MotMot Coffee

MotMot Coffee: All Roads Lead to E-commerce

Barista in coffee shop during COVID

Andrew Gao
CEO, MotMot Coffee

Andrew Gao portraitHow was your industry impacted and how will it transform?

One of the cornerstones of the coffee industry that was hit the hardest, the café sector, was impacted pretty quickly. Many cafes closed and many spots in the local Seattle area lost the ability to sell retail items, including bags of coffee.

When the pandemic hit Seattle, the first thing that was hardest on MotMot was the school’s [Seattle U] closure. Not having our physical retail platforms to sell on was a huge blow to our sales and, with the economic downturn, everyone’s attention shifted from luxury goods like drinking ethically sourced coffee to everyday essentials such as toilet paper and hand sanitizer.

We see the coffee industry taking a more digital approach to how they do business. The early adopters of e-commerce platforms will be most successful, which is why MotMot is working hard to push out a streamlined, efficient, and effective e-commerce site that makes purchasing coffee an easy task.

What practices were shelved to make way for new ones?

For us, moving operations successfully to a virtual space required: 

  • A platform to communicate effectively and efficiently with our stakeholders
  • Employees/representatives to remain on campus to both monitor the situation and fulfill any physical business needs
  • A mountain of standard operating procedures to ensure that current and future processes are maintained

What did you think would never go away that did go away?

We never thought that the campus closure would be so drastic and exact such a significant toll on our business. The biggest challenge was being resilient in the face of such a big change. We’ve worked hard through the years to build MotMot, and we are committed to operating despite the pandemic.

The team has been working consistently together throughout the disruption. This gives me hope that we’re not only going to survive the pandemic but grow from it.

Do you see any opportunities in this brave new world?

This generation of entrepreneurs and business owners/leaders are pioneers in a digital landscape where attention is everything and positioning yourself is key to being successful in grabbing that attention.MotMot coffee bag

MotMot has an opportunity to be in the frontlines of a community of coffee companies that are striving to do business better and do coffee better. That’s what makes this generation of coffee organizations more unique than ever before.

That being said, our company is looking to expand every day, every month, and every year. Just this quarter, we were able to hire more interns and a new role for us: designer. We believe that having someone generate and manage our brand image is crucial to the success of MotMot.

Next, our e-commerce venture has no limits in terms of reach and ambition. Investing in it to make it a success will hopefully be our crowning achievement during COVID.

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