Business in the Spotlight: Heavenly Hammocks
This is a little different for Recommendable, we’re showcasing in our spotlight this week one of the leaders in the Hammock Niche, Daniel Brady Heavenly Hammocks! Remember, If you’re interested in the Spotlight apply here!
Over the years, I started 3 E-commerce businesses which all failed for various reasons. I learned valuable lessons from each failure, which was the steep learning curve that I needed to make the 4th one a success.
Other than the E-commerce websites, I have over 10 more websites that I own, which make small-medium amounts of money each, mainly from ads or affiliate commissions. So I’m quite experienced in everything internet business.
Heavenly Hammocks started out as my foray into the Hammocks niche. There is not a huge amount of competition in the Australian hammocks space, so I was able to bring lots of new styles to the Australian market that the competitors don’t stock. That’s one of our competitive advantages – having some unique products in our range. I’d consider that good for the customers, having a greater range of options, and good for me, as customers won’t simply compare based on price.
Over time I’ve been refining the product lines. First I expanded the range of popular hammock styles, then focused on hammock chairs since they are less seasonal and sell better throughout the year, then I tried selling swings which have proven very successful, so this year will be spent improving the swings range.
Swings have now become the main profit driver, so a lot of effort is being put into those. It may seem odd for a person searching for a play swing or therapy swing to end up on a hammocks website, but re-branding would be very costly from an SEO perspective, but is it impacting sales? Having a second website could be worthwhile, though also costly to build up from nowhere.
Growing the business comes first, but a few commendable goals have been achieved along the way:
- Bringing more options to customers in the hammocks, hammock chairs and outdoor swings markets.
- Bringing more therapy swings options to kids with autism and sensory processing issues. Especially our sensory swings with stands. Few other companies offer stands, so ours are convenient to set up in a child’s bedroom etc.
- Being more cost competitive than our competitors for certain items, though definitely not all products.
- Over the next year, we expect to grow the range of outdoor swings and therapy swings further.
What kind of do you think people make great entrepreneurs?
In my case, dedication is the main thing that got me to this point. The business only grew to a good size after years of continuous refinement of practically every aspect of the business – product lines, importing, advertising, the website, payment processing fees, business processes and so on.
You need to be able to identify endless areas that can be improved, and then be able to improve them. Even companies like Amazon are still doing this to improve their business.
It’s good for our profit margin if a customer arrives without us having to pay for any advertising, but I think word of mouth is one of our smaller sales sources, behind SEO and advertising, though it’s hard to know for certain, particularly with a clinic or school customers buying our therapy products.
However, utilising customer reviews to boost trust seems effective for us. Eg. Somebody buys our 100cm green swing on Ebay and leaves a good review, so I screenshot it and put it on the swing’s webpage.