Why sell on Local 2 Pets?
The market of raw pet food for cats and dogs is rapidly growing.
While some pet owners have fed their pets raw meat, bones, and organs for many decades, due to a greater awareness of quality concerns with dry and canned pet food, many additional pet owners are now turning to raw feeding. Social networks both online and in pet-centric communities are discussing and promoting raw feeding with increasing frequency in recent years.
When switching their pets to raw, many people prefer to buy ground pre-packaged raw food that is deemed to be “complete” and “balanced”, but many seasoned raw-feeders and increasingly beginners, too, prefer to have more quality control by feeding whole animal parts or even grinding on their own. Indeed, feeding whole animal parts provides benefits to a pet’s health that cannot be achieved from more heavily processed feed. These raw feeders are whom we’d like you to meet.
Local 2 Pets offers
1. Instant access to the target group of motivated local buyers.
2. All orders are prepaid for at the time the pickup is scheduled.
3. Articles and blogs to help you better understand your customer base.
I raw feed my dogs. This is why I started Local 2 Pets.
I stumbled upon this opportunity about a year ago. I had been feeding raw to my dogs for over 4 years. Through my networking I met a small farmer who was stuck with a whole processed breeding boar that she was unable to feed to her family or sell because the meat was tainted. Other than the taint, the meat was perfect. I bought it for my dogs for a fraction of the price I would have normally paid for pork of this quality and the farmer was able to sell the boar.
Raw-feeders like me would gladly buy bones, heads, feet, organ meat, tripe, or other animal parts which would normally go to waste, so that none of an animal raised with care need be lost. Raw feeders will come and pick up their orders from you: no shipping is involved. If you are interested in delivering to locations near your farm, you have the option of offering that service for distance-radius delivery fees of your choosing. You can decide to stick to selling excess meat or parts that you cannot use or sell for human consumption or you might choose to raise livestock specifically for selling to raw feeders. The choice is yours!
How to Sell on Local 2 Pets
1. Register yourself as a vendor. You can do so by clicking Sign Up Now at the bottom of the Home Page or by clicking on Login on the top menu and choosing to register as a vendor.
2. Fill out and submit a Vendor Registration Form. You will receive an email with log in credentials
3. Once you log in you will be able to set up your store. Please fill out everything in Store Settings, including adding images and a description of your farm and operations in Vendor Profile.
4. Add Products, including images and descriptions and Submit for Review.
5. Local 2 Pets will review your store and will approve your products or contact you if we have questions. You may also contact us at any time for assistance.
Setting Up your Store and Daily Operations
1. In Store Settings -> Store Settings:
a. PayPal email. So you can get paid, this must be linked to your PayPal account. Contact us, if you need help setting up a PayPal account.
b. Provide more information about your store in “Vendor Logo” and “Vendor Profile” that your customers will see.
2. In Store Settings -> Your Media:
a. Upload additional pictures via the Upload Gallery. Up to 3 will display on your profile.
b. Paste a YouTube or Vimeo link into the box next to “Video”. If you need help uploading your video to a service like YouTube, contact us.
3. In Store Settings -> Business Info:
a. Your phone number and address for a product pickup (the customer will only see it after making a purchase)
b. Any sales tax you might be charging on purchases from your store. Sales tax is normally charged when you sell locally in your own state. When selling through Local 2 Pets, you are most likely sell to the customer in your own state. This is a vendor’s responsibility to charge appropriate sales tax and remit it to the state. Your Local 2 Pets store will have an option to set a sales tax. Please consult with your accountant, if needed, before determining the sales tax.
c. Delivery mile radius and fee for each range: if you decide to offer delivery. This is optional. You may click on “Add a Rate” for additional rates. For example, if you put 10 in distance and 5 in Price, any customer within 10 miles of your location can choose delivery and will pay $5 for it. Outside of 10 miles, however, customers will receive an error that they are outside of the delivery range. If you add a second rate, such as 50 in distance and 20 for price, now customers that are further away can receive delivery for a higher cost.
d. Business hours (these are both days and hours when you are ready for the customer to pick it up at your address and the days when you are available to deliver.)
* Note that you can schedule delivery times with a customer once she chooses the date, but pickup times is something that your customer will chose as a part of the purchase. Pickup times are defined by your Open Business Hours. Delivery times are set by you, but must be on the day the customer chooses (which may be any day you have Open Business Hours). Your delivery may be outside of your normal Business Hours, but in this case, it’s a good practice to give the customer some idea of when you’ll be arriving at their address.
4. In Products -> Products, Creating your inventory list:
a. Add each product with a description and a picture. Note that each product is subject to approval by a Local 2 Pets Admin after you hit Submit for Review (the approval normally takes place within 24 hours).
b. Set a Price and Unit you will sell by (quantity or weight). For instance: one rabbit, one 10lb bag, or a lb.
c. Optionally you can decide to offer your products at sale price on certain days or choose to allow only one item per order, for a product.
d. Set the quantity of your product that you currently have available for sale (when a purchase is made, the stock will be automatically reduced). If your inventory is reduced in anyway outside of Local 2 Pets sales, be sure to decrement the inventory by Editing the Product, to avoid chargebacks, or other actions, if you cannot fulfill customer orders.
e. After a Local 2 Pets Admin approves your product, it will be available for purchase. After that, if you update the product click Update, and your edits will be automatically published.
5. Fulfilling the Orders:
a. Once the order is made and paid for you will receive an email and the order will appear under the Orders tab in your store.
b. Each order for pickup will have a date and time, based on the business hours that you have already set up.
c. If you offer delivery, you will have only a date set up and will have to arrange the time directly with the customer.
d. Once the goods change hands, in order to prevent future disputes, we strongly suggest that you have the customer open and fully inspect the product and sign for it. For that purpose, you can print out a confirmation email or start your own signature log for pickups and deliveries featuring the order number, customer name, and date.
e. Some vendors choose to have their customers pickup once a week, or so, at the farm or a designated location. Use the store hours and the Contact Information to set yourself up that way, if you so chose. If you desire multiple pickup locations for different days, you can leverage Group Pickups. There is a tutorial on this site on how to use Group Pickups, and you can also get in touch with us, if you have any questions.
6. Getting paid:
a. Your commission is paid to your PayPal account 72 hours after the pickup or delivery time. Although it is primarily the buying customer’s responsibility to let us know if the pickup or delivery date must be changed, we would also appreciate it if you send us notification if the pickup or delivery date is changed, as well.
b. If a customer files a dispute within the 72 hours, Local 2 Pets staff will contact you and hold your commission until the dispute is resolved.
Tips for Better Selling
1. Whether or not you will sell pet food, these tips should help you sell to this community. Local 2 Pets mission is to connect farmers and raw feeders not for the purpose of selling pet food, but rather ingredients, which means we intend for the pet owner to put the complete meals together themselves for their own pets. Pet owners will purchase ingredients from local farmers like you. If you choose to enter the market of pet food and mix your own formulations, you will need to obtain the necessary permits and licenses as required by your state and it will be up to the discretion of the site Admin whether to allow you to sell on Local 2 Pets. Generally, if you are raising the animals that make up 100% of your product, you are welcome to sell on Local 2 Pets.
2. Quality and variety. If you are able to offer a greater variety of high quality meats for sale, it will help you to attract more customers. Even though the customers are likely to be relatively local to you, it will make the trip to the pickup location more worthwhile for them, if they can pick up more in one trip.
3. Update your inventory in a timely manner. Be sure to list new items or additional quantities as frequently as you can.
4. Provide full and accurate descriptions and quantities. Providing an accurate and complete description of the product will ensure that the buyer’s expectations are met when they receive the items. Post pictures of the products.
5. Timely and businesslike. Being on time with the product properly packaged for the exchange will provide your customer with good experience.
6. Monitor your email daily for orders. The site is open 24/7. Be prepared for the customers to schedule pickups any day that your indicate you are open in Store Settings -> Business Info -> Business Hours. If you plan to travel or are unavailable, make sure you update your business hours prior to your planned unavailability. Also, be sure to contact customers directly, if they have already scheduled pickup or delivery during your planned outage. Also, let Local 2 Pets know of any delivery or pickup date changes that must be made.
7. If you possess a USDA certification, are a certified Organic farm, or have any other certifications please make sure you share this information to make your farm stand out as this is an advantage.
8. If you are not authorized to sell for human consumption, label you product as such to protect yourself from a customer mis-using your product.
9. Offer more “staple” items. Raw-feeders feed a variety of meats to their pet carnivores; however, some items are more popular than the others. Lamb, beef, chicken, turkey, and rabbit are considered staples. Offering any of them can help you increase your sales.
10. Reasonable pricing. Farm fresh items are not expected to be priced at the same level as commercial ones; however, finding a price that would both pay for your hard work and be affordable to your customers is a big advantage. Local2Pets can consult with you on pricing. Check the website for other farmers’ offerings to compare, as well.
11. Drop off at a busy location. Consider dropping of at a location that has been already established. Meet others in the community and maybe make some friends. Piggy-back on the foot traffic until you establish your customer base.
12. Take advantage of Local 2 Pets promotions. We are here to help! When we visit your farm, we will write a review and share our experience. If you have rare and time-sensitive inventory, we will do our best to get the word out! Be sure to fly the Local 2 Pets flag at Group Pickups, so new customers know who you are, and so everyone knows you’re proud to be there!