Ending a business

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SozoArtisanSoaps

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Has anyone ever had a soap business and then took it back down to hobby level? I have been in business for 2 yrs and losing my desire for it. I kind of want to just go back to soaping for my family.

Has anyone done this? Did you sell your business or just stop?
 

SozoArtisanSoaps

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It sure has taken the fun out of it. I haven't soaped for 6 weeks and have no desire to. I probably won't again until August. I was just curious if anyone has been through this or thought this. :)
 

Arimara

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Maybe you should see how you feel after your break. Waiting til August is ample time to think about why you originally started soaping and to reevaluate what you want to give and get out of being a vendor.

I personally won't sell anything B&B or soap related because of how hectic my life is at the moment. I also can't play around with colors and FOs because of skin sensitivities in my family. Not everyone wants a plain soap, no matter how well it cleaned you up or massaged your back or even stuffed you full of tea and crumpets.
 

green soap

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I was in business 3 years, and closed it mid 2015. In CA you need to pay the state tax you collected, and 'close the books' so to speak. I sold some of my extra supplies and tools, but did not sell the business per se, just ended it.

I did not tire of making soaps, I was just not making enough $$$ to justify my time. I always will make soap, I could not go to commercial soap again.

One of the thing I disliked was working with FOs. People liked the fragrance blends I created, but I got sensitized to the FOs. I felt I had to keep making those to keep the customers who liked them, but I hated making them. I now only make either unscented soaps or soaps with EO blends. I make only the soaps I love, and really enjoy making them.

I miss some things, like the huge variety of different soaps I had at any one time, the other vendors at my market, and a lot of my customers. As I said though, I could not justify continuing it due to financial considerations.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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If I recall, you have no "bricks and mortar" assets that is not a part of your home, either a shop or a soaping location, that could be passed on to someone else. You might have stock and ingredients, that could be sold.

But most online soap companies really only have customers and a brand. It's only worth selling that if there is a lot of repeat business and a stable brand/marketing plan in operation.

As for what you should legally do in order to close up shop, check with the places where you had to register to start with
 

SozoArtisanSoaps

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Yes, no brick and mortar :) If I do stop, I will close up after the first of the year or until sell all the soap. Then I will sell the rest of my supplies off.

The hard part is disappointing some of my customers. I am a people pleaser and hate to disappoint. Still praying about it, but I feel God is leading me down this path to have more time and focus for a ministry He has called me to start.
 

BattleGnome

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would "soaping by request" be an option for you? What I'm imagining is between custom orders and keeping stuff in stock. Someone could place an "order" with the understanding it will take 2 months for fulfillment. You would soap to order then whatever excess there was would be listed on your site/donated/gifted to family or friends.
 

penelopejane

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The hard part is disappointing some of my customers. I am a people pleaser and hate to disappoint. Still praying about it, but I feel God is leading me down this path to have more time and focus for a ministry He has called me to start.

We had a wholesale plant nursery I thought I had to sell it as a going concern so the customers didn't feel let down and kept the supply of our plants. Silly idea. There are lots of other suppliers out there even if they didnt supply our exact product. The people we sold to were too lazy to make it a going concern and that was a huge disappointment.

I wish I had closed the business and kept the land.
 

navigator9

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This subject makes me sad, because I'm going back and forth between quitting or not. I seriously considered quitting twice before, but both times, my customers dragged me back in. I enjoy doing craft fairs, more specifically I like being there and talking to the customers about soap, I like the atmosphere, the other vendors. I hate the set up and the break down, and one more thing...I figured once I retired, I'd have just loads and loads of time to make soap, and wrap it and label it, but I've found that I'm resenting how much time it takes to do all that. I wouldn't mind so much if I were making tons of money, but those of you who do craft fairs and markets know what it's like. Some are great, but many are not, and that's a lot of hard work and time spent without much payoff. Ideally, I'd love a tiny, little, shoe-box sized, brick and mortar store. I mean TINY. You know, the size of a closet. That's the only size I'd be able to afford to rent. So that's not going to happen, and I've realized that the older I get, the more precious time is, and I don't want to waste any of it. There are some people that I will continue to make soap for, on request, but spending all of those hours making, stamping, wrapping and labeling soaps, is just not something I'm wanting to do at this time. At this time. Sounds like I'm giving myself a way back in, doesn't it? Well, it's happened before. But today, at this minute, I don't want back in. But I wouldn't sell the business, the name and my recipes...just in case. :think:
 

penelopejane

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I figured once I retired, I'd have just loads and loads of time to make soap, and wrap it and label it, but I've found that I'm resenting how much time it takes to do all that. I wouldn't mind so much if I were making tons of money, but those of you who do craft fairs and markets know what it's like. Some are great, but many are not, and that's a lot of hard work and time spent without much payoff. Ideally, I'd love a tiny, little, shoe-box sized, brick and mortar store. I mean TINY.
Would an alternative be an Internet store - advertised to your current customers? That would/should/might at least cover the costs of your own soaps?
Or you could put them in an established small gift store who would do the selling for you (you would lose a commission though).
Just alternative options, to think about. I like the idea of covering cost but I know there is insurance etc.
 

SozoArtisanSoaps

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I appreciate the replies, guys. Navigator9, I certainly understand! After tonights market being horrible (still have one more day to go) when it was a market I would make $500 at, so far I made $59, I am ready to hang it up. It's crazy. But, it is not just me. Other vendors did poorly.

I made the decision to let it go. I won't sell it, but will sell off supplies at the end/beginning of the year. I am not doing anymore markets either. After tomorrow's, I am done. D.O.N.E. I won't make anymore soap except for my fall/Christmas ones and that's it. What I have left I will sell until it's gone and close up.

Been praying about this for months. I have my answer and ready to be done. Hopefully in the months to come after that, I get my passion to make soap back for my family...
 

samirish

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I just went through this exact same thing. I was in business for 3 years. Did well, but....I resented the set up, the break down and how exhausting it is to do farmers markets, craft fairs etc. The weather we have here made it worse too. While I enjoy speaking with my customers, Im an introvert by nature, and being a "sales person" just drains my energy.
I enjoy soaping but when its you actual job, it takes the fun out of it.
 

cmzaha

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My daughter has taken a long break from her end of the business, beautiful m&p soaps and not sure she will go back to it. She just burnt out and became frustrated with all the competition. I am getting old, tired, frustrated but still enjoy getting out of the house and going to the markets. Even with the loss of my very good weekly market I am just not ready to give up. Since we cannot go out of town with having elderly parents to watch over I enjoy a reason to get out of the house. It just has not become a "job" for me even though it is a tremendous amount of work. Thanks to our market owner that I think the world of I am now doing 4 markets a week just to support him. Keep telling him I am to old for this!! :)

I wish you well with any new adventures. You know yourself when it is time to quit
 

SozoArtisanSoaps

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I just went through this exact same thing. I was in business for 3 years. Did well, but....I resented the set up, the break down and how exhausting it is to do farmers markets, craft fairs etc. The weather we have here made it worse too. While I enjoy speaking with my customers, Im an introvert by nature, and being a "sales person" just drains my energy.
I enjoy soaping but when its you actual job, it takes the fun out of it.
I, too, am an introvert. I can relate to this very much.
 

TeresaT

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While I enjoy speaking with my customers, Im an introvert by nature, and being a "sales person" just drains my energy.
I, too, am an introvert. I can relate to this very much.
So true. People that are not introverts have no idea how exhausting "being friendly" is to those of us that are introverts. While I love being around my friends and those close to me, it is draining. Heck, just going to work and being around people all day is draining. I feel like I am "on" when I'm with people. I love being alone so I can recharge the batteries.

Sozo, I'm sorry you are packing up and calling it quits, but you have to do what is best for you. I hope you get your mindset back and return to soaping just for the pleasure of it. If it's not fun to do anymore, then it's not worth doing. If you are going to have a home-based business, it should be something you enjoy and are passionate about. If you have lost that passion, you are right to hang it up for a while. Good luck in your future endeavors, whatever they may be.
 

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