As a seasonal business based in rural Vermont, Denise made the decision to expand her father's snowmobile business and source additional cashflow in the off season by selling on eBay. Today, Al's Snowmobile Parts Warehouse offers one of the largest selections of snowmobile parts online. Family-owned and operated since 1984, Al's specializes in quality used, new and aftermarket snowmobile parts for the most popular as well as lesser-known snowmobile brands.
Why did you first start selling on eBay?
I first started selling on eBay to get rid of excess inventory and increase cash flow in the slow season of our seasonal snowmobile business.
Why should we vote for you?
Small business is the backbone of the economy. It's important for small businesses to develop multiple flows of income in order to be stable in an ever-changing business world. We hope to inspire others by our example that a small business can go from rural to global with help from eBay.
Share a fun fact about yourself/your business.
As a family business we're all about customer service and have done some crazy things to service our customers. One day a snowmobile customer came in for a part that we didn't have on our shelf and he needed it to ride for the weekend. We had the same snowmobile in good running condition in our showroom so rather than taking the part out of that sled which would have been too time consuming, we traded him our sled for his plus a little bit of money so he could ride.
Where does the inspiration for your business come from?
We have been a family business for over 30 years and are located on a back-dirt road in a small town with a population of 1,014. The inspiration for the business comes from my dad who started this business over 33 years ago in his back yard and garage and had the dream and vision to see it as a worldwide family business that ships parts all over the globe.
How has selling on eBay impacted your life?
Selling on eBay has allowed us to keep employees year-round that we may have otherwise had to lay off in our slower season. Being a small family business, our employees are like family, so keeping them employed is very important to us. They are well trained and supportive and have been with us through good times and bad so we strive to keep them with us and eBay has helped us with that.
How has your ability to sell globally impacted your business?
Our business used to be tied to local customers, the local economy and the local weather. eBay allowed us to expand our market reach and helped us build global sales that defies all these local factors.
My dad's dream since the 80's was to ship snowmobile parts worldwide – and with eBay's help we have been able to do that. We have had a world map hanging in a conference room for years with pins marking the countries we have shipped to. eBay has allowed us to increase the number of pin locations in the map of my dad's dreams.
Come back tomorrow and vote again.
Come back tomorrow to vote again.