Introduce your business and tell us your story: How did you decide on what to sell, and how did you source your products?
We were left unsatisfied when looking for dog leashes and collars that were MORE than plain webbing but LESS in-your-face than the bedazzled/studded variety, there was this crazy gap in the market for minimalist designs at a reasonable price. Our rope leashes are made in-house by hand with locally-sourced materials. For our leather and felt collars, we are sourcing these out of an amazing factory in China that was able to take our design from a rough sketch to reality on very low minimum order quantities.
How did you earn your first sales? Which channels are now generating the most traffic and sales for you?
An icon appeared at the top of my phones screen that I'd never seen before — that glorious little Shopify icon! We had just started an Adwords express campaign the week prior. We are still running the adwords campaigns but our big focus is on growing our Instagram presence as we believe our product resonates well with the photography medium and our target customer... i mean honestly who doesn't like a photo of a puppy!?
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?
Buying a theme from Pixel Union was one of our best decisions, a one-off payment has given us access to an integrated currency converter, a customizable top banner, and a social media feed, all of which were being run by 3 separate apps beforehand. We handle shipping and fulfillment the old fashioned way, by schlepping down to the post box to drop off every sale. As we look to grow we will investigate a local courier service.
What are your top recommendations for new store owners?
If I could go back and tell myself just one thing it would be to be consistent, like on social media telling our brand's story through a steady stream of curated content. We were very sporadic/manic in the beginning!