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A keen eye for spotting consumer trends over the years has helped Hal Lier make a success of his Vermont-based business, moving from storefronts to selling online, and most recently to branding his own line of fitness accessories.
"Over the past decade, I went from thinking of Amazon as someplace I thought we might want to be to seeing a substantial part of our sales each year coming from selling on Amazon," he says.
Nefitco, the business Hal founded nearly 25 years ago as New England Fitness Company, is a positive example of how selling online can help remove the hurdles to business success. "We began by selling exercise equipment in storefronts to walk-in traffic," he explains. "In our peak season, January through March in Vermont and New Hampshire, lots of people walked through the door. Then, in the warmer months practically no one walked in."
"What eCommerce and Amazon in particular have done for Nefitco is that we now have lots of people coming through the door. That door is the Internet and it is open 365 days a year," he says. "As a result, we have a year-round business with stable, predictable income each month. Today, our largest customer base is California, followed by Florida and Texas, instead of just our local area. It's been a real eye-opener for me."Learn more
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