When Lora Knaack, her husband Kyle, and their three kids moved to their farm in 2013, she envisioned one big pen and all the animals living in harmony. They started out with cattle, but it wasn’t until 2020 that they added a few Nigerian Dwarf goats to the family farm – that’s when Lora says L&K Homestead was born. L&K Homestead handmade artisan soaps, bath accessories, and candles, using goat’s milk from the ones raised on their farm.
L&K Homestead sells through a brick and mortar store located on their farm, where customers can catch a glimpse of the goats and cattle. They also operate a web store powered by Shopify.
Offline marketplaces, such as arts and crafts events, farmers markets, and vintage style events drive a huge portion of their revenue and account for 75% of their units sold. “Bringing the goats to the shows at different venues makes a difference in sales,” Lora says, “We thrived in the face-to-face setting.”
Lora is contemplating using an online marketplace, such as Etsy, to sell her products online in place of her web store, but not without accounting for the differences between the two sales channels. She describes, for example, considering the tradeoff between having competitors directly present on the site and having higher discovery rates on online marketplaces and vice versa on web stores.
L&K Homestead takes pride in their family-farm business. Lora, who is also working on obtaining her doctorate, mentions, “We can only make as much as our goats can produce, and it all must be high quality and up to standard.”