Tell us a bit about your business?
MiniMoh’s Online Marketplace - Bringing people together to create a community. An online marketplace for Buyers & Sellers of all things women and children.
MiniMoh’s Online Marketplace brings hundreds of small brands and local businesses together in one place. Think of MiniMoh’s as a virtual marketplace filled with unique stalls and gorgeous products.
Shopping on MiniMoh’s is convenient, easy, safe and secure. Every purchase you make on MiniMoh’s is a vote for a small business, helping them grow and keeping our dollars local.
Why did you start up your business?
My business partner Debbie and I were regulars at every weekend boutique market. I’m completely envious of these small business owners who have these fabulous products and a lot have been handmade. Once my second child came around, I found it harder to get out of the house, especially on weekends. Deb & I decided there had to be an easier way. We realize that a lot of these businesses are selling from FB and unless you know who they are, you wouldn’t know about them. We decided if we had them all showcased from one website then it would be easier for shoppers to find them and be convenient to buy online.
What are the major hurdles you experienced when starting up your business?
Having the web site built to the specifications that we needed. As it’s a marketplace style site, where each individual business has their own dedicated virtual shop that they manage. The purpose built site took almost a year to build and we are still ironing a few things out.
What tips can you give other SavvySME members that are thinking or in the process of starting up their business?
Do your research. Have a look at all options and make the best decision that suits you and your situation. Opportunities like MiniMoh’s can be a great cost-effective way to help you to grow your business without the high start-up costs. It just comes down to doing something that you whole heartedly believe in that you can achieve.
What made you decide to take the jump and focus on your business?
I was at a point in my life that I needed to decide if I go back to my career or if I go in another direction. This decision came at the right time for me.
How did you family and friends react?
My friends and family were not surprised. I am a very determined and driven person, so it made sense that I had given myself a challenge and a project to work on. I am a true believer that you do things properly or don’t do them at all, so I had set the bar high. My support network has been my backbone, especially when we were to launch. They keep me level headed and on the right track, without their support I couldn’t have done this.
How has your life changed?
I have connected with the most inspirational and talented business owners, whom some of them I can now call friends. I am so proud that we are giving back to Australian Small Businesses in a way that I feel I’m contributing to helping their families. The support that we have received has been unexpected. There are a lot of women out there who are wanting to get back into the work force after children and this platform gives them the opportunity without excess capital or start up fees.
What success have you experienced since starting your business?
We have only been online for 3 months and already we have had some fantastic press. We have been showcased in Pregnancy & Birth and Mother & Baby Magazines. Along with a segment on Channel 9’s A Current Affair program. We have also been given a thumbs up award as part of the “Anthill Cool Company” awards. We were one of only 14 businesses Australia wide to win in the online category.
What is the vision for your business going forward?
We are currently making some exciting changes to the site that will see the categories and segments expanded to allow more businesses on board. We are in the process of starting our PR campaign for 2013. We are also launching an e-catalogue that will feature some of our fantastic small businesses and some great articles.
We also have leaders in other Small Business, giving our small businesses the tools to grow their business. From Business Coaches, Accountants, SEO specialists, Marketing specialists, Graphic Designers and professional Photographers, our businesses will be able to tap into the talent and skills of these professionals.
What tips can you give other SavvySME about motivating yourself to push through the challenges that rise up while building your startup?
Believe in yourself and your business. Work hard at achieving what you have set out to accomplish. Don’t sit back and wait for it to come to you, you need to work at it. Be patient, it takes time for your hard work to pay off. Network to gain a support group of like-minded people that can assist you along the way.
Author of this article is Natrice Grosvenor. Co-Founder & Director of MiniMohs Online Marketplace