(sorry for the amateur pictures - I am an amateur photographer)
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
(sorry for the amateur pictures - I am an amateur photographer)
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
For the past several months we have had some challenges fulfilling orders. It has been a huge expense to CropChocolate.com so we've come up with a solutions - move. Since our warehouse is 30 miles away from our offices we have decided to move the warehouse to where we office. That way we can better train our warehouse staff, have better control over inventory, created kits on the spot.
Where this has become the most evident is with kits such as the Sultry Kit by BasicGrey. Each manufacturer packages their product differently, some deliver product in packs of 6 while others deliver in singles. The Sultry Kit stickers were a perfect example of this--they were packaged in sets of 12 so here's what happened. We bought over 300 of these kits and the stickers came in 12s so the first 25 or so customers got 12X the value and the later customers are still waiting for theirs. We have ordered more and are picking them up the first week in March to mail out. If we pre-packaged them before sending them out and had more control this would not be an issue.
Thanks for being patient and SWEET!
So the first week of March we are moving!
Thursday, February 18, 2010
One thing I've learned as a small business owner is work isn't just a 9 to 5er. It starts when you wake up early, and ends when you go to sleep--often times late. So when I hear those ads on the TV and radio saying something like, "Are you tired of working long hours? Sign up at (company's name) and make more money by working less. Patricia earned six million dollars in her first month...!" I think... "Yeah whatev."
I've done the small business owner things a few times now and every time the results are the same--work more, pay yourself less, hire employees, make their lives better, find more joy in life.
Taking your work home with you is another aspect of small business ownership. Pictured below are shots of new kits being made and sent out to the CropChocolate.com Chocolatiers from home. There never seems to be enough time in the day for any of us at CropChocolate.com so we take our work home--except the warehouse staff--eat dinner, work and wake up the next morning to do it all over again.
At the end of the day, small buisness is not about getting rich or working less hours--that's what retirement is for--it's about giving value to your customer and creating a better life for the employees.
Monday, February 15, 2010
It may not sound crazy to you but one thing we get a thrill out of is seeing the la Carte orders go through. We've seen orders that are as high as $758.34 and $684.18, we've seen customers order 3 sets of 11 different items, between 10:00 AM Eastern and 11:00 AM Eastern on Sunday we saw so many orders go through that a few customers saw "the hourglass" for several minutes.
We know it's frustrating when you don't know why you didn't get an email confirmation or when the hourglass sat and turned. If you have any questions regarding your order email us at cs [at] cropchocolate.com and we will get a response to you tout de suite.
We have upgraded our emails systems recently so that every month we are allotted a certain number of emails. Thinking that the allotment would be enough, we went to bed peacefully on Saturday night--only to be surprised that we had to purchase the allowance of more emails. This effected the confirmation emails that were to be sent out for a few hours on Sunday. We are sorry.
Again, if you have a question about your order please contact us. We are way SWEET on YOU for helping us grow and become more of what you want!
Friday, February 12, 2010
Just a few more days of testing at CropChocolate.com and we'll have some shipping announcements to make. They're gonna be SWEET!
Here's an example; if you are an international customer living outside the US and Canada your daily shipping rates will NEVER exceed $12.78! If you have a whole bunch of stuff in your la Carte, shipping will never exceed $49.99! What's more, we will be offering free shipping to international customers on orders exceeding $300.00! So get all your friends together and split up an order and get it shipped FREE to Adelaide, Stuttgart, Tshwane, Singapore City, Strasbourg, Ipswich, and more!
The chocolate just keeps getting SWEETER and SWEETER!!!
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
We knew you would be either SWEET or sour on certain deals. That's why we added the comment section on CropChocolate.com. We read the comments you leave on the CropChocolate.com home page and on here, The Crop. Using this information, we've met with several manufactures, found brands we were unaware of, purchased great items to offer at SWEETer and SWEETer prices. We will be cross-collateralizing brands, mixing items that we think you'll like from various manufactures, and more. You have played an intricate part in our buying and the product is now landing on our docks. Thank YOU for helping us move the old stuff out to make room for the new.
OK, so there's the deal. We are sending out the brand new product to YOU, the designers. In the next day or two you will be getting an email informing you that a package is on it's way. We will send two to three kits out per product and wait until we get the photographs back to feature these items. Unfortunately we're a little behind where we wanted to be but finding the right Product Manager was key to the success of the "designer" program. We couldn't be more thrilled with your response to this program. We can't wait!
In the mean time; play nice, enjoy the old chocolate and wait for the chocolatier's (designers) to work their magic!
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Ok so a wizard is a bit much--I'm a pretty normal guy that has been marketing stuff for the past 11 years. I live in a small community just north of Salt Lake City, UT with a great wife and a good dog.
When CropChocolate.com started it was just me. Thanks to all of YOU, within a short few months CropChocolate.com has become a company 11 strong. We have a warehouse staff, a customer service staff, a marketing team, a developer, and we just brought on a product manager to give a broader depth of product. Enough about us though, let's talk about YOU!
At CropChocolate.com we are continually looking for SWEET deals. What's more, we are continually looking for ways to involve you in the sweetness. We've added a comment section and user profiles. Coming soon, we will introduce pages that you can create to chat with folks in your area, meet other scrappers, share ideas and more.
Our newest idea comes as we have listened to you, read your posts on CropChocolate.com, and read you ideas on The Crop. We have a whole bunch of new product coming into our warehouse in the next few weeks and we're trying to make room by selling out old stuff. We've done a pretty good job these past few weeks making room for the new stuff thanks to you.
As the new stuff arrives, our product manager will be sorting out kits and scheduling out dates. She will be looking for CropChocolate.com customers to evaluate those kits--actually, better said, she will be sending out free product to interested customers to design. We will take those designs and show them on CropChocolate.com when the product is featured.
While learning about the scrapbooking industry, we have seen several industry stars rise through blogs, boutiques and the like. At CropChocolate.com, we want to give a platform to be the "the like" for our customers. We want to give you a place to showcase your designs!
Here's what we want from you; send an email to sales [at] cropchocolate.com to let us know you're interested in participating. We will confirm we've received your email and contact you about what you are most interested in designing. When we find a product that might be down your alley--card making, page designs, tags or embellishing--we will ship you the product for free and give you the deadline (2 weeks or more) for when we need pictures of your design submitted. Each design will be tied to the product(s) and to YOU, the designer.
Like I said earlier, I am no wizard, especially when it comes to scrapbooking but YOU are!