Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Rachael Wilson, Founder of Excite For Life CBD Shop, located in Bradford, West Yorkshire, UK.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
At Excite For Life CBD Shop, we have been serving the Community With Wellbeing Since 2015. We specialise in the highest quality CBD products that help to balance mood, sleep, and pain in the body. We have a diverse customer base, from children with autism, young people with anxiety, people in their 40s who need better sleep, or older people who use CBD to help joint pains like arthritis.
Tell us about yourself
I used to be a property developer and ran into some massive financial debt. It was extremely stressful and depressing and was affecting my sleep. I had been on antidepressants for years before and tried meditating, eating healthy, exercising, and reading positive books, but I still wasn't functioning properly.
I found CBD over six years ago now as I was looking for a natural way to bring my body and mind into balance. It took about three weeks for me to notice a difference, but when I did, it was profound. I went to sleep easily at 11 pm and woke up at 7 am without needing to snooze the alarm several times with a feeling of dread. I just woke up, and although I still had all the problems, I wasn't overwhelmed by them and felt capable of handling what I could that day. It was truly amazing feeling like instead of drowning, I had some arm bands on that kept me afloat.
I knew more people needed to start using this wonderful supplement but recognised that there wasn't much information about it. People had a stigma around cannabis that it was intoxicating and not good for the body. Therefore I started my YouTube channel Excite for Life UK, and created videos to educate people about how to use CBD and feel the benefits I had.
I'm so grateful that I started using CBD, as I have then diagnosed with stage 4 endometriosis in my bowel and womb. I started to use CBD to help me manage the pain of chronic disease. CBD won't cure a disease, but it has helped me to manage the symptoms and gives me a better quality of life.
When people visit me at the CBD Shop, they are sometimes in tears because of the pain, sleepless nights, or constant depressing or anxious feelings. After a few weeks, I see them again, and they are so happy as they have started to get their life back. This is why I'm passionate about CBD and why I campaign to educate people about the benefits of this wonderful supplement.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
When the Covid pandemic hit, we were able to keep our CBD Shop open as it's a food supplement. We had so many people coming to the CBD Shop because they were anxious or they couldn't get their normal prescription medications from the doctor. It was an honour to serve the community in that difficult time and help bring some wellbeing into people's lives. Each time a customer tells me they are able to go for a walk again or ride their bike. Each time a customer tells me they have never slept as well or that their child is a lot calmer and happier, it reminds me of why I love sharing this gift of wellbeing with people and warms my heart.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The CBD industry is tough as there are so many entities that want to keep it suppressed. You can't advertise on places like Facebook, Google, or Instagram. You are not allowed to make any medical claims, so you basically can't tell people why it would help them. It's difficult for farmers to get a licence to grow hemp in the UK, so most are imported from Europe and America, which has higher costs and issues with customs. With the new UK novel foods licensing for CBD, it means that no new brands can be created if they weren't already on the market before February 2022.
All of these factors affect CBD business owners, but we persevere because we are passionate about this wonderful plant and see how it improves people's lives.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Always do a test mock-up product first and see what the demand is for it. There is no point in spending lots of money and time on a product that you think will sell well. We always need to make sure that the people would actually buy it.
- Follow up with customers always. If people buy from your website, add an automated email campaign to ask how they like it. If it's a face-to-face customer, take their mobile number and ask if you can send them a text in a week to see how they are getting on with it. Build a relationship with that customer and genuinely care about helping them.
- Being an entrepreneur can be tough and lonely as all the responsibility is on your shoulders. Make sure you are in a business you feel passionate about, as that passion will help you persevere during tough times, which inevitably, in business and life, there always is.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Someone might visit our website and buy CBD Oil. On the checkout page, they have the option to add some sample CBD Gummies to their order for only £3.99. Most people add these, which is nice for them to try CBD Gummies and nice for us as it increases our order value.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.