It's long over due - an update!
Happy Memorial Day weekend! We hope all of our wonderful fans get a chance to salute and honor those who have given their lives during their military career which have be cut too short. May God Bless you all - family and friends of fallen heroes!
Reflecting on this holiday it seems like By the Bay Botanicals has grown silent over the past few months. I can assure you it is alive and kicking. The main reason why you have not heard of any updates is because of a recent partnership with My Staycation Box, a monthly subscription box service that is all about delivering a vacation in a box for those who need an escape but can't drop everything and go. The box itself contains amazingly curated products sourced from or inspired by different destinations each month - right up the alley for By the Bay Botanicals since we pride ourselves in offering products that are inspired and named after popular travel destinations. By the Bay Botanicals is the exclusive provider of all the scented gifts for the box which involves creating new scented products for destinations we have not explored yet.
In the next few weeks, those new scents will be made available through our website for our fans to buy. Some of those scents include Jamaica Rum Punch (tropical fruit punch scent), Australia Koala Kiss (eucalyptus scent), New Orleans Mardi Gras Parade (a festive, spa like scent) and Greece Fresh Baked Baklava. Since By the Bay Botanicals is still a small business, it is a time consuming process to create and test new fragrances for My Staycation Box as well as find the time to photograph and add them to the By the Bay Botanicals website. This is something we are going to remedy over the next few weeks especially due to the requests of wanting to additional products from those just learning about By the Bay Botanicals via My Staycation Box.
You may have noticed the website has finally gotten a facelift! This is something we are very happy with, but still tweaking. It is our goal to make it easier for people to navigate such as have easier access to learn about additional scents that are similar to ones browsers are searching for, make the check out process simple and easy, among many other aspects of the website better optimized with our fans in mind.
For those who may not have been keeping up with where is By the Bay Botanicals today... We moved from our warehouse location in Westminster back to the original home based location in Reisterstown. The move was simply due to the one year lease running out and did not want to rush into a decision of another warehouse or retail space without seriously considering all options. While space is tight in our current workshop, we are making it work to meet the demand of both our wholesale and regular clients. Only time will tell how long we will stay at this location, but right now it is home and very happy here.
What else is going on? Our focus is to continue to offer more of the great scents and products we are known to offer. We want to connect more with gift shop owners across the nation, not just those in the mid-atlantic region to carry our line of goods. We are working towards offer more interesting and fun content via our social media channels including running contests and offering coupon codes for different upcoming holidays, and reconnect with our followers by asking their input on new products we released as well as ideas on how to make them better. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.
On that note, we want to know what you think! Comment below with your thoughts and ideas for By the Bay Botanicals. What is it that you like the most about the company? What would you like to see us do more or better? Have any burning questions you would like to ask us and we answer? Again, comment below and we will respond to each and every one!
Thanks for your time and do burn your candles safely!!
Michelle Sholund, Founder and CEO of By the Bay Botanicals
What's new at by the bay botanicals for 2017?
First of all, greetings and welcome to 2017! For those returning you may notice a new layout on the By the Bay Botanicals website. This is something we have talked about doing for some time, yet each time we start, time constraints get in the way. As we continue to spruce up the website we will be adding product listings such as photos of room sprays and wax tarts available for purchase.
Another piece of big news is that in 2017 By the Bay Botanicals will be temporarily moving back to Reisterstown! It has been one year since we moved out of our gift shop and into a warehouse location. We signed a year lease and it is amazing how fast one year goes by. Since the owner of By the Bay Botanicals also started another business, My Staycation Box, a decision has been made to not renew the lease and transition back into being a home based business for a short period of time and continue to make the company's candles and other scented products there. Until the moving transition is completed, people may find some delays in orders placed over the By the Bay Botanicals website. This is a good move as the company makes important decisions on how to grow without the pressure of making irrantional snap decisions that may affect the company long term.
This 2017 also brings an opportunity regarding marketing opportunities which involves working with subscription box owners to include our candles in future box offerings. It is a great way to get our items into the hands of people who have never heard of By the Bay Botanicals while also growing the brand in ways we were not able to do so before. Currently By the Bay Botanicals scented goods are being featured in My Staycation Box, a subscription box that delivers a vacation experience to subscribers doorsteps each month. Since the products offered at By the Bay Botanicals are inspired and named after popular travel destinations, this fits very well with our brand. Know of a subscription box that you think would be a great match for By the Bay Botanicals, suggest it in the comment section below!
Lastly, we are in the process of signing up for a few art and wine festivals this Spring! It has been a while since we have sold our candles at shows, but we have not forgotten how! We hope you will join us. Event dates and places will be listed on our Events page as information is confirmed.
With all that is going on in our neck of the woods we encourage you to stay connected with us by liking and following us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/bythebaybotanicals) as well as Instagram (www.instragram.com/bythebaybotanicals) Until our next blog post, we hope you stay well and warm this winter and always think of us for your candle needs! - Michelle Sholund, owner
Vlog Episode #4 - Why Does By the Bay Botanicals Handpour Our Candles Verses Have Them Mass Produced Overseas?
This week we answer Ryan's question, "why do we choose to made make our products verses having them pass produced overseas?" Additionally we tackle the importance of supporting local artists over products you can get a Big Box Stores.
The answer to this is in 3 parts covering the importance of quality, how handcrafted products often have a remarkable story, and how your money helps people you know achieve financial success on their own verses supporting big corporate retailers who's biggest concern is to make big profits at the expense of having poor quality, cheap products and keeping employee wages low.
This is a goodie - and encourage you to share as well as comment below with your thoughts as well as any suggestions for future episodes.
Catch up on company news here at By the Bay Botanicals! Here's what you can expect to read:
We hope you enjoy!
Thanks for checking us out on our blog series - Why Does By the Bay Botanicals...
Each week we answer a question you pose us through social media, email, or through the comment section of our blog and other sites. Today we answer Why do we name our candles after popular travel destinations? In the video we not only talk about the origin of how we looked deeper into the niche of doing travel inspired candles, but show some examples too to better illustrate how it's all about the branding. Please share with your fellow candle lovers and friends - we really want folks out there know our candle line - Destination Scentsations, is a better alternative to sooty candles and scented candles where the fragrances fade quickly. Enjoy!
In this episode we answer the great question - why are our candles designed the way they look today? Well, it didn't happen over night, but several years of experimenting. From the very beginning we knew we wanted our candles to look different from all the others you see in shops - they had to stand out from traditional mason jar type candles. This episode takes a look at our journey of how our candles evolved. Here we talk about the style, the shape and how that helps make our candles burn better, and the transitions we went though to make them stylish jar candles that are incredibly sticking and makes you want to touch and smell them. Please comment with your thoughts on this video as well as post future questions you would like to see us answer on a future episode! AND SHARE!!!
Greetings everyone! We are so thrilled release the first of several episodes in a blog (video blog) series where viewers and fans like yourself get to glimpse of what goes on in this company. It's an opportunity to connect to our followers in a new way where you all get to pose questions that have been on your mind regarding this business and we answer them, on video! Expect to see one episode each week on our blog (via our website, www.bythebaybotanicals.com), youtube, and our Facebook page. This episode we tackle the question, Why palm wax? In the video learn about how palm wax is:
Hello and Happy March! Hard to believe how fast time is flying. Time got away from us trying to get this newsletter out in a timely fashion, but all good things come to those who wait! In this edition find info about why our custom candles make great wedding favors, company news, March's candle of the month scent, new vlog series announced, a new candle subscription is in the works and we need your input, plus much more!
Please share! Your friends will thank you!
I am sure by now most people have heard the saying, "location location location", right? That very saying went through my head one day this past December when I wanted to get some perspective on where I hope to see the company 1, 2 and even 5 years from now. After consulting with some great mentors about how things are going with the business overall one thing stood out when looking at the various aspects of By the Bay Botanicals.
By the Bay Botanicals is a unique company where we do not focus on one thing, but multiple. There's retail, wholesale and private label. The gift shop was a great tool to get recognized and allow people to physically see and smell our candles. The location was a hub - a great location in the heart of Carroll County, not to mention centrally located in the heart of the town so it was easy to find and nestled among other great local small businesses. This helped make the candle shop be not only a place someone could discover on a stroll through Main Street but also was a destination location where people would seek us out for local souvenirs and of course one of a kind candles! But there is more to having a location that looks good on paper...
Factoring in the "location" of the gift shop had some issues. The space size was limited something we didn't foresee when signing the lease. It was a perfect space to both make as well as sell our candles, until we felt claustrophobic with limited space to pour candles for orders and the shop too. While we also had nice space for gifts that complimented our candle line, display space for the goodies was also at a premium especially around the holidays. Additionally the building while historic and had great character it did come with some problems that didn't make working there easy.
Upon reflecting the time at the gift shop I saw more opportunities for distraction than production from what was really important to the business. While the shop provided an opportunity to bring us closer to our customers in the community, we lost focus. For instance it was harder to meet with new wholesale clients because running a retail shop while meeting with new clients was never in balance often having to stop a meeting to attend to a group of customers that happened to wonder in trying to find specific items. While we loved having a window showing how we make our candles daily became more of an invitation to stop and chat - which we didn't mind and always a welcomed part of the business, but at the end of the day were not able to fill orders in a timely manner.
When looking at everything that made the shop fun, it dawned on me, we lost focus. The goal of the shop was was to be the cherry on top. In other words our main source of income was from an e-commerce website so people could order candles from across the US, wholesale to independent gift shop owners and custom candles for those seeking wedding favors or business branding. These revenue streams were to help pay the bills and keep the business afloat while gift shop sales would bring in profit. The reality was the opposite - the gift shop drained a lot of our funds (especially taxes) and saw devoting less time to help get new orders from our wholesale clients. Addtionally we were always behind in updating the website with new products. Something had to give.
That is why on January 31, 2016 By the Bay Botanicals closed it's doors and moved to a new location - one that is a warehouse with an office where we solely manufacturer our candles with plenty of room for storage and meet our shipping needs. The office now offers space to meet with clients and less distractions regarding updating the website - like doing this blog for instance!
Not many company owners would bother sharing this type of information to the public, but I feel - with being transparent as one of the things we pride ourselves with - we owe it to our customers, an explanation why. Too many businesses get in trouble and are in so deep that they fail to see the clearest of answers are right in front of them. Also people wonder if a space is not around, then it must have closed for good - which is not what has happened in this story. We are very happy with this decision. Change is a good thing that all people should embrace. Change brings new opportunities and helps the creative juices flow. Change can even help an entrepreneur lead a business to greatness.
With this new change we are not only pledging to our fans but our employees that the best is still to come and we really want you to come along for the ride.
Please comment below as I would love to hear what you think about this change in location. Are you less likely to buy from us now that we do not have a gift shop any more? Also do subscribe to this feed for future blog posts on topics relating to By the Bay Botanicals as well as random thoughts that I feel lead to share. Sometimes it may be advice I think followers would benefit or perhaps questions for you to answer in making this company more customer friendly.
Michelle Sholund, CEO
I am the owner of By the Bay Botanicals. We want to stay connected to you, and through this blog we aim to share with you tips and tricks to buying and burning candles as well as read up on what goes on behind the scenes at By the Bay Botanicals. Feel free to comment, and comment often as well as share with your friends and family.
Wish to contact me directly about questions or comments, visit our contact page.