[vc_row][vc_column][vc_message bb_tab_container=””]Niche : Home and Living
Shop link : https://www.etsy.com/shop/SquirrelRusShop
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/MikeWesterWoodworks[/vc_message][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]
Tell us something about yourself. What is your niche? How did you get your idea or concept for the business?
I follow a lot of woodworking pages on Facebook. I saw that a gentleman in England posted squirrel picnic tables so I decided to go in my wood shop and make one. I made it, posted it Went to bed and woke up to 28 orders. And it’s all been a hill from there. Over 300 sold in 3 months.
What are your responsibilities as a business owner?
I go shopping for materials. I build all products. I package and ship with the help of my shipping department aka my 3 kids.
What are your best selling products, what type of materials are used in your creations, how do you design your products, what makes your products stand out?
Squirrel picnic tables are my best and only seller[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”100001112″ img_size=”737×737″ onclick=”link_image” css_animation=”appear” bb_tab_container=””][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”100001111″ img_size=”737×737″ onclick=”link_image” css_animation=”appear” bb_tab_container=””][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”100001110″ img_size=”737×737″ onclick=”link_image” css_animation=”appear” bb_tab_container=””][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text bb_tab_container=””]
What do you enjoy most about being an entrepreneur? What’s the hardest about it?
I thoroughly enjoy and have a great passion for woodworking.
Who do you sell to (and how do you get customers)? What marketing tools or strategies you use to boost your sales? Are you satisfied with the results?
I sell to squirrel lovers people that own squirrels for pets. And people that are just looking for a little entertainment. I joined a few squirrel groups on Facebook which helped increase some of my sales.
Do you believe there is a winning formula for becoming a successful entrepreneur? What is yours?
I think it just takes dedication drive and willingness not to give up. Even when there are naysayers.
What was the toughest moment you have experienced in your business practice? How did you succeed to get over it and move forward?
Went to work at 5 PM Got home at 5 AM. I had received 18 orders the day prior so I had stayed up for 36 hours to be able to complete all orders and still be able to spend time with my family. The hardest part is balancing my side business and my family and a full-time job.
What inspires you when you’re creating? How do you get ideas for new products? What are some methods or tools you use to get creative?
I drive a tractor trailer for a living. I spend a lot of time with the music off staring at the road and thinking of new projects.
Do you ship your product internationally? How do you handle postage pricing? What is the average time it takes from the order to the delivery? Do you use free shipping? If so, why? How do you package your products?
I charge a flat fee of $10 to ship and $15 to ship internationally. I have yet to have any orders going international. My average time is 1 to 2 days but I like to get them out the next day if the not the same day. There’s nothing better than seeing on a review “I got my package so fast my head spun”. So far I have five stars, not one bad review and I plan to keep it that way.
What would you say are the key elements for starting and running a successful online business?
Just don’t give up keep grinding.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are starting out?
Find something you actually enjoy doing. So when you get orders you’re excited to make it. And also be able to sell what you enjoy making.
How do you personally define business success? Is it money? Freedom? Influence? Creative expression and innovation? Something else?
It’s definitely creative expression and innovation. Money means nothing if you’re not being able to enjoy it with the ones you love. And also be able to earn it doing something you love And also be able to earn it doing something you love
Describe your day-to-day operation. How do you manage your time?
I work a full-time job at 50-60 hours a week. Get in the woodshop as much as possible. And try to prioritize my family before everything.
How do you plan on growing your business? What is the biggest impact on your profitability?
I think next is making different things That I enjoy building (Bird houses, birdfeeders, cutting boards, cheese boards)
What are some things you did to set your shop for success on Etsy? What is one lesson you learned the hard way?
I realize that everyone was selling squirrel picnic tables but no one was selling them ready to go with food. I went to my wife and got her opinion on whether I should sell my squirrel picnic tables with food. Knowing that I was going to take a tiny hit on the profit I made the sacrifice and it really has paid off. A lot of people don’t want to have to run to the store right after they get a package. They want to open it up to throw it in the yard and have visitors as soon as possible.