When I opened this boutique online, I was so wet behind the ears, it was literally dripping off my face! I learned some hard lessons and grew from them. Being in business for yourself is the most thrilling, terrifying, electrifying roller coaster you have ever been on. Fellow entrepreneurs know exactly what I'm talking about here! One minute, you're on top of the world. You feel like you have finally hit your stride and have it all under control and BAM Facebook changes algorithms or you realize you totally spaced on one of the seasons hottest trends and now its too late to get in on it. Live and learn right? And adjust or get ran over by the masses and left in the dust. I learn something new every.dang.day.
This Holiday shopping season is no exception. With this being my first, I didn't know what to expect. I knew I better have a fully stocked store or I'd be in trouble. What I didn't realize is, people would be knocking down my door to get their hands on CC Beanies that I cannot keep in stock or that no one would want cookies the day after Thanksgiving because they would still be in a half turkey/sugar induced coma the following day. I am so thankful to report that my Black Friday, Small Business and Cyber Monday sales were way more than I anticipated. I did not, however, anticipate the longer delivery times to get restock items and new items in. So here is a snap shot of my daily life here lately:
10:00am - "Oh, that's SUPER cute. Must order for store! (adds to cart) And the vendor shows it to be in stock!!"
10:05am - "Can this item just ship already??"
10:15am - Order confirmed. "Awesome, they have it and it's going to ship quick!"
10:30am - Receives message from vendor. "The item you ordered is no longer in stock." (freaks out, bangs head on counter, regains composure and forges on then uses snapchat to document feeling.)
10:45am - Finds more unique, quality items and adds to cart.
11:00am - Receives call from vendor: "Yes, this is a courtesy call to inform you that the items you ordered are on back order. We expect them to arrive in about 3 weeks."
11:02am - Places face in pillow and screams...and then takes another photo with snapchat to document current mood.
11:05am - "Ok, I'm starved." (Eats)
11:30am - Finally finds vendor with items in stock, orders and does happy dance.
12:00pm - Receives shipping notification with following warning: Due to operating conditions, shipment may be delayed. "WTF!" Seriously, how would I even express my feelings without Snapchat?
12:30pm - Receives Spring line sheets from a few favorite vendors. Gives up on winter stock for time being and goes ahead and orders 15 rompers, some tanks and 42 pairs of shorts! Laughs at self for good measure.
1:00pm - Checks shipping carrier obsessively to see how bad said delays are.
1:02pm - Nope shipment still hasn't moved.
1:05pm - Does some internet marketing, writes blog, makes notes to remember for next season.
2:00pm - Checks shipping carrier one more time. Shipment is on the move. Happy dance number 2 commences. My sidekick, Miss Cate, is as thrilled as me to have some goodies on the way!
2:05pm - Where's the wine? Oh, wait, it's only 2pm.
Y'all, that's just four hours! But I wouldn't trade it. Being self employed is the most rewarding "job" I have ever had. I love my customers and am so thankful for each of them.
Tell me I'm not the only one feelin the squeeze this holiday season...