Even if you are totally uninterested in knitting you have to find the story of Jimmy Beans Wool in Reno an interesting one. The company was founded in 2002 by Laura and Doug Zander. Laura focused on the store and the yarn and Doug developed the web site.
Last Saturday I stopped at Jimmy Beans Wool to look at a knitting pattern that I had found from their web site. There were two cash registers open and a line waiting to check out. Jimmy Beans is Reno's best knitting store. A yarn distributor I know told me that Jimmy Beans doesn't buy from distributors because they sell so much yarn that the yarn companies want to sell to them directly. Business sure seems to be good.
According to an article about them in Fortune Small Business article in July of 2007 the on-line business at that time accounted for 70% of their business. They recently expanded their back room into the store front next door. Often when I am in the store I can hear people on the phone with customers taking orders.
The shopping experience on their website is wonderful. Browsing the web site just makes me want to buy yarn and knit. Right now they have cashmere sock yarn in delicious colors on the front page. They have hooked me on the possibilities. I am probably going to buy some.
Perhaps because I am a computer programmer at heart I find it inspiring that this website is their own, developed by them. I've always thought that it would be fascinating to develop a web site and sell on line. But what a lot of work. When you look at the complexities of the Jimmy Bean website and store and yet how well it is designed for ease of use you really have to admire the fact that the web site was created from scratch.
Bottom line is that Jimmy Beans Wool is a real Reno success story. If you want to create your own business, work really hard, be a bit lucky and I am sure put a lot of money and sweat equity into your effort Jimmy Beans is proof that it is really possible to succeed.