My business is LCDcycle.com.
We sell wholesale smartphone and tablet replacement parts. Our average customer is your local smartphone repair shop.
The idea for LCDcycle was derived while running a startup I launched in college called Phone Restore. Phone Restore was a small chain of smartphone repair shops. Frustrated by the lack of quality domestic wholesalers available, I set out to do a better job with LCDcycle.
What are the key factors that have helped your store be successful?
I earned our first sales by hitting the phones hard. I would call up repair shops from Seattle to Miami and tell them how awesome our parts and customer service is. After placing their first order, we did everything we could to serve them and keep their repeat business.
The key factors that have enabled our success is a dedication to serving our existing customers while actively seeking out new ones.
If we can't handle growth, we work with what we have for the time being and grow our infrastructure. When we sufficiently have enough capital (both human and financial) to continue growing, we call up shops and tell them why we're awesome. If something is defective, we return it, no questions asked.
We rely heavily on Shipstation and BoldApps, particularly the Customer Pricing App. Since we primarily sell wholesale, we need a system to reward customers for purchasing higher quantities, and this is where the Customer Pricing app comes in. We also love using Retention Grid for identifying customers that may be falling through the cracks.
What are your top recommendations for new store owners?
Research, research, research! Research negates risk. Entrepreneurship is only riskier than a 9-5 when you don't know what you're doing. Know your market, your future competitors and your future customers. A successful start-up is more science than art. If a good idea has a potential customer base and the right amount of smart and hard work behind it, it will be successful. Don't let competition or naysayers discourage you.
Don't rely on SEO and SEM to do all the heavy lifting for you. You are going to need to go out and find customers, you can't just expect the money to just start rolling in on its own.
Any Closing Remarks?
Never outsource your core competencies.