Stacy Henderson is the founder of ForZilch, an online platform where people can connect with others to give away their free Items, free stuff, free junk, and freebies with free classified ads. Stacy started ForZilch after losing her job during the COVID-19 pandemic. While in quarantine, Stacy spent her time cleaning out and selling all of the stuff she didn’t need in her house. Stacy made a few dollars on some of her stuff, but what she discovered was that people were willing to travel 100+ miles to get an item for free, rather than travel the distance to pay a small amount for the item. After this realization, Stacy started offering her stuff for free; in other words, “For Zilch”. This sparked the idea for her ForZilch online platform. www.forzilch.com
Where did the idea for ForZilch come from?
I started ForZilch.com when I lost my job due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While in quarantine, I decided to spend my time cleaning out every room, every closet, and my garage of stuff. I started selling the stuff I found online.
I made a few dollars on some of my stuff, but what I discovered was that people were willing to travel 100+ miles to get an item for free, rather than travel the distance to pay a small amount for the item. So, I started selling my stuff for free; in other words, “For Zilch.”
Buyer/seller transactions were win-win: buyers got items they needed for free, and I, the seller, got what I wanted — less clutter, less stress from clutter, freed up space in my home and garage, and a downsized, more minimalistic life — all the things that made it worth selling my stuff for Free.
Thus, I decided to create ForZilch.com, where people can sell their free items, free stuff, free junk, and freebies with free classified ads, and companies can offer their free samples with free classified ads.
ForZilch.com – Everything for Sale is Free.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I start the day by spending a half hour on personal chores: unstacking the dishwasher, feeding the pets, watering the plants, cleaning the kitty litter, and taking out the trash. I then sit down at my computer with a cup of coffee and start working on ForZilch.com. While on my computer, I am also riding my Cubii elliptical that sits under my desk. As I am pedaling, I review the site’s Google Analytics and any pending new classified ads posted by advertisers. I make sure the classified ads are following our terms of advertising and then make them active on ForZilch.com.
I post a couple free classified ads of my own free items, and I then promote those free classified ads on social media — Twitter, Facebook, Google Ads, and more. I encourage my followers on social media to also post free classified ads on ForZilch.com (which run for 30 days).
How do you bring ideas to life?
I come up with ideas and I outline on paper how to implement each as a project. I assign a start date and time all the tasks involved in the correct sequence, a completion date and time for each project. I finish each task on time, I meet the completion date and time, and I implement the project, i.e. bring the idea to life.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I get excited by the trend of downloading and using apps on one’s phone. The Forzilch.com app will soon be available on Google Play and on Apple Store, for Android and iOS phones.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I have a habit of keeping my home office and surroundings neat, clean, and organized. This habit eliminates stress and keeps me positive, clear-headed, more focused, and more productive.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would advise myself that it is unnecessary to live my life with a lot of things, stuff, and junk. These things just cause clutter, decrease living space, and increase stress in one’s life. Plus, “you can’t take them with you.”
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Taking risks and investing one’s time, money, and energy in those risks are required of any successful entrepreneur.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Always be polite, courteous, and responsive to your customers. Providing this consistent type of customer service will generate repeat business, positive word-of-mouth advertising, and referrals.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Start small and within your means, and each time your business grows, build on that growth. Create multiple income streams within your business so you are not relying on just one source of income. Also, utilize all forms of social media to promote and grow your business.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
I once purchased a storefront business when I had my first three children. The purchase came with a lease on a credit card terminal that I would have to take over payments for, to pay it off. I realized quite quickly that it was going to be unfeasible to bring my children to my place of work. I needed to resell that storefront business as soon as possible. I did, and although this entrepreneurial decision failed, the credit card terminal I was stuck paying the lease on ended up being fully utilized in my next entrepreneurial venture (as I would never have been able to qualify for a credit card terminal otherwise, so I overcame the failure).
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Consider being a virtual assistant. Any home-based, self-employed entrepreneur is his/her own virtual assistant; however, you can also be a virtual assistant for a number of companies. Purchase a phone with multiple lines, have a computer with high speed internet and an email system. Receive incoming phone calls from clients’ customers, book appointments, perform billing and accounting for your clients, and converse with customers via email. All can be done from home, and your clients will save on overhead and on costs involved with hiring employees.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I put $100 in a birthday card for my daughter who turned 23 and just graduated from college with a civil engineering degree.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I pay Arca Solutions monthly to support my website, ForZilch.com. Their eDirectory system is very user friendly and the company offers very timely support.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I recommend Home Business Magazine’s ‘Home-Based Business Start-Up Guide’. Written by Barbara Weltman and Richard Henderson (publisher of Home Business Magazine), this book is an incredibly informative, in-depth guide on the fundamentals of running a successful business from home. I learned all about which business entity I should choose, protections I might need, how to effectively manage my company, marketing tactics, and so much more. The book is very useful for anyone who wants to take their future into their own hands and be their own boss.
What is your favorite quote?
“Good Thoughts, Good Words, Good Deeds.”
- Having too much stuff causes clutter, decreases living space, and increases stress in one’s life.
- Taking risks and investing one’s time, money, and energy in those risks are required of any successful entrepreneur.
- Always be polite, courteous, and responsive to your customers.
- Start small and within your means, and each time your business grows, build on that growth.
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.