advantages to having your products in brick and mortar locations, even if you run an e-commerce business. People prefer human-to-human interaction and being able to physically hold an item before purchasing. Furthermore, shoppers who walk into local gift shops intend to make a purchase – you don’t need to do much to convince them! Retailers may also promote your products, which indirectly, brings traffic to your social media platforms.

The big question is: HOW do I get my products into retail locations?

I finally have a product that I want in retail locations so I started asking my fellow business owners regarding their process of getting into retailer locations. I knew Allie, from The 6th Scent Candle had her products in many locations so I started chatting with her. When I found out that she would wait until her toddler’s nap time, then pack him into the car seat, and let him nap while she drives around the city bringing candles to various retailers. I was so impressed with her work ethic and entrepreneurial spirit that I wanted to share what I learned from her!

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Prep work: Before you even start going to stores, you need to prepare a few things.

  • Know your margins. Wholesalers and consignment shops may have varying terms. Wholesalers expect a significant discount (at least 30% but 50% is more common, depending on type of product). Consignments may be a 30/70 or 40/60 split (i.e. you receive 60% of the sale and they receive 40%).  Know what your margins are so that you can quickly tell a retailer whether or not their terms are realistic for you.

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Tink & Evie: Keeping it fun & interesting

Meet Colleen, owner and creator of Tink & Evie. Her small shop is dedicated to fun and interesting clothing for children and their moms.

How did you start your business? 
I started my brand because my daughter didn’t seem to fit a lot of baby clothes due to her length.  I also couldn’t find clothes that matched the aesthetic I liked, so I decided to start making my own.  Then people started telling me I should sell them!

What advice would you give to the 20 year old you? 
Don’t wait for things to happen, just go and make them happen!

What personality trait always gets you into trouble?
I’m quite stubborn.

Colleen’s products are adorable and very, very well made (trust me – I’ve seen them with my own eyes!!) Find out for yourself at www.tinknevie.com

Bee Pure Apitherapy: Organic, eco-friendly products from the bees

This week, we are meeting Amanda from Bee Pure Apitherapy. Her business is SO COOL! Her shop carries natural organic skincare and eco friendly products made with key ingredients found in the bee hive and combined with carefully chosen premium ingredients from around the world. Let’s find out more about her business!

Hey Amanda, how did you start your business/brand?
It all came together when I developed an interest in bees and beekeeping.  I discovered so many wonderful benefits of honey and the by products from the honeybee (Bee Pollen, Propolis, Royal Jelly etc.) This led me to further my education by taking an Apitherapy course from Europe. During my studies I began to play around with what I had been learning and make products that were all natural, healing and healthy.  Once I found the perfect formulas for my products, I felt the desire to make these products available to everyone, who like me, desired to use products that were based on an organic formula.

Share a fun fact with us!
As much as I really do love keeping bees, I have since discovered I actually have an allergic reaction to bee venom.  Every trip to the hive demands that I wear a full on bee suit that covers me from head to toe.  Even then my little friends find their way into my suit where I fail to properly zip it all the way.  Fortunately, I have my trusty homeopathic remedy, Apis mellifica, to remedy the reaction to the occasional sting.


What’s the biggest challenge of running a small business? (We know it’s not that glamorous behind the screen!!)
Besides being an entrepreneur, I am also the wife of the most supportive husband and mother of three wonderful children.  While they are the most important part of my heart and life, I have discovered that running my business feeds another part of me!  I find that I can manage my deadlines and get product out the door to customers, and that provides much satisfaction.  What is a big challenge for me is social media.  When it comes to keeping up with my instagram and other social media sites, I struggle with keeping them interesting, meaningful and current.  

BEE-cool and check out their eco-friendly products at www.beepureapitherapy.com

Grey + Beau: Creating an empire one shirt at a time

Hey friend!

The holidays are over, time to get back into it! Today we are meeting Shannon, boss babe of Grey + Beau. They are a small babe and mama run business who wish to inspire everyone to not only create beautiful moments, but to take the time and make their souls happy.  

Let’s ease into this with a few quick questions:

Why did you start your business?
After almost losing my life after having Greyson, I realized that life did not revolve around my previous career and that there was nothing more important then doing whatever I could to be able to watch Grey grow. 

What inspires you?
Creative minds.

What advice would you give to the 20-year-old you?
Change nothing. 😉

What’s one word to describe you? 
Silly.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? 
A lawyer.

Find out more about Shannon and her business at Grey + Beau.

Happily With Love: A Keepsake To Cherish

Last month we did a call out for donations for Baskets of Love Down Syndrome. Nicole, from Happily With Love, was one of the small businesses who stepped up and graciously made a donation. Today we are going to meet the owner of this beautiful shop located in Toronto, Ontario. 

Hi Nicole!! Can you tell us how your business started?

Happily With Love started with the simple idea of creating a cake topper for a friends shower, and evolved quickly from that (I’m the type of person who has a thousand different ideas running through my mind in a single day!) I enjoy a good idea and really loved creating these beautiful pieces from scratch! I’m most in love with the fact that people will use these plaques in some of life’s most memorable moments – from pregnancy and birth announcements, to those first amazing months with your little babe, they really do pull at your heart strings!

What advice would you give to the 20 year old you?

I would have loved to tell myself that it’s okay to take some time to figure your story out. Take a year off and just travel, enjoy being care-free with little to no real responsibilities, do things that you’ll never have the time to do later on! Those were the years! 

See more of her beautiful stories at www.happilywithlove.com

josiah+co: A business to honour our babies

What I love about For The Small is that I get to meet so many people that I would otherwise never have crossed paths with. Every entrepreneur is inspired by their own story and some are so, so special.  Meet Melissa, the mompreneur behind josiah+co. She makes non-slip crochet baby booties. Each item is handcrafted with Heaven Babies in mind as a way to honour our babies gone too soon.

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Why did you start your business/brand? 

After experiencing three consecutive miscarriages, I wanted an outlet for my grief. I had learned how to crochet baby booties after our Rainbow Baby was born, so I decided to turn it into a business and a way to connect with and bless other women who have experienced pregnancy loss.

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What’s the biggest challenge of running a small business? (We know it’s not that glamorous behind the screen!!)

It would definitely be organizing my time effectively and making sure my family comes first.
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Mia’s Moccs: A must-have baby item

Meet Kim and Alyssia. They are the mother-daughter duo behind Mia’s Moccs, a shop that carries baby and toddler leather moccasins. Yes, those super adorable fringe-y shoes that you try to rock as an adult!

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How did you guys first start your business? 

Based in British Columbia, Canada, Mia’s Moccs was founded in early 2016 by mother-daughter duo Kim and Alyssia.

Mia’s Moccs was created to offer stylish leather moccasins for babies and toddlers at affordable prices. When Alyssia was pregnant with Mia, she had a hard time finding baby shoes for under $45, so she decided to design and create great-quality genuine leather moccasins, with her mom Kim, that everyone could afford.

Each pair of moccasins are designed in Canada by Kim and Alyssia, and lovingly and ethically handmade overseas by their own team of seamstresses using the most durable cow leather. Each pair of moccasins contain leather soles for durability and sanitary reasons, as they’re easy to wipe clean, and a cushy insole to provide extra protection and comfort for your little one. Bigger sizes now include rubber soles for extra traction.

Mia’s Moccs are a great gift as they can be used as everyday shoes, slippers or day care shoes, and are able to be dressed up or down for any special occasion.

Mia’s Moccs has been awarded the Nanny Robina Seal of Approval after extensive product testing by Canadian celebrities, parenting experts, doctors and moms and have been featured on Breakfast Television Toronto.

By purchasing a pair of Mia’s Moccs, you’re not only receiving a pair of stylish and comfortable shoes for your little one, you’re joining our family.

What’s your key advice to running a small business/biggest challenge?

Running a small business looks like it’s easy and looks like it’s going to be an easy profit, but it’s not. It’s a lot of hard work, a lot of dedication and a lot of competition. Be prepared to stay up late designing, packing orders, replying to emails and spending your weekends traveling to and from markets. It’s so amazing and rewarding working for yourself, but it’s a lot easier to work for someone else! If you’re looking to get rich fast, don’t start a small business.

 

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