"We are defined by who we say no to," says Elizabeth Nichols, CEO of Taigan, an ecommerce site that hosts some of the most amazing boutiques from around the country--boutiques that might not otherwise be accessible outside of the brick and mortar store. When Taigan, appropriately meaning a breed of Canine from Kyrgyzstan "known for its tenacity to find the best game for its master," launched in 2009, Nichols estimates that there was a three percent acceptance rate from all of the retailers who reached out to them.
Since then, the offerings on the site have grown to more than 100 vendors in 11 categories--from fine jewelry to cigars. "The small stores needed a big voice," says Nichols, who draws her experience from 20 years spent developing shopping centers. "If you put one store in the middle of the world wide web it won't get any more traction than if you build a little store in the middle of a field." Now with their re-launch--including a newly curated landing page--they also plan on introducing 8-12 stores each month. Though no store makes the page without a rigorous evaluation, from combing through the stock to seeing how they are packaged and shipped. Nichols even physically visits every store and is constantly seeking out new locations on her travels. As she puts it: "We are on a hunt."