We all know that seeds can be bought at our local nursery, but for the hardcore horticulturists amongst us, nurseries don’t stock the really fun and challenging stuff. Cue Seeds for Africa, one of our more original and favourite Shopify stores. Grant Muller and his team have been selling online for the last 5 years selling seeds and horticultural accessories and they have been kind enough to provide their story as to where it all started. Take a read, be inspired and then go buy some planting goodies!
When did you start your Shopify store?
GM: We started trading on Shopify in December 2011, but originally started trading on bidorbuy.co.za earlier in 2011 and decided to expand to our own presence on the web by starting our own store on Shopify.
What do you sell?
GM: As our name may suggest our main product line is plant seeds. We stock the largest and most diverse range of plant seeds in Africa. In addition to that, we stock all items that you may need to grow your seeds. We saw a gap in the market for items that aren’t ordinarily available in the mainstream retail stores. Selling these items online was a natural step to take, with a minimal setup cost the products could be offered to a wide global audience.
How long did it take you to setup your Shopify store?
GM: The initial setup was pretty easy and took us a day to get up and running. Loading our range of over 2 000 products took around 2 weeks, but ongoing maintenance is minimal.
How do you market your store?
GM: Our store is marketed on social media, Google, gardening websites and gardening publications. Our best marketing is from customer referrals and websites linking to our site.
What do you find is the most useful feature on Shopify?
GM: It’s very easy to customise the theme and the look and feel of the store to align with our brand. On top of that, it’s a very stable platform and there’s the added benefit of having local support. We also really enjoy having access to Shopify’s huge range of add-on apps from marketing to customer service and anything in between.
What are your thoughts about using uAfrica Shipping?
GM: It’s a great system that allows the seller to enhance the customer experience by giving the customer detailed updates of the progress of their shipment. It allows the seller the most cost effective way of shipping parcels.
What are you looking forward to by using Shopify and uAfrica over the next 12 months?
GM: We’re really looking forward to further developments with the Multichannel service. It’s a great system that allows us to manage everything from one central place and have our products on bidorbuy without requiring any maintenance.
If you are one of the aforementioned hardcore horticulturists, or if you enjoy a casual bit of sideline herb gardening or are simply curious about what they have to offer, head over to Seeds for Africa for a peek and maybe a purchase.