Bee Raw: Freeing up time to help grow the business, using PayPal.

Aug 11 2022 | Chase Jones, Content Marketing Manager, PayPal

In 2005, Freeman launched Bee Raw to sell attractively packaged honey and related gifts online and at specialty food markets and retail stores. Eleven years later, the business is growing about 20% annually,1 although Freeman still runs Bee Raw from his home office. 
Zeke Freeman grew up on a family farm outside of Erie, Pennsylvania, where he saw firsthand the value of the close connection between food and farmers. After a career in restaurant and food retailing, Freeman discovered raw honey – and he saw an opportunity to help struggling beekeepers maintain their operations and produce healthful and delicious honey. The company uses PayPal to process and manage all of its payments, Freeman says: “We have all of our money coming into one place, which makes it easy to track where sales come from.”

Winning new customers with on-the-spot sales.

One of the ways Bee Raw wins fans is by selling at artisanal food markets – and PayPal Here helps Freeman and his team accept PayPal, debit, and credit card payments directly at Bee Raw’s display stands. “We want people to taste the honey and understand the different flavors, and we’ll ask them to sign up for our newsletters,” Freeman says. “So the festivals and markets are just as much about lead generation as they are about sales. When people are ready to buy at the markets, PayPal Here lets us process the purchase so they can take home their honey right away.” PayPal Here accounts for about 20% of Bee Raw’s annual sales.1

Keep cash on hand to boost inventory.

PayPal also plays a role in helping Freeman keep beekeepers in business, and keeping Bee Raw supplied with plenty of honey for busy seasons. Freeman has used PayPal Working Capital loans2 to buy honey from beekeepers in the summer, so he’s fully stocked with inventory when the holidays approach. “PayPal Working Capital gave us additional capital when cash flow was tight, and the loans are paid directly from our PayPal account when we have sales,” Freeman says.3

A one-stop shop for payments.

 “One of the tough things about being a small business owner is that there are so many things to get done,” Freeman says – like managing payments from wholesalers and retailers. PayPal simplifies payment tasks by allowing Freeman to accept payments and track revenue through a single channel: Bee Raw uses PayPal Express Checkout and PayPal Payments Pro to accept PayPal, debit, and credit card payments on both its desktop and mobile websites.

Honey sales from anywhere – mobile, markets, or online.

As more Bee Raw customers discover the ease of buying their favorite honey products via their mobile devices, PayPal positions the company to process mobile sales without a hitch. Currently, 32% of Bee Raw’s annual sales come from mobile.1 “We see more and more of our customers shopping on our mobile site, and we want to streamline checkout so those sales are completed as quickly as possible,” Freeman says. “No matter how customers come to us – through mobile, food markets, or other retailers – we know they’ll be able to pay any way they choose.”

Learn more.

To learn more about how PayPal can help your business sell more – and connect with your customers wherever they shop – go to or call us at 855-787-9088.


The contents of this site are provided for informational purposes only. You should always obtain independent, professional accounting, financial, and legal advice before making any business decision.

1 Data is based on the business’s own internal analysis.
2 PayPal Working Capital is subject to credit approval, as determined by the lender, WebBank, Member FDIC.
3 Subject to minimum payment requirement of 10% of the total loan amount (loan + fee) every 90 days.  See Terms and Conditions for details.

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