ATHOL, ID (PRWEB) May 29, 2007
Averaging 50 packages shipped daily and 88,000 Web site visitors each month, Heather Ledeboer's business, Mom 4 Life, has come a long way. Though her initial single-item inventory used to fit in a cubbyhole in her desk, Mom 4 Life has outgrown its current location - Ledeboer's Redlands, CA home, where her 3-bedroom house is literally crammed with the more than 450 current items, with more being added each week.
As of June 2, Mom 4 Life - and the Ledeboers -- will be relocating to Athol, ID, where it will be given its own 30- by 40-feet building. Ledeboer, who has one part-time and two full-time employees in her current location, will hire local people to fill two full-time and two part-time positions once in Athol, offering job opportunities in the small town.
"We're very excited to be able to have breathing and growing room for both our business and our family," she said.
Ledeboer hopes to open her first brick-and-mortar store in a few years in Coeur d'Alene and then ultimately franchise Mom 4 Life.
Mom 4 Life stocks a variety of unique products geared toward moms and children. All of the items stocked in the store are made or invented by fellow moms. From nursing pillows to baby slings, Hooter Hiders to journals, and colorful hair bows for young girls to chic maternity clothing for moms, all of the items on the site must meet Ledeboer's high standards. Many of her customers recommend products, and Ledeboer has a part-time employee dedicated to researching new products. Although she gets many wonderful product recommendations, Ledeboer is very selective and only sells products she or friends have sampled with success.
When she first started her business in October 2003, Ledeboer was a new mom in search of a way to stay home with her son, Hunter, and continue earning an income. After seeing a friend wearing her baby in the New Native Baby Carrier, Ledeboer realized that the big box stores didn't carry everything a new mom needed and she wondered what other unique products existed.
The New Native Baby Carrier was her first product she sold when she started her business - initially selling on Ebay -- followed soon after by LilyPadz, which are silicone nursing pads. Within a month, Ledeboer was getting enough requests for items that she had her husband construct a rudimentary business Web site. Nearly four years later and Ledeboer's business is going strong - inventory is stashed in closets, one bedroom is a dedicated office and her master bedroom also doubles as an office for another assistant. In order to go to bed, the Ledeboers have to step around a large folding table where an assistant packages items during the day.
The store has evolved from Ledeboer's initial interest in finding unique products not available at big-box stores to offering support to other work-at-home moms, many of whom have ingenious products but don't have the budget or time to market them.
"It has become a support system for the moms whose products are sold on my site," she said, adding that the moms swap marketing ideas and cooperate on joint advertising efforts.
And the business has provided support for her family, as well.
"Before I became a mom, I was an elementary school teacher working full time. Now I work part time and am able to provide more financially for my family than I did as a teacher," Ledeboer said. "It is a blessing."
Mom 4 Life is a high quality, work-at-home mom Web site that donates 10 percent of each sale to the San Bernardino Crisis Pregnancy Center.
"I want to serve as a support for moms, offering them great products and superb service while also using my business as a blessing to the moms supported by it. I love the fact that we can all help each other by something as simple as shopping," Ledeboer said. "I'm hopeful that the new location will be an avenue to meet people in the area, to provide employment and to provide a wider selection than what used to be there for moms in the Athol area."
Mom 4 Life boasts a plethora of awards for its Web site, including the coveted Diaper Pin customer's choice seal of approval. Most recently, Entrepreneur's StartUp featured Ledeboer and her business, and a variety of Web sites and the national magazine "Parenting" have featured many of the products she sells. Ledeboer's publicity background also include appearances on a variety of radio and television shows.