Fri, 9 July 2021
It wasn't long ago that people were saying that brick and mortar stores are dead and will never come back. Those folks better watch out because David is swinging his sling shot and has figured out a new way to slay Goliath!
On today's episode I am speaking with an unbelievably innovative, rural entrepreneur, who is not afraid of brick and mortar. Kayla Gabel is the owner of The Desert Rose Boutique in Wiggins, Colorado. Located only 66 miles from Denver, she has customers that will drive 90 minutes to come spend the day in her shop rather than drive 20-30 minutes to shop in Denver. Kayla has redefined brick and mortar, and she is only getting better.
Kayla likes to shop, and that passion ultimately led her to starting her own, online boutique which she named Desert Rose. However, it was becoming too much for her family to handle in their home, so she found herself opening up an actual store front. Kayla chose to open that store in the small, farming based town that she lives in rather than commuting into a city where she might get more drive by traffic. Actually, she ignored convention knowledge about opening up a physical location altogether. Rather, with the help of the internet and social media, Kayla created her own community of fans, and now they drive to her small town to shop with her!
Today the Desert Rose Boutique makes about 60% of its sales online with 40% of sales happening on location in Wiggins, Colorado. However, Wiggins is very small and those 40% of sales are not exclusively from locals. So, how does Kayla get people to drive to her small town to shop.....she created a community.
Kayla is very active on social media, Facebook specifically, and she even has a special, VIP group on Facebook where she shares her life and exclusive offers with her fans. She has also created a mobile app to keep in touch with her fans outside the confines of Facebook at the touch of a button.
What Kayla really does is provides a unique experience, unique products and unbelievable customers service. If a customer walks into her boutique, she knows who they are, what their story is and what they purchased last time. She and her staff will visit all day with them, help them pick out outfits and provide the type of customer service that seemed to have died somewhere back about 1989. Even though today many people will just buy from whomever and don't hold companies to any kind of standard when it comes to service, there are those who still demand to be treated well. And, they are driving from the Denver Metro Area to a postage stamp, small town to get it.
Kayla thinks way outside the box when it comes to business. She has brought a massage therapist into her store so now people who want a massage can come be part of her boutique's experience as well. She just purchased her first tanning bed, and soon will have three that she will rent to people looking to get some intense UV rays. And of course, when they are done there is conversation, friendly people and unique clothing and products waiting for them right outside the door.
Kayla is driving by a sense of community, and she is trying to bring customers to her community for a shopping experience that will extend beyond her boutique and into surrounding businesses.
If you have ever wondered if you could start a brick and mortar store in your small town and succeed, you need to hear this interview with Kayla Gabel!
Direct download: Off_Farm_Income--Episode_1119_Kayla_Gabel-062521.mp3
Category:farming -- posted at: 12:30am MST