As a welcome gesture for her employer's guests visiting Palu, on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, Hardjo Sriyono (Sri) would make them a batch of fried onions, a local delicacy, which quickly grew in popularity. Forty years later, her crispy treats are the cornerstone of Hj. Mbok Sri, a family business which her great grandson, 19-year-old Adi Wahyu Prasetya, is today helping to take into the future.
As the business blossomed, word-of-mouth brought people thousands of miles to their store for snacks like fish floss, fried cashew nuts, and its best-seller, fried onions — commonly used as a garnish in Indonesian cuisine.
Wanting to modernize the way the business communicates with its customers, Adi introduced his family to the WhatsApp Business app in August 2018.
The business profile feature helps customers — particularly those doing last-minute shopping on the way to the airport — find Hj. Mbok Sri more easily. And quick replies help Adi engage with more customers faster.
After in-store sales, the WhatsApp Business app is Hj. Mbok Sri’s most important revenue stream. Since switching to the WhatsApp Business app, Adi says overall sales have increased by 30 percent.
Customers — some more than 1,500 miles away in Jakarta — also like connecting with Hj. Mbok Sri via WhatsApp.
“I have never been to Palu, but I have made five purchases via WhatsApp,” says a customer who has his favorite snacks delivered after placing his order. “I also share Hj. Mbok Sri’s WhatsApp number with friends and colleagues who are visiting the city.”
“It saves time and distance. I only need to send a message to their WhatsApp number, and they process my order,” explains another.
Adi’s parents are always trying new techniques to maintain the quality of their fried onions, and with the help of the WhatsApp Business app, he is doing his part to carry on the legacy of the family business.