Why online sales are the key to growth for wholesale bakers

February 27, 2024

Online wholesale bakery ordering on iPad and iPhones

Nine out of ten wholesale bakeries that use Cybake to manage their operations also use the system to take online orders.

That’s because, if you are a wholesaler, online sales offer you the best way to grow your businesses without incurring extra administrative overheads.

Wholesale customers make their orders via your web store. Order requirements are then calculated and scheduled for production automatically along with their invoices and delivery notes. All with the minimum of human intervention.

Judging from what bakers tell us, this appears to be pretty much the opposite of what happens without an online system.

Stephanie Blankenship, for example, is the owner of Importico’s Bakery and Café, in Stuart, Florida. Like many Cybake users, she runs a combined retail and wholesale business.

Stephanie says: “Orders were coming in via text message. Everything was done on an Excel spreadsheet or by hand. There was no system. It took about sixteen hours a day to run production – and the paperwork for production – prior to Cybake.”

Is it any wonder that wholesale bakery owners can wince at the prospect of processing more orders? Yet in her first twelve months of using Cybake, Stephanie grew from twenty wholesale customers to over a hundred.

So, how does online order-taking with Cybake work? As the vast majority of wholesale bakers that use Cybake rely on its online ordering capabilities, this feature now comes as part of the core package when you first sign up.

Then, our onboarding team helps you to set up your Cybake system both internally to process production, and externally to populate the pages that you want to show your customers online.

Cybake gives each customer their own product list telling them what items they have on standing order, what they have ordered before, and when they ordered it. Customers can view and download their own copy invoices, which saves admin time spent on resending them at your end and helps with credit control.

We help you to customize your ordering site with your bakery’s brand. Most of our users then add links from their home pages to their Cybake order-taking sites, so that their ordering pages look like extensions of their own websites.

Tailored to your needs

The pages and product lists that you show to your customers are tailored to suit your needs. You may want to show images of your products, or you may wish to simply use text. The choice is yours and we help you set them up the way you want.

Crucially, our team also helps you set up all the lead times and cut off points for orders.

Explaining the importance of this, Stephanie Blankenship says: “People were adding on orders at all hours of the day. So, imagine coming into work and you think you’re going to work an eight-hour shift, and then, all of a sudden, your manager is telling you to make a hundred more products.

“With Cybake, we are able to have a cut-off time for products in the system, so, for the bakers, their day is not getting interrupted. They’re not being asked to add on products. It streamlined the production for the bakers. When they come into work, they know right then and there what they need to make.”

Another important issue is order accuracy. When orders are flying in from all kinds of places, the sheer amount of data entry and re-entry involved inevitably leads to errors.

As another Cybake user, Cary Clifford of Camino Bakery in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, puts it: “Our wholesale customers would text us; they would email us; they would call us. They were sending in orders in all these different formats. Some people were very organized, and some people weren’t organized at all.

“Our customers now place their own orders and so it’s fantastic because we don’t have to do anything. They just do it online. If there’s a mistake, they made it and they’re not mad at us.”

The final driver in this mass adoption of online business by Cybake users is simply that of customer expectation. Customers, particularly new customers, want to order online. Yet, in the age of e-commerce, wholesale bakeries struggle to find a suitable platform to let them do it.

Mediterra Bakehouse, for instance, operates a 40,000 square foot production facility, three cafés and a thriving wholesale operation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Niko Ambeliotis, the family bakery’s head of production, says: “We had a lot of customers who asked us beforehand about ordering online by themselves, and that was something we weren’t really able to offer before Cybake.

“It’s been something that’s really helped us and been something that our customers are very happy with. It has made things a lot easier for them, it has made less work for us, so, yeah, it’s been great.”

If you would like to find out more taking online orders, you can get in touch via our contact page, by using LiveChat below, by phoning us on the numbers above or by sending us an email.    

You may also like:

Case study: Importico’s Bakery and Café, Stuart, Florida

Importico’s Bakery and Café’s Stephanie Blankenship explains how her two-store + wholesale operation uses Cybake to run production and receive wholesale orders online (includes video).

News: Camino Bakery installs Cybake to streamline production for its stores and process wholesale orders online

Cary Clifford, of Winston-Salem, North Carolina-based Camino Bakery, explains why her three-store plus thriving wholesale business ditched the spreadsheets in favour of Cybake.

Case study: Mediterra Bakehouse, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Mediterra Bakehouse’s Niko Ambeliotis discusses how Cybake has helped his family’s business grow by 40% over twelve months by running recipes and scheduling production as well receiving wholesale orders online (includes video).

Categories: Blog
Tags: bakery management software e-business invoicing online order-taking online ordering wholesale bakery
Share: , ,

Rachel Hindle is the Business Development Manager of Cybake in the UK and the coordinator of the Independent Cybake Partners group.

Company profile

We started creating ERP-class software solutions for the baking industry in 1998.

Since then, we’ve gained a reputation for friendly and reliable customer support, a deep understanding of retail and wholesale bakery, and for our expertise in cutting-edge systems and technology.

Now, bakers of all types and sizes rely on Cybake® bakery software to control their businesses, cut admin, improve efficiency and increase sales.