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From a Real Mom

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StorkGifts has been in business since January 2003. You may be an original customer, or a brand new customer, either way; I appreciate your business. Looking back, it’s hard to believe how much my life has changed and how my path has taken me somewhere I never dreamed of going…..

When my each of my children were born, I always loved getting personalized gifts. When a friend called a favored wood-crafter to order a name puzzle stool for our third baby in December 2001, he informed her that he was selling his business. After discovering that the manufacturing facility was located just outside of St. Louis, she called my husband to see if he was interested in buying it. He did; but decided to keep his job in corporate America and hired a manager to run the facility. Realizing there were sales opportunity on the web, he developed an e-commerce website for the company. After a year, the decision was made to sell the wood crafting company, as it was difficult for the business to operate how we wanted it to when we weren’t on site.

Thinking about how much our own children loved all the personalized baby gifts they had received throughout the years, and appreciating how special and long lasting these gifts were for families, we hated to give up on the world of personalized baby gifts. Seeing how successful the website had become, we began to think it would be nice to have one location where someone could find all types of personalized gifts from different artisans. It was decided to develop another website selling a variety of types of personalized baby gifts; thus, StorkGifts was born.

In January 2003, internet shopping was just becoming widespread. The daily operations were outsourced to a call center until 2005. During this time, what started with just name puzzle stools, name puzzles, and personalized coat racks; grew to include personalized piggy banks and a variety of hand painted personalized stools, personalized jewelry boxes, personalized books, and a handful of other personalized gifts for babies and children. I have looked all over the country for creative, unique, high quality personalized baby and children's items.

I wanted to be more involved in our family owned business. I knew that it was not growing at a substantial rate and felt that a major reason was because the employees in the call center didn’t have a vested interest in StorkGifts. Logistically, once my youngest was at pre-school a couple of mornings a week, I had the time to take over the daily operations. It was then that my husband and I made the decision to get rid of the call center and that I would run the company.

I was excited; yet terrified to take over StorkGifts. I had a Master’s degree in education and had worked as a Special Education teacher before quitting to stay at home with my children. Before StorkGifts, my business background consisted of one high school accounting class. It was true on site job training! It helped somewhat taking over an existing business, as I could see how things were done and then tweak them as I saw fit to make improvements. I’m not going to cherry color it…it was difficult! What would take a businessman a short time took me a long time. There was definitely a learning curve. Not only was there no business background; there was also no technical knowledge. I was dealing with a website. When I first took over StorkGifts, I didn’t even use email personally nor had I ever shopped online. I barely knew how to turn on my computer! This was 10 years ago! I had no experience with customer relations and suddenly, I was THE customer service department. I was determined to figure it all out. I Googled terms and ‘how to’s (once I learned how to ‘Google’). I took continuing education classes at a local University on sales/marketing topics. I had great mentors. My husband showed me how to do things and initially was a great resource. My accountant taught me how to do Quick Books. I utilized my friends’ business expertise.

Now, I understand business terms. I am experienced with customer service. Our company has grown significantly. We have numerous long time customers. StorkGifts now offers nearly 100 different personalized baby and kids gifts.

All our items are gifts that I would give to my dearest friends and family members. They are tested by my children and given their seal of approval! As a mom, I make sure that the products are safe for my children to use. If I wouldn't feel comfortable using the item with my own children, I don't add it to our product line. Each gift you select is hand-crafted to order with the careful touch of our talented artists who take pride in their work. At StorkGifts.com, customer service is of utmost importance. Each customer is treated as our only customer. Our goal is that each customer's experience with StorkGifts.com is both positive and memorable. I am a busy mom and I represent our typical customer and I know how I like to be treated when conducting business. From timeless classics such as name puzzle stools, personalized piggy banks and rocking chairs, to pillowcases, books baby blankets, you can find a personalized gift for any baby or child StorkGifts.

In retrospect, I do think some of the success of StorkGifts is BECAUSE I did not start out as a businesswoman, but as a mom. My view point was always from the consumer side, because I never had the business side before. Every decision I have made has been based on being a fair decision for the customer…..is that what I would expect from a company?

Last year, my husband and I divorced. I am now a single mom with three daughters. I realize that I am an inspiration to them and how they view their future professional life. A woman CAN run a company and take care of her family. StorkGifts thanks you for your continued support; we look forward to serving you for another ten years and beyond.