"I have an idea!" Being an Entrepreneur, these are words that often came out of my mouth. But I really did have a great idea. After launching CurrySimple in 2006, I was looking to do more in the food business. An online gourmet food store just made sense. Now I had many connections in the food industry and a passion for selling high quality products online. I also noticed many of the gourmet food products being produced were by small companies such as myself. Many had a hard time selling their delicious goodies online and I thought I could help. The next step was to figure out how to get started.
The discussion on how to make this work began during a seven hour car ride to a food show in Tampa with Todd Copenhaver. Todd worked for a local distributor I did business with. In the past year we had worked together to launch my CurrySimple product line into stores. Next was working out the business side of the Snazzy Gourmet venture and how to launch a store with about 500 all-natural gourmet food products. We figured out most of the details. This was getting exciting! My family warned me about being involved in to many ventures at once and that I should just focus on CurrySimple. It went in one ear and out the other as I just had to do this no matter how much time and work it would take. My passion to make this happen was too much to contain.
I started coming up with a variety of different name ideas. Somehow "Snazzy Gourmet" just stuck. "Gourmet" was important so consumers would know what the heck I am selling. "Snazzy" was catchy and represented things of high-class and value. My idea was not to sell average junk food products. I want to offer the best! The next step was to register the new domain name SnazzyGourmet.com.
The name was registered. The next few months were used for planning and logistics. The launch was set for 2008...
The next step was to choose an E-Commerce platform that was a leader in the industry. In 2008 I chose Volusion. Now years later in 2012, we still use the same platform. Their dedication to online security and customer satisfaction is first class. In January the web development of the new online store began. After a few weeks of 16-hour days and late nights, Snazzy Gourmet was officially (and quietly) launched in February of 2008.
As you can probably tell a non-designer designed the logo (me). It was not pretty but worked at the time.
The site was now up and running. Our FIRST SALE came in at 5:08 pm on 2/29/2008 . It was a very exciting moment! Thousands of orders later, and I still get that same feeling.
The first year was under my belt I thought it was time to start figuring out ways to improve the customer experience. Nobody likes to pay for shipping, and it was time to give our customers a bargain for spending their money on Snazzy. We began to reward customers that spent over $99 with Free Shipping. This was a great idea!
The concept for Snazzy is not to offer a million products. We just want to offer some of the best in each category. These top-notch products include items such as Sonoma Syrup Co. Pure Vanilla Extract and Badia Campo Corto Organic EVOO. They are simply the best!
We had a huge push for the holiday season for the first time. We had so many satisfied customers! Gourmet food products make excellent gifts. Who doesn't like to eat? We have some really unique items that you will not find at your local grocery store.
It was time to start updating the look of Snazzy Gourmet. We had a professional logo designed.
In 2010 we also added one of our favorite product lines called Garlic Clove Foods. They offer healthy and delicious products that are really easy to prepare. We also started to expand our lineup of Beverages. Entrepreneurs have really started creating some great tasting drinks over the past few years.
We finally found our FAVORITE BBQ Sauce! There are hundreds and hundreds to choose from and we found the best in our back yard. Fox Bros. BBQ is a local Atlanta restaurant that decided to start bottling up their sauce. It was a great idea that worked! We started selling the heck out of this stuff instantly. It had the right combination of sweet and heat. It is worth a try!
Things were going great in 2011. We are always on the lookout for great new products. We now had a way to offer them with a big deal!
Volusion then launched a "Groupon" like feature called Deal of the Day. It was a way to easily offer large discounts on items. We use it to introduce new products to our customers at discounts up to 50% off. It is a great feature that keeps customers coming back often to find a deal on something delish!
This year it was all about our new look!
We were going into our 5th year and thought it was time to get a new design. We went from minimalist to earthy clean with brown and green tones. The new look of the site was an exciting time and got us ready for our biggest year yet! New product additions included PB2 Peanut Butter, Shortstacks Vanilla Pancake & Waffle Mix, Fox Bros Rub and more! These are some amazing gourmet goodies.
We also made some ownership changes in 2012. I am excited to announce the addition of Todd Copenhaver on the ownership team. We had been working on the project for so many years it just made sense to form a partnership. In addition to Todd, we also added Reid Edgar as a manager to help facilitate the day to day activities and marketing.
We continue to find ways to improve our customer service and product selection.
The Story Continues...
I want to say thank you to the thousands of customers over the years and being part of this delicious story!
After several years of dedication, Michael (Mikey) Moran recently made the difficult decision to sell Snazzy Gourmet and focus his efforts on other business ventures. He really wanted someone to come in and continue the dedication to Snazzy’s customers so here we are! We wish him the best in his future endeavors.
As the story continues….we will be making some exciting improvements by the end of the year so stay tuned. If you have any questions/suggestions for us or would simply like to say hello, we’d love to hear from you!
Your new friends at Snazzy Gourmet,
Shawn Swanson & Kyle Sulerud