Buyer's Best Friend (BBF) is the leading source for innovative specialty and artisan products, starting in food.
For brokers and sales reps, BBF replaces brochures and allows your buyers to answer routine questions and place routine orders, freeing hours of order entry every day and allowing you to spend more time opening new accounts-- and best of all, BBF doesn't charge per-transaction fees, so you keep your entire sales commission. learn more
The BBF team lives by these axioms:
- "It's all about people: respect everyone, focus on the buyer". People buy from people and BBF is designed around reducing the paperwork of sales, so salespeople can focus on the creative arts of cutting deals, solving problems, and pioneering products.
- "Be practical". We take practical approaches to problems, including prioritization. We're not afraid to admit failure and try new approaches. We listen to feedback from all sources.
- "Change is good". We build new things for the world and don't just compete on price; we don't try to stop or slow innovation; we try to help everyone with transitions.
- "Think big". Our ambitions are not regional or limited to one market.
- "Create joy". BBF isn't just a job, we're creating BBF to change the world and delight everyone along the way.
If these ideas resonate with you, and you either like to sell stuff or build stuff (read: software), send us a resume: email@example.com
BBF started in March, 2010, when Joyce complained to her fiancee Adam about how time-consuming it was to sell wholesale food, and Adam suggested that he could maybe write some software to help her-- he'd spent 5 years at Google and 20 in the software business and was looking for an interesting project. 30 days later, Joyce was taking all her orders using this software, which she affectionately called "Buyer's Best Friend" to reflect her dream that her customers might someday place their own reorders. Within a few months, 15% of her business was online with buyers ordering for themselves.
In June that year, Adam and Joyce took their annual trip to the Fancy Food Show in New York and showed off BBF for the first time, and 100 manufacturers signed up in 3 days, trade press asked to interview them, and brokers and buyers said that they'd never seen anything like this before. They went back to California, incorporated a company, filed a patent on the technology and got to work turning this prototype into a product, which went into 'private beta' in July.
By September that year, buyers were placing orders on their own and other brokers were using the system. By November, over 10% of Joyce's orders were being placed self-serve and many of the others she was placing in the stores, on her iPad. Meanwhile, hundreds of producers were selling thousands of products on BBF and through other brokers, hundreds of stores were getting product through BBF, including Bi-Rite (SF), Zabar's (NY), Zingerman's (Ann Arbor), Mollie Stone's Markets (Northern California), Star Provisions (Atlanta), and Joie de Vivre Hotels & Restaurants.
As you can see, the story is still being written, and if you buy or sell wholesale products, Adam and Joyce would love you to join our community.
Joyce Guan, Founder and VP Sales. Joyce is the visionary behind Buyer's Best Friend. Previously, she ran sales for Charles Chocolates, where she learned about private label and co-branding, shelf life and shipping, distribution and channel conflict, lead generation, managing sales staff and more. Previously, she held a range of positions including SF Asian American Film Festival (marketing), the bakery box (founder), Ionami (sales), VerticalNet Solutions (Product Manager). She holds a B.A. from UC Berkeley.
Adam Sah, Founder and CEO. Adam is CEO and technical founder of Buyer's Best Friend, his 7th startup over 20 years, including Foodzie.com, Google (he invented Google Gadgets), SenSage (log data management for large companies), iPIX (virtual real estate tours-- IPO'99), Cohera (federated databases-- acquired by Oracle), Inktomi (#1 search engine before Google- HotBot- IPO'98); Ovid (medical research databases- IPO'94). Adam received a Master's Degree in Computer Science from UC Berkeley and BS in Computer Science from the SUNY Stony Brook. He has 10 issued patents in databases and internet infrastructure.
- "Pitching a company like Whole Foods is complex and BBF got us into two regions of Whole Foods -- BBF made it easy. It's a pipeline into major retailers." - Dan Garblik, Co-Founder,
Bandar Foods (San Francisco, CA)
- "BBF works the way it should - I get a sample request from buyers, send out samples, then buyers place orders." - Emir Kiamelev, Founder,
Amella Caramels (El Segundo, CA)
- "Without BBF, it takes 15 minutes to order from one vendor-- with 50 vendors, it's easy to forget one." - Bobby Vardakastanis, General Manager,
Haight St Market (San Francisco, CA)
- "We're all learning this stuff on our own... major benefit to connect with BBF as mentors..." - Trevor Smith, Founder,
Secret Squirrel Cold Brewed Coffee (Los Angeles, CA)
- "I had been trading calls and email with a particular store for a while...but nothing happened until we got on BBF. Within days of being listed on BBF, that store placed their first order!" - Daniel Sklaar, Founder,
Fine & Raw Chocolate (Brooklyn, NY)
- "BBF allows me to focus on strategic work, since it's easy to hand off the reordering process to others." - Anderson Yee, General Manager,
Farm Fresh to You (San Francisco, CA)
- "We’ve been working with BBF since they started in 2010, and they continue to send us new accounts and orders every week." - Micah Goldman, Head of Sales,
Taza Chocolate (Somerville, MA)
- "We source high quality products from many vendors, and constantly looking to improve quality and add variety. BBF makes it easy to get detailed information about dietary attributes and ingredient lists, which is important to us and our employees." - Purchasing Team Member,
Fortune 500 Company (Mountain View, CA)
- "Since its launch, BBF has sent me over a dozen new wholesale accounts (often without needing to send samples!); I've gotten tons of reorders from multiple buyers without even picking up the phone." - Clarine Hardesty, Founder,
Clarine's Florentines (Berkeley, CA)
- "As soon as I saw BBF, I knew I'd be using it for finding new products as well as reordering existing products. I love that I can order anytime of the day, and repeat previous orders with one click." - Anna Derivi-Castellanos, Specialty Buyer,
Other Avenues (San Francisco, CA)
Tired of 100s of calls and visits from reps? Want a one-stop shop?
For Buyers, BBF simplifies buying:
Large company buyers: BBF works with major accounts like Whole Foods to save them 1000s of hours on sourcing and evaluating brands. To learn more, email us: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more and start shopping, sign up for a free account.
Struggling to reach marquee buyers? Are small buyers "hardly worth" the time they take?For sellers, BBF is the first online wholesale system that really works-- because it's the first that blends real world, face-to-face brokering with an easy-to-use online catalog where buyers can do their research.
• Reach marquee buyers. Because of the size and quality of our catalog, BBF is regularly invited to meet with buyers large and small. BBF marquee accounts include major hotel chains, corporate customers, independent and chain groceries, airlines and more.
• Automate smaller buyers. Every seller has small accounts that order $1000 or less per year-- and it's expensive and annoying to keep calling and emailing them for their tiny orders. Instead, send them to your BBF page, and because BBF is so easy to use, they'll be successful and themselves happy to get fewer phonecalls. For buyers, BBF is a single login to remember, a single system to use, and their BBF reputation carries from one manufacturer to another, making it easy to order new brands.
• Keep control, while publishing to Google and the web. BBF is careful with your Confidential information-- only qualified buyers (by referral, or by background check) are allowed into the system, and we blank-out Confidential fields when publishing to Google.
The first step is to join the hundreds of companies listing on BBF-- sign up here for free. For a limited time, BBF will even do the digitizing work for you!
Looking for brokers or distributors? BBF can help. Email Joyce Guan at
Feeling overwhelmed? Buried in paper? Spending evenings entering orders?
For reps, BBF isn't software, it's a new way of life-- buyers start coming to you, small buyers order for themselves, and orders are entered immediately, eliminating double-entry. This frees you to spend more time opening new accounts and working with large and strategic accounts.
|The old way||The BBF way|
|• Driving out to small accounts, plus calls and faxes for small, routine reorders; customers asking basic questions (such as pricing, shelf life, case count, "what's new?")||• Small buyers order for themselves; BBF checks order minimums and other rules.|
|• Schlepping paper brochures, constant updates.||• The latest product information, straight from the manufacturer. Fully detailed information at your fingertips (photos, product brochures & pricesheets for download, certifications, product attributes, etc.).|
|• Hours of data entry; too much time spent on 'paperwork'||• Zero paperwork: take orders directly into the system, in front of customers (by tablet or celphones).|
|• complex, proprietary IT systems; weeks of training required||• BBF is so easy, your customers can order for themselves.|
|• Difficult to get attention from buyers, hard to get meetings.||• 1000s of buyers come to BBF and reach out to you when they're interested in your lines. BBF quickly pays for itself, as buyers discover your lines and place orders and sample requests. Make money in your sleep, as the new accounts, leads, and reorders roll into your inbox.|
|• You're on your own to find buyers and close deals.||• With BBF, you're joining a strong, high quality network of reps and brokers, who pass leads to each other, share accounts and trade tips.|
Brokers: BBF was designed for brokers with multiple lines-- we onboard your manufacturers and build you a broker website for free (including a fully featured catalog and ordering capability), which is linked into BBF's broker directory. Finally, you can fully cross-sell and upsell all of your product lines, instead of having your accounts just order the same old product lines. Brokers who join BBF experience rapid ROI, since thousands of buyers use BBF, and the ease of use encourages regular ordering through the system.
To learn more about BBF for reps and brokers, schedule a demo with our founder, Joyce Guan, who designed BBF from her experience as a broker.