Anna and Eeva are looking at colourful yarn samples. Their selections will end up being the colours of spring scarves for their online store, Store of Hope.
Eeva established Store of Hope in 2012. When Anna joined the company, it was time to expand. Store of Hope is a multivendor shop allowing it to sell a large variety of brands.
All products are fair trade and empower their crafters. The products are handmade in Nepal.
– We want to ensure working conditions, salary and working hours are fair for the workers,’ they say.
(the video has English subtitles)
"Instead of just building us an online store Woolman helped us with our business mind-set"
Every product has a story behind it. The desire to make the world a better place is the driving force behind Store of Hope, a multivendor shop hosting multiple merchants under one roof. After five years, Store of Hope decided to change their e-commerce solution to Shopify.
Store of Hope chose Shopify because it meets their needs. Store of Hope’s goal is to reach out to the international markets.
– Shopify was different from other e-commerce solutions. It had a really well functioning e-merchant dashboard. It also has a lot of different tools and apps for commercial use. I've noticed that many of the daily processes are more quickly done with Shopify, Anna says.
Woolman became part of Store of Hope’s story when it was time to start the development of their new Shopify store. Woolman was different from other IT firms because it wasn't just about IT: Woolman was about business as well.
– Instead of just building us an online store, Woolman helped us with our business mind-set, Eeva says.
Eeva and Anna find Woolman's business know-how and its strong team very important. During the e-commerce project, the two women were able to test out their ideas. They found it valuable that the Woolman team wasn't afraid to say no to some of their ideas.
– Everyone was an expert in their own field. It felt great when Miika Malinen said that our store looks awesome. I respect Miika's e-commerce experience, so it was great to hear someone like Miika say something like that, Eeva says.
What future brings for Store of Hope?
Eeva grabs a large cashmere scarf and ties it loosely around her neck. The scarf is one of the best-selling products in their online store.
– This scarf is super comfy, Eeva says.
We take a short walk from Store of Hope's office to its warehouse. Anna shows off a set of earrings that arrived in the mail from Nepal that day.
– It's almost unbelievable that all these accessories are made by hand and in such rural conditions. The workmanship is amazing, Anna says.
Store of Hope has set a goal for the future: it aims to reach consumers who choose their clothes and accessories based on trends and current fashion. Store of Hope also wishes to sell more outside Finland as well - firstly to the Nordics and countries accustomed to using online stores in English.
– We must take care of the production of our products in Nepal. It takes time and effort to keep all our crafters in business. For example, our merchant, Breeti, makes jewellery out of paper. We have to keep her jewellery in top condition to ensure a European consumer is happy to buy them, Eeva explains.