Tips for Becoming an Online Entrepreneur: Selling Decals

Today's I Want to Be features Jade.  She and her husband have one child who just turned 2.  Jade is a graphic designer who has worked in that field for 10 years.  Her husband works in business and business sales.  The majority of designs in their decal store, Sunny Decals, were created by Jade and her husband.  Find out how to connect with Jade at the end of this article.

How long have you had your business?

We started creating the artwork for our decals and website design in June 2012. However, we officially launched our site in January 2013.

What led you to pursue it?

We were decorating our son’s nursery, and we were searching for wall decals to put in his room. The theme for his room was Safari, and we were looking for some monkeys and a tree to place behind the crib. What we discovered is that 99% of the decals you find online are made from vinyl. Companies like to use vinyl because it’s inexpensive and easy to use; however it’s made from PCB’s which is toxic. We took some extra measures to make sure our new nursery will be safe for our baby. We used paint with no VOC’s, we bought sheets that were made from organic materials, and we were cautious about what we brought into this nursery. That is what motivated us to create a better product that is nontoxic, easy to apply, and superior to the other products found online and in stores.

Are you full time or part time?  If part-time, do you anticipate switching to full time?

At the moment, this business is part-time. However, we are hoping that it can grow to the point that we can make it a full time business.

How do you market your business?

We started out by using social media and word of mouth. We also use Google AdWords and have experimented with giveaway promotions.

What is your favorite part of the business?

The most satisfying part of the business is the feedback and pictures that we get from our customers. We work so hard to create a quality product, and I love that people enjoy our products.

What one myth or misconception do you want to dispel about the work you do?

If I can dispel one misconception it would be that all wall decals are the same. Anyone can buy wall decals for a fraction of the price at a big box store or online; however, most people who have chosen to use these cheaper products have been through the frustration of having the decals peel, curl, or fall off the walls. Our product is made from a fabric material and it’s more expensive; however, it’s a product that is nontoxic and will not peel, curl, stretch, or shrink. The inferior products look like cheap stickers, and our decals are designed to look like a painted mural.  

What advice do you have for others who want to get into a similar opportunity?

Research your area of interest carefully and try to find a niche that you can specialize in. The wall decal business is pretty large with a lot of competitors; however, we found a niche within that industry for the customer that is looking for a nontoxic and better quality product.
What is the first step?

The first step would be to research your area of interest. Study your competitors and find something that is unique.

What websites or books do you recommend for tips?

My husband and I had no experience in setting up an e-commerce business or online marketing. We signed up for an online course that really helped us get started. It was a step-by-step course to finding a niche, choosing a platform, marketing, and much more. The instructor hosts weekly live seminars and answers your questions.

(Editor's Note: Steve Chou, the person behind the course was interviewed here. Check it out for more details!

You can learn more about what Jade does at her website, Sunny Decals, and on her Facebook page.  You can also find her on Twitter.

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