13 Unique Brands Making $40M in Annual Sales with 10 Employees or Less

The digital age has furnished small teams with robust ecommerce tools, from inventory management systems to AI-driven customer service chatbots, allowing them to operate on a global scale.

Ecommerce has significantly leveled the playing field in the business world, democratizing opportunities for brands big and small. Previously, the realm of retail and sales was dominated by large corporations with extensive resources.

However, ecommerce platforms and digital tools have empowered small businesses to punch well above their weight, allowing them to compete effectively with much larger competitors. With the right strategies, small companies can scale to unprecedented heights, often outpacing larger counterparts in terms of innovation and agility.

The digital age has furnished small teams with robust ecommerce tools, from inventory management systems to AI-driven customer service chatbots, allowing them to operate on a global scale. The benefits are manifold: lower operating costs, the agility to adapt to market trends quickly, and the ability to offer 24/7 customer service.

This empowerment has enabled them to compete with industry giants, and often at a fraction of the cost. Moreover, the ability to implement rapid changes gives these small teams an edge in innovation. Where larger corporations may be held back by bureaucracy and red tape, smaller outfits can make quick decisions and experiment with new features, often pioneering trends that the larger players eventually adopt.

In this landscape where David competes with Goliath, personalization and agile strategies become the slingshots that small teams use to claim their market share. The upcoming brand spotlights will delve into the stories of 13 unique brands that have made remarkable strides, all the while keeping their teams small but extraordinarily effective.

How Personalization Helps Small Team Brands Succeed in Ecommerce

Enhanced Customer Experience

Personalization in ecommerce isn't just about product recommendations; it's about creating a seamless, intuitive journey for the customer from start to finish. With tailored suggestions, relevant content, and a streamlined checkout process, customers are more likely to be satisfied with their overall shopping experience.

The benefits extend beyond the individual transaction, as a positive experience can lead to word-of-mouth recommendations and social sharing. In a digital landscape where consumers are bombarded with choices, standing out through a personalized experience can be a significant differentiator for small team brands.

Higher Conversion Rates

Personalized interactions guide the customer toward products or services that genuinely interest them, thereby increasing the likelihood of a purchase. Rather than sifting through a sea of irrelevant options, customers are presented with selections that resonate with their past behavior or current activity on the site.

This level of focus and attention to detail often translates into higher conversion rates. The end result is not just a one-time sale but potentially multiple sales over time, as the system learns more about customer preferences.

Increased Customer Loyalty

Building loyalty is critical in a competitive market, and personalization helps achieve this by making the customer feel valued and understood. Whether it's remembering a customer's name or their previous purchases, these small touches can have a significant impact.

When customers feel like a brand understands them, they're more likely to return, leading to more consistent revenue streams. This repeat business also often comes at a lower marketing cost than acquiring new customers, making it an even more attractive outcome of effective personalization.

Reduced Cart Abandonment

Cart abandonment is a major challenge in ecommerce, often occurring because customers feel overwhelmed, are presented with unexpected costs, or simply lose interest.

Personalization strategies can identify these friction points in the shopping experience and provide tailored interventions, such as offering a limited-time discount or sending a follow-up email to re-engage the customer. By proactively addressing the reasons behind cart abandonment, brands can significantly improve their conversion rates and overall sales.

Improved Marketing Efficiency

Personalization can make marketing campaigns more effective by targeting the right audience with the most relevant content. By understanding customer preferences and behavior, brands can customize their marketing materials to resonate more closely with their target demographic.

This results in better ROI for advertising spend and a higher degree of customer engagement. Overall, personalized marketing not only saves resources but also maximizes the impact of every marketing dollar spent.

Top 13 Unique Brands Succeeding with 10 Employees or Less


INK+ALLOY is renowned for its handcrafted jewelry and accessories that are designed to empower women. Their products are a blend of modern design and traditional craftsmanship, offering a range of items from beaded necklaces to artisan earrings. With a focus on sustainable materials and ethical production, they've garnered a loyal customer base. Their unique selling proposition lies in their combination of contemporary aesthetics with age-old artisan techniques.

  1. JNCO

JNCO specializes in unique denim jeans and other casual wear, most notably their iconic wide-legged jeans. The brand has managed to tap into nostalgia while evolving to meet contemporary fashion needs. Despite the challenges in the apparel sector, JNCO’s distinct style has enabled it to carve out a unique market niche. By offering high-quality, durable products, JNCO sustains its strong following and profitability.

  1. Estelle Colored Glass

Estelle Colored Glass offers hand-blown colored glassware that adds a touch of elegance to any setting. Their vibrant, colored glass pieces are the epitome of sophistication and whimsy, perfect for both formal and casual occasions. They've received considerable attention from high-end interior designers and home decor enthusiasts alike. The brand sets itself apart by focusing on the artistry and craftsmanship behind each piece.

  1. Wildflower Cases

Specializing in unique, fashionable phone cases, Wildflower Cases has amassed a celebrity following and consistently releases limited-edition collections. Their eye-catching designs and collaborations with influencers have made them one of the go-to brands for trendy tech accessories. Their products are not just stylish but also offer high-quality protection for mobile devices. It's a brand that effortlessly combines function and fashion.

  1. WizardPins

WizardPins is an expert in creating custom pins, patches, keychains, and more. Known for their high-quality customization and quick turnaround time, they cater to businesses, organizations, and individual creators. They've simplified the design and ordering process, making it easy for anyone to create customized products. Their versatility and customer-friendly approach serve as their unique selling proposition.

  1. Allegiance Flag Supply

Allegiance Flag Supply sells high-quality American flags that are handmade in the USA. They take pride in their meticulous design process, using materials that are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions. Committed to quality and craftsmanship, the brand has become synonymous with durability and patriotism. Their US-made promise serves as a significant differentiator in the market.

  1. Relievet

Specializing in CBD products for pets, Relievet offers oils, chews, and topical solutions aimed at improving pet wellness. They stand out by using all-natural ingredients, rigorous testing, and a focus on ethical sourcing. Their holistic approach to pet care has won them accolades and a devoted customer base. By concentrating on an often-overlooked market segment—pet wellness—they've carved out a specialized niche.

  1. Canna Style

Canna Style offers a stylish line of cannabis accessories ranging from grinders to stash jars. With its chic and functional products, the brand aims to destigmatize cannabis use and attract a broader audience. They have managed to elevate everyday accessories into fashion statements. Their unique selling proposition is their blend of form and function, making cannabis use both aesthetically pleasing and practical.

  1. Maison Miru

Maison Miru specializes in eclectic, stylish jewelry that is both affordable and elegantly designed. Their pieces range from minimalist studs to elaborate statement pieces, catering to a broad spectrum of styles. With materials that are both high-quality and ethically sourced, they offer a guilt-free shopping experience. Their affordability without compromising on quality sets them apart in the crowded jewelry market.

  1. Rex Specs

Rex Specs sells protective eyewear specifically designed for dogs. The brand aims to provide safety and style for your furry friend’s outdoor adventures, from hiking to water sports. Their goggles are designed for comfort, durability, and functionality. Their specialization in a niche yet essential pet accessory makes them a unique player in the market.

  1. City Grounds

City Grounds specializes in urban cycling gear and bicycles. They offer custom-built bikes tailored to individual needs, focusing on functionality and style. With a range of accessories and apparel to complement their bikes, they're a one-stop-shop for urban cyclists. Their commitment to quality and customization gives them a unique edge in the biking community.

  1. State Bicycle

State Bicycle offers high-quality bicycles known for their durability and customizable options. They appeal to both casual riders and serious cyclists, offering a range of models from city bikes to performance cycles. Their brand is built on the principles of quality, simplicity, and community engagement. Their focus on customization and quality materials makes them a top choice for cycling enthusiasts.

  1. Dugout Mugs

Dugout Mugs creates unique mugs made from actual baseball bats, appealing to sports and beverage enthusiasts alike. The products are officially licensed by Major League Baseball, adding an extra layer of authenticity. They've turned a simple, everyday item into a conversation starter and collector’s item. By bridging the gap between sports memorabilia and functional home goods, they've created a product that stands out in a crowded market.

How Small Team Brands Can Leverage Maverick in Ecommerce

With Maverick's AI-generated video capability, these small team brands can significantly elevate their ecommerce strategies, transforming customer interactions into more engaging and personalized experiences.

Post-purchase videos

Imagine INK+ALLOY sending a personalized video message to a customer who just purchased one of their handcrafted necklaces. The video could showcase the artisans behind the product, offering a heartfelt thank-you, thereby turning a mere transaction into a memorable experience.

Abandoned cart recovery

JNCO could set up automated yet personalized videos to be sent to customers who abandon their cart. The video might feature a stylist demonstrating various ways to rock their wide-legged jeans, enticing the customer to complete the purchase.

Personalized welcome videos

New subscribers to Estelle Colored Glass could receive a personalized welcome video showing the intricate process of hand-blowing their colorful glassware, making newcomers feel connected to the brand right away.

Product launch announcements

Wildflower Cases could leverage Maverick's AI to send personalized video messages announcing a new limited-edition phone case. The video could even be tailored to showcase designs that align with the customer's past purchases.

Quick turnaround notifications

WizardPins could use Maverick to notify customers when their custom pin orders are ready to ship, using a video to display a few pins from their order as a sneak preview.

Holiday greetings

For patriotic holidays like the 4th of July, Allegiance Flag Supply could send personalized videos featuring the meticulous process of creating their high-quality American flags, setting the tone for a meaningful celebration.

User tips for new customers

Relievet could send video messages to first-time buyers with tips on how to effectively use their pet CBD products, creating a richer customer experience that extends beyond the purchase.

Special offers

During 4/20 or other cannabis-friendly celebrations, Canna Style could send out personalized videos showcasing their trendy accessories and announcing special deals, tailored to individual customer preferences.

Styling tips

Maison Miru could provide personalized video tips on how to style their jewelry with different outfits, based on the customer's purchase history, adding value and encouraging repeat business.

Safety precautions

Rex Specs could send personalized videos to customers, showing them how to safely and effectively use their dog eyewear during different activities like hiking or swimming.

How-to assemble videos

After purchasing a bike from City Grounds, customers could receive a personalized how-to video for assembling their new bike, making the usually daunting task seem manageable and even fun.

Customization tips

State Bicycle could send out videos offering tips on how to customize their bikes for optimum performance, using AI to suggest specific add-ons or configurations based on past purchases.

Serving suggestions

After buying a Dugout Mug, customers could get a video showcasing unique ways to use their new baseball bat mug, from game day cocktails to creative home decor ideas.


Emerging technologies like AI are providing small ecommerce teams with tools previously available only to large corporations. This technology not only streamlines operations but also personalizes the customer experience, a cornerstone of ecommerce success.

The 13 brands highlighted here are sterling examples of what small teams can accomplish. Whether you're part of a small team or looking to start your own ecommerce business, there has never been a better time to dive in and harness the power of AI and personalization.

Maverick uses AI-generated video to help ecommerce stores have personalized interactions with each of their customers across their journey. Start boosting your customers’ lifetime value (LTV) today with personal videos at scale!

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