Toronto Jeweller Sells Out In One Weekend With New Online Store
May Vera started as an idea by Jennifer Hadaway to give new life to designer buttons, charms, and pulls by recreating them into new luxurious jewelry. From her home in Toronto, ON, Jennifer had been putting together the idea for her business when COVID-19 forced her to put the brakes on her plans. She decided to turn lemons into lemonade by using the extra time to perfect the vision of her brand. While already in the process of setting up a Shopify store and finding it overwhelming, Jennifer came across the ShopHERE Powered by Google Program to help launch her online business. Fast forward to her first product launch—in two hours, all but one of her products had sold, and by the end of the weekend her first collection was completely sold out.
“The initial process of setting up May Vera was a bit stressful and definitely a learning curve, but once I got the hang of using Shopify, it was a lot easier. Especially when the ShopHERE Program came in to keep me on track, show me what I was missing, and ensure I was prepared to launch.”
Jennifer attributes her ability to focus on building her brand and inventory to the help she received getting her online store set-up. From utilizing the free apps available to her in the Shopify App Store, to making sure the store was compliant with all the e-commerce regulations needed to begin advertising her store on Google and Facebook, her Coordinator made sure her store was ready for success.
“Building my website alongside my ShopHERE Coordinator was very beneficial to me. My Coordinator was able to help complete my vision, as well as brought my attention to important pages I could have otherwise missed. She also shared her knowledge on tools and apps that would have been harder to find on my own.”
Jennifer’s Coordinator understood the vision for May Vera—a modern, sleek, fun brand created to help women and men alike feel effortlessly confident in everyday pieces. With her Coordinator aligned with the desired May Vera aesthetic, Jennifer was able to focus on other aspects of her business. Her Coordinator elevated the site to a point where she felt confident sharing it with the world. In addition to this, Jennifer already knew that her audience would primarily be accessing her site on their phones, so together they worked to create a mobile-first store in line with the May Vera brand.
“My Coordinator responded to me very promptly, was very on board with our vision and helped it come to life. She provided us with her expertise, and really helped amplify our website as a whole.”
Beyond just the aesthetic of the store, it was important for Jennifer that the sustainable message at the heart of her brand came to life through the website. From the initial sourcing of her product materials, right down to the packaging, sustainability is at the forefront of the May Vera brand. Jennifer proudly sources the bulk of her materials in Canada. She’s able to give new life to designer items like Chanel bags and Gucci garments that are past their prime by preserving their buttons, pulls and charms. She then carefully crafts these into effortless everyday pieces meant to last a lifetime. And to finish it off, she packages them up in pretty little pink boxes made from FSC® forest friendly packaging.
A year ago, May Vera was just a dream to combine Jennifer’s love of jewelry and environmental studies into a viable business. Today, with the help of the ShopHERE Powered by Google Program, Jennifer’s dream has come to life! If you’d like to purchase one of Jennifer’s next creations, head to her website and be sure to sign-up for her email list to be notified of her next launch. And if you’re interested in discovering new eCommerce solutions for your business, you can learn more at Digital Main Street.
Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Meta, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, Lightspeed, Ebay and Canada Post.
A $42.5-million investment from FedDev Ontario brought together the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas, Communitech, Invest Ottawa and the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association to expand the Digital Main Street Platform in order to support more businesses going digital as a response to the impacts of COVID-19 in Southern Ontario.