COVID-19 restrictions have meant big changes for everyone in the food industry. When things started to shift in mid March, Two Sticks Bakery on South Washington in Bloomington quickly moved to takeout only, and closed down their seating area.
People were still coming into the shop to place their orders, but it became clear that it wouldn't last. Amanda Armstrong, co-owner of Two Sticks was initially resistant to setting up an online store for her bakery.
When she saw that their point-of-sale provider had an online store option, she decided to try it. It was easier than she expected, though not without glitches. They realized quickly that they had it had to be all or nothing, both to reduce physical contact, but also to keep track of their inventory in their system. They had to turn people away for placing orders at the door, and they stopped taking phone orders, too.
The strong customer base that Two Sticks has built up over the past two years has paid off. The response to their online store has been overwhelming. They sell out every day, often within minutes of opening at 7:30 am.
In a way, it is a good problem to have, but it makes for some grumpy customers, and some of them are quite vocal. Luckily there are plenty of grateful and supportive customers, too--who are just happy to know that their neighborhood bakery is making-it-work in the midst of a pandemic.
Listen to our conversation on this episode of Earth Eats.