While the COVID-19 caused many small businesses to close their doors permanently, some have been able to ride the wave and stay afloat.
Emma Holmes, co-owner of EmmaJo Scarves and More, has been able to do just that during the past several months. She and her mother run the business together.
“She does most of the sewing and I do the digital media marketing side,” said Holmes. “We make handmade scrunchies, hair scarves, and headbands. We’re not in a store front. Therefore, I rely heavily on pushing my products on Instagram to drive traffic and sales to my website. Once we get an order, we package, print a label, and mail off the order.”
The business’s Instagram page of the same name recently surpassed 500 followers and is growing fast. Holmes uses the Instagram page to share any deals the company may be having or to show off new products. This has allowed it to remain successful during the lockdowns.
Despite this, aspects of the job are still challenging during this time. Holmes said finding materials has been a bit of a dilemma.
“My biggest struggle has been finding materials that I need to function,” said Holmes. “Things have either been out of stock or taken longer to deliver due to the pandemic. I’ve had to search for other ways to buy fabric," she said. "I was used to using Hobby Lobby. Thankfully, Etsy is another great alternative that I’ve been able to use. Purchasing fabric from Etsy allowed me the opportunity to support small business owners. I have definitely realized how important that is through all of this.”
Thanks to the business being online, Holmes said the company has not only survived, but is more successful than ever.
“Honestly, business has been significantly better since the coronavirus,” said Holmes. “I am very blessed to even say that. I’ve been able to put more time and effort into growing our small business. I’ve had to make minor changes along the way. Overall, people are online more than ever before, so it’s been awesome to keep getting returning and new customers."
Holmes believes her product is a great gift to give someone during a crisis like this. She said the new Friend Gram she is offering is a great way to brighten a day.
“I wholeheartedly believe that my products can put a smile on someone’s face during these uncertain times,” said Holmes. “At the start of the pandemic, I noticed people started sending letters to people they missed. With this in mind, I brainstormed an idea called a Friend Gram. A Friend Gram is sending a product, like a scrunchie, and a personalized note to someone that you miss during quarantine. I thought it was the perfect way for people to send a friend positivity.”