Township Trading Company: Small Businesses Get Together

SOUTH ABINGTON TOWNSHIP -- For many small businesses, the move from online to brick and mortar can be intimidating and costly, but a group of businesses in Lackawanna County thought it would be easier to do it together.

Lisa Burke and Heather Percival became friends because of their businesses. Lisa sells homemade candles and melts; Heather has a clothing boutique. Both had dreams having their own storefront one day.

"We've known each other for a few years and we've always talked about taking our online businesses a little bit further and opening up a brick and mortar someday," Burke said.

In fulfilling that dream, they're also making it happen for other small businesses. Earlier this month, they opened Township Trading Company near Clarks Summit.

For a monthly fee, other businesses can set up shop. They've been open for two weeks and already 12 other sellers have signed on.

Most of them are also friends the owners met over the years at pop-up marketplaces.

"That's how we met a lot of the people, through the vendor events that we did and it's a little community, I think, of people who do those. And sometimes people want to stay and have their businesses at home or online and just do those events. But, Lisa and I both wanted to grow it more," said Percival.

The communal approach helps these small businesses achieve something they wouldn't be able to do alone.

"Until I actually get the name out there, so people know what Bravery Beads are, this is a great place to actually start out," said Corey Ware of Bravery Beads.

Most of the vendors sold only online before and they will continue to, but, they say there's something about being in a store.

I think people are looking for more one on one, I think everything did get too much on the internet and now I think people want one on one service," said Krista Pastora, Madymak Designs.

One on one, but 14 at once.