How BigCommerce Helped Jeni's Go From Local Confection to Sweet National Success

Jeni Britton Bauer

Founder, CCO
Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams
  • 2002
    Year founded
  • 194%
    Increase in orders with BigCommerce
  • 07
    Years with BigCommerce
  • 7.6%
    Increase in conversion with BigCommerce

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams Success Story

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams was founded in 2002 by Jeni Britton Bauer, Founder and Chief Creative Officer. Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams is a community devoted to making the best ice cream the world has ever known by using whole ingredients and dairy from grass-pastured cows coupled with inspired flavors.

The artisan ice cream is sold in 35 of the brand’s retail stores, fine grocery stores across the United States, and on its ecommerce site, powered by BigCommerce.

Jeni is the author of the New York Times best-seller Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home. With more than 100,000 copies in print, the cookbook dubbed the “homemade-ice cream-making Bible” by The Wall Street Journal earned Jeni a 2012 James Beard Award, America’s most coveted honor for writing about food and the culinary arts.

Jeni’s been making ice cream for half her life. Jeni got a job at a local ice cream parlor in high school and later at worked at a French bakery that opened across the street. In college, she studied fine art and art history and discovered essential oils. She started adding a few drops into pints of ice cream. She would put her experiments in the freezer and then bring them to parties to gather feedback. The ice cream was a hit and one day during her spring of her sophomore year at Ohio State, she decided to leave college and start her own ice cream company.

“We are absolutely devoted to making better ice creams and bringing people together. It’s what gets us out of bed in the morning and keeps us up late at night. We believe that you can grow a business as a community of people, with artful attention to detail and the customer experience, and get continuously better at the same time. “Every pint of ice cream represents the work of hundreds of people in our network. That’s why we say flavor is everything. It’s about how it tastes, and who made it, why we made it, and how.”

  • FUN FACT

    In 2017, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream used 1 million pounds of grass-grazed milk

The Challenge of Taking Ice Cream Nationwide

However, it was difficult for Jeni to take her splendid ice cream online. In 2004, the company started selling online using the Yahoo! Small Business platform, but was immediately met with problems. Taking payment was difficult, and the checkout process provided a poor customer experience. In addition, the backend store management dashboard was difficult for Jeni’s team to navigate. 

“We eventually knew we needed a platform that would enable us to focus on what we’re good at — making great ice cream and bringing people together.” Jeni’s team wanted to spend their resources on what was important and sell their delicious product online to a national audience in a seamless and streamlined way. So they decided to partner with BigCommerce. 

Make it Big means to not limit yourself—Challenge yourself and climb the mountain. BigCommerce is the platform we use to help us reach the summit and ascend the next one.

Jeni Britton Bauer

How BigCommerce Helped Jeni’s Keep it Chill

Since 2011, the BigCommerce platform has enabled Jeni’s small team to maintain and oversee every aspect of their online business and complete tasks in the most efficient manner. “It’s easy-to-use, which is great since our company has no technical or development resources.” They are able to leverage BigCommerce’s flexible platform to enable their customers to enjoy Jeni’s wherever they are by choosing from a Pint Club subscription membership, corporate gifts, or for Grandma to send a delivery to her grandson for his birthday.

“To compete with much larger companies, we realized we needed to do multi-warehouse fulfillment to lower prices and reach more customers, especially on the West Coast,” said Chelsea Clements, Director of Ecommerce for Jeni’s. “I discovered ShipperHQ on the BigCommerce app marketplace, and it has solved all of our shipping and fulfillment needs.”

With BigCommerce Analytics, Chelsea can highlight which products are the highest revenue generators. “Every morning, I go into the Analytics dashboard of BigCommerce because I want to see which products sold in the last 24 hours, especially after we have a big release. I check order totals, revenue, and which products are our top sellers. The team at BigCommerce is constantly creating and updating helpful features, as well as providing apps and integrations that make it easier for us to be successful.”

Jeni’s and BigCommerce have become a tasty team — a partnership that has made Chelsea’s job a lot more delicious. “Our team constantly contacts the BigCommerce support team through live chat and phone. They are accessible, helpful, and knowledgeable at all times during the year, especially during the busy holiday season.”

Profits by the Pint

Since being on BigCommerce, Jeni’s has been able to advance its shipping and fulfillment processes, accelerate the reach of its products, lower its shipping prices, and elevate its customer service.

“At Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, we believe in community, service, and hospitality. We want you to get to know someone better over an ice cream. Online we can reach everyone in America, whereas with our stores we are limited to our local community,” says Bauer.

With the help of BigCommerce, Jeni’s has built a national audience and created a consistent experience in its Scoop Shops and ecommerce website. This has been critical in building brand awareness and growing sales.

“Make It Big means to not limit yourself. Challenge yourself, and climb the mountain. BigCommerce is the tool we use to help us reach the summit and ascend the next one.”

The team at BigCommerce is constantly creating and updating helpful features as well as providing apps and integrations that make it easier for us to be successful.

Jeni Britton Bauer