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Start Your Business Success Stories

Small Business Snapshot: Packable Pails

Small Business Snapshot: Packable Pails Credit: Melissa Reed

Our Small Business Snapshot series features photos that represent, in just one image, what the small businesses we feature are all about. Melissa Reed, co-owner of Packable Pails, a business founded in 2013 that sells collapsible beach pails, explains how this image represents her business.

Reed explains...

Our son has posed for many pictures with Packable Pails, and this picture represents our business perfectly! We have met so many people all over the world through our business. In this case, he was just smitten to run into these two beautiful girls surfing in San Francisco. 

Packable Pails is a family owned and operated business in Iowa that was started after we invented a beach pail that collapses easily in one motion. We get teased all the time — "You sell beach pails and live in Iowa?" Well, actually, yes.

Like a lot of families, we enjoy traveling and especially to the beach, and Packable Pails were invented after a thoroughly-planned but failed family vacation to the beach. We had packed everything to jump off the plane from Iowa and head directly to the beach. When we got to the beach our young son pointed and asked for something to play with in the sand. After much persistence, our family packed up and went in search of a beach pail that was thrown away at the end of the trip. On the plane ride home, I sketched the initial drawing for our product.

One of the biggest challenges Packable Pails faces is making customers and retailers aware of our product and the endless uses. Our pails work well as Easter pails, are food safe for snacks, and can be used as a flower vase, a gift basket, or to give the family dog a drink on a long trip. Plus, they're easy to personalize. One of the best ways we have gotten out the message about our company is through images on social media.