Home organization became an especially hot topic during the pandemic, as people spent more time at home. However, many people need support while cleaning out their belongings and re-organizing. And that’s exactly what It’s Just Stuff provides. Read about the unique company and its journey in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.
What the Business Does
Provides home organization services.
The company is based in the Boulder, Colorado area. But they travel to other states and are looking to expand even more.
Founder Beth Blacker told Small Business Trends, “We help clients with everything from simple closet reorganization projects to working with extreme hoarders peeling back all of the layers, literally and figuratively of the “stuff” they have accumulated for years.
“Not only do we help with the actual organization, but we ensure that after working with us, our clients have all of the tools and resources they need to keep those organizing pain points from flaring up again. We truly want to be the conduit for change from chaos to calm when and where it matters most for our clients and their homes.”
Providing customizable services that work for every unique situation.
Blacker says, “We approach every project and client as unique. While there is a general process we follow, we know that life circumstances that bring clients to us can be very different and we do our best to treat each client and their situation with a great deal of compassion and empathy. At the same time, due to the nature of our services, we have to have a certain degree of ruthlessness when it comes to decluttering and purging. We operate under the belief that home organization is not a luxury, but rather a necessity for many people.”
How the Business Got Started
By noticing a strong need during lockdown.
Blacker explains, “I was working a traditional job and had spent years trying to squeeze myself into roles that often felt like I was just going through “the motions”. I started doing home organizing on the side but didn’t pursue it full-time until I moved to Colorado and went through three jobs in one year. Then in March 2020 when we went into COVID lockdown, people started spending more time at home, and they often discovered they had too much stuff and were anxious to know how to manage it when suddenly facing it 24/7. By the time the lockdown ended there was a significant amount of pent up demand for my services and I found myself with a growing list of clients that summer and into the fall of 2020. Wanting to expand beyond my network, I brought my business online with Thumbtack, a platform that connects homeowners who need work done with local professionals like myself.”
Finding the right platform.
Blacker says, “There is no doubt in my mind that my engagement with Thumbtack overall has been the biggest “win” for my business. I tried other lead generation platforms for service professionals but none of them produced any significant amount of business. And because I really hustled for every job, It’s Just Stuff’s profile rapidly climbed to the top of the categories we offered services in within just a few months. Our conversion rate has consistently been around 80-85% ever since and as a result our gross income quadrupled in the first year and continues to exceed the previous year’s revenue month after month.”
You’ve gotta believe.
Blacker adds, “I think the biggest risk was getting over my fear of the unknown and believing in myself and my ability to build a business from scratch when I had no financial security to fall back on. It was scary but I took the chance and it has paid off more than I ever could have imagined. My mother always told me “you’ve gotta believe” and I carry that mantra with me each and every day.”
How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000
Offering free services to those in need.
Blacker says, “I would try to use it to advocate for those who really are struggling with their stuff whether due to hoarding or any other mental or physical disorder and don’t have the means to pay for my services.”
Biggest Personal Accomplishment
Being a one-woman moving crew.
Blacker explains, “I once packed up a 4,000 square foot house by myself in one day. There was a LOT to pack but I was incredibly focused and clearly organized. It was during COVID. And my client didn’t want a crew of helpers. So I started at 7 am and finished about 12 hours later. She didn’t believe I could get it all done in one day. But I am, as my friends refer to me, quite the Energizer Bunny!”
“If not now, when?” – Hillel.
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Image: It’s Just Stuff