How Zoho helped Vivapura safeguard digital trust and transparency
"I would go so far as to say that while Zoho Commerce is pretty good in itself, Zoho One with Commerce is just great."
- Jason Uccetta,
Art Director, Vivapura
Vivapura Superfoods is a boutique superfood company based in Tucson, AZ. Over the years, they have been shipping premium superfoods directly from their kitchen in 100% compostable packaging. While Vivapura started as a raw vegan company, there was something about keto food that caught their attention. “There are no values attached to a keto diet, unlike say, a vegan or vegetarian diet," says Jason Uccetta, Art Director, Vivapura. "Keto is more of a science diet, and the trend exploded from 2016-17 onwards." In 2008-09, Vivapura followed a rural, local business model closely tied to the farmers’ market in Arizona. When the ecommerce era was dawning, though, Vivapura decided to jump on the bandwagon.
They started selling online using Zencart but soon grew out of it. “Our business grew fast," Jason says. "We worked with rare food items. Our supply chain was inundated and we were getting a lot of traffic.” They continued to outgrow all the ecommerce platforms they used as they weren’t getting the results they were looking for. “We tried them all—Shopify, Big Commerce, Woocommerce, Magento and other cart systems—but the problem remained.” That is when they came across Zoho One and Zoho Inventory, which solved a large percentage of their issues. And then they came across Zoho Commerce.
When it came to improving the shopping cart experience, Vivapura saw inventory management and CRM as great assets. But for ecommerce, the buck stopped at Zoho Commerce. “Inventory management was something we were always struggling with," Jason says. "The sum experience we derived from Zoho Inventory, CRM, and Campaigns told us we took the right decision by going with Zoho. Then we came across Zoho Commerce. We jumped at it.
"For its price, Zoho Commerce is a great asset for the company. It is like a sites builder, but easier to use. It’s faster but not confusing, and that, I think, was the key. We decided to go with it. It took me roughly five or six weeks to develop the site, migrate the DNS and get the email servers working. There is so much depth and attention to detail there. It has been a great experience for us to get into Zoho. I’d say that while Zoho Commerce alone is quite good, Zoho One with Commerce is great. It changes the trajectory of what Zoho offers.”
Benefits and ROI
After switching to Zoho, Vivapura has seen its sales increase steadily. “We have had an excellent experience after moving to Zoho and are witnessing a steady incremental growth curve," Jason says. "Zobot (Zoho's AI-powered custom chatbot) has made customer interaction effortless. We have been adding approximately 2,000-2,500 new customers a month in 2021.”
Jason says he loves the fact that a business can build its website using Zoho Commerce to tailor to one’s particular needs. He also believes that there’s something about ecommerce that makes everyone feel comfortable to shop online.
“Our domain is an asset. With the right shopping cart experience, our site traffic has been consistent. We have not pumped in any advertising money; people discover us only through an organic search. More than half of our customers visit us through their mobile devices. So, it helps that Zoho Commerce enables a responsive layout, which has lent it a competitive edge.” He feels that Zoho servers are faster when compared to those of Google.
Vivapura sees itself as quite different from larger corporations in the superfood industry. To start with, they are a low-debt company and not corporately owned. “While we distribute our products nationally, we still stick to the small business investment," he says. "Our competitors are large, corporate-backed, have humongous warehouses and do their packing in large co-packing facilities. On the other hand, we are a small business and pay from our pocket.”
The insights drawn from the site traffic of Vivapura are aligned with the business philosophy of the company as well. For instance, Jason points out the fact that more women check out their site than men. Their customers are not casual shoppers but instead are there after making an informed decision about their food habits. Importantly, they safeguard their privacy.
“We know that because most of them use Safari, which means they don’t want their information to be shared at all. They don’t want to be tracked. It is quite distasteful to be tracked by a website, and a lot of them are not tech-savvy enough to add ad blockers. Digital trust and transparency are of great value to us."
Jason says that he uses most of the Zoho products, but with Zoho Analytics in particular, he's "taken the keys away from Google Analytics.”
As a word of advice for those in ecommerce, Jason cannot talk enough about the importance of the About Us page on Zoho Commerce. “I’d say sharpen your pencil on About Us as that is the most valuable page, even more important than your products. They find your brand because of the products, but About Us is what will close the deal.”
Jason sees a trend in favor of superfood smoothie mixes. “People like convenience, and these pre-done packages seem to be gaining popularity over premium ingredients.”
There are also several global factors affecting the business, such as climate change, unseasonal floods and the pandemic, which have made importing all the more difficult. “Supply chain issues are affecting everyone," he says. "For instance, we used to sell hunza raisins. But with floods in Pakistan, we switched to sultana raisins from Turkey. Another reality is that Amazon has exploded post covid. But we have seen instances where people find us on Amazon but Google about our brand and reach our website.”
What’s more? Their flagship product Jarrah Bee Pollen has been launched, and the road ahead seems all the more exciting for Vivapura.