Our StoryKirstin Sham
Our Story: Two Valley mom’s create e-commerce platform to support local businesses
Andrea Hoffman and Kirstin Sham, two local moms in the Valley are using their expertise, to give small local business access to online retail sales.
Andrea is the proud owner of a busy design agency Evolve Unlimited which would not have been able to handle the ever increasing demands it faced during 2017 without the diligence and creativity of her senior designer Kirstin Sham. Andrea found Kirstin on the South Peninsula Moms Facebook Page after Kirstin had reached-out in hope of finding a graphic design position. Andrea intended on employing Kirstin on a casual, part-time basis, but their amazing working relationship resulted in Kirstin soon working with Andrea full-time. Their relationship has since flourished, and they have formed an unbreakable bond.
In March, anticipating the economic impact of the pandemic and knowing that so many local businesses would suffer, Andrea came up with an idea to create an e-commerce portal to benefit local businesses. Andrea and Kirstin invested their free time and experience in the advertising and design industry and the concept quickly “Evolve-d” into a working e-commerce platform to allow small, local businesses to sell their products, with no setup costs. Evolve Unlimited has created e-commerce stores for many of their clients and the hard work and learning on those projects has culminated in the Peninsula Evolve-d portal.
The website is a fully e-commerce site with all sorts of products from local Valley businesses. The website offers a platform for businesses who need to get out in the market and those who just can’t afford to fork out massive amounts for their own e-commerce site. Using their knowledge and experience as graphic and web designers Andrea and Kirstin built the Peninsula Evolve-d brand, from logo to website to all design and social media collateral. They are marketing the website and managing all orders to make it an easy and simple option for the local businesses.
“Our valley is very unique in how we look after our own. This portal has been such a joy to be involved in. Being in the business of e-commerce and marketing it felt good to be able to offer this free service to small businesses, where they can also benefit from having an online presence. It has also been remarkable to see how much the ‘Deep South’ can offer, our goods, produce and people are why I am so proud to call the valley my home.” Andrea Hoffman co-owner of Peninsula Evolve-d
“This pandemic has turned our lives upside down, and the most heartbreaking part is watching the small mom and pop type businesses being hit the hardest. I was so excited when Andrea told me about her idea to create this portal. I thought this is it! This is how we and many other people can start helping our community! This lockdown has showed me how fragile our economy is and how important it is to support small business; it not only saves the businesses but saves the livelihoods of so many people. It needs to be our new norm, try and shop local as much as possible.” Kirstin Sham co-owner of Peninsula Evolve-d