Lancaster Homebrew | On-Line Shopping even for Locals
It was almost 4 years ago when Lancaster Homebrew opened it’s doors to the local folks, providing beer and wine making supplies for the homebrew enthusiast. They became an instant hit not only from the products they sell, but also with their great customer service and knowledge that they pass on to the customer. It was through them that I bought my first wine making equipment kit and more recently a beer making equipment kit. What a great way for a beginner like me to learn how to make high quality home brew!
About two years after the grand opening, Owner and Operator, Mark Garber contacted me to find out what it would take for him to begin selling his products on-line. He needed information to see if he could afford to take on such a venture at that point in time. I assured him that selling on-line does not have to be something that costs thousands of dollars to get going. Once I introduced him to Open Arms Marketing’s “Quick Shopping Cart” there was no turning back. This product is easy to set up and you can start selling in no time! Better yet, the low monthly fee means you don’t need a bunch of up-front capital to get going. Mark chose the Premium plan and for $49.99 a month he gets an unlimited number of products, 10 images per product, 50 GB of disk space, 1,000 GB of bandwidth and his hosting is all included. This is one of the best deals on the market right now for a hosted E-Commerce solution.
Setup: Quick Shopping Cart is based on templates; you choose one that fits your liking and then customize it from there. You can upload your own logo, images and menus, along with setting up your own color scheme. There is an advanced CSS section where you can add CSS code that will over-ride any code in the main css file. This is not a fully customizable solution, but for those who know html and css you have a lot of flexibility to get the design you want for your store. Mark hired me to do the initial set-up and design and then I showed him around the admin section so he could set up categories, menus and products etc. Before you know it he was off and running loading his own products and ready to launch in a couple weeks.
Since then I have been helping with SEO and Mark tells me that he was surprised not only at the orders coming in from different areas of the country, but also the amount of orders that are placed by local folks. Many of these customers order bulk grains which are used in all-grain brewing. It takes some time to measure out and mill the grains and customers like their order to be ready to pick-up when they arrive. They simply place the order on-line, pay with a credit card and mark it as “in-store” pick-up. No waiting when they get there. Mark tells me it is just another perk he can offer his customers and he just loves that feature of the store.
You can visit Mark’s blog site at www.lancasterhomebrew.com or his on-line store at shop.lancasterhomebrew.com