The ironic thing about running a party supplies website is that as a family we aren’t big on parties. The children would rather spend the money on a family activity/day out than a party. I’d rather not be hot glueing my fingers together the night before trying to make rosettes. So all in all as a family we are happy. This also means the passion I once had for Charlie Moo’s has waned, waned to the point that you might have noticed I’ve been selling off all the stock, excess fabric and display items. I made a decision back in July 2018 that once my hosting came to an end in February 2019 Charlie Moo’s would be no more. *insert sad face*
(Megan, Charlie and I 2010)
I started Charlie Moo’s weeks before giving birth to Megan in 2008. It’s been a rollercoaster, I have met some incredible people along the way many of whom I am proud now to call my friends. I learnt a lot about small business, won a few awards, started this blog, wrote a book, appeared in numerous magazines, met some business celebs, had more children and gained a few cats (we are now a 3 child, 3 cat family!) and banked an udderly mooverlous amount of memories along the way. I wouldn’t change anything but right now my heart isn’t in it and I unless I can give 100% it’s not fair to myself, the children and most importantly our customers. But Charlie Moo’s is far more than a room of stock. It’s a brand with a very full blog. So here is how I turned a very busy business and blog into just this single page (and didn’t go crazy!)
*Disclaimer I may have gone a little crazy*
Closing Down Charlie Moo’s Step by Step :
Notebook : I set up a goals notebook with the first being to close down Charlie Moo’s this was instrumental in getting everything done and in place before February. I took each point making a list of steps which I could tick off and date. I had a full stock list in there which I updated regularly after each sale/event. I also had this stock list as google doc which I could remove products from once they sold out. I also joined an accountability goal setting group to keep me motivated and on track.
Reduce Stock : This wasn’t as easy as it sounds! The first thing I did was a proper stock take, made sure all the stock on the website site was correct and even spent time adding stock that wasn’t listed I had so many boxes of things that I’d bought and wasn’t even selling. I deleted every product that was out of stock. It’s much easier to work with a list and a know exactly what I had an how many of each.
I decided what price I wanted for each item, this was less based on how much I paid for the items originally and more based on the fact I wanted to get rid of EVERYTHING. I listed items on both Facebook selling groups, Charlie Moo’s Facebook page and even did a shout out on Joanne Dewberry. I put some items on a 50% sale too. I announced I was closing down and that the date would be the 1st February. On the 1st I slashed prices and put a deadline on the site. I did a couple of bulk stock deals with other small businesses.
Anything left over I started listing as multipacks on eBay – mostly wrapping paper and cards where I could offer free delivery (cake cases cost £2.95 to post! more than the actual cost of the products.) Towards the end, I started contacting businesses selling similar products to me. Although it felt incredibly slow going and at times I felt overwhelmed by the amount of stock still around, but once I started to
Blogger Merchandise I moved to a woo commerce shop on this site, which was so easy to set up I decided to add all my Self-employed Team Building Socials there too.
Prima Magazine 2010
Blog Posts : I went through each blog post individually. Did I want to move it to Joanne Dewberry? Was it small business relevant? Was it gardening relevant? If so I moved it to Giltrow Land Management. Party based posts I offered as guest posts to Made By Me Craft Parties.
I deleted A LOT of posts and oh my goodness it was cathartic! I feel like I gave my brain a good clear out too!
Social Media : I’m currently trying to merge Charlie Moo’s Facebook page with JoanneDewberry.co.uk which is proving really difficult! You have to have the pages very similar. I changed the name of Charlie Moo’s to Joanne Dewberry (but only once the business was shut) and edited sections to match my JoanneDewberry.co.uk page, however, I’m still struggling to merge. I will probably give myself a few more weeks then I’ll just delete the page completely.
I gradually changed my names from Charlie Moo’s to Joanne Dewberry. I’m not the only Joanne Dewberry in the world! Most of my social media profiles use the image of myself with my fisherman yellow raincoat on, so I changed the ID’s to JoanneDewberryUK on Pinterest and Instagram (because just JoanneDewberry was gone) and JoanneDewberry on Twitter because with UK made it too long. I added “Formally known as CharlieMoos” to my profiles in case anyone wondered what happened. Changing ID’s was probably the easiest part of this exercise HOWEVER it was the most painful. After being CharlieMoos for over 10 years I felt like I was losing a part of myself. And for those interested, it didn’t affect my follower number (phew).
The End. Thank you and Goodbye :
So that’s it on Sunday 24th February 2019 Charlie Moo’s website closed down. I’m still not sure how I feel about the whole thing really as it’s both sad but incredibly liberating. Just think what I can do with all that extra time *haha* 🤣🤣 Massive thank you to everyone who has supported Charlie Moo’s over the last 10 years and here’s to a great new adventure.
If you have any questions about closing down a business do get in touch and I promise to get back to you!