written by Roanne Weyermars.
Meet Shaheen Hirji, the mom behind online organic baby store, Organically Hatched. Shaheen launched her business in 2008 with a goal to bring moms the best selection in natural baby products. Shaheen was nominated for the The SavvyMom Mom Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2010.
What inspired you to start your company?
My son was the inpiration. When he was born I had a difficult time finding natural, organic skin and bath care products for him. I would go into one store and they would have one or two products I was looking for but not the entire line. Plus with feedings every two hours it was difficult to physically go looking for products. I thought it would be great if I could offer moms like myself a one stop shop for all the organic baby essentials – one that was open 24/7 so moms could shop at their convenience.
Tell us about Organically Hatched.
Organically Hatched is about finding natural, organic and eco-friendly products to bring to our customers. It’s also about making it easy for parents and caregivers to shop for all the baby and kid essentials they need. At the same time, we aim to keep prices affordable.
What’s your vision for your company?
It would be great to see an Organically Hatched store in every community. We also need to continue doing what we feel we do best, which is bringing a great selection of quality products to the store. It would be great to expand our selection of products so that it caters to the entire family, not just kids. We’ve started to do this and want to continue to add more products for moms and dads too.
What excites you about what you’re doing?
I enjoy looking for quality products. There is also great satisfaction in researching products and learning what ingredients to avoid – in order to ensure that the products we add to our line-up are good for kids as well as good for the environment.
What are some early examples of success?
We doubled our sales in our second year! We have a solid customer base with lots of repeat customers even though we are only three years old. We also receive positive feedback from our customers telling us that they love the store and product selection.
Tell us about some of your challenges.
One of our biggest challenges is how potential customers find us online. Search Engine Optimization is tricky and with the rules constantly changing, this has been and continues to be one of our biggest challenges. For the first six months, we didn’t even show up in the Google organic search results and this was frustrating.
What’s next for you?
I plan to keep growing the business, adding great products and spreading the word about Organically Hatched. It would also be great if we could partner with other local businesses to cross promote. Finally, I hope to conquer the search engine optimization challenge one day soon!
This article was previously published on VancouverMom.ca