Farm WordPress Site Case Study – Franchesca’s Dawn Farm

Farm WordPress Site Case Study – Franchesca’s Dawn Farm

Create a Gorgeous Farm Website With FarmPress

This is a case study interview with a recently launched Academy member’s FarmPress site. FarmPress is a WordPress theme for agriculture businesses to create a modern farm website. It is included free with a membership in the Small Farm Nation Academy. Below are screenshots of the new website along with an interview with the farm owner.

Client: Franchesca’s Dawn Farm
Location: Virginia, USA
Objectives
: A modern farm website with better SEO, an online store, and a fresher design.

Small Farm Nation (SFN): When/how/why did you become a farmer? What’s your story?
Franchesca’s Dawn Farm (FDF): “I/We bought our farm in spring of 2013 for “retirement.” We had no intentions of farming! After a family medical crisis, I quit my job in the summer of 2014 and bought cows, pigs, and chickens while my husband continued to work in another town. The farm has been growing ever since.”

SFN: What are your current farm offerings? 
FDF: “We offer: grass fed beef from heritage breed American Milking Devon and Red Devon cattle, free range pork from heritage breed Gloucestershire Old Spots (GOS) pigs and GOS crosses, grass fed lamb and pastured eggs.

Goat will be coming soon – our new herd is currently working hard on clearing brambles. We have an online store where we offer products from other farms such as pastured chicken and honey.”

SFN: How you go to market, or if you’re just starting, what customers do you hope to serve?
FDF: “We have a delivery route which runs northeast from Halifax to Richmond, Williamsburg, and Newport News and then southwest to Roxboro, Raleigh, Reidsville, and Greensboro in North Carolina and on to Danville and Chatham in Virginia. We hope to add more locations in Virginia such as Lynchburg, South Hill, Boydton, and Emporia.

We also sell at farmer’s markets in Halifax and Danville in Virginia and Caswell County at Semora and Yanceyville in North Carolina.

A few customers pick up at the farm or meet me in town.

We are in the processing of putting up a building to store freezers and plan to open part of this as a store.”

SFN: What are your biggest challenges in building a successful farm business?
FDF: “Marketing is definitely the biggest challenge. Ok, and permanent interior fencing to keep all animals where I WANT them!

I didn’t anticipate all the challenges with marketing and the very low profitability of local markets (our area is very rural and low income, plus there are tons of farmers growing their own foods). Marketing really takes a lot of time, not just to do it right, but to do it consistently.”

SFN: What challenges were you facing with your website before switching to FarmPress?
FDF: “My website had very poor SEO and very little traffic was coming to it. I had no idea how to make things better and get more people to find us and buy. I discovered that I had too much information on the website and that my copy writing needed a lot of work, images needed to be properly sized, and that I needed to not only provide more places for visitors to opt-in, but give them a better reason to opt-in.”

What did you hope to accomplish with a new website?
FDF: “I wanted an online store first of all!  I hoped people would place orders online for delivery so that at some point we can stop with farmer’s markets, which are a drain on time and not profitable enough to justify the time spent.”

What are the benefits to you of being a member of Small Farm Nation Academy?
FDF: “The best benefit is mentoring by Tim Young. If you take the time to ask questions, Tim takes the time to answer every one of them. There is always new content. The courses are thorough and well done. I do not wait patiently for the next one to be released! Instead, I watch eagerly for each new addition.

After I’ve implemented what I’ve learned in the course, I ask Tim to review it and he never fails to let me know whether I rocked it or to tell me where it needs more work. Usually it needs more work – and that’s ok, because I wouldn’t know how to improve it if I didn’t have Tim there to tell me.”

Why would you recommend FarmPress & Small Farm Nation Academy to others? Or would you?
FDF: “I recommend FarmPress and Small Farm Nation to every farmers who will sit still long enough to listen. For every reason that I listed in the benefits. I can’t say enough good things about the personal mentoring that Tim provides.”

Looking for a farm marketing course?

Check out my Small Farm Nation Academy!

Farm WordPress Site Case Study – East West Farm

Farm WordPress Site Case Study – East West Farm

Create a Gorgeous Farm Website With FarmPress

This is a case study interview with a recently launched Academy member’s FarmPress site. FarmPress is a WordPress theme for agriculture businesses to create a modern farm website. It is included free with a membership in the Small Farm Nation Academy. Below are screenshots of the new website along with an interview with the farm owner.

Client: East West Farm
Location:Jacksonville, Alabama, USA
Objectives
: A modern farm website with better SEO, an online store, and a fresher design.

Small Farm Nation (SFN): When/how/why did you become a farmer? What’s your story?
East West Farm (EWF): “I’m Daniel. My daughter was born in 2007, I was already a dad to 3 boys, and I was working on expanding my lawn care business to include fertilization and weed treatments.

As I read more about the hazards, the less I wanted to handle them and allow my children to be exposed to them. I started researching organic lawn care and this led me to discover what folks like Joel Salatin and others were accomplishing with sustainable, pasture-based farming.

We looked up local farms, got our first gallon of real milk, bought some chicks and rabbits to keep illegally in the backyard of our 1/4 acre subdivision lot and planted tomatoes and strawberries in the garden beds. About a year later we moved into a rundown, farmhouse on 7 acres we found for lease just a few miles away. We experimented with a lot of things there raising various breeds of cows, chickens and pigs.

Four years later we bought 20 acres in Alabama and we’re loving life.”

SFN: What are your current farm offerings? 
EWF: “Pasture raised, organic eggs and broilers. Pasture raised and organic fed pork and zero grain dairy. We are looking to transition into primarily making cheese.”

SFN: How you go to market, or if you’re just starting, what customers do you hope to serve?
EWF: “We operate a food club that currently serves the northwestern suburbs of Atlanta.”

SFN: What are your biggest challenges in building a successful farm business?
EWF: “Access to capital!”

SFN: What challenges were you facing with your website before switching to FarmPress?
EWF: “It was very basic and I knew very little about web design.”

What did you hope to accomplish with a new website?
EWF: “To have some optimization of web searches and to make it easier for customers to get to know us plus to help me better manage my business.”

What are the benefits to you of being a member of Small Farm Nation Academy?
EWF: “I have an easy to access resource to learn and for support at what I now know is a great price and value. ”

Why would you recommend FarmPress & Small Farm Nation Academy to others? Or would you?
EWF: “Absolutely!”

Looking for a farm marketing course?

Check out my Small Farm Nation Academy!

Farm Website Case Study – Parkelm Farm

Farm Website Case Study – Parkelm Farm

Create a Gorgeous Farm Website With FarmPress

This is a case study interview with a recently launched Academy member’s FarmPress site. FarmPress is a WordPress theme for agriculture businesses to create a modern farm website. It is included free with a membership in the Small Farm Nation Academy. Below are screenshots of the new website along with an interview with the farm owner.

Client: Parkelm Farm
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Objectives
: A modern farm website with better SEO, an online store, and a fresher design.

Small Farm Nation (SFN): When/how/why did you become a farmer? What’s your story?
Parkelm Farm (PF): “My husband and I became farmers in 2012. Neither of us grew up on farms, but he had worked on farms his whole life through family and neighbors. I went to college to become a teacher, and he obtained a humanities degree while apprenticing as a mechanic and auto restoration specialist.

After we got married we spent three years traveling and living abroad before coming back to Wisconsin. My husband had told me that he always wanted to be a farmer, but had no access to land. I was raised an environmentalist and had no interest in the poor, dirty life of a farmer; or so I thought. I don’t enjoy gardening, but I sure do love animals. And then my husband talked to me about grazing. My husband loves tractors and machinery, but through working with his uncle who had been dairy grazing since the early 90s, he learned that low-input, soil-friendly farming was a path to success for the environment, animals, and farmers.

The idea of the animals living out their instincts while creating healthier watersheds and food systems really appealed to me. Luckily my family had a farm sitting vacant which we were able to inherit. Unfortunately, it was really vacant and we had to install a driveway, well, power lines, fences, and buildings. We purchased a small herd of miniature Hereford cattle and a couple Icelandic sheep in 2012 and have been growing from there ever since.”

SFN: What are your current farm offerings? 
PF: “We currently have a cow-calf-finish herd of miniature Hereford cattle of about 30 head, we have over 35 Icelandic breeding ewes, and six Large Black Hog sows. We sell grass-fed beef, grass-fed lamb, pastured pork, and a variety of Icelandic wool products processed in the fiber mill owned by my husband’s parents and handspun by me. Our goal is to get to 30 breeding cows, 100 ewes, and 10 sows.”

SFN: How you go to market, or if you’re just starting, what customers do you hope to serve?
PF: “We sell at the Oshkosh Farmer’s Market year-round, the Green Lake Farmer’s Market in the summer, and this year we will be at the Westside Community Market in Madison for the first time. We also sell off the farm and are working on building an on-farm store this summer. We would like to establish drop sites in the Milwaukee area as well.”

SFN: What are your biggest challenges in building a successful farm business?
PF: “Access to low-interest, long-term capital to help us cover expenses and stay afloat while we grow and build infrastructure. Finding enough customers in our local area with an interest in our product. ”

SFN: What challenges were you facing with your website before switching to FarmPress?
PF: “I don’t think it was SEO optimized very well, the store functions were clunky and not ideal for our product, too busy. It was hard for people to find our products.”

What did you hope to accomplish with a new website?
PF: “Better SEO, better store, fresher design.”

What are the benefits to you of being a member of Small Farm Nation Academy?
PF: “The access to the marketing knowledge and quick, personalized help and feedback.”

Why would you recommend FarmPress & Small Farm Nation Academy to others? Or would you?
PF: “The quick help is the number one reason. The customization is second.”

Looking for a farm marketing course?

Check out my Small Farm Nation Academy!

Farm Website Case Study – My Barefoot Farm

Farm Website Case Study – My Barefoot Farm

Create a Gorgeous Farm Website With FarmPress

This is a case study interview with a recently launched Academy member’s FarmPress site. FarmPress is a WordPress theme for agriculture businesses to create a modern farm website. It is included free with a membership in the Small Farm Nation Academy. Below are screenshots of the new website along with an interview with the farm owner.

Client: My Barefoot Farm
Location:Ringgold, GA USA
Objectives
: A modern farm website that displayed beautifully on all devices.

Small Farm Nation (SFN): When/how/why did you become a farmer? What’s your story?
My Barefoot Farm (MBF): “I started farming seriously about 6 years ago. We bought our land 10 years ago to have more space for hens and honeybees, and it just grew from there. In fact, my entire life up to that point was sometimes vegetarian and always avoiding any meat on a bone. Then once we started farming I began processing my own chickens and raising my own pork and beef. It took several years to get to the point of getting my family cow and within 2 years of that first cow, I bought 3 more. Today I have a dairy/beef herd of 15 and expect 8 calves this year from that herd. Because I am a hand spinner I became interested in fiber animals and started keeping flock of Teeswater and Wensleydale sheep.”

SFN: What are your current farm offerings? 
MBF: “This year I will be offering grass fed beef and forested pork. I will also have raw fiber for spinners and fiber lambs.”

SFN: How you go to market, or if you’re just starting, what customers do you hope to serve?
MBF: “I hope to serve local families wanting fresh meat. In the past, I have managed to sell within my small circle of like-minded foodies. My fiber I hope to sell to fiber artists, spinners and shepherds wanting to expand into fiber animals.”

SFN: What are your biggest challenges in building a successful farm business?
MBF: “Currently it is capital! I am selling food and fiber daily to fund the building of a creamery. I will actually be milking 6 cows at some point this year, and that would make a fair amount of cheese. If I had more capital I would start straight away with building a creamery, BUT I use this time to get logistics in order. I am going to bootstrap the creamery so it doesn’t drain my account. I also need an email list!!! Hoping the website helps generate a good following of loyal buyers and supporters.”

SFN: What challenges were you facing with your website before switching to FarmPress?
MBF: “It was not geared toward a business model at all. It was all blog! I have a fair number of readers, but they were not buyers. Most of the readers were also far away and not local enough to purchase anything from me anyway. FarmPress has allowed me to make that switch to a more business framework while still maintaining to blog aspect. SMN has helped me make the mental switch to farming as a business.”

What did you hope to accomplish with a new website?
MBF: “I wanted something more professional! Many years ago I had a blog on WordPress and it was too technical for me. SFN made the technical part understandable and doable for me. Blogspot was a great blog platform, but I needed to look more like a serious farm business and Farmpress was perfect for that goal.”

What are the benefits to you of being a member of Small Farm Nation Academy?
MBF: “It really helped me make the mental switch from hobby farmer to business farmer. I could not have switched to Farmpress format either without the classes on branding and customizing. I had no idea how to capture emails either until the classes on Opt-Ins. It is also very helpful to communicate with others who are in SFN. I have seen some great ideas and websites PLUS it is always great to bounce ideas off others in the academy.”

Why would you recommend FarmPress & Small Farm Nation Academy to others? Or would you?
MBF: “I would and I have! I told my best friend, who farms fiber animals and goats, to sign up! She has been selling goat milk soaps and I really think she could sell even more if she made the switch to SFN.”

Looking for a farm marketing course?

Check out my Small Farm Nation Academy!

Farm Website Case Study – Rafter W. Ranch

Farm Website Case Study – Rafter W. Ranch

Create a Gorgeous Farm Website With FarmPress

This is a case study interview with a recently launched Academy member’s FarmPress site. FarmPress is a WordPress theme for agriculture businesses to create a modern farm website. It is included free with a membership in the Small Farm Nation Academy. Below are screenshots of the new website along with an interview with the farm owner.

Client: Rafter W. Ranch
Location: Simla, Colorado USA
Objectives
: A modern farm website with 1) advanced email list building tools, 2) an online store that supported local pick-up options, and 3) improved search engine optimization.


Small Farm Nation (SFN): When/how/why did you become a farmer? What’s your story?
Rafter W. Ranch (RWR): “I guess you would say it was a gradual process. Starting with wanting to have animals for the children when they were growing up and then wanting to know where our food came from. So it probably started around 20 yrs ago on 2 1/2 acres, to slowly changing into what it is today on 640 acres. We wanted to be able to share with more people nutritious meat, grown in a regenerative way. Our full story can be found at https://rafterwranch.net/our-colorado-family-farm/

SFN: What are your current farm offerings? 
RWR: “We currently offer pastured beef, lamb, chicken, and eggs.”

SFN: How you go to market, or if you’re just starting, what customers do you hope to serve?
RWR: “We seem to attract folks from the more traditional side, a lot of Weston A Price students.”

SFN: What are your biggest challenges in building a successful farm business?
RWR: “Letting people know we are out there!”

SFN: What challenges were you facing with your website before switching to FarmPress?
RWR: “Things that I wanted to do with my website were not available to me, such as WordPress plug-ins, list building tools, and KingSumo. Also, changing the look of pages as I desired.”

What did you hope to accomplish with a new website?
RWR: “More conversions, more email addresses added.”

What are the benefits to you of being a member of Small Farm Nation Academy?
RWR: “Great customer service! BUT, not only the service, the education is invaluable.”

Why would you recommend FarmPress & Small Farm Nation Academy to others? Or would you?
RWR: “For the same reason as above. I would even recommend it to NON-farmers!”

Looking for a farm marketing course?

Check out my Small Farm Nation Academy!

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