So, I have something to admit- I shut down my shop. I wish I could say it was with a heavy heart, but the truth is that I’m relieved it’s closed. Opening this shop cost me hundreds of dollars. I am not kidding you, and I truly wish I was. I’m embarrassed to think of all the cool things I could have bought with that money, or the trip I could have gone on. The truth is that there's no way of knowing what's going to be a success or a bust. Sometimes you need to dive into the pool to see if you can swim. As a very apt metaphor, I could not. (And, I can't actually swim either.... but thats a story for another day...)
Today I'm going to answer some "FAQ", if you will, about the shop and why it failed. I hope that you guys can feel a bit better about your failures when you read about mine!
How much did you make from the shop?
About $100 and 3 sales. Yes, you read that right. I probably spent 7 times more than I made. That’s a pretty big failure, don’t you think? But hey, I’m ok with it. I’m giving myself a pass on this one. And if you’ve ever fallen flat on your face, I’m giving you permission to forgive yourself too.
Why did the shop fail?
Well... I don’t know. I put a lot of thought into curating some amazing products that I loved. I bought about 45 items and whittled the shop down to my top 15 or so items. I was super picky about what I sold. I was super picky about the photos. And I was super picky about the names and descriptions. But in the end, it didn’t matter. Cute photos didn’t work. Begging didn’t work. Coupons didn’t work. So, l figured if no one wants to buy it, I might as well stop selling.
Why did you spend so much?
Well, the inventory cost money. I didn’t buy tons of anything (less than 15 of each item!) but it adds up. Then, having a Shopify account cost $30/month. I had my items on Amazon too and that was $40/month. And to list on Amazon I had to buy UPC codes which were like $25. In short? My overhead was way too high. My items were priced fairly, but they didn’t sell. At all. And none of this even includes labor- all the time I spent on finding the items, photographing and styling them, editing, listing, promoting, storing, buying packing supplies... a lot went into this shop!
What are you gonna do with all that inventory then?
I’m going to have a flash sale for it, probably on Instagram stories. With a baby on the way I need to get rid of all the clutter in my life! The supplies are currently taking up a closet in my home, and I’m going to need it for other things soon enough. Plus, what am I gonna do with 15 of the same earrings!?
Why are you telling us all this?
Because hey, maybe you failed too. We only see success stories on the internet from bloggers, the picture perfect moment in their day where things went right. Part of me wanted to shut down my shop in shameful silence. To not publicize the fact that literally no one cared what I had to offer. And another part of me was like, fudge it. I FAILED and maybe you did too. And that’s ok! Let’s commiserate together. Let’s laugh at how bad it was, and dream of successes ahead. Let’s cry over spilled milk and wasted money until we feel a little better about it. Let’s remember that it’s ok to fail, because that means we tried. And that’s wayyyyy better than those guys on the sidelines that were too afraid to jump in.
At the end of the day, I have no regrets. I tried something, knowing full well it could fail. Which was pretty terrifying, because I hate failure. But guess what? I survived. My friends and family still love me. I’m not ready to give up on my dreams of owning another shop someday. I’m not going to tell others to abandon ship on their dreams because I failed mine. It’s all a learning curve. I just happen to be learning A LOT lately ;)
So, that's my story. Do you guys have a story about a massive failure? How did you feel about it? Did better things come after? Let me know in the comments below!