New Jersey-based Sea Breeze Syrups has been family owned and operated since its inception, but their classic American Dream success story began in Poland in 1925.
Barnet Sanders was a seltzer man who dreamed of building a better life for his family in the United States. After leaving Poland and settling his family in Patterson, New Jersey, he set out to rebuild his seltzer business on American soil.
The First Generation
Sanders made a reputation for his business, eventually dubbed Sea Breeze, by providing exceptional customer service and products. He delivered every order to his thirsty customers himself, carrying bottles of seltzer door to door and up and down many flights of New York City steps.
As his seltzers gained popularity, he eventually expanded his product line to include flavored syrups for seltzer and water.
Today, Sea Breeze offers sodas, juices, flavored waters, cocktail mixers, energy drinks, smoothies and dessert syrups. They have thousands of customers in the New York/New Jersey area but they remain committed to maintaining the same level of service established by Barnet. Sea Breeze provides emergency repair service to their customers 365 days per year.
From Humble Beginnings to Steady Growth
Expanding from a one-man operation to a booming corporation didn’t happen overnight for Sea Breeze. Like most small businesses, they faced their fair share of challenges along the way.
According to 4th generation owner, Josh Sanders, accepting payments efficiently was one of the most costly challenges.
Though their original method worked, it was inefficient for both customers and employees. Payment were collected one of two ways: customers would place their orders and once fulfilled, send a check to the Sea Breeze office, or upon delivery of their orders, drivers would call back to the office with the customer’s credit card and relay the information for them over the phone.
Aside from being time-consuming, both methods left a lot of room for error; a lost check or a misunderstood credit card number could mean failed or lost payments and an inconvenience for all involved.
When Going Digital Goes Badly
Sea Breeze’s first attempt at online payment processing didn’t quite go as smoothly as Josh had hoped. The system they chose was difficult to use and they had a hard time pulling the reports they wanted, leaving Josh wondering if online payments were actually all they were cracked up to be.
Josh asked a trusted friend in the beverage industry what they used to process payments and was referred to PaySimple. PaySimple’s free trial offer and accessible platform seemed to be exactly what Josh was looking for.
An Online Payment Platform that Works
Josh said, “As a company we love technology and are always looking for ways to improve processes internally, and externally for our customers. Providing them with an online payment gateway and a more accessible purchase option with PaySimple was an easy way we could integrate a smarter technology into our business model.”
He said, “The platform is easy to use and far more robust than the previous point of sale system we tried. Our customers can now go to our website to quickly make a payment for their orders”
PaySimple’s reporting capabilities made it easy for Josh and his employees to track their cash flow and payments processed, especially given the various payment plans their customers were on. With some customers paying on a recurring payment plan and others using one time pay-as-you-go services, they are able to easily keep track of when those payments are coming in.
“The more payments we run online, the less work there is for people in the office. It takes time to receive a check and match it to the customer or receive a phone call and match the credit card transaction to an account. Moving in a digital direction with PaySimple creates more time we can invest back into our business,” Josh said.
Since making the switch to PaySimple, Sea Breeze has seen customer satisfaction increase dramatically. They believe this is largely due to their ability to help more customers with online payment options.
92 Years and Going Strong
Today, Sea Breeze is the largest independent, family-owned manufacturer of on tap beverages in the Metro New York/New Jersey area with one of the most diverse product offerings in the nation.
Josh and his family have big plans for the company, but their focus will always be on staying true to their roots and maintaining a customer and family focused business without ever sacrificing quality for quantity.
Start a free 14 day trial and learn how PaySimple can help you go digital: