We’ve seen a movement sweep the world and the economy in which people are now able to make things and make money. Platforms like Etsy have just under 1.5 million active sellers providing 29 million products for the 20 million active buyers. After Etsy launched in 2008, 3 million people quit their jobs and started their own maker business creating a wave that swept the world and launched the maker movement. However, despite this success of Etsy at large, Etsy makers and entrepreneurs around the world struggle to make their businesses sustainable and truly transform their passion side hustle projects into a full blown business with enough money to cover their livelihoods. Etsy is no longer perceived “the answer” for creating a sustainable business as a maker or creator. But there is a second wave of makers taking their businesses into their own hands and not letting their fates depend on Etsy alone in helping them sustain a successful business.
Platforms like Etsy have just under 1.5 million active sellers providing 29 million products for the 20 million active buyers.
Wholesale in a Box exists to change that. This startup pinpoints maker obstacles and gives them the resources they need to get into brick and mortar stores and scale their products’ exposure beyond an Etsy search. It is a subscription service for makers and helps find the perfect stores for the unique products of each maker as well as provides these maker entrepreneurs with information and tools they need to not only find these perfect vendors but reach out to them and close deals; thus, generate revenue and sustainable sales. Each subscriber gets 20 hand-picked leads of whom the team scours the world for the perfect fits based on the unique goals, locations, scale ambitions, and styles of each venture. Wholesale In A Box has extensive networks and relationships with these stores of whom they seek out based on the data of the needs of their customers.
Wholesale In A Box pinpoints the obstacles bottlenecking Makers & gives them resources they need to get into brick and mortar stores & scale their products’ exposure.
Beyond this, Wholesale In A Box helps with outreach, coaches, connects entrepreneurs with leads, provides online tools and a CRM as well as provides project management task flows for closing deals for each store. It’s a cheat sheet for makers to successfully navigate garnering new customers from the first encounter to signed contract. It helps makers so they don’t need to reinvent the wheel but rather learn from an expert in the field who has identified what works and how it is done as fast as possible profitably. Consider it an accelerated route with fewer curveballs and potholes compared to going at it in on your own as an entrepreneur. They are your Sherpa who hikes Everest on weekdays and can help you conquer that mountain much faster than you can fathom. And for only $119 a month.
Wholesale In A Box’s team are your Sherpa who hikes Everest on weekdays and can help you conquer that mountain much faster than you can fathom.
Though Wholesale In A Box has subscribers from a plethora of industries and different types of businesses, they have found that their service makes the biggest impact on creators of handmade products who are looking to sell to independent boutiques. That said, they are not stopping there. They may eventually expand their expertise to verticals like artisan food producers.
Wholesale In A Box makes the biggest impact on creators of handmade products who are looking to sell to independent boutiques.
The most exciting thing on their horizon is doubling down on doing what works. They have found that many entrepreneurs who use their service get their return on investment within in only one month. Beyond this, the company is expanding their offering in both the tools that they have for makers as well as expanding into novel industries. The biggest challenge is continuing to keep their high rate of efficacy and customer service at the price point that makers want to buy at, driven by the desire to make their service radically affordable to any maker anywhere.Their current fee of $119 a month is a price point they came to based on the feedback from their customers and data from makers around the world.
The co-founders, Emily Kerr-Finell and Etan Brandt-Finell, participated in the past Parallel 18 cohort. Emily Kerr-Finell (likewise a fellow member of the Unreasonable movement!), shares the biggest impacts of the program on her and the company. “Being an entrepreneur can be isolating,” Emily shares (something I think we all have experienced first hand), “Connecting to similar entrepreneurs in the program was deeply impactful.” Likewise getting to live in a new (fun!) location in Puerto Rico, be immersed in an international community gave Emily and the team a richness of diversity of experience that helped fuel cultivating new ideas. They were exposed to inspirations that made them think bigger and challenge their conceptions of what they thought possible.
” Coaching has been an exponentially impactful practice that has helped me overcome personal barriers, faster. ”
– Emily Kerr-Finell, Co-Founder of Wholesale In A Box
Two people have been particularly impactful on Emily’s entrepreneurial journey and people she says have been influential on her success. First, an investor Rafe Furst who helps people prepare for investment – if you are raising money, he’s the guy to talk to shoot straight on getting ready to raise your round. Second, coaching has been an exponentially impactful practice for Emily that has helped her overcome personal barriers and she’s grateful to her coach Melissa Foster for unpacking those insights faster. If you are a badass young woman eager to realize your full potential, check out opportunities such as the Coaching Fellowship, co-founded by my former coach and lifetime role model Jane Finette, that exists to do just that.
” Women provide a unique perspective in business that is their competitive advantage.”
– Emily Kerr-Finell, Co-Founder of Wholesale In A Box
And given the staggering disparities of male to female entrepreneurs and CEOs, resources for helping female leaders and entrepreneurs realize their visions are more imperative than ever. As a female co-founder, Emily shared her take on her experience as a woman leader in a majority male-dominated industry. “The business field is molded based on an entirely masculine model, women need to see that they provide a unique perspective that is their competitive advantage. Don’t try to imitate that model — find the one that is authentically yours, and that will be what works best in the end.” says the co-founder of Wholesale in A Box and serial entrepreneur, Emily Kerr-Finell.
Join a global platform fueling the next wave of successful Etsy-esque entrepreneurs, movers, makers, and shakers.
Check out Wholesale In A Box for free resources on their site or expertise on their blog – unlocking these resources due to their core passion is helping makers have the freedom to do the work they want and create in sustainable ways. Are you a maker who wants to grow your business (or do you know someone who is?) – get in touch and see for yourself the return on investment you get within a week of joining this global platform fueling the next wave of successful Etsy-esque entrepreneurs, movers, makers, and shakers.
Update on Wholesale In A Box: Since I spoke to the team last month, Wholesale In A Box just started a “sister” company that will make other tools and workbooks and training for makers, artists, and designers. That company is called One Mill Co. Just like villages used to have one mill where farmers got their grain ground and ready for market — One Mill Co is a central place for makers to get tools and clear away obstacles to their work thriving. One Mill Co’s first project is a series of business Workbooks for makers, artists, and designers. These workbooks are beautiful, soulful and actionable. And the team is co-authoring them with some of the best makers in the business such as Gopi Shah, Falling Into Place, and Little Truths Studio. The very first workbook will be coming out for pre-order at the end of this week — and it’s called “Launching New Products Without Losing Your Mind or Your Shirt.”
Wholesale In A Box is continuing to grow rapidly and bring exponential value to makers around the world.