By Karen Knapstein
Jamaica Cottage Shop is a shed manufacturer located in South Londonderry, Vermont. The company has two models — the Writer’s Haven and the Home Office — that are specifically designed as backyard work spaces. Domenic Mangano, who founded the company in 1995 and serves as its president, said they saw a significant uptick in orders in 2020.
“In 2020 we saw an increase in demand for additional space,” Mangano said. “We saw that people were spending more time at home with more people in the household. The home office is something people are very interested in.” JCS offers three options for delivery of its backyard buildings. They can be delivered as a DIY set of plans, or as a complete kit shipped free through North America, or fully assembled (dimensions and weight permitting) within a 200-mile radius of the factory.
Mangano also attributes an increase in interest and sales to the addition of a shed configurator on the JCS website (www.jamaicacottageshop.com) in 2020. “Customers can configure a building to their liking and watch the price change as they add and remove options. At the end of the process they can check out and purchase the shed or save their design to a wish list,” he explained. “We saw an increase in orders as well as configurations and upsells. A lot of the choices being made were being done at home without the interaction of anyone at the call center. … Customers are putting buildings together on their own without our help.”
To increase its sales and reach, JCS also offers an affiliate program. Once signed up for the program, Jamaica Cottage Shop provides reviewers, shed builders — anyone with online reach — a unique affiliate link that can be used on a website, blog or social media accounts. Every time a client purchases from a referral link, JCS pays the referrer a 5% commission (paid monthly).
“Over the last 12 months there was quite a bit of uncertainty. We ramped up coming out of winter like we always do, and then we were told by the government to send everyone home … But we brought almost everyone back within 60 days,” he said. “And 2020 ended up being our best year ever; it surpassed the numbers from our previous year. We expect to continue in 2021 as we continue to gain market share and build a national brand.” GSCB