When co-founders Megan Scott and Lauren Mahlke launched Planted Table, a vegan meal plan company that serves the Bay Area, they received swift community traction. After all, the impetus for the sisters to start the business was a sentiment that Megan kept hearing time and time again: “If I could eat your sister’s vegan food at home, I would be vegan.” Planted Table caught on amongst students, remote employees working from home, and others with a shared interest in eco-minded eating habits. Beyond its focus on vegan cooking, the startup utilizes sustainable packaging and high-quality local ingredients. Planted Table collects deposits from customers who purchase meals in glass containers, to be returned once they retrieve the containers later on.
Flexible and affordable software
The only issue? The signup experience was not so seamless. At first, they were using Woocommerce, a meal plan app supported by Wordpress, to take orders. But Woocommerce created a ton of manual work for Megan and was a frustrating system for customers. “A lot of times they just quit because they couldn't deal with how confusing the process was,” Megan says. As she began her search for meal plan software companies that could better support Planted Table, she found that a lot of them had specific molds for which her business didn’t fit into. In Bottle, she found a product that could support their sustainability system, as well as the various meal prep options that they offer. Bottle was also an affordable meal plan software for a small company like theirs.
Simplified ordering leads to an uptick in sales
“Bottle has helped our growth tremendously,” Megan says. After implementing the ordering system on their website in early 2019, they saw an almost immediate increase in revenue. In Planted Table’s first year with Bottle, meal plan sales nearly doubled. Not only did customers have an easier time signing up, but they were also able to reach out to Planted Table with questions by simply shooting them a text. Megan, who has the app installed on her phone, could get back them no matter where she was or what she was doing. Even while she’s out on her morning hike, she’ll receive inquiries in real-time, pull up information, and use the voice function of her iPhone to reply to messages. “It enables my customers to feel like they’re special to us, like we really care, without a lot of effort on my end,” she says.
The value of top-notch customer service
With over 60 five-star reviews on Yelp, Planted Table has the best rating out of any meal prep delivery service in their area. One of the attributes mentioned most across user reviews is their stellar customer service.
Support for continuous growth
As Planted Table continues to expand its reach within the Bay Area, their number one growth tool has been their referral program. Along with reporting, which allows Megan to access revenue numbers and measure performance, Bottle’s referral codes are one of Megan’s favorite features. She can send codes to customers to share with their friends directly from the meal plan software’s app, which allows her to keep building up her community organically while her sister focuses on what she does best: cooking delicious vegan food for Bay Area locals.