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10 Local Line Best Practices To Increase Your Online Sales

Get the most out of your Local Line account! Using all the features from catalog schedules to pick lists and pack lists will allow you to maximize your experience and manage your business seamlessly and effectively.

As a team, we’ve compiled the 10 best Local Line tips to help you learn more about what the platform does and find the best system for your business.

10 Local Line Best Practices:

  1. Customize Pick List Formats
  2. Set Catalog Schedules
  3. Use Store Credit for Promotions and New Customer Incentives
  4. Customize Payment Options
  5. Use Product Discounts
  6. Open and Close Your Store
  7. Download Order Reports
  8. Update Product Seasonality
  9. Include a Custom Storefront Message
  10. Embed Your Store on Your Website

1. Pick List Formats

Export your custom pick lists to pull from inventory and quickly and efficiently download your orders by customer and delivery date. 

To help better organize your inventory and orders, Local Line offers two different views of pick lists: detailed and summary

Local Line pick list


The detailed view (below) is your best friend when packing orders for pick up or delivery. This view includes the column names and the products they ordered. With the detailed view, you are able to easily identify the customer, what they ordered, and when they will pick up their order.

Local Line detailed pick list

The summary view (below) allows you to have a broad overview of what products have been sold. This view has all the products ordered in one column along with the quantity of that product beside each. This view can be helpful when picking inventory to know exactly how much of each product is already sold.

Local Line summary pick list

To download a pick list, follow these steps:
  1. Go to the Orders tab
  2. Use the Sort By fields to select the date range you wish to pull orders for
  3. Once your start and end dates are selected, click Download Pick List
  4. Select the view you would: Detailed or Summary.
  5. Find the Excel doc in your Downloads

Tip: Within Excel, Numbers, or Google Sheets, you can reformat the spreadsheet to fit one page for printing purposes.

2. Catalog Schedules

Local Line users with a catalog schedule enabled see 3x as many orders in their store, and their average order size is 53.1% greater! 

The catalog schedule feature allows you to send automatic emails with the respective catalog to your customers on a weekly basis. So, if you’re using catalogs, you might as well set catalog schedules! It keeps the communication open between you and the customer and makes it easy for them to order directly with the link to your storefront in the email. 

Local Line catalog schedule

Here’s how to set up your catalog schedule: 

Click on the My Store tab on the navigation pane. Then click the CATALOGS tab.

  1. Click the Edit Customers button of the catalog you wish to create a schedule for
  2. Turn the toggle to ON beside Catalog Schedule
  3. Select your frequency (weekly or monthly) and the day and time you want your catalog to be sent to customers
  4. Enter a custom message (this replaces the demo "Reminder to place your orders for the week" message in the email example below)
  5. Click the Save button

Local Line catalog schedules

How to make the most out of your catalog schedule:

Timing

Think about when your customers are most likely to check their email and send your catalog then.  Set that as the time of day your catalogs will be sent out.

Personal Message

Take advantage of that message field! Try adding in a story from the farm that week or a new recipe you have been loving featuring your products. These are great ways to engage your customers! Just remember to click on and change that message before the next catalog is set to be sent out, so your customers don't receive the same message twice. 😊

Catalog Message Examples:

Use these message examples as templates for your own catalog schedules:

  1. Happy Monday! Here's what we're harvesting at [Business Name] this week. Be sure to place your orders before 5:00 pm on Thursday evening for Saturday pickup at the market. 
  2. We've added Honeycrisp apples to our online store! Our favourite way to enjoy them (other than as-is; they're so delicious), is using our family recipe for Baked Honeycrisp Apples. (Recipe to follow).
  3. Love our heirloom tomatoes? They're on sale this week! 20% off until Friday—order yours before they sell out. 🍅
  4. Good morning! Here's what's for sale this week at [Business Name]. Can't make it to the market for pickup? We've now added a contactless delivery plan to our storefront! 🚚 When you check out, select "Delivery," and choose your delivery date.

3. Using Store Credit for Promotions and New Customer Incentives

The store credit feature allows customers to pay for their order using store credit.  It can be used for CSA or farm credit, pre-paid orders, refunds and more! But we think that store credit is also a great way to run promotions and contests for your customers! Everyone loves free stuff. Consider running a contest for your customers to encourage online sales. 

Bonnie from Richfield Farmers Market ran a contest for her market. The first 150 customers to share a certain post and sign up to their online store received $5 towards their first purchase, and one lucky winner received a voucher for $50. The store credit feature allowed the team to update these credits to the correct customers in the system. By running this program, they saw a huge increase in new sign-ups and online orders!

Local Line store credit

Here’s how to set up store credit:
  1. Go to the Customers tab.
  2. Click View next to a Customer.
  3. Click Store Credit.
  4. Type the store credit amount in the Add to account balance box.
  5. Click Apply.

4. Update Payment Options

Payment options allow you to customize the payment methods you accept when customers order. For example, you may want to offer credit card, cash, e-transfer, or SNAP coupons as payment options when customers check out. By updating payment options, you can keep track of customer payments all in one place. When you download your order reports, payment option will show up in the spreadsheet. 

Local Line payment options
Add a payment option: 
  1. Go to My Store.
  2. Click Payment.
  3. Click Add Payment Option.
  4. Specify the Payment Option Name.
  5. Specify the Payment Instructions.
  6. Specify which Catalog(s) the payment option should be applied to.
  7. Click Create.

5. Product Discounts

Looking for ways to sell seasonal products or move extra inventory? Offering product discounts can be a great way to sell out quickly! Local Line allows you to apply discounts to products directly on your online store. This makes it easy to quickly adapt pricing depending on inventory levels.

Local Line product discounts

To apply discounts on products: 
  1. Click on My Store on the navigation pane. Then click the CATALOGS tab.
  2. Click the 'Edit Catalog' button to the right of the catalog you wish to offer visible product discounts for.
  3. Turn the toggle to "ON" beside Display Discounts.
  4. Select 'View Selected Products Tab'
  5. Scroll down and edit the Adjustment field beside any products you want to offer a discount on. The discount will always display as a percentage to the customer, but you can choose to set the adjustment a percentage or dollar value (the system will automatically convert to a %). Remember to add a negative sign (-) in front of the value. 
  6. Click the 'Save' button

Your customers will see this when they shop your online store.

Note: It is always good practice to view your store after making a change to make sure you like the way it looks! To do this, head over to My Store > Store > View Store and select the catalog you add the discounts to. 

6. Open and Close Your Store

Need some time to make adjustments to your online store, or taking the week off? You can easily temporarily turn your store on and off when needed. If you flip the off switch, customers will not be able to make orders until you turn the store back on. 

To close your online store: 

  1. Click Edit Account
  2. Turn the Close Store toggle to Off 

Your store will now say Closed when customers go to shop. Take the same steps to turn your store back on. 

7. Download Order Reports

Local Line offers real-time dashboards and reports so you always know how business is going. Reports by product, customer, order, delivery locations, and more means you'll know all the good, the bad, and be able to make the right decisions for you.

Be sure to use the order reports feature to know exactly what your customers are ordering most frequently and when. This can help you plan what to plant for next season! Create custom reports for your products. You can sort by date, customer, location, product, and more.

To download orders: 

  1. Go to Orders tab
  2. Use the Sort By fields to select the date range you wish to pull orders for
  3. Once your start and end dates are selected, click Download Orders
  4. Choose your format
Orders: the original format

List View: The new format that doesn't contain a header, is sorted alphabetically by Last Name and that contains full Buyer contact information in addition to order details. This file is also in CSV format. 

  1. Find the file in your Downloads folder

You can also download an order summary, which is a high-level list of your orders and their taxes and totals.

Go to Orders tab:
  1. Use the Sort By fields to select the date range you wish to pull orders for
  2. Once your start and end dates are selected, click the Download Order Summary button
  3. Choose your format:
Orders Summary with product details: The original format that contains a column for each ordered product. 

Orders Summary - A format that omits the product columns. This format is ideal for sellers with a large number of products, because the original format that includes product details can produce hundreds of product columns that sometimes exceed the limitations of Excel or other programs, making the report incomplete at download. This format also includes these differences from the original format:

    1. Orders are listed alphabetically by Last Name
    2. Only Buyer Order Notes are included.
    3. These fields have been added: First/Last Name, Email, Phone, Order Notes, Tags, Payment Option, Payment Status, Supplier Name (for Market accounts)
  1. Find the Excel doc in your Downloads folder

8. Seasonality and Visibility

Did you know you can update the seasonal availability of products automatically? By turning on the seasonality function, you can select the start and end dates for certain products. This will ensure customers never order products out of season! 

To enable seasonality, simply turn on the Seasonality toggle and select the Start and End dates using the calendar pickers. Seasonality can be turned on and off and dates can be updated at any point. 

The visibility also allows you to remove products from your available products without deleting it fully from your catalogs. It will remain in the catalogs you've added it to, but will not be visible to customers or available for purchase.

To enable visibility, simply switch the Visibility toggle to off. If turned off, this item will be visible to you and grey in colour. 

Note: fully deleting a product will cause it to be removed from all previous order invoices. Instead, simply turn off the visibility of the product to remove it from your storefront and from your customer's view. 

9. Include a Custom Storefront Message

Adding special touches to personalize your store is an effective way to communicate your brand to your customers. Local Line allows you to add a custom storefront message to your store. Use this feature to communicate store hours, delivery or pickup information, or any other special/relevant information to your customers.

Local Line storefront message

To add a custom storefront message: 

    1. Click My Store > Store
    2. In Store Settings, scroll to bottom of page and enter messaging in "Custom Storefront Message"
    3. Save

10. Embed Your Store on Your Website

Having a business website can be a great tool to attract customers. Additionally, having one hub where customers can get to know more about your business and order directly online is very effective.  

Unsure how to connect the two? Local Line allows you to directly embed your online store into your website so that customers can scroll through products without changing links!

Local Line store embed


Dependent on which website host you use, the process for embedding your online store can be different.  Don’t worry; we have all the information you would need at this link.

Happy embedding!


 

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Used by all types of local food suppliers, Local Line helps you accept online orders, communicate with customers, and manage your business all in one place.

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