This Side Hustle Spotlight Q&A features Wendy Wang, owner of F&J Outdoors. Her Pennsylvania-based company sells covers for outdoor furniture.
Image Credit: Courtesy of F&J Outdoors. Wendy Wang.
What were you doing before you started your side hustle, and why were you interested in entrepreneurship?
Before embarking on my entrepreneurial journey, I was employed as an international trade specialist. However, I always had a burning desire to create something I could call my own. The allure of the independence and autonomy that comes with being your own boss was simply too compelling to resist.
When did you start your side hustle, and where did you find the inspiration for it?
My entrepreneurial journey began as a side hustle back in 2018. The spark of inspiration was kindled by my personal experiences. I found that the outdoor furniture covers that were available in the market were far from satisfactory. They were either exorbitantly priced or they were of subpar quality. I recognized a glaring gap in the market for outdoor furniture covers that were both affordable and of high quality.
What were some of the first steps you took to get your side hustle off the ground?
The initial steps I took on this journey were methodical and well thought out. I conducted in-depth market research to understand the nuances of the market. I also spent a considerable amount of time sourcing high-quality materials that would meet the expectations of my potential customers. Furthermore, I set up an ecommerce platform to facilitate easy and convenient transactions for my customers. A significant part of my initial efforts was also dedicated to understanding the specific needs and preferences of my target customers.
What were some of the biggest challenges you faced while building your side hustle, and how did you navigate them?
One of the biggest hurdles I faced was juggling my full-time job with my burgeoning side hustle. Additionally, managing the financial aspects of the business was a daunting task. However, I tackled these challenges head-on by setting clear boundaries, prioritizing tasks effectively and acquiring knowledge about financial management.
How long did it take you to see consistent monthly revenue, and at what point did the side hustle’s income surpass your full-time job?
It took approximately a year before I started seeing a consistent stream of monthly revenue from my side hustle. After two years, the income from my side hustle surpassed that of my full-time job. This was a pivotal moment that led me to make the decision to transition into running my side hustle as a full-time business.
You’ve turned your side hustle into a full-time business. How much average monthly/yearly revenue does it bring in now? And what about during peak season?
As of now, F&J Outdoor generates an average monthly revenue of around $66,000. This translates to an annual revenue of approximately $800,000. During the peak season, our revenue can surge by up to 30%.
What’s your advice for other side hustlers who hope to turn their ventures into successful full-time businesses?
Practice patience and persistence. It is crucial to continuously learn and adapt to the changing market conditions. Do not shy away from taking calculated risks. Transforming a side hustle into a full-time business demands unwavering dedication, but the rewards that come with it are truly gratifying.