The vision for MYEBOOTH.COM started with its owner, Gloria Lastra, an avid crafter and a native New Orleanian.
Gloria, like many other New Orleanians, grew up with a love of the Saints, LSU, the Fleur De Lis, Mardi Gras, king cake, Jazz music, Second Lines in the French Quarter, the sounds of the streetcar, beignets, crawfish, and snowballs. And, it wouldn’t surprise you to know that there was a large community of local artisans in New Orleans – or as we call it “NOLA”, that created, baked, cooked, and made items reflecting their love of the city too – items that not only other locals loved, but that visitors from outside of the city also loved. From snowball door decor; paintings of jazz musicians, and beignets; and countless Saints and LSU items, it seemed that NOLA artists had conceived of and made everything having to do with NOLA.
The struggle as a local buyer was trying to find all of these items in one place and not having to wait until the next craft show to find that special NOLA something. Finding these items as an out of state buyer was even more challenging. In doing research, Gloria realized that this same situation was not particular to her city, but to every city, which also had its own unique culture and artisans making items reflective of their culture.
In speaking with local vendors, their biggest concern was how and where to market their items. Many vendors complained of the increasing costs of selling on existing craft sites, costly booth fees at craft shows, and the complexity of shipping perishable and heavy items. Most vendors felt that craft-based websites were not really designed for local to local transactions and so they relied more on social media to showcase their items. But, many of those vendors struggled to drive buyers to their products.
MYEBOOTH.COM was created to deal with these challenges. Of top priority was creating a professional, cost effective, and user-friendly environment for both Buyers and Vendors using her site. Gloria wanted to assure that each Vendor on her site had their own page with its own unique url and that each Vendor had the freedom to customize their page and to set their own store policies. In order to maximize Vendor profit, Gloria decided to do away with a commission-based system and to just charge a fixed monthly fee regardless of number of sales. Once Vendors joined her site, she would then market all of her Vendors by using different advertising means to draw buyers there.
In order to facilitate local to local transactions for those Vendors that really wanted to market themselves locally, she decided to organize Vendors by city and to allow them to even transact off the site if they wanted to. At the same time, Vendors who wanted a wider audience had the option to ship their items to people outside of their community.
It was a win win; a win for Vendors who could choose their target audience, and their own policies for selling and who did not have to worry about marketing their products; and a win for Buyers who could shop handmade items and crafts by locals in any city.