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eCommerce helps local bakery during the COVID 19 Pandemic

Local Bakery desserts in bread on display

$70000 online sales in less than 2 months

2000 orders

17000 donuts and pastries delivered

80000 online stores sessions

Bakery eCommerce Solution Background

During the COVID 19 pandemic we have witnessed some of our favorite local restaurants close because they were unable to adapt to this current situation. The shelter in place order in California required that restaurants eliminate all in-restaurant seating but allowed drive-through or pick-up/delivery options to remain in place. A local bakery came to us in March looking for digital solutions to help meet the shelter in place orders and stay profitable.

Our first step was to work with the bakery to create an easy-to-use Shopify website for customers to place orders online. Customers can order cupcakes, cookies, pastries, bread, and even order a completely custom cake, all from the comfort of their home. The customer selects a pickup date/time during the checkout process, the bakery receives and fulfills the order, the customer pulls up to one of the bakery locations where they are then greeted by an employee with the order in hand. More recently, we have worked with this bakery to get their flour blend up onto the website and ready for delivery. We also helped set up local delivery options that allow customers to order and receive their product without having to leave their home. The goal was to create easy-to-use features that could be used even after the shelter in place orders are lifted.

During this pandemic, the bakery has seen their highest online sales ever. Not only that, they have also received orders from people all over the United States. This new and improved website will allow the bakery to have a new sales channel even after this pandemic is over, and public health orders are lifted.

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Phase 1: Allow customers to order custom cakes without having to call or come into the store.

Right before the COVID 19 outbreak, we worked with the bakery to create custom cake options on their website so that customers could place the order online without having to come in store or call in. Not only was this more helpful for customers, but it also helped save time for the bakery employees because they no longer had to fill out a form for each custom order. By converting the form into an online step-by-step process, it helped reduce human error, increase website traffic, and helped free up the phone lines within the bakeries.

Phase 2: Use the custom cake model to adapt to COVID 19

Once COVID-19 hit, and the shelter in place orders came into effect, the bakery knew that they needed to do something drastic. That’s when they decided to offer weekend delivery for their most popular product; donuts. However, there needed to be zip code restrictions in place for deliveries. In order to do this, we used the same tool from the custom cakes to create this zip code restriction. This ended up being a major success as they sold over 250 boxes of donuts in under an hour. They did this each week and each time they sold out in under an hour. This was so successful that they decided to do this for several of their other products. As a result, they delivered over 17,000 pastries and donuts in under two months.

Phase 3: Ship products nationwide

One thing that we have all noticed is that flour has been very scarce since the beginning of the pandemic. The bakery saw this as an opportunity to sell and ship their proprietary flour blend on their website. We worked with the bakery to get their flour onto the website. We setup the shipping rates and made in-store pickup available for local customers. As a result, they received orders from all over the United States, and their customers expressed their gratitude for offering this flour on their website. People who were unable to purchase flour in grocery stores were now able to do it without having to leave their home.

Phase 4: Implementing a tipping system

After a few weeks of offering local delivery for their popular products, the bakery decided that they wanted to provide a way for customers to tip the drivers. Unfortunately, Shopify does not have a gratuity feature or app, but that didn’t stop us from creating one on the checkout page. Because the products were local delivery only, we used the shipping method section of the checkout to setup tips. In just one month they received over $5,800 in tips.

Phase 5: Going forward

COVID-19 has been devastating for businesses, especially those in the food industry. Because this bakery was so willing to adapt to change, they were able to keep their business healthy during this extremely tough time. They now have a website that will be a completely new sales channel for them where they can sell products both locally and nationwide. The bakery looks forward to using their website to help expand their name across the United States, and they will be more than ready if another global pandemic strikes again.

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