Lisa Muia, owner of the Just Lovelee Boutique, outside of her Cape shop. PHOTO PROVIDED
In a changing retail world due to the pandemic and here locally, Hurricane Ian, some business owners are branching out to the Interwebs to share their products with a broader audience.
Lisa Muia, owner of Just Lovelee Boutique in downtown Cape Coral, got started nearly three years ago selling her inventory to an online, live audience. Her arena of choice is an online platform called CommentSold.
With the COVID pandemic causing many storefronts to close, selling online became more popular than ever. Her success on CommentSold has turned into a brick-and-mortar location on Southeast 47th Terrace.
Just Lovelee is a one-stop-shop for women’s fashion, apparel and more. The business offers sizes from small to 3X and have a variety of shoes, jewelry, accessories, handbags and home goods.
“We take pride in that we have a full size run and can cater to every body type,” Muia said.
Online, Muia hosts live shows where potential buyers can see first hand how a certain piece looks rather than relying on an image.
“I created my online boutique with the notion that I was going to make shopping easy for women who hated online shopping, like myself,” she said. “I hate spending hours at a time looking for something through stock photos and then getting it in the mail and the quality is not what it appeared or it doesn’t fit right.”
Muia said live selling has been an extremely effective tool for her business, and has helped build trust with a customer base. She said each item for sale gets modeled so the customer can see how the materials fall.
“We tell them how it fits. We tell them how it feels. And then they’re able to ask questions right there on the platform,” Muia said.
When an individual decides they want to purchase the item being shown, they simply have to comment “sold” and the product is added to their cart.
She added that being able to engage with customers in real time on CommentSold is an invaluable tool. The platform also allows her to expand her potential consumer base from Southwest Florida to the entire country.
“I have customer from all over, which is really, really cool,” she said. “I’m now trying to grow my customer base here in Florida.”
Muia said she’s heard positive feedback from those who have come to her shop.
“A lot of people, the one thing they say when they come into my store is, ‘Thank you so much for opening up a store here in Cape Coral, we’re in such need of retail and small boutiques exactly like yours.‘”
Being a Staten Island, New York, native, Muia grew up surrounded by small boutique shops such as the one she has created. She moved to Florida 5 years ago and decided to bring a slice of home to Southwest Florida.
“I knew that I wanted to create a space where people could go to shop and get different pieces for affordable pricing,” she said.
Muia got started on CommentSold after doing some research on the best way to sell her products, and loved the idea of being able to comment during the live video to either ask questions or secure an item quickly.
She said CommentSold and its team have been tremendously helpful in getting her business to where it is today.
“It’s not an easy business and it is competitive, but I have a group of people at CommentSold that guide me along the way, and it’s so easy for people to shop with us,” Muia said. “The technology behind the app is incredible.”
Chief Product Officer for CommonSold Andrew Chen said, “We learn a lot from our clients. We build the tools and capabilities to match what they need for their business while providing the knowledge they don’t have. All our products come from years of testing into what makes live selling successful, but if the retailer doesn’t know how to entertain an audience, then those tools don’t mean much. That’s why the knowledge element provides so much value.”
Even if you miss a live stream, CommentSold users are able to re-watch a show and still comment on the item to purchase it. You can even find a specific item you’re looking for in the show by searching for keywords.
Muia’s advice for business owners potentially looking to enter on online realm?
“I think without a platform like CommentSold, it’s going to take so much longer and a lot more work in order to make your business successful,” she said. “They literally give you the tools you need to run an online, live-selling (show). Without it, I don’t know where I would be. We’ve grown tremendously over the past two and a half years.”
This weekend, Just Lovelee is hosting a men’s event encouraging men to come to the boutique with a shopping list and photo of their significant other.
“And we will do all the shopping for them,” Muia said. “They get to sit back while we give them some option.”
The men’s event is today, Dec. 9, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Regular store hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Just Lovelee Boutique is at 1113 S.E. 47th Terrace. For more Information, visit www.jusstloveleeboutique.com.
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