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3 Ways That Having a Digital Product Shop Can Change Your Life and Business

Episode 71: 3 Ways That Having a Digital Product Shop Can Change Your Life and Business

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve shared a new podcast episode! 

But I’m back and in this episode, I’m sharing the lessons I’ve learned from running a multiple six-figure digital product shop and teaching hundreds of people how to recreate my success in our program, the Digital Shop Experience.

 A lot happened to me in 2023, to say it was a challenging time would be an understatement. However, thanks to my digital product shop, it was also my highest revenue and profit year ever. Even though I probably worked half the time I usually would. 

My digital shop truly changed everything about my business and it enabled me to be there for my family when I needed to be.

I want you to be able to leverage the lessons that I have learned in your own business this year. 

In Today’s Episode We Discuss:

  • How my most challenging year became my highest-grossing year yet
  • Why repurposing my content gave my business the stability it needed
  • The ease that digital shops can bring to your business
  • The game-changing automations I use in my digital shop
  • How the buyer experience changes with a digital shop
  • Why my products are so much easier to sell now


If you have a high ticket program or a course, a program, a membership, or if you create a lot of social media content, are a blogger, or any sort of content creator, you can repurpose a lot of that content into profitable shop listings! Listings that honestly are a better way to offer a transformation to your customers and get you paid at the same time.

 

Ready to start your digital product shop? Sign up now for the Digital Shop Accelerator, a free training on January 29th! 


Head over to http://monicafroese.com/listen to listen to this episode and previous episodes on your favorite podcast platform!

Resources Mentioned:

[00:00:04] You are listening to the Empowered Business podcast. I’m your host, Monica Froese, and if you’re like me, you want to grow a business you love that gives you financial freedom and fits your lifestyle. Every week you’ll get strategy and unfiltered opinions from me and other successful business owners that will inspire you to make big moves in your business. When we work together, we not only grow faster, we also amplify each other’s voices. Are you ready to build your business on your terms? Let’s jump in.

 

[00:00:36] Hello, hello, hello and welcome.

 

[00:00:38] Back to the Empowered Business Podcast. It has been a hot minute since you’ve heard from me. About six months actually. So if you are new around here, I just want to welcome you and give you a bit of context about what this podcast is about and what I teach. In 2022, I pivoted my business from being based on a live launch model where I would launch different programs and courses, usually in the 1000 to $2000 range, to becoming an e-commerce business that focuses on having one central call to action and a cohesive shopping experience for our customers. Our digital product shop is called The Empowered Shop, and it has changed almost everything about my business and as you’re about to find out, changed my life too. And I am not being dramatic when I say that. You’ll hear why in a minute. If you are brand new to this idea of a digital product shop, I want you to pause and go listen to episodes 57 and 58. That will give you context as to what a digital product shop is, and how it can change your business after that. Come on back here, because today’s episode is going to pull back the curtain on a lot, because today we are chatting about the lessons I’ve learned from running a multiple six figure digital product shop and teaching hundreds of people how to recreate my success in our program, the Digital Shop Experience. And before we go any further, I want to tell you why I’ve been Mia for so long and why this episode is full of very valuable lessons and insights into how a digital product shop can change your life and business.

 

[00:02:03] So I do want to give a content warning. I will be mentioning some hard topics surrounding relationships and the death of a loved one. So if that bothers you, you may want to turn this episode off and just go on to the next one, okay? In 2023, in the span of three months, my husband and I separated. He moved out of our home. My stepfather, who was the best man I have ever known in my entire life, passed away. And Hayley, my right hand person for four years in the business, went out on her own to pursue her own business. I have never had so much change and devastation happen in my life in such a short period of time. Needless to say, I spent the second half of 2023 in basically survival mode with barely any space to process anything that was happening. And somehow 2023 turned out to be our highest revenue and profit year ever. And I’ve been telling a lot of people in my life this, which does blow my mind. In my entire adult life, I spent 11 years, from the age of 20 to 31, working at a fortune 100 tech firm. That was like the first half of my career.

 

[00:03:08] And then I went full time in this business, which has taken many iterations throughout the years in 2016. And I am telling you, because of everything that happened in 2023, I would guess that I worked like half of the amount of hours that I probably did in any other year of my adult life. And when I think of that, and I think about how the business performed, I asked myself, how in the world does that happen? It defies all logic. And yet I know that the reason that it was possible is because in 2022, I decided to change our entire business model to focus around selling our digital products in an e-commerce shop model. It not only made selling easier and sales more consistent, it also streamlined the operations of the entire business. Because of the shop, I was able to have the space I needed to process the dumpster fire of my life and focus on my two beautiful daughters, who clearly needed the attention of their mother during a very difficult time. Without the shop, I don’t know how 2023 would have turned out. Now that I’ve turned the corner and started to get a little more consistency in normalcy back in my life, I decided it was time to break down exactly how the shop changed everything about my business. So you can leverage the lessons that I’ve learned in your own business. There are three major things that having a digital product shop did to my business, and the first one was it brought stability with sales.

 

[00:04:36] So I mentioned that my business used to operate on a live launch model. And essentially what that means is I would have a signature course. So back in the day it was pin Practical Promotions. That was our signature course on how to run promoted pins or paid advertising on Pinterest. Moving into 2021 ish, our signature program was the Empowered Business Lab, which taught you A to Z how to create digital products. Now, my signature program is the Digital Shop Experience, which teaches you how to run profitable six figure digital product shops. And what would happen was my business was based around selling this signature program, so I would have about four launch periods, basically one a quarter built in on my promotional calendar, and there was a significant amount of effort that went into running these launches. It would take lots of my time, lots of my team’s time. And essentially the thing that we were launching came after a live event happened that was free. So we would put a significant amount of effort in to getting people to join this mechanism. So it might be like a free five day challenge or a series of different trainings. Right now we’re doing audio drops for the digital shop experience. There’s a lot of different ways you can launch, but what would happen is all of our focus would go into these launches, so we would get a big pop of revenue, and then we basically had burned out our email bandwidth after that, and we would go into like a two month lull, which meant I had to be really good at either filling the gaps of selling more things on the off months, or I had to be really good at managing our expenses.

 

[00:06:21] Now I am pretty good at managing our cash flow, but what really lacked is while we would get these big cash injections, first of all, a lot hinged on them. So if something happened in a live launch didn’t go according to plan, my expenses were still coming in. I have people on payroll, I have contractors I pay, there’s a lot of money that goes into running a business. So there was that. That was nerve wracking, but there was no consistency. On the off months of selling, it was often like we were on a content hamster wheel where we were like, oh no. Even if the launch did go to plan and what we expected on those two months or sometimes three months between launches, we had to be doing something we couldn’t just like disappear. And often that meant we were cranking out new products to sell. But the problem was, once we sold the new, smaller product that we were launching, we really never mentioned it again, because then we go right back into a live launch period of the bigger program.

 

[00:07:16] So if you’re following me here, basically we were creating a whole ton of stuff that would really see the light of day once, and then it would kind of go in the archives, and there was no consistent way for people to find all the things that we were selling because we didn’t have a shop. And so the number one lesson was stability with our sales. And how the shop brought us stability with sales is we unearthed products that were never sold before. And I did a whole episode on this. It’s episode 61 about repurposing content, and it’s a really powerful episode. But I’ll give you like a brief recap here and then you can go back and listen to it. But essentially over the years, like I said, I’ve been in doing this full time since 2016, very different iterations of things that I’ve sold throughout the years. But in essence, I have held, I don’t know, hundreds of trainings. I’ve probably got thousands of different audio clips. I have templates that I use to run my business, templates that we sell, spreadsheets that we sell, and basically there was a whole lot of stuff that I did that might have been workshops in our membership or different trainings I did inside a larger programs, or a one off loom video that I sent to a student about a topic that everyone could have benefited to hear my point of view on, and it just was collecting dust in our Google Drive.

 

[00:08:34] And so I did this thing called what I call content audit spreadsheet. And I went through our Google Drive and I spent like an hour just digging through different audio files and spreadsheets and all these different things that we had. And I realized I was sitting on a gold mine of content that was never going to see the light of day, because what was I going to do, have 300, 400, 500 different sales pages? And think about the fickleness of, hey, I have all this great stuff to sell, but you have to go to all these different places and check out multiple times to be able to buy everything I have to sell. So no wonder why it felt like we didn’t have stability with our sales. Like a nice basically bedrock. Like a floor that we could depend on every month. Instead, we were stuck in this cycle of huge spikes in revenue, but then bottoming out on revenue on those off months where what if we just had a consistent way to sell and a consistent place to send people? You get where I’m going here. Our digital product shop, which didn’t exist at the time, what if we had that? And so on these off months, we consistently had not only an endless supply of products to sell, because we’ve been creating content for years and years and years that we can repurpose into shop listings.

 

[00:09:54] But it also allowed us to highlight products that I may never have sent an individual email about before, because it might not have been worth it, and I’ll explain that in a minute. Or they simply wouldn’t have been a product, because it wouldn’t have made sense for me to create an individual sales page for it. So what I mean by this, when you think about this, there’s only so many times you can email your email list, right? Like you only have so much email bandwidth. And so let’s just say that I have a workshop that’s like, you know, I could sell for $9, $17, $27, something like that. And. If every email, I could only have one call to action in it, and it was going to go to a sales page that was for a $9 product, well, I would have to sell that $9 product in quite a high volume to make it worth highlighting as the main product in my email, because when you go to an individual sales page and you go to checkout for that $9 product, that’s the only thing you can buy. There might be an order bump on the sales cart in an upsell, but aside from that, that’s it. But if I could send an email and highlight a $9 product and the call to action was to go to my shop. So it was a direct to the product listing of my shop.

 

[00:11:07] Well, then there’s a whole lot of other stuff in my shop that you can add to cart. I have a whole methodology of how my shop works in terms of getting multiple things added to the cart. That’s something I talk about a lot in my program, the Digital Shop Experience. But where I’m going with this is suddenly these products that were hiding out my Google Drive, that it would have been totally illogical to have a separate sales page for in their own checkout cart or products that I sold once and just like never mentioned again. Because again, you can only really have one call to action in your email. Suddenly my call to action could now be to go to this shop that had hundreds of products in it that could meet you at different places in your journey. And what this led to was I was able to make sales every single day because my brand shifted to be constantly selling, and I’m going to talk about that more in number three. So the first one to recap, the first thing that my digital product shop has done for me over the last two years is it has given me stability with sales. It has given me that benchmark, that floor, that every month we are going to rinse and repeat. And I will talk about that in number two in a minute. But I have a consistent floor now of what we make.

 

[00:12:24] Which leads me into point number two, which is back end operations and efficiencies. Wo the shop has completely changed the ease of running my business. I cannot stress this enough. So I’ve already mentioned that live launching. Whether you’re doing a five day free challenge or you have a pop up Facebook group, or you’re running a summit or you’re doing a virtual conference, whatever launch mechanism you choose, it is an extraordinarily large amount of work to run a large scale free event. And then in the back end of that, hope that the program that you are selling sells. Okay. That’s a lot of work. And on those assessments, we never really had a plan. We really were flying by the seat of our pants because it was kind of like, well, let’s see how the launch performs, and then we’ll figure out what we have to do those two months to make up whatever we have to make up. And now I have a marketing calendar that is baked. Like basically, I determine our marketing calendar 30 to 60 days out because I like to be nimble. I don’t go too far. I have a high level understanding of what I want a year to look like, but really an online business, I think it’s really important to stay nimble. So I basically get our marketing calendar out 30 to 60 days out. But here’s the thing. It is all based on sending people to our shop, giving that central call to action.

 

[00:13:45] And it’s based on data. Because guess what? Now all the data for our digital products is centralized in we use Shopify. That’s the platform we use to host our shop. And so everything is in one place, which makes informed decisions on what marketing campaigns to run every month and what products to highlight and promote. And the more data you have, the better decision making you can make. So what I do is every month I go in and we use a project management software called asana, and I essentially make our marketing plan. I create a what I will call a card in asana that will say like, let’s just say January 2024. I will then break out into Subheaders each week. So you’re going to have anywhere from 4 to 5 weeks in a month. And basically every single week we run 1 to 2. I’ll say flash sales to our shop. You can call them whatever you want to call them, but essentially we run a marketing campaign 1 to 2 times a week that’s going to highlight a specific product in our shop. But the intent is not just for you to buy that product. There’s a lot of things that happen in the shop that will encourage you to add multiple things to your cart from there. After I create that plan, one of my team members will go in and create what we call email shells.

 

[00:15:03] This means that in our email service provider, they go in and create the sales emails that are going to go out for these 4 to 5 weeks. And let me tell you. The longer you have your shop, the easier this is going to become, because you’ll find when you run regular sales, you’re going to end up circling back to the same products. And of course, you’re going to use the data to inform what products you should be promoting every month. But. As you sell these products over and over again, you can duplicate those emails and modify those emails to have like a fresh spin on it. But you’re not recreating the wheel every time from scratch. So every time we launch a new product on an off month of launches, we were recreating the wheel from scratch every single time. So the next thing that has just been game changing when it comes to our back end operation of the business, is we have developed a whole process for pretty much automating how this works. So after I develop the marketing calendar based on the data from our shop, then a team member goes in and creates the email shelf. They also, we have a checklist in asana that allows them to go in. We use convert box and we use a Shopify app called mi a mi and we for a month. Or you can do it for however far out you want to, but we usually do it for a month.

 

[00:16:27] We develop our emails for a month, and then we go in and everything about our shop in terms of highlighting what that sale will be for whatever sale period it is. So the pop up, we have a featured product on the on the main page of our site. That will always be what we’re highlighting on a flash sale. We also have a pop up banner that will come up. Those are handled in convert box and then MI allows us to schedule our flash sale. So on that product listing, it will automatically change the price to what the flash sale is and add language that will say the flash sale is ending in and there’s a countdown timer. This is all automated. We set it up at the beginning of the month and the rest of the month runs. Automate it. We are making sales without me having to be at the computer. And that I mean, right, there is a big reason why I was able to step away and deal with what was going on in my life for the second half of 2023. As you get into this process of sending all of your people to one place, instead of sending them to ten, 20, 30, 40 different sales pages, it becomes very rinse and repeat and everything about selling becomes easier. And here’s the other thing that a shop does that I was not expecting.

 

[00:17:40] But wow, it has allowed us to cut down significantly on customer service issues, and it has given us the ability to keep cash flow in the business. This is something I talk about quite a bit inside of the digital shop experience, the program I run, but honestly. A shop has just completely transformed the buyer experience. In my business, where everything is more streamlined, it’s more cohesive, and because of that, there’s just way less customer service issues to deal with, which then costs me less money in team overhead. And the ability to keep cash flow in the business is because we can issue credits very easily, and it’s really a win win for everyone. So these are just some ways that we use store credit in the shop to make everything about our business easier and better. First of all, if you issue a store credit, it brings people back to the shop, right? Think about this. It’s one more reason for that person to return to your shop, and all of your other marketing triggers can then take over and hopefully get them to spend more than what their store credit is for. It also increases customer loyalty, so issuing a store credit doesn’t cost you anything. So if you can keep a happy customer by doing so, why not? Anytime you can offer a store credit to someone who has not bought from you, you are also potentially acquiring a new customer.

 

[00:18:59] So like let’s just say a customer has an issue with something. Issue them a store credit, it gets them back to your shop and potentially spending more money with you. Also, it’s great for in lieu of refunds, you can keep cash flow in your business. We get refund requests for a lot of various reasons, and a popular one is that they bought duplicates of the digital product. Now our goal is always to keep cash in the business so we can offer them a store credit instead. Why not? It’s a win win. There’s many other reasons that we issue store credits, but what I’m really going with this and what I want you to take away is that. Being able to centralize where people are buying from you makes everything easier, including your customer service. And the third reason that our digital product shop has just changed everything about our business is it has allowed us to reposition my brand to be an e-commerce brand, making it easier to sell now, honestly. This was an unexpected benefit, and my students in the digital shop experience have certainly recognized this. In fact, if you go to episode 68 with a student of mine, her name is Anna Joy. She’s a blogger and she had a free resource library. So essentially she had like dozens, if not hundreds of printables that lived in a free resource library. This is very popular in the blogging world, and basically giving away all of her stuff for free and how she would sell.

 

[00:20:26] She had a few products and she would run sales to them about four times a year, and what she experienced was that she got a lot of pushback, because most of the time she was only providing free stuff to her audience. And then these four sales periods that she had a year, people didn’t like that. And she found when she started following my methodology of selling consistently. Because here’s the deal. If you want to run a business, you’re in business to do one thing and that is to sell. It is an economic exchange of money. That’s what business is. You provide a product or a service and people pay you money. That is a business. That is how it works. And unfortunately, when you’re leading with constantly giving everything away for free and you’re not selling well, then it can feel really hard to sell on the times that you do try to sell. But what happens when you transition into an e-commerce brand, a digital product, e-commerce brand? Instead, a few things are going to happen. First of all, you’re going to transition your business into leading with the transformation that you offer is through your paid products. So when I send an email, it’s almost always an email where I’m selling, and I’m not selling in a way that’s stressful or like hard for me to do.

 

[00:21:43] And this is what Anna realized as well. Instead, it’s genuinely, hey, here’s this product, here’s the transformation it can provide for you. This is why I think this product can help you. And here’s the link to go get it. One of my most popular examples I like to use is Old Navy. We just talk about this real quick. Old Navy is a physical clothing e-commerce seller. I got an email from them almost every day. The email might be something like, hey, our tank tops are on sale for $8. I don’t get mad at them for sending me that email because that’s what they do. They sell clothes and so they’re informing me, a customer of their sale that week and that’s it. I don’t think anything further about that. I don’t get upset at them for sending this email. Instead, I expect it from them because I expect an E-com brand to be selling. However, if you want people to expect you to be selling well, first of all, you have to be consistent with sending emails. You have to be consistent. And one of the easiest ways to do this is hit 3 p.m. every Friday. We send what is called our Friday Special of the week. We have been doing this consistently since March of 2022, have not missed a single Friday, and we have people that will truly email us and say, I did not get my Friday email, and they’re upset that they didn’t get an email.

 

[00:23:10] That’s me selling to them. It’s literally an email of me saying, hey, can you go pay me money for this product? And people are upset if they miss it because that is you training your audience to understand that your brand is a business. It’s an e-commerce business, and you are in business of selling your digital products. And these digital products are great. They’re transformational, but that is the point. And it trains people to be okay with you selling, and it makes selling so much easier. But consistency is super important. So you have to be consistent. And I find the easiest way to do that is by doing what I did when I started with the Friday emails, pick a day theme it and be consistent. So if you think about it, you can launch your shop like I get I get this question a lot. How many products do I need to launch my shop? And my general rule is 5 to 10, because there’s a lot of things you have to do in your shop where the products kind of work together to get more added to the cart. So like, there’s no point in sending someone to a shop with one product. However, 5 to 10, let’s just say you launch with eight. That’s eight weeks of flash sales. Let’s say your marketing campaign is going to be Wild Wednesdays, our wild deals on Wednesdays, and then every Wednesday.

 

[00:24:19] You just have now eight weeks to run flash sales to your email list for those eight products that you launched with. And in that time, then you can use the data to make informed decisions about other content you want to repurpose into shop listings or new products that you want to create for your shop. It like just opens up a world of opportunity that is not there when you sell only on sales pages. Okay, so to recap, my life was, as I said, pretty much a dumpster fire. My personal life in 2023 not recommended to go through all the things I went through in very short period of time. But life happens and we can’t always help that. I did not expect that’s how my 2023 was going to go, but I am super glad that I had taken the time prior to that to really give stability to my business by starting to sell and see myself as an e-commerce brand, a digital e-commerce brand, I was able to stabilize her sales and give us a baseline of sales in our business every single month. I dramatically was able to create a lot of back end efficiencies on how we run our business because it’s rinse and repeat. Most of what we do now is rinse and repeat. It’s templatized, it’s easy. And I was able to reposition my brand as an e-commerce brand, and that made everything about selling easier.

 

[00:25:42] So if you have a high ticket program or a course, a program, a membership, if you create a lot of social media content, maybe on TikTok or Instagram, if you are a blogger or if you’re any sort of content creator, if you have been creating content in any sort of medium for a significant amount of time and actually time doesn’t even matter. I wouldn’t even say significant amount of time. But if you have been creating content for a while, you likely can repurpose a lot of that content into profitable shop listings that honestly are a better way to offer a transformation to your customers and get you paid at the same time. So if you want to work with me on your digital product shop, I would love for you to join me the week of January 29th inside the Digital Shop Accelerator, where I’m going to teach you how to launch your shop. The low risk, high reward way. And a fun fact it’s kicking off on my 39th birthday, so this is a free week long event, and it’s a combination of short, impactful audio drops and an interactive live training. Plus, we’ve added a pop up Facebook group so you can network with fellow creators, myself and my team. Honestly, I’m really excited about this because if you couldn’t tell, I’m pretty passionate about how digital product shops can really change and revolutionize your business. You can sign up for this free training at Digital Shop experience.com/training, and that link will also be in the show notes.


[00:27:05] Now during this week long free event, we’re going to be diving into things like how to make the mindset shift from free to paid, from content creator to e-commerce shop owner who provides their value through selling. That’s right, because selling is serving. When you sell, you are selling your transformation and you’re serving your audience. We’re also going to talk about the power of having a centralized call to action in your business. That, of course, is your shop and the transformation that you’re going to see when you make that shift. Then I’ll show you how one low price product can turn into a multi hundred dollar sale, making us several thousands of dollars in one weekend. And then we’ll do a live interactive demonstration on how you can leverage all of your hard work over the years at scale using a digital product shop. And I’ll show you the low risk and high reward way to get your shop launched ASAP, so that you can enjoy the same benefits that I have in 2024. So if you’re in, head on over to Digital Shop experience.com/training and sign up and tune it again next week for another episode all on digital product shops, it’s going to be a good one. More lessons that I’ve learned over the last two years of running my own six figure digital product shop. So until then.

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