一个美国大学生讲述,他如何通过代理中国产品,没有雇佣任何人,一个人在亚马逊上年销售额达到100万美元。

如何在亚马逊上销售课程上有很多骗局,所以我认为我会提供真正有用的内容,这将帮助您入门并学习如何使用亚马逊物流在亚马逊上销售。

我主要在亚马逊上卖东西,在Shopify卖东西。一切都通过亚马逊FBA进行,所以我可以全职旅行。

今年,仅在亚马逊,我的收入就达到了100万美元。

 

我的故事可以追溯到2009年,那时我只是一名大学毕业生,对可预见的未来没有真正的计划。

不过,企业家精神对我来说是很自然的事情,我衷心希望我能够在我的余生中继续努力。

这一切都始于佛罗里达大学,那是我的第一场演出,当时卖足球票。作为一个骨瘦如柴的白人孩子,我肯定在人群中脱颖而出,这是肯定的。

令人惊讶的是,对于像我这样的男孩来说,这是最好的疗法。我认为,每个企业家都应通过拒绝疗法,以学习如何应对拒绝。

毕业后,我迁移到了TicketMasterStubhub.com等网站,继续在这里买卖机票。您会惊讶地听到这项工作多么有趣,而且,如果您真的很擅长满足需求,那么您将永远不会破产。

问题是,它很重复,一段时间后,您一次又一次地重新输入验证码就感到无聊。也许对我个人而言最大的问题不是为人们提供真正的价值,而这正是我现在引以为豪的事情。


这项繁琐的业务开始吸引我,所以我换了车道,预订了廉价航班,并拜访了中国的一个朋友。6个星期后,我回到了家,很明显,他不得不带一些纪念品和礼物给最亲近的人。

在各式各样的小工具中,一只特殊的手表引起了最多的关注,因为人们无法停止对它的询问。

出于好奇,我再次与我从中国来的朋友联系(当时他在那儿担任英语老师),他找到了供应商。

我相信有钱的合伙人/投资者是必经之路,所以我与我唯一的有钱朋友取得了4,000美元的投资,我们安排了50/50的合伙人。这些手表仅售3美元,所以我订购了800块,并在自己的网站上花费了3,000美元。

 

目录

第1课首次使用网络时,请不要花费超过$ 300

 

在我向该网站投入了巨额现金后,我决定放弃它,而是自己在Shopify上创建一个。相信我,这非常简单,我保证您将能够实现这一目标。我的初始价格定为65美元。

 

第二课高价

 

尽管这听起来有些违反直觉,但这是正确的选择。有了更好的客户群,更大的批发/分销商空间,更少的退货和更大的感知价值,它就没有缺点。

乐趣一直是我品牌的目标。我竭尽所能,通过举办精彩的比赛,拍摄精美的照片等来取悦客户,并吸引了一批满意的买家。

真幸运,我遇到了一个Groupon代表,我们达成了协议。当时,Groupon主要是食品网站,而我的手表是最早的产品之一。

销售量不错,因此将我的品牌列入黑色星期五全国交易。仅三天,我的“交易”就售出了7,000多个!不幸的是,我的中国供应商原来是一家贸易公司,我们无法仅凭他的“信用”来满足需求。

伙计,这对我来说是沉重的打击,因为整个交易几乎花光了,我的生意也随之而来。只有大约70%的订单成功完成,其他订单获得了退款,但由于基本上破坏了很多人的圣诞节,我感到非常讨厌。

令人难以置信的是,尽管我未能履行大约2,000个订单,Groupon还是以某种方式向我支付了全额费用。如果您想知道,我公司的名称是TIKKR,但现在不再营业了。谁知道,也许我有一天会再说的。


可悲的事实是,我看到帝国的前途一片光明,因为有50家公司出售与我完全相同的手表。其中,Walgreens当时仅以4.99美元的价格出售,尽管没有品牌名称。

我挣扎了一段时间,因为手表根本不是最优质的,而且我在退货和保修上花了大钱。最终,我需要一个新的起点,但缺乏灵感。我不记得它是如何产生的,但是突然,我意识到竹子墨镜已经成为一种事物。

早在2012年,我发现自己在Groupon总部所在地芝加哥。我的中国朋友与我联系,建议我们再次启动一个联合项目。通过一个在Groupon工作的朋友,我得以进入他们的销售大厅,我只是与人们聊天,直到与一个正在销售时尚配饰的女孩取得联系。

 

第3课始终留在游戏中,并希望自己能有个大突破

 

经过一番谈判,我们达成了协议,我需要准备10,000单位用于全国范围的销售。我们可以使用TIKKR的大部分资金和妈妈银行的大笔贷款,在3个合作伙伴,Groupon内部人员,中国朋友和我之间筹集到180,000美元。

我们的商业计划相当简单。

来自中国的家伙负责生产,我负责市场营销和品牌建设,Groupon花花公子很好,Groupon花花公子。

这个名字伍迪听起来真棒给我,但我第一次买权Woodies.com来自加拿大的同胞,谁用它来销售曲棍球棒椅子。如果您想知道,我是从老式Woodie旅行车上得到的想法的,该旅行车的车架是木质的。

由于对Ashley Sky的痴迷,我想雇用她进行照片拍摄,为此我也租了一些很棒的游乐设施。

尽管她有10万个Instagram粉丝,但她只索要600美元的一天的照片拍摄,在我看来这是天上的一笔交易。

Groupon销售上线后,我们仅售出4,000台,而不是10,000台。


 

第4课保持积极态度,但要对预测保持现实

 

想听一个疯狂的故事吗?

我不记得我一次想达成一项世界性大交易的想法有多少次,只是看到它瞬间消失了。即使交易取得了一定程度的成功,也没有我最初希望的那样有意义。令我吃惊的是,我活出了《老人与海》的故事。

我当时进行了很多交易,但是完成工作后,我只剩下了最初一小部分的财产。保修,客户服务和费用,运输成本和其他费用等问题很快加在一起。


一件事导致另一件事,由于我们的“销售不佳”,我的中国供应商陷入了自己的财务困境。最终,Groupon和我出于绝对必要而接管了他们的业务。

但是,并非一切都不好。在偿还了来自中国的朋友之后,我们有了14万美元的资本金。我们知道自己的业务潜力巨大,但我们仍然无法应付大笔订单,因此我们选择了Kickstarter,当时Kickstarter确实才开始爆炸。

我决定做大一点,并计划为此活动聘请肯德尔·詹纳Kendall Jenner)。花了很长时间,但我最终得以联系她的模特经纪公司,并与她的直接经理取得联系。

一天的要价定为100,000美元!我试图创建一个Pinterest董事会并将其发送给她,问她是否可以将价格降到25,000美元(包括大量激励措施),令我惊讶的是,她说“是”!

在把这个数字整理好之后,我意识到我们可以用我们的钱获得回报,但是我们必须从Kickstarter活动中筹集很多资金。

我雇了肯德尔·詹纳(Kendall Jenner),阿什利·斯凯(Ashley Sky),艾格曼·克莱(Aygemang Clay),达马里斯·阿吉亚(Damaris Aguiar),里尔·阿斯顿(Lyall Aston)担任摄影师,萨基特·范恩博登(Sagette Van Embden)负责视频制作,造型由莉娜·帕拉西奥斯(Lina Palacios)和玛丽·古思里(Mary Guthrie)负责。

制作是如此疯狂,以至于我感到敬畏。通过使用西南航空的伙伴通行证,我决定将所有人都飞往加利福尼亚州马里布。这些难以置信的炙手可热的女孩中的大多数从未遇到过这种旅行方式,我可以保证!

一直以来,我都在发着子弹,希望一切顺利。那段日子,我承受了很大的压力。

 

第5课不要让自己失望

 

在企业家精神方面,您必须准备继续战斗,并迎接挑战。我不会撒谎,有很多时间我认为比赛会把我吃掉,我不过是个“伪装者”。

但是,请注意,直到您成功,最好的策略都是假的!尽管如此,让我们回到这个故事。我通过Airbnb在马里布(Malibu)租了一辆面包车和一个总部。

现在回头看,我禁不住笑了。

想象一下,在马里布(Malibu)上的一辆面包车上驾驶Kendall Jenner,Damaris Aguiar,Ashley Sky和我的一些朋友等大人物!


更糟糕的是,我们有点迟了,所以我不得不将踏板踩到金属上,以免我开车太快而被Kendal的经理骂了。

哦,是的,我一直都穿着队长的衣服,因为那是我过去的事情。娱乐时间。尽管肯德尔(Kendall)同意我的Kickstarter竞选活动,但结果却令人吃惊。

我只能筹集到30,000美元,并且有大约70,000美元的投资花费。事后看来,我认为我不会再经历这种磨难了。

对我来说幸运的是,肯德尔(Kendall)成为了一个名人,因此也为我的品牌赢得了很多认可。此外,由于她的管理层允许我写合同,所以我基本上永远拥有这些照片和录像资料的权利。

真是个胜利!

仅从Kendall发了一条推文,我的电子邮件订户数量就增加了20,000,从那时起,它一直是稳定的收入来源。

说到业务方面,收入是季节性的,整个夏季和圣诞节都达到顶峰。

从手表到太阳镜,伍迪(Woodies)在这几年发展了很多,业务从大到热。另一个很好的推动力来自在亚马逊上的销售,这令人惊讶。当时,我正冒着浓烟,几乎不拿任何薪水,实际上不得不和妈妈一起回到塔尔萨。

除了几个比特币外,我的积蓄为零,花了很多时间环游世界。在这段时间里,我的创业经历归结为几笔史诗般的胜利,以及几笔适度的损失。

尽管如此,这仍然是一个令人兴奋的旅程,因为我要环游世界,与漂亮的模型交融,执行创造性的任务,并从整体上提高自己。

最终,这被证明是很有价值的一课,我几乎不会改变任何事情。

在忘记之前,请允许我提及到目前为止我使用的一些技术:

 

我学到的重要内容:


自然地,我还有一些松散的地方需要解决,包括:

在服务方面,有许多值得一提。

认真地说,我现在才开始意识到我真正使用了多少这些该死的东西。将来也可能取消一些,大声笑。

无论哪种方式,它都会成功。

与伍迪(Woodie)做生意5年后,我开始掌控事物。没有合伙人或员工,我是我自己的老板。这使我能够控制自己的业务,甚至丝毫不差。

但是,一天中只有这么多时间,这些服务可以成为救生员。自动化确实将事情带到了另一个层次。

 

我一直旅行

Shopify:电子商务领域的Alpha和Omega

 

Shopify应用程序:进行报价:弹出窗口,允许购买者针对其所需产品进行出价。他们在此过程中提供了他们的电子邮件地址,我用它通过Zapier向他们发送折扣代码,然后将其提取到Mailchimp。

使用亚马逊登录:尽管所有流量的60%来自移动设备,但结账仅占大约20%。这是为什么?这实际上是一个简单的原因,用这种方式输入您的个人信息要困难得多。这个出色的应用程序允许他们使用自己的Amazon帐户,以及选择他们的付款方式和地址。

ShopiMap:每个客户都随订单一起固定。非常适合社交证明。

Yotpo:当我买到它们时,价格从每月30美元开始,但如今这些价格已经飙升至300美元!这个出色的应用程序会自动发送评论请求,并在产品页面上展示它们。CovetPics:一个简单的Instagram插件,用于从我的照片设计拼贴。老实说,这些天这些应用可能有点多余。

Spently:来自Shopify的默认确认电子邮件,非常无聊,而且很麻烦,但是却为方程式带来了乐趣。向尼克大喊!

Compass.Co:就我而言,排名第一的电子商务分析。它不仅可以提取大量我从未知道过的信息,而且还可以超级整洁地组织所有信息。

亚马逊:我的主要销售平台,占我总销售额的60%以上。

客户服务:任何业务的组成部分。对我来说幸运的是,我妈妈被录用了这部分工作。尽管我妈妈很忙,但是您可以在一个名为HireMyMom的网站上测试运气。伙计们,这是一个真实的地方,所有您想要的笑声。


不过,向全球妈妈们的问候真是太棒了!亚马逊亚马逊物流(AmazonFBA):我的产品100%通过这项出色的服务进行交易。他们接收,存储,包装和运送我所有的产品。它使我得以全职旅行,并且使后勤变得如此简单。亚马逊会员:有成千上万的人将亚马逊Prime作为其主要服务,老实说,我完全理解这一点。

在一天结束时,免费送货是可喜的奖励。因此,我的每个产品页面都包含一个指向我在亚马逊上的产品列表的链接,并且通过会员链接,我能够收集到大约1%的订单。最终,它每月最多只能增加约100美元,但为什么要扔掉呢。

 

亚马逊应用程序:

 


我一直旅行

网站:

 

任务管理:

 

Gmail:我会尽可能每天至少两次检查它。如果我能达到零收件箱…

专家提示:您应该学习大量有趣的Gmail键盘快捷键

专业提示2:转到Gmail设置,然后自动启用“发送+存档”选项。

收件箱暂停:大多数人倾向于先完成艰巨的任务,但总会找到某种方式同时回答3或4封短电子邮件。收件箱暂停功能可以阻止这种讨厌的习惯。

相信我,它将大大提高您的生产率。

特雷洛:在努力实现“收件箱零”的过程中,我总是有一些规则:

举报此广告


Gmail计时器日志:打开新邮件后,计时器会自动启动。


我一直旅行

Chrome扩展程序:

 

 

产品开发:

 

阿里巴巴:这仍然是我寻找新产品的网站。

您唯一需要做的就是向供应商发送电子邮件,并要求他们答复。它不仅消除了阿里巴巴复杂的消息传递系统,而且还排除了无法遵循基本说明的供应商。

Whatsapp:出于某些奇怪的原因,中国供应商更喜欢发短信而不是电子邮件。从一开始就将他们带到Whatsapp,并建立良好的沟通。

Flexport:这一出色的扩展功能简化了国际货运代理。不过,不确定他们是否接受新成员。

升级后的图像:如果您想让摄影胜过竞争对手,这是最佳选择。

快速条形码:购买条形码的地方,以后我会在亚马逊上使用。


我一直旅行

市场营销:

 

举报此广告


时间表:它会预先安排Instagram帖子。帮了我很多次。重新发布:重新发布其他人的照片,特别是在'em中带有Woody标签的照片。

Instagram和Snapchat:社交媒体游戏中的两个绝对之王。如果您有兴趣,我的Instagram是WoodiesCaptain以及WoodiesIG

Mailchimp 在过去的四年中,Mailchimp一直是我发送电子邮件的首选。公平地说,我的电子邮件非常简单,因此我可能考虑降级。哦,是的,我也使用了Klaviyo,因为它与Shopify集成在一起。

应用:

 

TripIt:因为我过着一个游牧民族的生活,所以此应用程序会跟踪我的行程。

F.lux:在深夜调暗屏幕亮度。如果您是夜猫子,这是必须的。

Franz:适用于Mac的简单客户端,将Whatsapp,Skype,Messenger,Hangouts,Slack和WeChat等各种应用程序组合在一起。我不赞成Shipwire,StitchLabs和AppSumo,因为它们太复杂了。

我想念什么吗?一定要让我知道。

在我忘记之前,尽管没有特定的应用程序,但每个人都应该学习的一件事是如何说“不”。不,批发不是一种选择。

国际运输?忘掉它。这两个简单的字母将节省您大量的时间和精力,因此请强迫自己在每次使用它们时都使用它们。

营销的火种?等等,我的朋友们。这是我自己的小秘密策略,但是很好,我准备与世界其他地方分享它。

在您的Tinder个人资料上,请务必强调您是该特定品牌的所有者,并贴上一些照片进行备份。下一步包括升级到TinderPlus(每月仅约9.99美元)和下载Bonfire(将使您再赚0.99美元)。

我将Tinder放置在100英里处,并一次将Bonfire安排到200个配置文件中。通过多次按下,您将立即与数百个甚至数千个比赛保持联系。

我个人已经使用这种策略收集了9,000多次比赛,可能进行了数十次销售,这也给我留下了很多印象和成功。当然,它也可以帮助您结识女生,以防万一您想知道。

想听听我做过最愚蠢的事情的故事吗?等待它。在我朋友的生日那天,我不小心制作了99%的折扣代码。

怎么样?我无法取消选中“显示在详细信息页面上”,并且Internet崩溃了。

SlickDeals上发布之后我在4个小时的时间内就订购了1,500副眼镜!

当我意识到刚刚发生的事情时,亚马逊已经将所有东西都运送出去了。当然,我哭得像一个女婴一样,一次又一次地支持,但是这笔交易是一成不变的。

我妈妈和我试图向客户发送尽可能多的电子邮件,但基本上没有任何可显示的内容。

结果?损失了30,000美元,我的灵魂被粉碎了!

 

举报此广告


令我惊讶的是,由于我的销量激增,亚马逊不断向我吸引客户,产品开始疯狂销售。

我不知道如果不是我的支持系统,我是否会在最初的打击之后继续前进,但是运气终于站在我这一边。在那之后的整整两年,我仅在亚马逊上就突破了百万销量。

关键是,即使您犯了一个愚蠢的错误,也总会有一个值得学习的教训。拥抱磨!

您还在使用妈妈的车库吗?加入俱乐部!

曾经有一次我在妈妈家出现1100公斤。货物包括为亚马逊包装的10,000多副太阳镜。

万一您错过了它,我是一个全职旅行者,我在AmazonFBA的帮助下经营Woodies,他们在那里存储和运送我的订单。

当然,我可以将这些物品直接运送到亚马逊,但是再说一次,我总是先将它们检出,以防万一。

自然,我也不想让供应商知道他们也可以自己运送到亚马逊,而且,亚马逊的运费也很大,因此请确保尽可能减少运费。

如果您有机会向朋友/家人寻求库存,请不要害怕问。您的储蓄可以是巨大的。请记住,每位成功企业家的关键是拥有一台裁纸刀和一把胶带枪。必须处理基本原则。

最终,我希望我的旅程能激发您的生意,并扼杀自己的生命。

您已经看到我的旅程充满了不同的障碍,有很多次我想放弃,但我一直坚持不懈,现在,我的公司的年销售额已超过100万美元!

尽管如此,我还没有达到个人目标,也没有看到那一刻发生过,但是如果您告诉我几年前会在这里,我不确定我是否会相信您。

向所有企业家大喊大叫,继续做自己的事,最终,你会做得很大。

原文:

There’s so many scammy How to sell on Amazon courses, so I thought I’d contribute really helpful content, that will help you get your feet wet and learn how to sell on Amazon using FBA.

I’m mostly selling on Amazon, and a bit on Shopify. Everything goes through Amazon FBA, so I’m able to travel full-time.

This year, I’m at $1M on Amazon alone.

 

My story begins way back in 2009, when I was just a college graduate who had no real plans for the foreseeable future.

Still, entrepreneurship is something that came naturally to me, and I sincerely hope I’ll be able to keep hammering away at it throughout the rest of my livelihood.

It all began at the University of Florida, where my first gig was selling football tickets. As a scrawny white kid, I definitely stood out from the crowd, that’s for sure.

Surprisingly, it turned out to be the best therapy for a boy like me. In my opinion, every entrepreneur should pass through a rejection therapy, in order to learn how to deal with refusal.

After I graduated, I migrated to websites like TicketMaster and Stubhub.com, where I continued buying and selling tickets. You’d be surprised to hear just how interesting this job is, and if you’re really good at supplying the demand, you’ll never run out of business.

The problem is, it’s quite repetitive, and after a while, you simply get bored with re-entering the captcha time and time again. Perhaps the biggest issue for me personally was not providing people with real value, something I now take pride in.


Woodies.com

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This tedious business was started to get to me, so I switched lanes, booked a cheap flight and visited a friend in China. After 6 weeks, I went back home and obviously, had to come back with some souvenirs and gifts for the ones closest to me.

Among the various gadgets, one particular watch garnered the most attention, as people simply couldn’t stop asking about it.

Out of sheer curiosity, I contacted my friend from China once again (who worked there as an English teacher at the time) and he found the supplier.

I believed that a wealthy partner/investor is the way to go, so I reached out to my only wealthy friend for a $4,000 investment, and we got an arrangement to be 50/50 partners. The watches went for only $3, so I order 800 pieces, and spent about $3,000 for my own website.

 

Table of Contents

Lesson 1 Don’t spend over $300 on your first web presence

 

After I invested a mad sum of cash into that website, I decided to ditch it and create one on Shopify by myself instead. Trust me, It’s super easy, and I guarantee you’ll be able to pull it off. My initial price was set at $65.

 

Lesson 2 Price high

 

Although it may sound counterintuitive to some, this is the right choice. With a better clientele, more space for wholesale/distributors, less returns, and a bigger perceived value, it comes with no drawbacks.

Fun was always the goal of my brand. I tried my best to please the customers by throwing down awesome contests, have cool photo shoots and such, and it resulted in a pool of satisfied buyers.

By pure luck, I got to meet a Groupon rep, and we agreed upon a deal. At the time, Groupon was primarily a website for food, and my watches were one of the first products out there.

Sales numbers were good, so they included my brand in the Black Friday national deal. In only 3 days, more than 7,000 of my ’deals’ were sold! Unfortunately, my Chinese supplier turned out to be a trading company, and there was no way we could supply the demand based only on his ’credit’.

Man, that was a hard blow for me, as the entire deal nearly went down the drain, and with it, my business as well. Only about 70% of orders were completed successfully, and others got refunds, but I got a ton of hate, as I basically ruined so many people’s Christmases.

Incredibly, Groupon somehow paid me the full amount, despite the fact I failed to fulfill around 2,000 orders. In case you were wondering, the name of my company was TIKKR, but it’s not in business anymore. Who knows, maybe I’ll get back to it one day.

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The sad truth was, I saw that my empire didn’t have a bright future, as there were 50 companies which sold the exact same watch as I did. Among them, Walgreens was selling it for only $4.99 at the time, albeit without a brand name.

I struggled for some time, as watches simply weren’t of the highest quality, and I was spending big bucks on returns and warranties. Ultimately, I needed a fresh start, but my inspiration was lacking. I cannot recall just how it came about, but suddenly, I realized that bamboo sunglasses were becoming a thing.

Back in 2012, I found myself in Chicago, the home of Groupon headquarters. My friends from China reached out to me, proposing we start a joint project once again. Through a friend who worked at Groupon, I was able to get access to their sales floor, and I simply chatted with people until I got in touch with a girl who was selling fashion accessories.

 

Lesson 3 Always stay in the game and hope for your big break

 

After some negotiation, we agreed on a deal, and I needed to prepare 10,000 units for sales on a national level. We were somehow able to gather $180,000 between 3 partners, the Groupon insider, friends from China, and me, using most of TIKKR money and a big loan from the Bank of Mom!

Our business plan was fairly straightforward.

The guys from China were in charged with production, I handled marketing and branding, and the Groupon dude was well, the Groupon dude.

The name Woodies sounded awesome to me, but I first had to buy rights to Woodies.com from a Canadian fellow, who was using it to sell hockey stick chairs. In case you were wondering, I got the idea from vintage Woodie station wagons which had a frame made from wood.

Due to my obsession with Ashley Sky, I wanted to hire her for the photo shoot, and I also rented a few awesome rides for this purpose as well.

Although she had 100k Instagram followers, she only asked $600 for a day of a photo shoot, which in my mind was a deal made in heaven.

After the Groupon sale went live, we only sold 4,000 instead of 10,000 units.

 


Page views on Woodies.com

 

Lesson 4 Keep a positive attitude but stay realistic with your forecasts

 

Wanna hear a crazy story?

I cannot recall how many time a thought I had a world breaking deal on my hands, just to see it vanish in an instant. Even the deals which were mildly successful weren’t as rewarding as I originally hoped for. It struck me that I was living out a story from the Old Man and the Sea.

I was landing huge deals, but after I completed the job, I was left with only a small part of my initial fortune. Problems with warranties, customers service and fees, shipping costs and other expenses quickly add up.

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One thing leads to another, and due to our ’poor’ sales numbers, my suppliers from China ran into their own financial hardships. Eventually, the Groupon guy and I took over their part of the business out of sheer necessity.

Not everything was bad, though. After paying off our friends from China, we were left with a $140,000 capital base. We knew that our business had massive potential, but we were still unable to cope with a big order, so we turned to Kickstarter, which was really just starting to blow up at the time.

I decided to go big, and planned to hire Kendall Jenner for this campaign. It took a long time, but I was eventually able to contact her modeling agency and get in touch with her direct manager.

Their asking price was set at $100,000 for a single day! I tried to create a Pinterest board and send it her, asking if she could drop the price down to $25,000 including a ton of incentives, and to my amazement, she said YES!

After wrapping my head around that number, I realized that we could get a return for our money, but we had to raise a lot of funds from our Kickstarter campaign.

I hired Kendall Jenner, Ashley Sky, Aygemang Clay, Damaris Aguiar, Lyall Aston was a photographer, Sagette Van Embden was responsible for video production, styling was done by Lina Palacios and Mary Guthrie handled hair and makeup.

The production was so insane, that I was simply in awe. By using Southwest Airlines buddy passes, I decided to fly everyone down to Malibu, CA. Most of these incredibly hot girls never encountered this form of travel, I can guarantee that much!

All the time, I was sweating bullets, hoping that everything works out for the best. I endured a lot of stress during those days.

 


Woodies.com

Lesson 5 Don’t put yourself down

 

In entrepreneurship, you’ve got to be ready to keep on fighting, and embrace the challenges. I’m not gonna lie, there were plenty of time where I thought the competition would eat me alive, and I was nothing more than a ’pretender’.

However, be aware that the best tactics were always fake it til you make it! Still, let’s get back to the story. I rented a van and an HQ in Malibu through Airbnb.

Looking back on it now, I can’t help myself but laugh.

Imagine driving big shots like Kendall Jenner, Damaris Aguiar, Ashley Sky, and some of my friends in a rental van across Malibu!


To make matters worse, we were kinda late, so I had to push the pedal to the metal, so that got me scolded by Kendal’s manager, as I was driving too fast.

Oh yeah, I was also wearing a captain’s all the time, because that was my thing back in the day. Fun times. Although Kendall agreed with my Kickstarter campaign, the results were pretty underwhelming.

I was only able to raise like $30,000 and had about $70,000 spent in investments. In hindsight, I don’t think I’d go through this ordeal again.

Luckily for me, Kendall became a huge celebrity, so it raised a lot of recognition for my brand as well. Additionally, because her management let me write the contract, I basically have rights to those photos and video material forever.

What a win!

It only took a single tweet from Kendall, and I grew my number of email subscribers by 20,000, which turned out to be a steady source of revenue ever since.

When it comes to the business side of things, the income is seasonal, with peaks throughout the summer and Christmas season.

Woodies evolved a lot during the years, starting from watches to sunglasses, with business going from big to boom. Another good boost came from selling on Amazon, which was sorta surprising. At the time, I was running on fumes, barely taking any paychecks, and actually had to move back in with my mom in Tulsa.

Other than a few Bitcoins, I had zero savings, and spent my days traveling the world. During this time, my entrepreneurship came down to a few epic wins, and more than a few moderate losses.

Still, this was an exciting journey, as I got to travel the globe, mingle with gorgeous models, perform creative tasks, and improve myself as a person overall.

Ultimately, it proved to be a valuable lesson, and I would hardly change a thing.

Before I forget, let me mention some of the techs I used up to this point:

 


 

Important things I’ve learned:


Naturally, there were a couple of loose ends I had yet to take care of, including:

When it comes to services, there are more than a few worth mentioning.

Seriously, just now I’m starting to realize how many of these damn things I really use. Might as well cancel a few in the future, LOL.

Either way, here it goes.

After 5 years of doing business with Woodie, I started to get a grip on things. With no partners or employees around, I am my own boss. This allows me to control my business, down to the slightest nuances.

However, there’s only so much time in a day, and these services can be a lifesaver. Automation has truly taken things to another level.

 


Me traveling the whole time

Shopify: Alpha and Omega of the eCommerce space

 

Shopify apps: Make an offer: Pop-up which allows buyers to offer a bid for the product of their desire. They give their email address in the process, which I use to send them a discount code with Zapier and later fetch them to Mailchimp.

Login with Amazon: Although 60% of all traffic comes from mobile, checkouts only account for about 20%. Why is that? It’s actually a simple reason, it’s much harder to enter your personal info this way. This terrific app allows them to use their Amazon account, as well as choose their payment method and address.

ShopiMap: Every customer gets pinned, along with their orders. It’s perfect for social proof.

Yotpo: When I got them, the prices started at $30 per month, but the value has skyrocketed these days to $300! This fantastic app automatically sends review requests and showcases them on product pages. CovetPics: A simply Instagram plugin which is used to design a collage from my photos. Honestly, this app may be a bit redundant these days.

Spently: Default confirmation emails from Shopify and terribly boring and plane, but Spently bring fun into the equation. Shout to Nick!

Compass.Co: Number one eCommerce analytics, as far as I’m concerned. Not only that it pulls tons of information I never even knew existed, it also organizes it all it a super neat way.

Amazon: My primary sales platform, which accounts for more than 60% of my overall sales.

Customer Service: An integral part of any business. Fortunately for me, my mom is hired for this part of the job. Although my mom is busy, you can test your luck on a website called HireMyMom. That’s a real place guys, laugh all you want.


Greetings to moms across the globe, though, you are awesome! AmazonFBA: 100% of my products are dealt through this great service. They receive, store, pack and ship out all of my products. It allows me to live as a full-time traveler, and it made the logistics so much simpler. Amazon Affiliates: There are tons of individuals who use Amazon Prime as their primary service, and honestly, I completely get that.

At the end of the day, free shipping is a welcomed bonus. Because of that, each of my product pages includes a link to my product listings on Amazon, and through affiliate links, I’m able to gather around 1% of the order. Ultimately, it only adds up to about $100 per month, but why throw that away.

 

Amazon apps:

 


Me traveling the whole time

Websites:

 

Task Management:

 

Gmail: I do my best to check it as often as possible, at least two times a day. If only I could ever reach Inbox Zero…

Pro Tip: There are tons of interesting Gmail keyboard shortcuts you should learn

Pro Tip 2: Go to Gmail Settings and enable Send+Archive option on automatic.

Inbox Pause: Most people tend to finish tough tasks first, but somehow always find a way to answer 3 or 4 short emails simultaneously. The Inbox Pause stops this nasty habit from the get-go.

Trust me, it will increase your productivity by a long shot.

Trello: As I strive towards achieving Inbox Zero, I always have a couple of rules at hand:

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Gmail Timer Logs: A timer automatically starts upon opening a new mail.


Me traveling the whole time

Chrome Extensions:

 

 

Product development:

 

Alibaba: This is still my go-to website for finding new products.

The only thing you need to do is email the suppliers, and ask them for a reply. Not only that it eliminates Alibaba’s complicated message delivery system, it also excludes the suppliers who aren’t able to follow basic instructions.

Whatsapp: For some weird reason, Chinese suppliers prefer texting over email. Bring them to Whatsapp and establish good communication from the start.

Flexport: This terrific extension simplifies international freight forwarding. Not sure they are accepting new members, though.

Upgraded images: If you want photography that trumps the competition, this is the best option.

Speedy Barcodes: Place where I buy barcodes which I later use on Amazon.


Me traveling the whole time

Marketing:

 

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Schedugram: It schedules Instagram posts in advance. Helped me out a bunch of times. Repost: Reposts other people’s photos, specifically those that have Woody tags in ’em.

Instagram and Snapchat: Two absolute kings in the social media game. In case you’re interested, my Instagram is WoodiesCaptain as well as WoodiesIG.

Mailchimp: For the previous 4 years, Mailchimp has been my go-to for sending emails. To be fair, my emails are fairly straightforward, so I might consider a downgrade. Oh yeah, I also use Klaviyo, as it’s integrated with Shopify.

Apps:

 

TripIt: Because I live the life of a nomad, this app keeps track of my itineraries.

F.lux: Dims the screen brightness late at night. If you’re a night owl, this is a necessity.

Franz: A simple client for Mac which combines all sorts of apps like Whatsapp, Skype, Messenger, Hangouts, Slack and WeChat into one. I don’t approve on Shipwire, StitchLabs, and AppSumo, as they are too complicated.

Am I missing something? Be sure to let me know.

Before I forget, although there’s no specific app for this, one thing everyone should learn is how to say NO. No, wholesale is not an option.

International shipping? Forget about it. These two simple letters will save you so much time and effort, so force yourself to use them every time you feel like it.

Tinder for marketing? Just wait and see, my friends. It’s my own little secret tactics, but it’s fine, I’m ready to share it with the rest of the world.

On your Tinder profile, make sure to emphasize you’re the owner of that specific brand, and put up some photos to back it up. The next steps include upgrading to TinderPlus (only about $9.99 a month) and download Bonfire (which will set you back another $0.99).

I place Tinder location at 100 miles, and arrange Bonfire to 200 profiles at a time. By pressing like multiple times, you’ll get in touch with hundreds, possibly thousands of matches in no time.

I’ve personally used this tactic to gather over 9,000 matches, possibly dozens of sales, and it also scored me a bunch of impressions and hits. Sure, it also helps you meet girls, just in case you were wondering.

Want to hear the story about the dumbest thing I ever did? Just wait for it. For my friend’s birthday, I accidentally made a 99% off discount code.

How? I failed to uncheck the ‘display on detail page’, and the Internet blew up.

After it got posted on SlickDealsI got orders for 1,500 pairs of glasses in the span of 4 hours!

When I realized what just happened, Amazon already shipped everything out. Sure, I cried like a baby girl to support one time after another, but the deal was set in stone.

My mom and I tried to send out as many emails as possible to customers but got basically nothing to show for.

The results? A loss of $30,000 and my soul crushed!

 


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Much to my surprise, due to the spike in my sales, Amazon kept sending customers to me, and the products started to sell like crazy.

I don’t know if I would keep pushing after that initial blow if it wasn’t for my support system, but luck finally turned on my side. Two whole years after that, I broke a million in sales numbers on Amazon alone.

The point is, even if you make a foolish mistake, there’s always a lesson to learn. Embrace the grind!

Are you still using your mom’s garage? Join the club!

There was a time where I had 1,100 kilograms show up at my mom’s place. The shipment included over 10,000 pairs of sunglasses which were packed for Amazon.

In case you missed it, I am a full-time traveler, and I run Woodies with a help of AmazonFBA, where they store and ship my orders.

Sure, I could ship these items directly to Amazon, but then again, I always check them out first, just in case.

Naturally, I wouldn’t want my supplier to know they can ship to Amazon themselves either, and also, Amazon rates are quite big, so make sure you trim it down as much as possible.

If you have a chance to lean of friends/family for inventory, don’t be afraid to ask. Your savings can be huge. And remember, the key to every successful entrepreneur is to own a box cutter and a tape gun. Gotta handle the fundamentals.

Ultimately, I hope my journey will inspire you to tackle your business and grab life by the throat.

You’ve seen that my journey was filled with different obstacles, and there were plenty of times where I wanted to give up, but I kept on pushing, and now, my company is recording over $1 million in sales annually!

Still, I haven’t run out of personal goals, nor do I see that moment ever happening, but if you told me I’d be here a few years ago, I’m not sure I would’ve believed you.

Shout-out to all entrepreneurs out there, keep doing your thing, and eventually, you’ll make it big.



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