Ellie has figured something out. Life is going to happen and you can let it happen on your terms or someone else’s terms. Guess whose terms she chooses. So when the problems happen, when the family issues arise, when the manufacturing problems come up and when Amazon changes something that affects you, pull yourself up and get through it. It’s okay to stop by the bathroom and cry your eyes out. But then dry off your face, hold your head up high and ask for help, take action or anything else you need to do.
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Transcript: (note- this is a new tool I am trying out so it is not perfect- it does seem to be getting better)
Ellie: 00:00:00 It is, and you have to realize it’s not your fault, it’s really on the other person or the situation and how you deal with it. And um, I just really felt strongly looking back, I mean the best advice I had at the time because we actually had to go live with a friend for three weeks, um, was her husband had said to me, this is not emotional. Think of this as business. I had worked in New York and run a business in New York and he was like, think about it that way. It’s a business approach at non emotionally. Map Out your steps in your head or on paper and just go and do them, you know, check them off. And that’s really what I did.
Cool voice guy: 00:01:03 Welcome to the ecommerce momentum podcast where we focus on the people, the products, and the process of ecommerce selling. Today. Here’s your host, Steven Peterson.
Stephen: 00:01:17 I’m excited to talk about my sponsors today, Gaye Lisby’s, million dollar arbitrage group. Amazing, amazing group. She is a teacher. This is Gaye, she was a teacher. She is a teacher. Still. You need to learn. This is the type of environment you want to be in because she’s going to help you understand why, and I think that’s the hardest part of this business is understanding why. Why is the red one popular when the green one isn’t? Well, there’s usually a reason and look Gaye does is probably parsed that better than anybody and she’ll explain the reasons for those things. I think that’s really powerful. Yes, she puts out a list. You’re going to get a good use of that list if you get in the group. Now here’s the deal. The group isn’t always open, right? So you get on the waiting list and you can join the waiting list through my link.
Stephen: 00:02:03 Doesn’t cost anything that to get on a waiting list and if you like her service, which I find that most people do that, that’s why there’s not so many openings. Um, you’ll be with her for a long time. And so it’s amazing. Freedom Dot com. She’s part of Andy Slam. It’s group amazing freedom.com, forward slash momentum. And you’re going to get in the waiting list. That’s all I can get you on right now. You can use my name and see if that gets you anywhere. But what I like about in the uh, what I like about what they teach in that group or the things that are going on, you know, the current things. I’ve seen a lot of stuff going on about stores going out of business. Well here’s where an opportunity is, here’s why you want to do this. Hey, be cautious about this, you know, with toys r US coming out, you’ve got to think about this and that’s the learning that you need to do.
Stephen: 00:02:47 And Gay is better than anybody else I’ve seen. So I’m amazing. Freedom Dot com. Forward slash momentum will get you to the waiting list. Then hopefully I can get you in the group and then you’re going to see me in there and we can chat anytime you’re ready. Karen lockers, group solutions, the number for ecommerce solutions, four ecommerce.com, forward slash momentum. It’s going to save you 50 bucks. Karen’s our account manager. We recommend her to everyone because she’s done so well for us. I mean, that’s quite frankly the reason we’ve been paying her for last few years, but she’s become an important part of our team. Her and her team are so involved in our account. I just see the emails coming back and forth, hey, we did this for you. I just saw two listings today. I’m like, wait a second. Why did they show up?
Stephen: 00:03:26 I didn’t put any listings up. They got a. They got a set off to the side by Amazon and they reactivate them for me. You know what I mean? That’s the stuff that just happens when you have a strong team and I can’t recommend Karen enough if you use my code momentum. Karen pays me. I don’t want to hide that. Of course we all know that, but you’re going to save $50 and it’s a great opportunity to really, really build out your team with somebody you can trust. It’s why I recommend them. So solutions four ecommerce solutions, the number four e-commerce dot com, forward slash momentum. It’s going to save you $50. Oh, and by the way, she’s going to do an inventory health report. Why is that important? Well, guess what fees are going up. Is your inventory health number declining like ours is?
Stephen: 00:04:15 Well, here’s why, and here’s what they can do. What I like is I get a spreadsheet from them and it says, Hey, here’s a bunch of inventory, here’s what we recommend, and I’m like, Yep, read refund. I mean a delete returned us blah blah, blah, whatever it is and it’s or destroy and it just happens. That’s what I like. The other thing that I have Karen helped me with a lot is creating new listings. You know, we do a lot of the research ourselves. We upload our images and then boom, magically the listing goes live and I don’t have to worry about it. Those are the services that Karen offers. CanNot recommend her enough solutions. Four ecommerce.com forward slash momentum. Save 50 bucks, use my code. You save $50 a month every single month and it’s a great service. Plus you get that free inventory health report.
Stephen: 00:05:01 I think it’s a really powerful way. So I can’t. I’m so excited how many people have been joining here because I see it and I’m excited because the messages I get from people saying, hey, this is great. I finally feel like I can focus on something else because Karen and her team are watching this for me and you know, I highly recommend her. Next up is scale solar lamps and scope and we’ll set it wrong. It’s, it’s amazing. I mean, it really is amazing when you sit back and think about, hey, I want to get this product up and it’s similar to this product and that product does well. Well, therefore, if that product does well, they have the right keywords, they’ve chosen things correctly, so guess what? You scope and you could see all that stuff and that’s what the most powerful thing in the world is to copy somebody who’s done it right.
Stephen: 00:05:45 That’s what you want. You want to take advantage of that, right? I mean it’s, it’s fair to see and so therefore you can take and apply it to your listing and immediately get that same benefit. That’s what scope does for me. Seller lamps.com, forward slash momentum. It’s going to save you $50 on the service. Oh, by the way, it’s free to try, so sign up, try it and say, oh, this is how it’s done. Boom, and then you’re going to. The light’s going to go on and you’re going to be like, man, I can get my products out there. I just can’t wait. Can’t wait. So we’re labs.com forward slash momentum. The other day I bought another domain. Yes, I bought it. The other domain. It’s almost like A. I’m admitting guilt, but it’s because I had an idea and it was something that was a pretty good idea I think is going to go pretty far and so what do I do?
Stephen: 00:06:36 I go to try go daddy.com forward slash momentum and save 30 percent. So domains aren’t very expensive. You get a few services, it adds up a little bit and I usually buy three years. I usually by privacy, by the way, I recommend that to buy that, you know, it’s not that much money, but when you can save 30 percent it makes it that much sweeter and it makes it easier when you’re buying domains and especially if you buy a bunch of domains. I am a domain collector and so I do tend to do that, but that 30 percent makes it a lot easier and I use go daddy because what I like is I can pop in and address I’m thinking and it’ll say nope, nope, could try this version or try this extension and then boom, there it is. Hey, you better hurry before it goes away.
Stephen: 00:07:17 And they’re right. You know, and so try Godaddy.com, forward slash momentum save 30 percent. Also want to mention about grasshopper. Who was that? Just talking to somebody the other day and they were like, Oh yeah, use this company called grasshopper. I’m like, Dude, did you buy it through my link and save 30 percent? Hello? No, they missed that. So save 30 percent. It’s try grasshopper.com. Forward slash momentum. No surprise there, but you’re going to save 30 percent and what the real cool part about that is they’re using it for their private label business and it gives them virtually a second phone on their current phone without having to get another number. They can make up a vanity number. They don’t have to go and do all the grief and signed loan contracts. Pretty easy stuff, and so if you’re creating a brand that you want to identify, you want to look professional, you want to look like a real company. Grasshopper is a great tool. It’s an app you put on your existing phone and boom, you now have a customer service or you now have a sales department. You’d have a manufacturing division. You could forward it to somebody else. You can have it go to different voicemails, different departments, and it’s all included. So try grasshopper.com while word slash momentum. Save 30 percent.
New Speaker: 00:08:30 Welcome back to the ECOMMERCE momentum podcast. This is episode 330 Ellie Lipetz. I love this interview and I know he said that a lot, but it’s just on his truth and I get choked up in this interview, um, because she’s just so real, you know, and it’s so refreshing to hear somebody with perspective say it like it is and not pull any punches and not make any excuses. Um, and I know that it’s got to be very difficult when you’re in it, when you’re so close to it, you can’t see it because I think of my own circumstance or from time to time I get it, you know, but being willing to ask for help, being willing, willing to be vulnerable, um, is really the answer and she gives some great examples of what that can do for you. Um, and I just, I really hope somebody hears this and changes and says, Huh, I can do that too.
New Speaker: 00:09:22 And Ellie will help you. You’re exactly the person she wants to talk to. She wants to help you. She wants to see you get past that circumstance and that situation. Let’s get into the podcast. Alright, welcome back to the ECOMMERCE momentum podcast. We’re excited about today’s guest, a good friend who’s been, you know, I sit and watch over time. Um, again, I say this all the time. I looked for consistency over time and when I look for somebody who’s figuring things out, who says, okay, boom, tried it. Nope. Adjust, tweak, adjust, adjust, and then hits a stride. Those are the kind of people, Hey, I want to be friends with because I’m going to learn a lot from. Um, but then when they’re great people, it just makes their life in my life much better. Ellie Lipetz, welcome La la. I was like, oh, I got so excited.
Ellie: 00:10:09 How are you? I’m doing good.
New Speaker: 00:10:11 Oh man, there’s no doubt you’re doing good because I don’t think my statement is inaccurate. Would you agree with that?
Ellie: 00:10:17 No, I think I’m really like, hit hit my stride now. I love what I’m doing. I love what I’m selling. It’s, it’s really working out
New Speaker: 00:10:25 and you can’t always say, you know, it’s funny. It’s not reasonable to always love what you’re doing. I don’t care who you are. I’m sure even the people who were the most happy still get, you know, life happens, things happen, challenges happen, but when you look at it in perspective, it’s pretty darn good, isn’t it? Yes. Well, when you think about where you are versus where you thought you would pay, I mean, do you get a kind of that Cheshire cat smile? I mean a little bit like, yeah, yeah, this is good.
Ellie: 00:10:58 I’m a single parent so the buck stops here no matter what. And the fact that I could be home with my kids and also take care of them financially, physically be here and run a business that I am enjoying what I’m selling, I’m enjoying who I’m dealing with is really amazing. I think.
New Speaker: 00:11:16 Well, I think it’s more than just being home with your kids. I mean, we’ll use your daughter for example. She’s deeply involved in a social activity that she loves and that’s a life consuming. It’s like when we used to do travel soccer with my, uh, my oldest, oh my God, it was like a whole weekend just to go to a game. And you do that for a lot of events, but the end, do you still work when you’re at those events?
Ellie: 00:11:37 Yes, I do. I made it my goal to not sit around and do nothing. I am one of those people who cannot sit around and do nothing. Um, my daughter actually this summer is working for a professional, so I’m really not traveling as much as I to be, but I, as soon as I realized I was going to be sitting on the sidelines for hours at a time, I went out and got an Ipad, an apple pencil and started doing march.
New Speaker: 00:12:02 What does that mean though, that you’re not present? You know, Ellie, you’re there but you’re not present. You’re there, but you really should be present. I’m there. Yeah. I agree with you because it’s three minutes on the field or whatever it is and would, depending on whatever event it is or if they’re watching, if, let’s say if she was playing soccer, you would watch the game, but it’s the, it’s all the rest to get there. And then she wants to be with their friends quite frankly. And I think personally she loves her mom, but right, I mean that’s fair.
Ellie: 00:12:31 You know what I think I’m really blessed to have a teenage daughter that likes to hang out with me. So we drive three hours one way or three hours the other way and we talk and have serious conversations. And she asked me stuff that I’m very grateful she’s not looking up on the internet or asking somebody who’s older sister. Um, and if I just sit on the sidelines and watch her and cheer her on when we’re there, that’s fine.
New Speaker: 00:12:55 The net, then you are prejudiced. So the rest of it though, it gives you the chance. Know. The other thing is she gets to watch her mom be a business person. I don’t want to. It doesn’t matter that you’re woman or man, if she gets to watch her in her element and realizes, wait, she can do this from anywhere. You mean I don’t have to be tied to a desk for the rest of my life. I can, I can go anywhere and be successful because my mom’s doing it. That’s a big moment.
Ellie: 00:13:18 Yes. And she definitely takes that to heart. In fact, she’s entering high school this year. Um, and she was really upset. They didn’t offer any business curriculum at the freshman level.
New Speaker: 00:13:30 Well, that’s the time that she could take, I don’t know if they allow that community college in your state at that age. I wonder if they do because that is something that, you know, I’m preaching to anybody if they have that, that urge, embrace it and don’t let them take nonsense courses that, um, take real. I mean, this is how the depth can be made right here. It’s a big deal.
Ellie: 00:13:52 Yeah, it is. Well, she’s very, very driven. It will be 15 in a month. She’s incredibly driven. I was not that driven or focused at her age. Um, but she, she knows what she wants and she just goes after the ball. And uh, she also helps me in my business and she makes suggestions in that way. Also a, she handles my poshmark account. She’s my models. She preps in the car, you know, it’s a family thing.
New Speaker: 00:14:21 Well, let me ask you an uncomfortable question. One of the reasons she showed driven is because she sees how hard you’ve had to have it. Is that, is that an unfair statement?
Ellie: 00:14:30 No, I don’t think that’s unfair. She, she knows that I worked my butt off to be where I am and she knows that, um, you know, we, we don’t really celebrate some holidays because q four, there’s just not enough time and there’s times that I’m like, Hey, you know, this is the weekend before Thanksgiving weekend. I can’t go and do a show this week. You know, you have to go with someone else or there’s just not enough time. She definitely knows how hard I work.
New Speaker: 00:14:59 And so teaching your daughter not to be dependent upon anybody but herself, how important is that to you, given your circumstances?
Ellie: 00:15:10 That was one of my goals when I became a single parent. That was a goal. I did not want to look back when they were older and say, I’m, I didn’t teach them that no matter what happens in life, sometimes you can go cry in the bathroom and then you put your big girl pants on and you get out there. And you do what you have to do no matter what.
New Speaker: 00:15:30 Did you do know that or did you have to learn it the hard way? And be honest.
Ellie: 00:15:36 I knew that that’s how my parents raised me.
New Speaker: 00:15:38 Nice. Okay. So, so when I’m thinking about helping other people, you’re starting from a different place because you knew, you knew you had value. Nobody had to teach. I mean it was, it was in you write, it was built into you because there are some people who just have not been able to hear that they’ve been pushed down. They’d been, you know, just awful, awful circumstances have not heard that. Um, and so they don’t have that foundation to fall back in. What would your advice be to people who were in those circumstances?
Ellie: 00:16:12 I think that the hardest thing to do is to ask for help and to admit that you have an issue. You know, there was a huge embarrassment factor. It’s you look and you say, wow, this only happens to other people. This will never happen to me. And the reality is you just don’t know. So ask for help. No matter what your situation, I came out of a situation. Um, my ex husband is an addict. He’s still an avid. We tried every which way. I didn’t know anything about this. I was thrust into a situation with two young children, a mortgage, putting food on the table, and at the time I was not the main breadwinner and I asked for help. I asked for help from my temple. I asked for help from local organizations. I asked for help from my family and my friends and it was embarrassing, but people step up and they’re not embarrassed. You are so just take that to heart and reach out.
New Speaker: 00:17:07 That’s so powerful because I think, I think you’re absolutely, especially as a guy, a guy who is like, oh my God, I like asking directions. We can’t even do that. And so to to admit that they’re not perfect. Have to admit that they in their mind failed. Now you know that you never failed. I think that there’s a, there’s a key point. You didn’t fail in this relationship or whatever. I mean, it wasn’t you. That’s a big thing to recognize, isn’t it?
Ellie: 00:17:35 It is, and you have to realize it’s not your fault, it’s really on the other person or the situation and how you deal with it. And um, I just really felt strongly looking back, I mean the best advice I had at the because we actually had to go live with a friend for three weeks, um, was her husband had said to me, this is not emotional, think of this as business. I had worked in New York and run a business in New York and he was like, think about it that way. It’s a business approach. It not emotionally map out your steps in your head or on paper and just go and do them, check them off. And that’s really what I did.
New Speaker: 00:18:17 When, when you see like you’re out here selling, you’ve been selling for a long time and we’ll get into some more details there. Um, when you see people struggling, can you, can you sense that they’re in a difficult relationship based on the comments they post out on facebook? I mean, can you, do you have like a spidey sense for that?
Ellie: 00:18:35 Yeah, definitely. And I think, um, you can tell everybody, you know what the reality is, we all have things that we don’t tell other people. We all have issues that we deal with and some are worse than others. You know, we’re lucky, I think in this day and age where stuff is more open and acceptable. Um, where even a decade ago when this happened to me, it wasn’t as much. Give me an example. Um, domestic violence, you know, this was not out there. I mean, now with the me too, you know, generation, it’s so much more out there. Uh, I experienced verbal abuse. We did some kind of art therapy programs. It really was not a public thing then it wasn’t out in public. Now I’ve done like a video of my daughter and I did local video where they used it to promote a local organization to help women and families get through this. But back then it wasn’t so prevalent. Same thing with mental health, you know, it was just coming in. People weren’t as accepting, you know, we all have faced different challenges.
New Speaker: 00:19:42 Did when you went for help, when you said that people stepped up, did you experience the opposite to where the people were like, oh yeah, it’s her fault, you know, I mean, he’s a good guy or what have you, um, did you experience any of that?
Ellie: 00:19:57 Very little really only from his family. Um, because that would be a big fear I would think, you know what? I didn’t really have a fear as much as I didn’t know what to do. It was like living a surreal dream. It really was. And people don’t know what goes on behind closed doors. And we looked like the perfect happy family to a boy and a girl. My episodes, a CPA. We lived in a nice house in suburbia and a commuter neighborhood to New York. You know, people just don’t know what’s going on. And I, I often say this to my children, don’t judge somebody by their cover unless you’ve walked in their shoes and we are a perfect example. No one knew what was going on in our home until afterward when I opened up and shared that and asked for help.
New Speaker: 00:20:45 So there’s the lesson again, you hear Ellie ask for help, it’s a and you’re the one embarrassed the other people. Really the real other people that help, you’ll know that they’re genuine, those people really want to help. That gives them, you know, their, their, their, their value, right. To help other people give me the chills. Okay. So you need to find a job. So. So you were working in New York, I mean when all this went down, things got challenging. How do you come out of that? Where do you start? I’m rebuilding and then eventually get a get into selling on Ebay, Amazon, that kind of thing.
Ellie: 00:21:22 I worked in Manhattan for 15 years. I ran a design recruiting company. I have, I have a design degree. It was pre this happening I had, I had after the DOTCOM bubble, I’d come home and what’s with my kids more. And so I started selling on Ebay about when my son was born, you know, buy a little tykes truck for fifty cents, sell it for 50 bucks on Ebay and that totally blossomed. I always was a collector. I grew up with parents who collected antiques, so we did toys up the wazoo impact, um, a couple summers. My entire front yard was covered with huge little tykes toys that I sell on Ebay and have people come in and pick up. Um, it was a bizarre experience. We found a little tykes camper, like a full size climb into it, camper and somebody sent their assistant in a limo out of New York with cash to pay for this and then hired a shipping company to come pick this up and take it to their estate long island. Wow. That, it was very strange. Um, but then layering though,
New Speaker: 00:22:37 was that freeing for you? I mean, was that like a moment where you’re like, Huh, this is something. I mean, I, I, you said your parents had already, you know, got into antiques. I don’t know if they sold them, they bought them at least. But was that a moment for you, like, Huh? That you stored away? That eventually came back out.
Ellie: 00:22:56 It came back out in the sense that, um, I moved really from. I could see the potential in the bay and it was still really early days. It was like 1999 and then, but from there I learned pretty quickly. I didn’t like selling really big items. Okay. So if they’re a pain to ship their opinion to have people come to your house or just they’re huge and I quickly moved from there into collectibles and I was very good at finding collectibles. I found lots of stuff. We lived in a area where there are a lot of old houses and um, and we moved, you know, we, I moved into Ebay and then when this whole other thing happened, I had a pretty good ebay business going, but it wasn’t enough to support me totally. And you know, from I, I started moving into Amazon, but I also had to take a part time job with a friend, you know, to make sure we had benefits and um, which you still have, which I still have to admire, you know, I, I’ve gone back and forth.
Ellie: 00:24:02 It is for an accountant. So I go straight from q four into tax season. So pretty much six months in my life can be really crazy, but I’m feeling very blessed that a, he’s a good guy and he was and has always been very flexible and understanding. I can text him from the pediatrician’s office and he’d be like, fine, take care of the kids, come in a different day. I mainly work one day in the office and the rest of the time from home and I handle everything because I ran an office. So I’m sort of the Jill of all trades from tech to tax returns.
New Speaker: 00:24:36 Yeah. But that didn’t just happen. I mean, again, you sit back and do you think first off, that was your skill set, the New York, you know, running offices and all that. Um, and I’m sure it was crazy then, right? I mean, do you deal with a huge thing? You go to a smaller business where quite frankly you’re way over qualified to be there full time, yet he gets the benefit of your capacity and so he’s willing to give and you’re willing to give. To me, that’s a match made in heaven because you have a need, you know, benefits and stuff like that. I think it’s a, it’s a design, right? Um, yeah. It’s a design and most people aren’t willing to make that sacrifice. So right now there are some people struggling selling on Amazon right there, there it’s evolving. That was the word to use in our preinterview right?
New Speaker: 00:25:19 Was it? It’s a very good description. It’s not hard or harder if you were doing the same thing, it’s harder, right? If you’re trying to maintain the same thing, but it’s evolving and so you have been flow, but having. And you’re not swallowing your pride but having to work part time for you because that’s so important to you in based on your, your family circumstances, to me is almost like heroic. It’s like, I guess we’re back to that place where you’re, you’re kind of like asking for help. Even though you give him more, probably more value then. Then you get that. You get what I’m saying there. I just think people should hear that to say, Huh, that’s another way to do it. And you see you’ve been doing this for how long now? Working
Ellie: 00:26:00 time for eight years. Part time. And he convinced me to work for him. I had originally I didn’t, I was like, Ugh, I shouldn’t work for a friend in my recruiting background. No, always don’t work for a friend. And he convinced me to work for him and it worked out immediately to the point where I guess my daughter, well she’ll be 15 so she was seven. So we had like a whole drawer of tub that she would like to do. Arts and crafts on the floor. We pay her a penny a sheet to shred paper, you know, like it’s just worked out really well for me. And I think that as much as we talk about how people want to quit their jobs and go do Amazon full time, not everybody can do that. Um, I do think dual income people probably find it easier. They also can put the money back into their business most likely easier than I can. I have to take money out of my business. I have to or I can meet my bills. So you do what you have to do. He knows q four. I’m going crazy from like the middle of November to the middle of December. I only worked eight hours a week for him, whereas maybe from, you know, all of March, I’ll work 40 to 60 hours. So I, you know what, there’s a given. Take your backlog.
New Speaker: 00:27:22 It’s, this is something happening behind closed doors. Again, from the outside, somebody going to look at your say chase, why she worked in that part time job, what does she do when she can’t be making any money? What is going on? And then, uh, but when you pull back the curtain and you look at the actual workings, it’s a beautiful relationship because like you say, you’re busy in bolts, the, each, each business has a season and you’re able to help maximize both of them. To me that’s a win, um, where most people would see it as, oh man, what’s going on with that? Very cool,
Ellie: 00:27:55 very lucky. And I really believe that things happen for a reason. I’m very much so. And this has been a true, truly a blessing. I mean, I certainly, I have a bachelor of fine arts, I never set out to work for a CPA, but you do what you have to do and it’s like I said, you put your big girl pants on and you get for what did you do what you have to do, and this is one of the things that I had to do and I’m, and we’re my air your buds. I work hard. I come in early, I’ll stay late when I need to and uh, but what I get back is, is priceless. It’s really, especially, you know, in this day and age, you know, who knows, I feel like I have job security. Um, and I get this, this very special kind of relationship that makes it easy for me to work flexibly. He knows that I’m going to get the job done and I know that he’s going to have my back if I have a problem.
New Speaker: 00:28:52 So let me ask you this. This is a personal question and you don’t have to answer this, but do you make enough money with the accounting to cover your basic expenses plus the plus? The benefits, um, or could you get enough that way and then that way you don’t have the same, you know, feast or famine, you know, because there’s a big fear about going full time selling on Amazon or Ebay because it’s like, oh, I got to make it paycheck to paycheck. Right. What is it? Seventy percent of people that paycheck to paycheck? Well, when you’re, when you’re selling on like, like the old, uh, the newer sellers on Amazon can get their payments for two weeks. Right? And so those kinds of things are really challenging. You’re not bound by those challenges if you have it. I don’t want to call it a safety net, but it really is a safety net by design and it’s a sacrifice. But man, that’s a, that’s a, that’s a good way to look at this.
New Speaker: 00:29:46 Yes. So I used to be hourly. We changed over to. I have a yearly salary, I do get paid weekly now. It is a huge difference. Yes. I can cover all my expenses and I’ve built up to this. I mean, I’ve worked for him for eight years and his end, as we well know, uh, benefits are huge. They’re a huge part. Healthcare is priceless.
New Speaker: 00:30:13 And so I hope people hear this. I hope somebody who’s sitting there thinking about going, especially a single mom, you know, this is a great, great discussion. I always say this, good people are hard to find. You know, everybody’s like, Oh, you know, uh, you know, uh, jumping from job to job, it’s hard to keep somebody who’s good, so a good company will pay you what you’re worth. If you’re good now that means you got to go in and give. And, and I think the way La described it is perfect, where when he needs more, you have to give more and it’s not always you taking, right? But when you develop that relationship over eight years, so, you know, I don’t know what it turned for you, but at some point you can get to that position and now you’re able to take risks. Uh, whereas your development, private label products, you do, you’re doing all the things.
New Speaker: 00:30:56 I mean, you got the best of both worlds. Um, again, by design and you were forced into it. Is that the weird part for you? When you look at some of the others? I mean, you must smile to yourself when you see some people who haven’t made right, who sit back and you’re probably send you something, man. You don’t realize how good you have it when they’re sitting there complaining about, wow, the price tanked on my thing and you’re saying to yourself, Geez, I’ve got to sell this thing to make my numbers. I’m, do you get a little smile to yourself?
New Speaker: 00:31:26 I don’t know if it’s a smile as much as I think sometimes people don’t appreciate what they have now. I have to and end. I have things that tank, you know, I have stopped that. I’m like, oh my gosh, I wish I didn’t buy a thousand of those and I just want to get my money back out of it. Um, but, you know, I think we should appreciate what we have and um, you know, I don’t use repricers. I don’t scrape, you know, catalogs or anything like that. I really come have come upon a lot as you know, in a sort of unorthodox way. Uh, you know, I kinda, I, I gravitate toward a certain certain kinds of things and then I try to make it work, the numbers, the ideas, and because of my recruiting background, I really preach relationship building. I preach it on facebook, I preached it in person. I think that when you make a relationship with vendors, and I do tend to deal with small to medium sized vendors. When you get a relationship, they’ll go the extra mile for you knowing that you’re going to go the extra mile to sell the product.
New Speaker: 00:32:35 You’re right back to the, to the, to your accounting firm that you’re working for. You’re back to that same example again. You give when they need and they give when you need it. And I think that that is a perfect lesson. So there’s couple of lessons here. So you did do some retail arb. Did you realize that that just wasn’t as enjoyable because you, you now wholesale and private label exclusively did how much retail arb did you do? And, and when was at the point you’re saying, hmm, this isn’t from each back to the Ebay thing. This isn’t for me either.
New Speaker: 00:33:05 I did retail arm and I was 100 percent retail arbitrage. I really started by small things. I’m doing very small things and then I sort of did it. Oh my God. Squirrel and got distracted and started doing clothes and shoes. And you and I’ve had this discussion. I hate shoes. I hate packing shoes. I hate taking years off my wife. Neither one will like shoes. Yeah. Don and I had this conversation to hate shoes. I did hire for like one year I had someone working for me doing it. I just don’t like it. I didn’t like the returns. I didn’t like anything about it and it’s exhausting to me. You know, I, I’m, again, it was just me. So the kids would go to school and I rush out in my suv and go shopping, bill the thing to the brim, rush back home in time to be here before the kids got home, you know, take the labels off or whatever into the night and then ship them out for awhile.
New Speaker: 00:34:08 I use someone’s warehouse that worked out a little better. But, but I just don’t like, you knew it wasn’t for you if that wasn’t the thing for me. And I know people. I still know people who make their living doing this and that’s great. Um, the main difference I feel between retail arbitrage and wholesale is when you’re buying retail arbitrage, if someone already has made those decisions for you. So there’s, you know, they’ve already made the decision that they’re buying this product and they’re putting it in their stores and now you’re buying that product and putting it on Amazon. When you’re buying wholesale, you have to make the decision for everything. You have to say, this product’s gonna sell. Nobody else is telling you, oh, I think this is going to sell. And that’s why I’ve put it in my store.
New Speaker: 00:34:52 No, Kelly Fed ego says it this way. She’s like, you know, there’s a science to this business, right? EHR data to back up that choice. Like you’re saying right there. However, there’s an art to it too. You can’t, it’s not just science, right? The, the, the numbers. You know, how many people are using all these tools and then they buy product and it tanks. Right? Why? Well, because there’s the art piece that you have to add into it that art is what separates the outliers. And that is an art. And I think this is a, I think this is a good question. Is that an art that can be learned or is it built into you? Like, I mean, it’s taught or it’s a innate.
New Speaker: 00:35:35 Do you know what I mean? You know, exactly. You’re asking me. I had gone shopping. I, you know, my daughter and I look at things together and she’ll make the Dustin’s and quite frequently she’s right about, oh, this is gonna sell mom or that’s hot or you should get that color. Um, I think that it’s a little bit of both and where your background is. I mean, I have an art background and I do gravitate toward things that have sort of some sort of already, you know, or handcrafted or, or things in that, you know, John Ra, but that’s like what I know. And so I think it’s a little bit of both. Also though, if you’re doing retail arbitrage and you see you have something that’s been selling and then you can’t get it anymore or it’s so successful. Well, Hey, if you make it yourself or create your own brand and have a similar product made, then you’re not competing against all those other people because it’s your brand and your product.
New Speaker: 00:36:32 No, wait ellie, there’s so many. There’s millions of products on Amazon. We can’t add another product. There’s, there’s no chance. You know, that’s so not true. I know. It’s so not true. You know, what’s, what’s very cool to me is your story. So you walk away from retail Arb, uh, and you don’t walk away. You evolve from it. So you don’t just turn it off. I think that’s a mistake people make, but you came away with it with a different perspective. Again, that example you just used is that when things are not there anymore, there’s a clue, right? Uh, what’s a good example? Um, fidget spinners, right? You know, whoever started the fidget spinner craze, right? Recognized early on that this was an incredible opportunity. And Boom, they brought it to market, right? There wasn’t enough. Not Enough people could get it to a scarcity, you know, it now it evolved so fast, right?
New Speaker: 00:37:22 But, but it’s a good example when you walk away from that experience with ideas and then you have the skillset to be able to bring them to the marketplace, either private label or white label and we can talk about white label because you do some of that too. I think that that is just so powerful. Um, and again, I think most people, you know, when you, when you have to make a paycheck on Friday, and I know you do, so I don’t mean to say it that way, but you have because you’re sacrificing on this other end and you’re willing to do this other hard work with this other part time job. It gives you the chance to take some chances. You get what I’m saying? Yes. I think that’s very smart, especially if you have limited funds. Right? Is that, is that a good way to say it?
New Speaker: 00:38:08 Well, I do have limited funds and you know, I do make most of my, not all of it, but I do make a considerable amount of my money during q four. So you know, like now in August and September and October, things are going to be really tight around here. But then especially if I’ve had a vendor for a couple of years, I asked him for terms. Right. You know, some of my vendors give me terms of mainly in q four, they know I’m going to give it back to them, but they know I’m not going to really be making the money until December. And so they’ll wait.
New Speaker: 00:38:43 Well, I think this is a great example. So next week, uh, Ellie’s going to a trade show that I can’t go to, um, and because I’m launching some product, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, but you’re not going looking for products now if they fall in your lap, if an opportunity arises. But in our pre discussion you were able to buy a product that you’ve been buying, um, because it was an off season and because of the relationship you got so much cheaper than you would have because at opportunities there, but you’re going to work on your relationships now who’s willing to put that much energy, effort and money into that?
New Speaker: 00:39:18 Well, I think that, you know, I’m, I’m in New Jersey, so I hit almost every show at the javits except the choice show. I don’t go to, I don’t do choice anymore. Um, so I go to the javits. It’s only a train ride for me, so it’s really not hard. It makes it hard for me to go to other shows because the javits is right here. My vendors, I’ve already had a dozen vendors contact me to make sure that I’m going to come by and see them. You know, you press the flesh, you talk to them, you talk about their kids, you talked, they show you new product to talk about ideas and stuff that maybe you can give them suggestions. They give you suggestions. I have personal cell phone numbers, you know it. It’s relationship building and that is priceless
New Speaker: 00:40:05 and, and this takes time. So we share a vendor, Lee and I do. And you were just at her house, you were and and you get better. You’ve got a better deal than I did. I mean the, the processes that they’re going to do for you because of that relationship going further now, just moved your business. How much forward?
New Speaker: 00:40:27 Oh my goodness. That that trip and spending. We spent a couple hours together developing packaging and stuff and she has prep people and she’s going to do all my prep for me in terms of packaging the product and I literally will drive down there and pick it up in September. That’s amazing for me because as we all know, it’s great. It’s so much fun to develop the product, but do we really want to spend all that time prepping it because that’s time that we can be building our business.
New Speaker: 00:40:57 Especially when you’re a one or two person operation. I mean that that comes at the cost of something else, right? I mean that’s 100 percent. You would have never gotten that. Well, I shouldn’t say that. You might’ve had you not. Well, not at the price you got by email, by that impersonal email. Right. This is, this is where the hardware and in these people you’re going to see next weekend in New York. Again, this is an opportunity for you to take, and maybe none of that comes this time, but how long have you been with that person that we share?
New Speaker: 00:41:30 Two years. A year and a half.
New Speaker: 00:41:32 So you’ve seen though personally several times, and so that’s what takes right each time, you know, you don’t win everything day one, if you would’ve went up to him and said, hey, here’s what I need a, you wouldn’t have got it at the price you want probably, and she wouldn’t have been willing to do it, but she’s seen you over time. Again, we looked for that consistency over time and you’ve been fair buying. You’ve been fair paying and boom, magic. This happens. Okay? So when we think about trade shows, I think about Ellie, um, I think she’s a great example is somebody who can go to a trade show, develop the relationship. So when you go in, you’re not looking, you’re not going in and scanning every item and going to booth, hey look, I saw on Amazon, right? How many times have you. And I heard this, I sell on Amazon, therefore I’m the guy that you want to talk with, um, and I can fix all your problems. And that’s not a, that’s not what you get, right?
New Speaker: 00:42:30 That’s not what I do at all. I was laughing when you were saying that that is not how I operate in any way in bad. I, um, I take a much softer approach. I tend to look at products and then strike up the conversation, especially smaller vendors about the products. You know, you started talking about how you have things in common, you know, where you are. Amazon will come into play. You know, I always am always, always, always am upfront about that. I am a third party seller on Amazon. I never want to get into a situation where I had somebody say, oh, we didn’t know,
New Speaker: 00:43:10 you know, so wait. So you’re not hiding it. You’re saying, Huh? Um, you’re, you’re saying, Hey, I’m there. This is what I do and we can work together if we give and take. Yes. So talk about how you approach a booth.
New Speaker: 00:43:30 I will, I have to be drawn in. I think that, you know, I, I pretty much stick to, you know, a certain kind of, um, vendors so that easily now I can walk by a lot of vendors. Now I can go, I’m not going to do this. I’m not gonna do that, I’m not going to, this is not in my niche, this is not what I want to be doing.
New Speaker: 00:43:53 Or there’s a hassle, right? I mean, so those all those things and experiences taught you, if you see it and it looks like a hassle, oversized, whatever, you have those parameters.
New Speaker: 00:44:02 I don’t do any oversize. Um, my rule of thumb is smaller than a breadbox. Uh, and if it’s bigger than that, I don’t do it. I want a higher priced. Yes. And, but sometimes not. If it’s so simple that you don’t even, all you do is slap a label on it. Hey, if I can make five bucks on that and literally I’m slapping a label on the product, why not? You know, I’m not poly bagging, I’m, I have a product like that. I’m, all we do is slap, you know, a certification label. It comes polybag slapped the, the, the Amazon label on it, slap up certification label. Boom. It’s out the door.
New Speaker: 00:44:41 Okay. So I don’t want to lose this though. You approach this, you filtered out mentally as you go down the aisles. I think this is such a powerful thing because it’s so hard and they’re almost like absolutes for you. Right? I mean you don’t. It’s almost like an absolute.
New Speaker: 00:44:56 Yes, it is an absolute hard absolute. So I know kind of the products I’m looking for and then I’ll walk in and I’d like to look at the products. I’m not here for the hard sell or anything. Then I’ll start talking to the, you know, the vendor and I do come out and say, this is what I do. Sometimes there’ll be like, hey, you know what? We already sell our product on Amazon or I already have some and this is more the kind that I get. I already have an exclusive with somebody. They’re doing a really good job for me. Or you know, we’ll have someone say, hey, I sell my product on Amazon but it’s not going that well and I can’t figure this out. And then I’ll start talking to them and then maybe they’ll have you sell that. I have not. I should be clear.
New Speaker: 00:45:40 Ninety five percent of the products I sell, I either have the exclusive on or are my own brands or a creative for me, like five percent of the products I sell. I compete against other people. I don’t want to compete against anyone else. And I think that if you, you’re not the hard sell for me. Not a, a, a sort of easy just talking, you know, relationship building conversation works so much better. I just went to the Philadelphia gift show, I downed a new vendor. I just happened to be standing next to some that the booth next door and I looked over and I started talking to her and um, and now she’s, she’s, she’s not an Amazon and now we’re going to try something together.
New Speaker: 00:46:26 Hmm. And that. And again, you didn’t go there looking for new vendors. You, you have. Maybe this is a, a sense maybe this, uh, this is a notice that maybe you become a noticer. I’m a filtered notre. Sir. I don’t have a good term for this, but I think this is really smart. So if you go and you have all these parameters in your mind and then you look through that Lens, you see things that most people don’t. Right? I mean, like you said, your daughter looks differently than you do, but when you have that Lens and you have proven right over time, not everything’s perfect. You know, you gotta hit 51 percent, not 49 or you’re in trouble. Right? But when you, when you have that over time and you developed that, that gives you almost an advantage. How he kinda cool.
New Speaker: 00:47:17 You know, I, I do go to trade shows sometimes with somebody else. We bounce ideas off each other. We have our own, each have our own Amazon businesses and we do tend to get ideas from each other. But I’ll using the Philadelphia gift show as an example, I went there really to see one vendor because I sell a lot of their products and they have a bigger booth there and I knew there wouldn’t be a lot of competition. Just the fact that I’ve found a couple other people that I’m going to sell was like icing on the cake. I didn’t plan on it, I just happened to walk the show. I thought the show was a lot smaller. I don’t know that I would go to it again in the summer, but that, you know, paid for it itself. Also driving distance from my home. So it wasn’t a big deal for me.
New Speaker: 00:48:07 Well, I think there’s another pro tip, right? So, and I, and I say this all the time, if you go out and look at the trade shows that are around you, you will be blown away. You wouldn’t know they exist. Most people don’t. And then if you did a little circle, if you say to yourself, hey, you know, I don’t want to drive more than two hours, right? So I don’t have to stay over. If you do that, I don’t care where you are in this country, you’re going to find places maybe in Arizona or in Montana, you might struggle a little bit. Um, and Charlene’s a nodding your head Steve. You’ve never been to my town. Right?
New Speaker: 00:48:38 Okay. All right. Fair.
New Speaker: 00:48:41 However, when she’s cruising, she goes to supports where their stuff so back at you, but it’s real and I think if you go with that perspective and then you have this filter that has been developed over time, um, how long did it take to hit your stride, would you say when you started looking at white label and private label and moving away from retail arb, how long would you say it took to get your stride?
New Speaker: 00:49:05 I’d say within the last year. Okay. So two years. It took about six months to like kind of with getting it together, but this year it’s really coming together. I also want to say to people, you can find vendors anywhere. Um, my, my daughter, I traveled with her to dog shows. This is what she does. I have found vendors at the shows and the public selling their own products and now I carry those products.
New Speaker: 00:49:34 Nobody would know they even exist. Right? Because they were just selling something that they’ve made.
New Speaker: 00:49:40 Yes, exactly. So you really, if your eyes are open and you’re willing to talk, not the hard sale, not the scanning, the soft, getting to know them, getting to know what they’re doing, what their ideas are, then you really, I think it makes a big difference in a certain area. Like, as I said, with smaller to medium sized vendors.
New Speaker: 00:50:01 Let’s talk about white labeled a little bit because I think this is another thing that you’re really, really strong and where you’re not importing from China a container of particular item, you’re getting smaller, lots less than a container, I’ll call it that. Um, and then you can modify their product with their permission and make it your own. How, how, you know, how expensive because some people are to like, oh my God, I got to spend, you know, $30,000 just to do that. Did it start that way for you?
Ellie: 00:50:32 Not at all. I think it started really started was because I had a vendor where I spent a ton of money in 2016 at the holidays because no one else was selling, selling them. And then by 2017 people had driven the price down, they’d been discovered and privileged driven the price down to you weren’t making more than a quarter and I didn’t buy anything from them that year and I saw him at a trade show and he said, why didn’t you buy from me? And I said, well this is why. And he said, well, why don’t I develop my own product? Why don’t you, I’ll let you mix and match these different components and I’ll make it for you. You know what? I’ll let you buy the things that we’ve discontinued out of old catalogs. So that relationship building, I went to known anything about that if I hadn’t seen him in person. We spent an hour and a half together. They’ve developed a ton of products for me. I started out, I think I had a buy 100 products from him, maybe less 50. So it was less than $500 the first time I did it and she gave me terms.
New Speaker: 00:51:43 And, and now when he’s thinking of a new product, who do I want to go to? My stalwart, my person who I can count on the person who’s delivered for me and you’re helping protect his brand. I mean because, because if you’ve stopped buying more than likely others stopped buying to that other products, right?
Ellie: 00:52:02 Yes. And, and she went and we have ideas. We’ll bounce them off each other or I could just do a sketch now and they’ll like, come back to me. We’ll, it’ll be a give and take kind of thing. By the same token, you know, I’ve developed the relationships where I bought products and I just started out buying 25 of an item to the point where it was so popular. I bought out their entire everything they had. And then when the container came in in the middle of December, they were texting me photos of the new products as they opened the container and I was buying it like right there and now I just actually found out because I saw the vendor, he said, do you know my wife sent you all our samples? Those weren’t supposed to be for salad. I, they sent them to me. I sold them instantly.
New Speaker: 00:52:51 So there’s a lesson here, so I hope people hear this. Okay, this, this didn’t happen. This takes hard work, right? Because it’s got to be daunting, right? You’re going and you know, you need to get stuff for q four, right? And some of these things aren’t proven. Most of these things weren’t proven when you started, but again, this is where that intuition that’s developed and I don’t know that we both answered it. I mean, I know you have a design degree, but I mean there are lots of us who do this too. I think it can be taught. Um, if you’re open minded, right? If you listen to other people’s right, if you go like, we do a lot, go to a trade show, meet up with other people and you get to see them in action in your life. Huh? I never thought about that. And if you develop a trust where there’s a respect to their stuff and you don’t infringe and that kind of thing, of course, right? But to me, that’s how you learn in group environments, when you can work together with other people and then all of a sudden help them. You get helped additionally. Is that fair?
Ellie: 00:53:51 Yes, it’s totally fair. And I don’t think people should be daunted. I’m going to launch a new product in the next. I’m having a design right now and next 30 days it cost me $50 to launch mean all they ass.
New Speaker: 00:54:05 No, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. You need to hire six companies. How many giveaways are you going to do? You need to launch it. You need $100. I mean, and you have to, when did the photography teams coming in? Right? The commercial people are going to develop commercial, right? All of that’s being done right.
Ellie: 00:54:21 $50 a box myself with the um, Amazon ag photo APP, which, you know, I’ve shown you, which is a great app. And I’ll take the photos myself, I’ll do my own lifestyle photos, you know, on a bookcase or whatever. And that’s it. And hopefully I’ll take off. This is a small vendor. They’re going to make them for me. Um, we worked on the design together, boom, if it takes off, it’s a win win. It’s a win for them because now I’ll buy whatever, a couple hundred and it’s a win for me because you know, at first I’m giving back to a small manufacturer and obviously I’m going to make money on it and it’s my own product.
New Speaker: 00:55:05 I think this is powerful right there, what you just said, that whole little description, because I think that the steak a lot of people make is they do that same thing, but they’re like, Ellie, this is going to be a million dollar product. Here’s the deal, when you sell those million dollar product, she become on the radar, right? There was one person who kicked off the silicone spatula one day, way back and now there’s 8 billion of them available, right? And so when you go for those big giant home run things, you become on the radar. So in your example, you’re working with small manufacturers who can’t handle the million capacity, right? That’s just out of there. That’s not gonna happen yet. It can be, there’s enough demand. You can meet the demand at a good price. You win, they win. I think that’s a very powerful list. But don’t you have to carry hundreds of skews? Ellie, don’t you have to.
Ellie: 00:55:55 I mean, I just don’t. I’m just going to be honest. I don’t have $100 of skews. I’ve actually called down by skews even more. Uh, I, you know, I would like to build it up, but I’ve worked for myself. I just hired a part time employee. I’ve had part time employees. I’m not looking to make $10,000,000. I’d love to make a million dollars, but I don’t want a huge warehouse. Um, I, I have a certain lifestyle I’d like to maintain by design, by design and I have other family obligations and I need to be able to meet those as well.
New Speaker: 00:56:35 So I think we’ve come full circle. I think it’s, I think, you know, as I sit back and watch what he’s done and one of the reasons I want to have on the show was I wanted, quite frankly, somebody who’s in that difficult situation to hear this is that they are not alone. Uh, there are lots of crazy things that go on behind people’s doors that you have no clue, no clue. Um, and I would say, you know, 10 out of 10 in your neighborhood have challenges going on in their house in some way, family members, illnesses, you know, stuff that outside of their control and some inside their control so that it’s not an excuse, it’s the real world, right? And so how you deal with it. And so I think Ellie give a great example of you’ve got to be willing to be vulnerable.
New Speaker: 00:57:17 You’ve got to be willing to go out there and ask for help and it’s so hard to do. And if you’re a guy, it makes it even harder, right? Because you know, it’s supposed to be macho and tough and guess what, you’re not, you know, you need help, you need help. Ask for help. Send me a note, I’ll help you. And so I think this is a perfect example of someone who’s pushed through it. The thing that I love is you’re designed life. I think, uh, I hate that you were forced into it. And so, you know, my heart bleeds for you there, but the fact that you do it and you’ve done it for eight years, you keep your head down doing that is the difference, right? You know, it wasn’t a two year plan. Get it done and now I’m done. No, you’re like, hey, this is the long game. I’m building something here. Someday you’re going to walk away because you’re just not going to have the time. But then that’s on your terms. It’s so powerful, Ellie. I mean, it’s just so inspiring to me. It really is.
Ellie: 00:58:10 I don’t get choked up because I’m going to get choked up. I mean that. I just mean that from a guy who
New Speaker: 00:58:17 knows you well and watches that’s real.
Ellie: 00:58:22 Like I was going to say, you know my back story. I mean we’re friends so this. But the reality is just like you said, 10 houses, 10 different things, you know, special needs children, domestic violence, addiction, people that are ill, you know, cancer survivors adapt. This is reality. This is life. This is what happens in life. We all have hurdles we have to do. I had certain goals I feel if I look back now, I’m really meeting them and enjoying what I do. I have goals for the future and I will be honest. My goal for the future is eventually to move out of where I am in New Jersey when my daughter graduates and be able to go wherever I want to go and have my business grow with me, you know, and, and have habit. Just continue growing. I’m, I’m not, you know, I’m not going to have a pension or anything like that. So there’s that consideration. College Education for my children, all of those things. So I’d like to grow the way I am and I’m very happy with it and I think that people get intimidated by cost and, and even getting into wholesale, you know, you could start open a wholesale account from a lot of small vendors for $150. Yup. Yup. Ask them what their 10 bestselling things are. Look them up on Amazon if that’s what you feel. Put out the 100, $150, try it.
New Speaker: 00:59:51 And if they’re not available on Amazon yet, there’s a another brand that sells well, right? Their rank is good and it’s good quality. And the thing that you’re looking at is very similar. There’s your clue. Hmm, let me launch it myself. You know, it’s funny now. He and I were talking about some products. I’m launching this coming week and have the photos are being done right now. And I’m like, Oh yeah, I got to get them to somebody to get. And she’s like, I just do it myself, Steve. I’m like, wow, I get it. I get it. You know, but you’re better than I am. We all know that. And so how about this? Let me ask you this, because I think this is a good way to just think about when, when somebody is listening to this, hopefully they’re inspired and they say, you know what?
New Speaker: 01:00:26 I’m going to give it a shot. I’m going to go to a trade show or I’m going to go in my area again by design. Now he’s not going to stain over. She’s going in and taking advantage of it and going back home to take advantage of it. Right. Um, what are some of the habits, some of the things that you do now that you’ve narrowed down that could help others, that you know, just get you through because you only got so many hours a day because you got all these other responsibilities. What could, what are some of those?
Ellie: 01:00:52 Are we talking about habits and going to a trade show or.
New Speaker: 01:00:54 No, just habits in running your business now because I think the trade show thing is a good piece of it, right? So you go and you get a, you do exactly what you just said. Then you come back and you execute, right? That’s the piece that people struggle with. So how are you executing day to day? Maybe that’s a better way to say it.
Ellie: 01:01:09 Well, everyone should know I do work out in my home. So from long years of working out of my home, I know that when the children walk out the door to school, I don’t look at the dishes or the dirty laundry or anything else. That’s my business time from nine to two, excuse me until whenever they come back. I don’t look at anything else. I don’t answer my home phone. I’m at all my parents know not to call me. Then I just don’t elect it to call from the school nurse. I don’t answer it. I only answered my business phone and then I kind of have my days, my week laid out, you know, I, I’m, if I’m getting in inventory and it’s new, I do all the photos on one day, boom, boom, boom, boom. Then the next day I do write all the listings, put the photos and you know, do that.
Ellie: 01:01:59 Then I’ll just get them out the door and yes, I am guilty of sometimes not getting things out the door and creating the listings as fast as I should, but if you have inventory that’s coming in, you want it to get out because it’s money, you know? And then once a month, I do my own books. Obviously I’ve worked for a CPA, I do my own bookkeeping and then Kinda go from there. But don’t get distracted by the everyday things. If you’re in a lot of small people are, you’re working out of your house, think of it as your business time. I think too often we’re like, oh, we’re home. I’m going to throw in a load of laundry while I’m doing this. Don’t do that. This is your business time as if you walked out the door to go to the office and you were working for someone else.
New Speaker: 01:02:41 Hmm. I think, I think every one of those things, but that’s an established pattern that you have. Again, we’re back to the absolute other than there’s an illness or something outside of that you can’t control, but these are standard absolute for you. And over time they become habits, right? And habits become, um, you know, uh, opportunities and they help create opportunities. I think the message about getting the product out is just so powerful. How many of us sit on, you know, our product, looking for the next product. Well, we didn’t deal with the one we have staring us in the face. How does it help that you’re, you have to look at it. That does help a little bit, right? Because it’s got to be in your face and you’re like, oh, I can’t look at it anymore.
Ellie: 01:03:19 Yeah, well I’m guilty of it too. I just opened a box where I was like, oops, I don’t know why I didn’t. I forgot I had it
New Speaker: 01:03:29 Palatal Lego’s a couple of weeks ago. And I’m like, oh my God. How many years have I been dragging around a pallet of Lego? So I can totally relate.
Ellie: 01:03:35 Yes. So you don’t want to do that. Uh, I keep a binder. Someone else had made one for me and given it to me as a gift. I keep a binder of paper binder, you know, that I can open. This wasn’t my idea. This was Jennifer summers idea, but it’s awesome. It’s tabbed with all my vendors. I put a paper copy of all my invoices in there, so for yearly and I can refer back to that. And that also makes it easy to know if you haven’t shipped out all the stuff you have because you can look at that invoice in black and white. Uh, you know, I have a corner of my home setup for photography, you know, again, I only use the Amazon App if I though that, that for that and just getting in and out and I’d given myself permission at this point to have my office in part of my home. That is my work area and that’s going to be my work area and it’s not going to be a family area, it’s just the work area and you need to sometimes do that.
New Speaker: 01:04:34 So you set some boundaries and, and those are, those are established. Alright, so I’m gonna ask this question because this is, I heard this on another podcast and I thought, boy, this is such a good closing question. So, um, oh, let me ask a best way if somebody wants to follow up with you, if they have a question, what’s the best way
Ellie: 01:04:49 they can contact me on facebook? Okay,
New Speaker: 01:04:52 contact. Okay, I’ll put your contact. Okay. So you normally ask is how to get past the point of stuck, but I just think you just gave a really powerful description of how to do that. Exactly. Block out your time. Make it absolute, you know, everything done and I love the once a month too. And your financials, love it, love it, love it. That’s power right there. Consistency. How about this? What’s something that you’ve taken on some, something different that you’re doing this in the last five or six months that you haven’t been doing, that you wish you’d been doing all alone all along? You know what I mean? So something new, habit, new trick, new technique, something could be software. Could be anything that you’ve done that you brought into your business that has advanced to you that you’re saying, man, I should have been doing this for years. Gone by. That’s a hard one. That’s a trick one I didn’t want. I didn’t give you an upfront about that. It’s just, I think about like if a, uh, let me just think, um, well go into your vendor and meeting them at their location and now having this discussion that probably be a good example that you can’t use now because I just used it. Um, but you get what I’m saying, that kind of thing.
Ellie: 01:06:00 I think the, um, simplifying packaging has been for me. Um, it was, I do carry some of my own things. We prepped everything here at it was a nightmare. I’ll be totally honest. Um, I had my parents making boxes at home while they watch tv last q four. It wasn’t, it was just a nightmare. It was so complicated. Simplifying it down, spending the extra money to have the labels made, have the packaging printed, be able to just put the product into the packaging. Bing, Bang, boom. It’s printed on there. It’s out the door. I was, I kept thinking it was going to cost so much more money, but it actually I think has been less expensive in the long run because it’s less prep time, less labels, less everything, and then all I need to do is stored in ship it out.
New Speaker: 01:06:54 Genius man. Oh man, it’s so good to hear you hitting your stride. It’s no surprise, but again, this wasn’t a. You weren’t a, an overnight success right now. Nobody is. There’s no such thing as Dan Miller always tells me it’s 12 years overnight success. You’ve been doing this over time consistently and hence the reason you’re hitting your stride and it’s just so cool to watch. I’m so fortunate to be able to watch from my little perch and man, we just really appreciate you. I wish you nothing but success. Thank you so much. Thank you. Great interview strong lady and just a strong person in general. Just somebody who’s not willing to curl up and, uh, just give up. Uh, she says sometimes it’s, you’re in the bathroom crying your eyes out, but then you come out white Burma, get going because she can put on your big underwear.
New Speaker: 01:07:47 Get going. Right? And so guess what? That’s what it takes. And she’s a great example of it. Take that wholesale stuff to heart. That is a absolute great way to do it. And you do it at a small scale. And guess what? Over time you build up this huge portfolio for yourself. You just relative, but huge portfolio of trusted vendors. You’re trusted, they’re trusted and you don’t have any competition. She doesn’t have competition on 95 percent of our products. You heard that? Well guess what? That didn’t just magically happen. That’s been intentional and if you’re willing to put in two years to develop this business model, you can be where Lee is. Okay? Just don’t forget the art part. There is an art to this too, and you have it. It can be trained, it can be taught. You just have to be willing to put your head down and do the work. ECOMMERCE momentum.com, ecommerce momentum.com.
Cool voice guy: 01:08:32 Thanks for listening to the incomers momentum podcast. All the links mentioned today can be found at incomers momentum. Doug, come under this episode number. Please remember to subscribe and the lake us on itunes.