Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Perth, Western Australia, Australia
    Posts
    5

    Default Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Hi all,

    I'm looking for your advice.

    I am a beekeeper and packer and have a traditional distribution network.

    I also enjoy tinkering with websites and have set up hiveshare.net. I'm trialling all sorts of different ways to sell honey, and help other beekeepers do the same.

    I just wanted your take on whether honey sells online, with ecommerce and what I might be doing wrong?

    Hiveshare now has the ability to create listings, and I've added my products to my personal listing, but before I encourage others to do the same for their listings, I wanted to make it work.

    Do you think this is an avenue that I should pursue, or should I just stick with my traditional distribution?

    My personal listing with products is here:
    https://hiveshare.net/listings/melisseus-honey/

    Would really appreciate your opinions.

    Regards,
    Adrian/

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Woodinville, WA
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    I sell at farmers markets and some retail outlets near me. I'm interested to hear the answers to your questions as well. I would like to move more honey with less farmers market events.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Quincy, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    357

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Guess I'm just here to look for the answers myself. We do Farmers Market, which can be a lot of work for limited reward. But we view it as letting people know we are out there, educating the public and providing a service. I've thought about on-line, but also question the methods, costs involved, and whether or not it is indeed worth the effort. I would think increasing online sales would be the same for any online product, advertising to those who are your potential clients.
    So Adrian, I just took a look at your site, (nice by the way) but notice you are in Austrailia. Do you find your location prohibitive to off shore sales?

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,812

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    You will have substantial time/cost in packaging, mailing label printing. The USPS picks up at my door during mail delivery. They also supply flat rate boxes for free.
    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Quincy, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    357

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    You will have substantial time/cost in packaging, mailing label printing. The USPS picks up at my door during mail delivery. They also supply flat rate boxes for free.
    odfrank, so flat rate boxes are how I anticipated shipping one pound bottles. Do you find customers are willing to pay the premium, shipping + handling cost plus the cost of one pound of honey (8 - 9$)?
    So you sell enough that way to make it worth the effort? Thanks in advance.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,812

    Default

    I do not advertise shipped honey just supply a few people who ask. For one pint doubles their cost but less when I fit in three or four. I often sell to folks who see my operation or hives at home and know for certain my product is the real thing. My Hispanic employee sells a lot also to relatives who know his occupation is extracting Real honey. And has pictures of his stung swollen face to prove it.



    Quote Originally Posted by BeePappy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    You will have substantial time/cost in packaging, mailing label printing. The USPS picks up at my door during mail delivery. They also supply flat rate boxes for free.
    odfrank, so flat rate boxes are how I anticipated shipping one pound bottles. Do you find customers are willing to pay the premium, shipping + handling cost plus the cost of one pound of honey (8 - 9$)?
    So you sell enough that way to make it worth the effort? Thanks in advance.
    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Lee\'s Summit, MO
    Posts
    2,514

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    My 2 cents is the cost of freight and the fact that if it requires shipping it's no longer "local" will make online sales challenging to say the least. In the states being local (fresh, raw, pure) is what allows us sideliners and hobbyists to compete vs. cheap import honey out of God knows where. Don't fight on price, fight on what makes your product different than 99.9999% of the honey out there. It's local, and being local demands a premium price as there's a very limited supply of the local stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by fishboy54 View Post
    I sell at farmers markets and some retail outlets near me. I'm interested to hear the answers to your questions as well. I would like to move more honey with less farmers market events.
    ...Adrain as well.

    Seriously consider trying an honor stand. I've been doing it for 5+ years now. I don't loose time at farmers markets setting up and breaking down,haggling and I sell all I harvest (50+ hives now). I charge full retail and my stand is open as long as I have honey. Does some get stolen? Yep. I loose about 2-3%. While having anything stolen sucks, when you consider the cost of your time or discounts given for wholesale (30-40%) you're waaaay ahead of the ballgame. What's more important to you? Money or time? To me it's time, I can always make more money. The honor stand has worked so well I opened a 2nd stand last year. I also sell my homemade candles, soaps, and honey preserves out of the stand too. I do have insurance as well as pay state and federal taxes on my income. I went from being light red in the books to firmly in the black when I opened my honor stand(s). Advertising is all word of mouth and because it's unique it travels like wildfire.

    Here's one of 2 local news stories on my stand.

    https://www.kshb.com/news/local-news...7tLAZsI-BnIvmM
    Ninja, is not in the dictionary. Well played Ninja's, well played...

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Quincy, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    357

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Very nice D Coates. And a news story like that is better advertising that you could have paid for. My wife and I have talked of an honor stand. At my location though (on a highway) it's 55mph which means they are going 60 - 70mph. Slowing down could cause problems. Maybe I scope out a place where it is more safely acceptable to slow, pull over and make a purchase. My wife is not keen on the idea, I think it could work, not sure I could stock it as well as what yours is at first. Todays tech allows for cheap survellience too. You've really got me thinking of forgoing online, and moving toward honor system (for the honey anyway). Thanks!

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Greenville,SC
    Posts
    124

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Good story "D".

  11. #10
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,812

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    After I got a video doorbell I had the idea to convert an electrical cabinet at the front of my house to a self serve honey sales cabinet. It cost me almost nothing. With no advertising it has become a big success. Have sold probably over $100 this week. People like this guy show up who I have no idea who they are and how they found out about me and my cabinet. Word of mouth advertising. I am listed on Google maps and some people have found me that way. They serve themselves and I don't have to deal with them. I have seen no theft so far. I have lived here and sold honey for 47 years and feel like a moron that I didn't have this idea sooner.

    https://ring.com/share/6686102226796108654
    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Quincy, Illinois, USA
    Posts
    357

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Good idea odfrank.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    6,812

    Default

    Here are pics of my self serve cabinet. Too bad they came sideways.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    All of my opinions and suggestions are based on my five decades of actual beekeeping,
    not so much on book learning, watching YouTube videos nor reading internet sites.

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    5,213

    Default Re: Does honey sell online? How do I increase online sales?

    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    People like this guy show up who I have no idea who they are and how they found out about me and my cabinet.

    https://ring.com/share/6686102226796108654
    Judging from the size of that guys gut, a little less honey and a lot more lettuce would be more appropriate!
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