Operating for 30 years and selling direct to customers for the last 12 years, Castor River Farm specializes in rolled oats that are rolled daily. Located 20 minutes from downtown Ottawa, this farm focuses on using natural and organic production to bring high quality products to their community.
They also grow and process many different types of grains into flours including barley, Red Fife wheat, rye, buckwheat, spelt and many more. They also produce pork, limited beef, chickens and eggs, maple syrup and soaps.
No more errors!
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. The more customers he serviced, the higher chance of an order error. It became harder and harder to track what needed to go where. He knew he needed to address this, and quick.
“Around 10 customers, we didn’t have a lot errors when it came to getting customers their orders. When that number jumped to 30, there was an exponential increase in the amount of errors I was seeing. This was the biggest problem in my business”.
Maybe, maybe not?
George knew something needed to change to deal with the error problem. After being approached by Jordan from Local Line, he considered the thought of starting an online store, but was scared it would take away the personal touch he had when connecting with his customers.
After thinking about the switch, he asked his five best customers whether they would want an online store: “Everyone of them was pushing for it! They were the ones that actually convinced me to move my business online.”
Soon after that, George opened his new online store!
A successful switch
After having used the software for only just six weeks, George has seen immense changes in his business. By using the pick-lists and instant invoices features on Local Line, he is able to easily pack and get the orders where they need to go seamlessly and efficiently. The errors that he so badly wanted to address disappeared. “The biggest problem in my business was my order errors and now that has significantly reduced. The only errors I’m still seeing are from the few customers that have yet to move online and use the system!”
Additionally, the fear of losing personal relationships with his customers has dissolved. George is still able to connect with his customer base through emails and conversations, however his online store allows them to order seamlessly. Additionally, online ordering has brought forward some of his shyer customers and allowed them to place their orders more frequently.
“The system has exceeded my expectations on what it would do for my business. My customers love it. I’ve seen more customers, larger orders, and fewer errors in only 6 weeks. It’s awesome.”
Moving forward, George hopes to explore and use Local Line’s other features including the accounting and analytics tools to continue to grow his business. However, most importantly, he hopes to continue to reduce the amount of errors seen in his business.
We are so happy we were able to help George in finding a solution to his business’ biggest problem. Check out Castor River Farm’s awesome online store here to see all the great things they’re producing
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Nina Galle is Local Line's Content Marketer, creating blog posts, templates, free tools, and other helpful resources for local food suppliers.