[Market-farming] Farmer's Market Pre-orders
elderberrywine4u at yahoo.com
Sun Jan 21 15:35:54 EST 2007
Simon Huntley <simon.huntley at gmail.com> wrote: I'm currently gathering some requirements for a 'store' system to be added to a small-farm web development software system, and I was wondering if the group had any ideas on something I've been tossing around in my head for a few days.
. . . -farmer's market pre-orders (this is the one I have the most questions about)...
Would you be interested in someone being able to visit your website, seeing what you have available to sell as pre-order produce and then order the box of food that they want, pay for it by credit card online, and then pick the food up at the market on the day chosen. ...
---connection. Do you feel you would lose a connection to your customer? ...
---money. In a system like this, you will not have your own merchant credit card account, it will be run through a central account and you will be paid out in measured intervals. There will also be a percentage fee taken out of sales to pay the credit card company and to pay for the software. What is an acceptable percentage?
I don't think a system like this currently exists and certainly not intertwined with a larger web development project. I think it may be a good way to sell produce before you ever arrive at the market (no more wilting in the sun!) and to increase customer loyalty. I'm interested to hear where the group thinks that there are trouble spots for the farmer's market pre-orders and the rest of the store software, though I haven't gone into as much detail for the rest of the store.
I'll be glad to get your input.
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Yes, Simon, I believe I would lose connection with customers. The whole point of direct marketing for me is to lose that middle man aspect which is what I get from your idea. I want to get to know my customers which I think your idea takes away from. I like people. I like to chit-chat around my market stand and talk about food. I care about my customers -- whose son has gone to Iraq, so-and-so is sick, somebody's child is doing well in college, etc. The feeling I get from your idea is "customer-with-no-time-needs-quick-gratification". I think direct marketing is an old fashioned concept that encourages people to slow down and enjoy life for a change. I accept cash, check or WIC/FMNP coupons only because I don't encourage credit card slavery. I prefer being small and would rather sell small quantities of produce to a wide number of people than sell most of what I have to only a few buyers. My current goals are simple -- to make enough money to pay the real estate
taxes and cover costs of operation. Everything else is soul enriching and pure "cream gravy and biscuits". Your idea may appeal to larger operations, but not to me.
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