I think it only proper to introduce And Above All Yoga to you. It is likely that you have never heard the name before, but we think you will as time passes. I want to tell you why. Every company that ever was or ever will be had a humble beginning. We are no exception. We began our operations in late January 2018, when, at a family Christmas party, a truly boring one I might add, my siblings and I had the idea that we could enter the online marketplace with high quality yet fairly priced clothing, accessories, and gear for a growing marketplace in fitness geared primarily toward women. My brother, Roger, had a great deal of retail experience in both fashion and in hard goods as well. My sister Sarah is a graphic artist and we saw an opportunity to design our own line of fitness apparel that would be both stunning and impressive. By late January we had a business plan in place and had sourced a number of products that we believed would be widely accepted. We were not wrong. |
Why Pick Yoga as a Focal Point
Just speaking for myself, my experience taught me that clothing designed for the yoga studio is so very flexible that it is great for any fitness activity. From yoga pants to sports bras and more, if comfort is the goal I suggested that we concentrate on yoga apparel as the ultimate form of true fitness wear. Yoga pants, whether leggings, Capris, or shorts are not only perfect for the yoga studio, but they are absolutely perfect for the gym, running, Pilates, playing tennis, or just hanging out with friends. We decided that we should take advantage of the comfort and durability offered by yoga pants. My brother was convinced when I showed him a comment from a product search we did that read, “I love my yoga pants. I can even wear them two or three times without worry that they won’t be fresh. I have even started to use them as pajama bottoms.”
Our decision to focus on yoga apparel was unanimous which was something of a minor miracle because we have never agreed on anything in the past. Big decisions were always 2 to 1 with the balance always being different. It was natural to think in terms of adding two secondary lines to our mix as well. We decided that because hydration is so important to fitness training (let alone life itself) we decided to add a variety of water bottles and hydration backpacks to our product line. Because we include yoga in our name, we decided to also add a line of yoga gear including yoga balls and yoga gear like bricks and rollers. Our very first sale was a 25cm blue yoga ball, so it must have been a good idea to add the line.
Two Important Considerations for our Business
We made two additional policy decisions before we opened our doors. First, we decided that as much as possible we would source goods from US companies. The second was that we would create a return and exchange policy that would be second to none. Let me explore each of these policies.
Why Do We Source from the United States Whenever Possible?
There are two reasons we source our products from the United States first. If there is no US option, then we source from North America. If there is still no other options, we will use Chinese and other Asian suppliers. Why make this choice? After all, goods from Asia are generally less expensive that what can be found in the US. That being said, they also tend to be somewhat less durable than American made goods so that, in the final analysis, the premium paid for US goods balances out in the sense that you won’t need to replace your apparel more frequently.
A second reason revolves around shipping, a service we offer free of charge to you. Even under the best circumstances, shipping from China takes from two to three weeks. Most Chinese suppliers will offer a 60 Day shipping guarantee, that’s two months in which they see their shipping as being within normal expectations. That is simply not good enough, at least not for our clients. Even our made to order yoga pants and sports bras made in the US are delivered to your doorstep free of charge within ten days at the most. My experience shows that the average is nearly midway between six and seven days, including printing. It is better for all of us to be prompt in getting your orders to your doorstep.
What About Returns or Exchanges?
Roger’s experience in retail began when he was in the management training program at Marshall Field and Company in Chicago, Illinois. He was taken by the idea that at Fields, the policy for returning anything was always a friendly, “YES, we’ll take it back.” This policy originated with Marshall Field himself when he was asked about his store’s return policy. “Give the lady what she wants,” he retorted, and the policy stuck. Our policy is quite simple. If, for any reason whatsoever, our customer is dissatisfied with a purchase, initiate a return ticket within 30 days of delivery. We send you a mailing label for your use and we refund your purchase price less the shipping cost for the return to your credit card. What could be simpler?
So, There You Have Our Story
Our story is simple. Three siblings forming a company to sell yoga apparel and gear at fair prices online. We ship for free, source products from US vendors before we look for foreign sources. We have one of, if not the best, return policy in the marketplace today. We are quite proud of our accomplishments.
About the Author
Hi, my name is Sandy Fischel, marketing director for And Above All Yoga, a wholly owned division of The Fischel Group LLC. I am responsible for many aspects of our marketing but most of all, getting the word out about our company. If you have any questions or comments about any of the articles I write, do not hesitate to email me directly. I will almost always respond within one business day to your questions or comments.
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