Sticky notes and Excel spreadsheets can only bring you so far. It doesn’t take much before orders are lost, or missing. Transitioning your business online will save you loads of time, while also offering a streamlined shopping experience for your customers.
Before using Local Line, Kye was using an email system to manage incoming orders. The more orders that came in, the more complicated the process would become. Having to send inventory lists and record orders himself quickly became onerous.
Food production works in seasons. If you are a seasonal business, you don’t want to lose customers over the off-seasons. Here are our best tips to continue to market your seasonal business during the off-season:
As the world’s population approaches 9.8 billion in 2050, the importance of food safety is increasing. To combat future outbreaks, governments and food corporations are looking to food traceability platforms to keep our food safe.
Everyone is getting a bit fed up with farmers’ markets. They can be extremely unpredictable. One week you sell out, the next you only sell half the product you sold the previous week. Instead of relying on market sales, use your online store for pre-sales!
Excellent customer service is the best way to maintain and retain customers. Sometimes things happen, and a customer is left unhappy with a product or your service. Having a well-developed plan to deal with unhappy customers will only serve you in the long run.
When you first start selling online, your routine changes! There are certain habits you need to keep to make the most of your new system. Here are some of our best practices:
“The analytics and reporting tools are awesome! I can easily have an overview of our orders without having to do any data entry myself. The biggest benefit I’ve had since using Local Line is how much time it saves me!”
If you want to survive as a farm, you have to operate as a business. By operating efficiently and effectively, over time, you will find ways to reach all customers. When is the last time you reviewed your prices?
At Local Line, many of our customers have set up awesome stores for a variety of uses! Need some inspiration to get started? Here are some online stores that are doing it right!
It is a common misconception that face-to-face interaction is the only method of building a relationship. In today’s world, this is not the most convenient way to sell, nor is it always possible to develop your relationships this way.
Local Line was created to help local farmers succeed as independent entrepreneurs. The reality is that more local farmers have to find a way to get to market better, faster, and cheaper in order to prosper. Since our founding in 2015, Local Line is now used by farmers across Canada, USA, and Australia to help them sell more product, organize their business data, and save time.
Solving food deserts has been an increasing topic of discussion for the last few years. Today’s food systems do not serve food deserts properly, and tend to leave entire communities in urban environments without access to fresh, healthy food.
Unlike Instagram, Facebook has changed its algorithm to prioritize content from family and friends over businesses. This is where Insights comes in!
Local Line is pleased to announce the launch of a free website builder for farmers. Starting today, farmers from all over the world can create and publish a free website at www.locallinesites.com.
Good Instagram marketing is a skill to be learned and mastered. In addition to posting good pictures, captions play a significant role in your success.
An important part of having an online store is having the right online payments platform to get you paid quickly. Local Line integrates with two popular payment providers, Stripe and Square.
Using social media advertising can be intimidating, so we've brought back Local Line alum and online advertising guru, Brock Jones, to break it down. Here are his best tips:
Facebook can be very powerful for small business owners. It is a fact that today, almost every business has a Facebook business page. It serves as social proof that you’re current and actively running your business.
When you’re selling food online, your product descriptions and product photos are the most persuasive tools you have to get customers to buy. A product description should elegantly explain the product and it’s characteristics without being too long and wordy. A longer description will often deter a reader from reading the full copy.
Running your own business is a lot of work, and it can be overwhelming to get everything done in one day. With all the duties and added work of being a farmer, marketing can often get put to the side.
Increasing accessibility to local food is the hardest challenge of being a farmer. Sara George, Vice President of Minnesota Farmers’ Market Association (MFMA), learned this quickly after finding herself in the world of local food.
Since joining Local Line, both the retail store and the wholesale food hub have been thriving. Local Line has allowed them to properly organize their orders, track their inventory, and quickly reference invoices and payments after orders have been picked up. Communication between staff, customers, and farmer goes seamlessly and efficiently.
Good marketing can help you reach your target market, increase your customer base, and ultimately, boost your profits!
Three ways you can use Instagram Insights to grow your following and increase customer engagement.
Unlike creating a post on Instagram, Stories are a temporary image or video that you can share with your audience. Stories show authenticity, as they are quick and easy to digest, versus a curated Instagram profile feed.
As George at Castor River Farm continued to grow his customer base over the years, he prided himself on maintaining a strong relationship with his customers. As the number of customers continued to increase, he was able to keep up with the production demand, yet when it came to deliveries and logistics – he kept facing order errors.
Recently celebrating their 5th year, Mustard Seed Co-op is a co-op grocery store stocking everything local!
MailChimp allows you to create demand by telling your authentic story. Instead of just sending another email, use this tool to best showcase your lifestyle and products to potential customers.
Why do you farm? When you ask a small-scale farmer this question, they often don’t say because they want to make money.
“People say farmers are behind, but that’s not true. We’re right there with them – online!”
Local Line, a sales and distribution software platform for farmers and food producers is pleased to announce a partnership of Local Line’s food hub software and Local Orbit, a market-leading food hub management software platform.
Greenbelt Fund launches new and improved Ontariofresh.ca with technology partner Local Line.
It’s becoming more and more popular for consumers and chefs to source food from local farmers and suppliers. Because of this, companies like Local Line have formed as a kind of go-between, bringing farmers and customers together.
Getting to know who your customers are and what they want from their shopping experience is a recipe for success. So what do they want, and how are you going to give it to them?
It’s not a secret that distribution is a pain point for a lot of food suppliers. Shipping is very expensive, so here's how to save some money.
A standing order is a purchase order covering a repeated delivery of goods in specified quantities, at specified prices, and according to a specified time schedule.
“Online shopping is the new normal. Consumers increasingly demand convenience and ease of access for shopping; local, farm fresh food is no different.”
The moment a customer opens their package, it should feel the same as opening a present. To help you make that experience memorable for all your customers, here are our tips.
Increasing your business’ productivity can make the difference between staying stagnant and growing.
On October 11th, 2018, Peter Bethlenfalvy, MPP for Pickering-Uxbridge and President of the Treasury Board Secretariat, paid his visit to Ontario's own tech-hub, Communitech to learn more about is happening in Canada in the digital age.
If you are looking to offer direct delivery to your business, however do not have the resources or time to deliver yourself, partnering with a shipping partner could be an option.
"We all have the same mindset and approach to how we're growing food," Morin said. "And that's based on ecological and or organic principles, and we all direct market."
An essential aspect of having an online store is providing online payments. Here’s why accepting payments online could benefit your business and increase your sales.
Three Local Line suppliers were all working on their own independent distribution plans, but found success working together and combining their delivery routes.
Far from their roots of Northern California, BC ranchers Tristan and Aubyn Banwell are passionate about raising livestock to benefit the health of people and the environment. Operating in their fifth season, they’ve seen tremendous growth but were starting to feel the pains of growing their business.
It’s a fact, nobody likes returned orders. They’re a pain and can be very expensive.
In summer 2017, Local Line and Flanagan Foodservice partnered to create the Flanagan Market, an online catalog of Ontario food products available for purchase by Flanagan’s customers.
Offering delivery services to your customers is advantageous to growing your business, however you must find the balance between happy customers and a happy business.
Customer follow ups ensure a positive relationship between you and your customer, so let’s take a look at our 5 step checklist to help you manage your customer follow ups:
Food distribution is a unlike any other form of distribution. There are many different parameters differentiating the transportation of food product from A to B from other types of product delivery.
Pickup locations can save you money, however it important that you find the perfect location for your business. This can be a difficult process, so we have created a six step process.
Restaurants want to stay current by being able to source fresh, local ingredients to add to their menu, which is notable for local food suppliers and for diners.
A pickup location is a predetermined area where a buyer is able to go to collect the items they have purchased from your business. A pickup location could include a store, warehouse, or restaurant.
If you’re a farmer, baker, butcher or any other kind of small-scale food producer, Cole Jones understands the challenges you face.