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After months of promoting multiple online marketplaces on braquelsbathroom.com, Tyra and I decided to open a Big Cartel account and redirect it to the main domain. Promoting several storefronts on this site did not serve the business well, mostly it confused potential customers when we directed them here to view and buy products.
Streamlining was necessary.
When the decision was made to promote one storefront, we chose to direct braquelsbathroom.com visitors to Storenvy to buy products because it is a free e-commerce platform with no sign up or listing fees—and it needed major promotion as we only had 2 sales on Storenvy since we launched in late December. It made perfect sense at the time until I started testing WordPress themes to create a stylish front page that would include a link to direct customers to our Storenvy storefront. Due to Storenvy having one basic template that requires heavy HTML and CSS editing, I had to find a WordPress theme that was similar to the Storenvy template. Going into the process, I knew I wouldn’t find an exact theme to match, but I wanted something close with simple customization. After a week of testing more themes than I can count, nothing worked! Everything I tried looked fragmented and unprofessional, ugh!
All I want is a clean looking, functional site.
After not getting the look and feel I wanted and also the lack of sales on Storenvy (sadly), I decided to give Big Cartel serious consideration after dismissing it late last year due to the monthly fee. After checking out the options for a paid account – stats, inventory tracking, discount codes, use of own URL, and most importantly, ease of customization – the decision to sign up was easy. Between sales on Etsy, the bit of direct billing we do for family & friends, and attending craft shows—the monthly fee for the Diamond account should easily be affordable as a small expense of doing business.
It’s coming together.
I am very happy with the new setup of braquelsbathroom.com online store and I was able to find a WordPress theme for the blog and other featured pages that integrates nicely with the online store. For now, we will continue to sell independently on other online marketplaces until it’s time to re-evaluate their effectiveness. Lastly, we’re realistic that it will take time and a lot of effort for this site to come close to the traffic and sales that we get on Etsy, but having a professional looking, fully functional website to promote and sell our products directly gives us the confidence to continue to grow the business on our own terms, and that is priceless.