About this project
Who Are We?
Cheerfully Given is a marketplace website made up of a community of over 60 Christian designers and makers who have a desire to share the Lord Jesus through great design and contemporary craft. Take a moment to watch our video to find out more.
We want to worship the Divine Craftsman with excellence in all kinds of creative ways. Creative arts have been at the core of Church life since the tabernacle was constructed, so we want to encourage and share that great treasure.
We launched in June 2016 with our current basic beta website, and have since had over 130 applications from amazing creative businesses all over the world.
We have been totally overwhelmed by the levels of interest in our site, and the time has come that we need to develop a purpose-built website in order to grow any further.
What makes us different?
Our website isn't just a place to buy more stuff on the internet. It's a community of people who are passionate about reflecting the life of the Triune God. We want to encourage thoughtful, fair gift-buying and a new way of sharing Jesus in our homes.
You can click here to read some testimonials from our sellers about how Cheerfully Given has impacted their lives.
What is it?
Cheerfully Given is a marketplace website. This means that it's a larger website made up of lots of individual store fronts -- each member of our community has their own business and their own section, but you can also find their products in the wider website alongside designs from other creatives. It's like a really cool market, but virtual!
Why do we need a new website?
Our current website is an extremely basic beta website in terms of its software and capabilities, and was used to find out if there was enough demand for what we offer to spend a significant amount of money on a new website.
We have determined proof of concept over the past 8 months, during which time we have grown more quickly than we could have imagined. It has become imperative that we have our website forever-home sooner rather than later.
How do we know that our concept works well enough to spend almost £25,000 on a new website?
We haven't been in print or on the radio yet, we haven't had a chance to go to any of the big Christian events (we launched after Spring Harvest and had missed the deadline for the summer events).
The following stats are from our organic, word-of-mouth growth in the 7.5 months since we launched:
130+ seller applications
6,100 Facebook followers
2,500 Instagram followers
350,000+ website views
Almost 2,000 orders
Interest from 40+ high street Christian retailers
Best weekend of sales: £4,500 in gross sales
In order to serve our seller community effectively, and provide an excellent resource for the wider world, we need a website that is built to our specific needs.
Why is it so expensive?
Marketplace technology is much more complex than your average ecommerce website. It takes a lot longer to develop, and there are a lot of different components to ensuring that it will work properly. Raising £15,000 on Kickstarter will provide us with around half of what we need to build the website debt-free.
It will take our highly skilled developer, Josh, at least four months to develop the site, including a complex piece of software that allows each of our sellers to have their own beautiful store-front -- you won't necessarily see the results of Josh's work, but everything that works about the website will be because of his hard work and skill.
Working alongside him will be Cat, our web designer, whose creative genius will be responsible for stunning, user-friendly layouts (the bit of the website you'll see as a customer) that fit in with the Cheerfully Given brand.
Here are some of the costs so you can see how much is being spent on each element:
Josh's web development: £20,000
Cat's web design: £4,000
Kickstarter fees: 9% of final amount
Fulfilment of rewards: 25% of final amount
To build the website debt-free, we need to raise £35,000 through our Kickstarter campaign.
What is our timeline?
Josh started work on the new website in January, and already has the basics set up. We are hoping that the new website will be ready to go live by the beginning of June 2017, just before our first birthday.
Josh is married and has a little girl. He and his family are based in the Midlands. Josh is a specialist Craft CMS developer and consultant, and is particularly experienced with complex website builds, writing custom plugins, and all things ecommerce. He's recently launched his own web development company, which you can find here. Josh enjoys music, being outside, swimming with his daughter, and more recently, knitting. website // instagram // twitter
Cat is based in the Midlands with her husband and their black Labrador, called Ellie. She is the creative genius behind Cheerfully Given's branding and collateral, which she designed back in 2015. With experience working as a web designer for well-known retailers, Cat also runs Twin Pines Creative, a design studio which she launched in 2015. Cat is a big film-lover, and her love of design is also reflected in her interests and how she spends her free time. website // instagram // twitter
Menekse is married and they live in Nottingham with their Standard Poodle, Dougal. Having trained as an accountant within the Christian retail industry, Menekse then moved into project management and small business development before founding Cheerfully Given. Menekse *loves* creative business, and enjoys finding lovely things from independent designers and makers. Other hobbies include reading, chatting about theology, and eating Easter eggs for breakfast in January. website // instagram // twitter
We love the nature of crowdfunding, and feel that it's a great reflection of Cheerfully Given's heart for community: a group of people using their resources to support one another and work towards a larger goal. We would love to be able to testify of the power of a crowd of people with a shared vision to create something that will glorify God for years to come!
And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. Acts 2:44-45.
We are taking a leap of faith and asking you to help us -- asking you to share your finances with us so that we can continue building this amazing community.
What if we surpass our goal?
Anything raised up to £34,000 will go directly to paying for our website (the maximum amount we need to build our website debt-free).
A closer look at some of our rewards:
1. Pledge to our campaign, and get one of our exclusive Kickstarter rewards.
2. Pray for us as we share this journey with the wider body of Christ.
3. Share this campaign with five of your friends who would be interested in what we're doing.
We are trusting God our heavenly Father with this project. We know the new website is vitally necessary in order for us to continue what has been started with our beta website, and we know He knows!
We are all immensely grateful for every person who has bought from the current site, who has engaged with us on Facebook or Instagram, and we thank you for your interest in this project and for your prayerful support.
Please note that no charge will be made to your bank card until our campaign closes on Monday 13th March 2016. If we don't reach our goal, no money will be charged to your card.
Risks and challenges
A delay in the project being completed if the stretch goal isn't met due to sourcing funds from elsewhere.
We want to be completely transparent about everything we're doing, so if you have any questions that aren't covered here, please get in touch by emailing Menekse at email@example.com.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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