It seems impossible to believe that our website begin 21 years ago. Can you imagine a world without emails or websites? It was all new at that time. Large corporations were just putting email systems in place. The late 1980’s saw the first authorized use of commercial email on the Internet. We started as a very small little company in 1994. At that time, we were completing personalized order forms by hand. Then we were faxing in orders to factories. No one emailed in orders. We were a one-person company with some friends and family volunteers to help from time to time.
Back in the day, we took our product images with a Kodak camera that had a floppy disk. We inserted the floppy into our first computer and after probably 5 minutes the image appeared on the screen and we loaded it into our back end system. We were using a store-bought application for our website in the early days. We had few choices for website graphics, colors, styles and typestyle.
Time passed, we grew slowly and steadily, and we continued to add more and more products like stationery, gift stickers, notepads, and even hand-painted ceramic piggy banks. We learned through trial and error. As one of the premier personalized stationery and gift websites on the internet, we had few competitors at the beginning. We soon grew out of our internet solution as we needed the tools to be more flexible for the types of products we sold. We hired professional developers to create a custom application for our website, which was a very big deal at the time. We were growing. Fast.
We were a trailblazer in this industry and, in many ways, still are. We still operate by adding products one by one, giving personal care to each item in our selection, providing unique product options for many items, and creating boutiques online to show the items off, just the way we’d like to see them if we were a retail store. Our staff has grown, too, with many professionals joining our family, and adding their special touches to the look and feel of the website, the product images, the graphics, work flow of the website, the services we provide to our customers, and more. Several of our original staff members are still with our company and are as indispensable as ever.
Starting with a website that boasted 50 products 21 years ago in a corner of our living room, to the present as we feature a comprehensive selection of over 20,000 personalized stationery and gift items, with over 10,000 visitors daily, has truly been a process. We moved to a nice large modern facility and have a full team supporting the 24/7 business. However some things never change. Our specialty niche and daily responsibilities are still the same as they were on day one: to provide excellent service, quality products and competitive pricing.
We treat every order with care, with several customer service team members checking the details as it moves through the process. We answer customer’s emails very quickly. We answer our phone and help customers personally. We have a skilled team of customer service representatives (who also love personalized items, I might add!) and get excited about helping customers create their great orders. And we go out of our way to assist with special requests.
Creating wonderful personalized products is what we do. All of the products we offer are made in the USA. And we keep many factories humming with the volume of orders that we produce. We love all the repeat customers that return to us time after time. We enjoy the growth we have experienced and are grateful to our customer base. It’s been an exciting 21 years and it’s time to celebrate!
Looking forward to what the next twenty years will offer!
Tags: 20th Anniversary Celebration, 20th anniversary of TSS, history of The Stationery Studio, The Stationery Studio, TSS 20th anniversary