When she founded Riffraff in 2009 as a senior at the University of Arkansas, Kirsten Blowers shared her unique eye for design with the city she loved. “We're very community-based. We absolutely love Fayetteville,” Kirsten says. Riffraff is a home-grown Arkansas fashion boutique, designed for women by women. Her vision has since blossomed from a tiny pop-up retail space on the edge of town to a wildly successful online storefront operating out of a new 6,000-square-foot facility downtown. “It's lighthearted. It's funny. It's local,” she says proudly.
Riffraff grew into a major player in the retail fashion market thanks to the Internet. “The web lets us get in front of so many more eyes, here in Fayetteville and all over,” Kirsten explains. Riffraff shares favorite looks and products with over 800,000 followers on social media. They use AdWords, Google's advertising program, to attract customers and drive 30 percent of their online sales. “We make sure we’re a top result when people search for Fayetteville or for the best boutiques in the southern United States,” Kirsten says. “We want to be their first pick.” Google Analytics gives them a clear view of their web traffic, so they can adjust their marketing accordingly. Google My Business ensures customers can always find the store's hours and directions, and YouTube provides a creative, digital-friendly way to connect with their growing audience. “Thanks to Google, I don't think anyone in Fayetteville hasn't heard of Riffraff,” Kirsten remarks.
Today, Riffraff ships their products to customers all over the globe, and their sister company, Charlie Southern, wholesales to over 500 boutiques across America. Amidst their growing reach and influence, they remain true to their roots of supporting the local economy. They use printers in Fayetteville to manufacture their t-shirts, and all of their employees are female and under 30. “When you support a local business, you're supporting the town and everyone in it,” Kirsten says. “We try our best to stay local, present local, and sell local.” With impressive growth and plans to expand, Riffraff will keep on sharing its hometown with the world.