1. You started Pike Place Fish Market online way back in the early 2000's, did people think you were nuts for putting something as perishable as seafood for sale online?
To this day it is hard for some people to believe that we can send fish anywhere in the US overnight. As long as you pack it well and keep it cold it is no problem.
2. We have had Pike Place as a focus on our website for a long time because you do a great job of keeping your site fresh. Why do you place such a high regard on redesigning the website?
We wanted to keep the appearance of the site fresh and new just like the fish that we carry. We were always getting different fish in and needed to have a website that was easy for the customers to place orders on. If it is hard to navigate the site, people will just not order and go somewhere else. We also wanted to make it easy for us to make changes to the site like price, quantity, description as well as add and remove items. You can tell when a site is dated and it makes you question how the product will be. With fish we can't take that chance, the site has to be fresh and new.
3. Pike Place Fish Market has sponsored a number of custom projects to make buying seafood easierfor your customers. What would you say is the most beneficial looking back?
Giving the choices about what they can purchase. Like letting them chose how they want it cut or how big of a fish they want. Before we just said 5#, 10#, of 20# fish. Now they have the ability to choose from a range that we are able to set the high and low ends. That way if someone can order the size they want.
4. There is a heavy focus on the website about being World Famous, what does that mean and how did Pike Place Fish achieve that status?
We are known around the world for high quality seafood, great customer service, and making a difference for people. We wanted the people who can't make it to Seattle, to be able to experience us and the shop, through the website. We just want every customer to have a great experience whether they are buying fish or not.
5. Fish is an interesting product with a whole host of issues when it comes to online sales, but you have been successful for so long you obviously have a way to break through the challenges. Is there a process you use to work through business challenges?
I think the key is to be honest with the customer. Make sure they know exactly what they are buying, what it will look like when they get it, how long it will last, etc... No one wants to order something online expecting to get one thing, and then when you open the box it is different. We have a guarantee on all of our fish; if its not exactly what you ordered let us know so we can make it right.
6. What advice would you give UltraCart users to help them as their business grows?
To let you guys know exactly what they are looking, because UltraCart seems to be able to accommodate almost everything you could ask to have. If not they will start a build to get it available. I remember we had several things that we had to have built just for us.
Just wanted to let you guys know that CenterForLit.com has been an UltraCart customer for nearly ten years. All it ever does is exactly what I want and more. I couldn't be happier.
Ultracart integrates nicely with our website, and handles all of the transactions. We've written a script that pings the UC API and gets us pertinent data for our CRM.
When we switched to UltraCart, we experienced a substantial increase in sales within two months which we attribute to the added capabilities that we obtained by using UltraCart.