Susan Jacobson at her store in Ottawa. (Photo credit: JVL Photography)
Jacobsons Gourmet Concepts stocks its digital and physical shelves with unique, quality ingredients that introduce customers to a new world of food.
The company caters to foodies through gourmet cheese plates, gift arrangements and a monthly cheese delivery membership.
“We find the best available product and bring it to the Canadian market,” said Susan Jacobson, the company's founder and chair.
Jacobsons Gourmet Concepts uses its website, Jacobsons.ca, to sell goods and register people into their “Cheese of the Month” club.
Jacobson says the company's website has opened unforeseen growth opportunities for the business. As it scales, e-commerce becomes more important to reach new customers.
“Our goal is to expand our online offering, in terms of product [availability].”
As more Canadians shop online, it's increasingly important for small businesses to have a web presence. Many Canadians report browsing online for goods they'll eventually purchase in-store, and Canadians who buy online say they spend more on Canadian websites than international ones, according to the .CA Factbook..
.CA connects Jacobsons with customers from coast-to-coast
When Jacobsons Gourmet Concepts went online, it chose a .CA to market nationally and to its local Ottawa community.
“It's the profile,” says Jacobson when asked what value .CA brings to her business. “It's about getting the name out there, constantly, to let people know who we are and where we are.”
With her physical store housed in a small neighbourhood northeast of downtown Ottawa, the company relies on its website to make the storefront easy to find for locals and to connect out-of-Ottawa customers with the brand.
Through Jacobsons.ca, the company offers a delivery service for customers in the greater Ottawa area and serves about 1,500 customers across Canada.
Expansion on all fronts
In addition to the success of its brick-and-mortar store and Jacobsons.ca, the company also has a wholesale division called DoveTale Collections and is opening a gift company.
With three brands under her wing, people, passion and product continue to be the centre of Jacobson's growing success.
“It's not easy,” she says. “It's a lifestyle. Things go up and down. An entrepreneur just has to dig and get it done. You have to be a do-er, able to roll with those punches, and be creative!”