Where & How To Sell: Getting Started & Going It Alone

with our industry experts

There's one simple thing that all businesses require in order to be viable, and that is sales! Without them, we simply don't have a business. This month, we'll focus on how to thrive "going it alone". As you'll soon find out from the founder of Field of Ponies, for the first time in many years, entrepreneurs can truly challenge the status quo and single-handedly take on retail giants.

We'll discuss the avenues you can take to get your product to market and hear from those who have been there and done it on their top tips for success. You'll also discover how to overcome your fear of selling and how to perfect your sales technique. We've also included, not one, but three invaluable downloadables! The first is an extensive list absolutely jam-packed with ethical retail stores, marketplaces and boutiques that you can pitch your wares to. Followed by two checklists for what you need to do and think about before you set up both an online and physical bricks and mortar shop.

Then, next month, we'll look at the other side of the coin and we'll take a look at wholesale selling, fashion and trade shows, boutiques and sales agents.

Let's get started!


We've got the incredible design entrepreneur duo from Francis Love to introduce your sales options. And they've hung around for a second video where they've imparted all of their incredible knowledge and wisdom on their experience setting up their beautiful, interior homewares shop in Surrey, England.

I think you'll love my interview with Julie Bérubé from Field Of Ponies who shares her experiences of doing things a little differently. Having worked in a more traditional way for ten years, she now retails on her own terms utilising the power of social media and also talks in depth about running her own Pop Up Shop - with some amazing advice.

Then we dive into the world of setting up bricks and mortar stores. Having already taken a look at the runnings of an interiors home furnishing shop, Ilona Anthony gives us her insight into running her beautiful fashion store in Melbourne, Australia. Having spent the majority of her working life as a primary school teacher, Ilona is a true inspiration as a granny entrepreneur! She has lots of brilliant tips on how she set up her store and attracts her ideal client.

Finally, we chat to Wendy Batten, the founder and director of Front Porch Mercantile. In a nutshell, she runs a gorgeous upcycled furniture store - but it's so much more that that! She is has a very interesting, eco-business model and gives us the scoop on franchising her idea too. And the best part? She's done it all on her own. What an inspiration.

Then, talking easing the anxieties of getting those elusive sales, we have expert advice from business consultant Melanie Brooks who has over 20 years of experience in fashion buying and now runs her own consultancy for female entrepreneurs. And once we've overcome our sales anxieties, we have Christine Knott, managing director of retail training company Beyond The Box, to explain how we can sell more simply by understanding how our customer buy!


  • Introduction to How & Where to Sell with Francis Love

    with Deborah Lynch-Shyllon
    Summary

    Today there are hundreds of sales channels available for creatives. So it's no surprise that both established and emerging designers often find it difficult to choose the right mix to sell their products. However, choosing the right sales channel is absolutely crucial. Without this, sales may not pick up as expected and it can be a fast drain on both your time and money. Luckily, the design duo behind Francis Love, Deborah Lynch-Shyllon and Julie Middleton, are on hand to demystify the topic, with their introduction to how and where to sell. Deborah and Julie began their business with a bricks and mortar interior design homeware store in 2014 and now run an interior design consultancy covering commercial and architectural design under the same name. They have incredible, first-hand experience of setting up a store retailing goods for the home using sustainable materials and working with independent designers and artisan.

    Read More...
  • Online Shops & Pop-Ups with Julie Bérubé, Field Of Ponies

    with Julie Bérubé
    Summary

    Julie Bérubé began her first label in London under her own name - and went big! She secured investors, produced collections twice a year with catwalk shows, invested in two employees, and a PR company. The business ran for seven years when Julie decided it simply wasn’t sustainable and stopped. She realised it wasn’t sustainable because she was too inexperienced and the pressure from her investment proved too great: "You had to pretend you were operating like a big fashion house". But she also felt that her creativity was being stifled and lost under the constraints of managing employees and managing money. Starting Field of Ponies was a conscious decision to do things in a different way - her way.

    Read More...
  • Launching A Bricks & Mortar Interiors Shop with Francis Love

    with Julie Middleton
    Summary

    With so many different business owners in The Members' Club, I was so excited when the fabulous design duo from Francis Love agreed to impart some of their wisdom on their experience setting up their interior homewares shop in Surrey, England. There are some amazing gems of advice in this video so get your pens at the ready!

    Read More...
  • Launching A Bricks & Mortar Fashion Boutique with Ilona Marasea, founder of Ilona Anthony

    with Ilona Marasea
    Summary

    We dive into the world of setting up a bricks and mortar fashion retail store! Having already taken a look at the runnings of an interiors home furnishing shop, Ilona Anthony gives us her insight into running her beautiful fashion store in Melbourne, Australia. Having spent the majority of her working life as a primary school teacher, Ilona is a true inspiration as a granny entrepreneur! She has lots of brilliant tips on how she set up her store and attracts her ideal client.

    Read More...
  • Running a Bricks & Mortar & an Introduction to Franchising with Wendy Batten, Front Porch Mercantile

    with Wendy Batten
    Summary

    We also had the pleasure of an interview with Wendy Batten, the founder and director of Front Porch Mercantile, a retail store in North America selling beautiful, reclaimed furniture which you can buy fully upcycled with their own ethical paints, or, you can even join in one of their fabulous workshops to learn how to do it yourself (among many other things). Wendy is also a coach and works with two of the biggest ethical paint lines in North America. But even more impressive is that just five years in, Wendy has franchised the business and is currently opening store numbers three and four! She has an incredible nose for business - I could have chatted to her for hours.

    Read More...
  • Conquer Your Anxiety Around Sales

    with Melanie Brooks
    Summary

    The fear of not being able to sell your product can be totally overwhelming. After all of the hours, money and love you've invested creating your product - the thought that your customer might not like it is scary! But, guess what - it's completely normal.

    The key is to not let the worry paralyse you. To teach us how to combat this anxiety around sales, we are so lucky to have this Masterclass from the brilliant Melanie Brooks!

    Read More...
  • Understanding How Your Customer Buys to Increase Your Sales

    with Christine Knott
    Summary

    Christine Knott founded Beyond The Box in 1999, a retail training and field marketing business. When Christine offered to host a Masterclass all about how to maximise sales - I couldn't believe it! Christine's company is one of the top training businesses in the UK, enabling sales staff to sell more effectively, with the aim of encouraging more satisfied customers to leave stores having bought products or services - and to come back as loyal customers who can't get enough. Beyond The Box teaches businesses how to raise average transaction values and improve conversion rates, and inspires employees to become sellers rather than servers. If you're at all nervous about sales and closing the deal - you'll love this video!

    Read More...

Additional Links

Advice for talking to fashion buyers

Success secrets of the best online fashion boutiques

The best online marketplaces to sell

Best sustainable fashion stores online

How to do market research or your niche business

Choosing the right location for your retail store

Managing a retail inventory

Launching your online shop

Ecommerce Gateways

Nail your SEO for your retail site

Appear here - find retail spaces for pop ups