While some set aside a few hours a week to themselves, Michelle Williams, a 37-year-old mother of two, decided to start a home business, a website company called Pixels in My Pocket.
“I really just missed having something that was mine. I missed contributing to my family finances,” Williams said.
An English literature graduate, Williams learned how to build, setup and maintain a website from a friend and former co-worker. Now, she has a suite of different, ready-made website designs for businesses that want something simple and easy to keep up.
“It is very affordable. You can have a really cute website up and running for $15,” Williams said.
Prices for Williams’ site designs vary depending on the features included and whether the business wants her to operate and update the website. She can also design custom sites specific to a particular business and help bolster its online presence.
For a small investment, every small business can have a website, Williams said. It doesn’t have to be a major undertaking as a simple template will do. In the digital age, however, having a site for people to visit gives businesses more validity.
“It just gives people confidence in a businesses,” Williams said.
Because she is still a stay-at-home mom to her 8-year-old daughter and 4-year-old son, Williams said she had to figure out how to juggle both her kids’ needs and those of her clients. While she is available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Williams often works some odd hours to finish tasks while the kids are asleep.
“It has been a transition for us, but it has been really good,” she said, adding that it helps that her daughter is old enough to help around the house.
Williams won the Haywood County Chamber of Commerce’s Business Start-Up Competition this year, which included a $10,000 prize.
The money was the boost her budding business needed, Williams said, and it helped her buy new equipment necessary for her job.
“I am so grateful,” she said. “The money that I make in my business goes to support my family, and I just don’t have the money to invest.”
In addition to buying new Adobe graphic design products and an iPad, Williams purchased a much-needed new computer. Her previous one was 6 years old, which in computer years seems like decades.
“It was crashing on me all the time,” she said.
After moving from place to place with her parents as a child, Williams said she is happily settled in Waynesville with her husband, daughter and son.
“We love it,” Williams said. “I am so excited to start this business in this area.”