jlink
Monday, August 21, 2017

Ari Korman, left, and his brother Josh Korman. Credit: Abbie Sophia

Ari Korman, left, with his brother, Josh Korman, and one of their Cinch vans. Credit: Abbie Sophia

In 2014, a foursome of young Englewood men, some still in high school, hit upon the idea of online shopping at the next level of convenience by pioneering a combination of online shopping with fast, personalized service.

This group, the Korman and Agus brothers, founded Cinch, formerly known as SodaScan, a profitable and useful community service with a loyal customer base. Brothers Ari and Josh Korman, CEO and COO respectively, manage the company full time.

Cinch staff, based in Englewood, deliver heavy and bulky household items straight to each customer’s home, then place the items in the basement, pantry, fridge, laundry room, garage (or any of the above)—essentially wherever the customer designates. Whether the order contains water bottles, Kedem grape juice, Snapple, soda, diapers, detergent, paper goods, paper towels, cleaning products, folding chairs, tables, dry goods, grocery items or more, Cinch can supply it and place it where you need it most.

The unique value proposition that Cinch offers is free delivery straight to the customers’ homes at prices per unit that are comparable to—if not cheaper than—prices of the local grocery stores like ShopRite. This enables customers to buy bulk products without having the hassle of going to a big-box store and lugging everything home.“Customers no longer have to shlep to Costco, brave the long lines, load and unload the car, and put away their groceries,” said Ari Korman.

Even if they have to climb up 10 flights of stairs, Cinch workers are happy to make their customers’ lives easier, as this is a success-factor built into their business model. “People love the fact that we deliver all of their heaviest, bulkiest and ‘shlepiest’ products,” said Korman.

Cinch’s free delivery service currently covers all of Bergen County, Passaic and Clifton. Orders placed by midnight are guaranteed to be delivered the next business day, and when the Cinch driver arrives in a general neighborhood, customers in that neighborhood will receive a notification by text or email with a link where they can track their delivery. A second notification will be sent out when the packages arrive at one’s home. If not home, customers can still communicate directly with the driver through their tracking system if the customer has special instructions for the delivery.

To start shopping at Cinch, one can check out their website at www.cinchdelivers.com, but many customers shop quickly and easily through their app. Cinch is also currently working on a new version of their app for the iPhone and Android. After listening to customer feedback, the Kormans are making additional strides to provide more options with a continued easy experience. “We are having a new customer app that is being built from the ground up,” Korman explained. “Hopefully it will be out in about a month. We’re very excited about it.”

Cinch employees build warm relationships with their customers, as they really value the face-to-face interactions they have with them; Korman said this is an important aspect which can add to the community and can help the company provide better, more agile services to their customers.

Agile, flexible and trustworthy home delivery is an idea that has resonated with the Kormans. Growing up, their father was involved in the milk business and did some home deliveries, encouraging the brothers to think about how people used to befriend their milkman. “We want to bring back the idea of a milkman; rather, instead of being a milkman, we’ll become people’s cinch-men,” explained Josh Korman. “We believe in community and want to develop relationships with our customers. We want to be people that our customers can wave to when they pass us in the street.”

Ari Korman, a proud alum of The Moriah School, Ramaz and NYU (his brother Josh went to Moriah, Frisch and The New School) said that their company’s strong sense of community partnership was enhanced by his time working at the Bet Elazraki Children’s Home for children at risk in Netanya. There, he explained, people took time to understand the people around them. Therefore, Cinch stresses how important community is to them and truly makes an effort to understand their customers’ needs. “We are very focused on personalized service,” Josh said. “Cinch is not a traditional retailer; rather, we interact with our customers. We bring things into their homes and develop a unique relationship with them.”

Additionally, the concept of hakarat hatov (gratitude) is extremely important to Cinch. As young men developing a business, the Kormans and Aguses knew that they would need the support of the community to succeed, and they feel blessed and grateful that they received it. The support that the community gave Cinch helped encourage their own optimism toward their growing business. “The loyal customers are the foundation of our success,” stated Korman. “We are very grateful for them.”

Another noteworthy side-benefit: while Cinch offers a wide variety of products, they don’t overwhelm their customers with a million choices of the same thing. Therefore, customers are easily able to choose what products they want. Cinch also offers some products that are hard to find elsewhere; for example, they sell a 24-pack of Diet Peach Snapples, Voss sparkling water in imaginative flavors, Mexican Coke and a wide range of Kirkland-brand products.

In addition, someone who uses Cinch, can save money by cancelling his or her Costco membership. “I haven’t renewed my Costco membership in two years,” said Jewish Link editor and loyal Cinch customer Elizabeth Kratz, “and yet, I have Kirkland products all over my house!”

“We have a mutual relationship with our customers,” Korman continued. “We provide them with a great service, and they have been loyal to us. We’re generous because we appreciate their loyalty, and also because we want people to try our service. We believe that once people try our service, they will like it and feel encouraged to continue shopping at Cinch.” When Korman mentioned Cinch’s generosity, he referred to the product sales and deals that Cinch constantly offers. Currently, they are offering Jewish Link readers the generous deal of “$20 off the first $100 spent on a first purchase.” The promo code for this deal is: CINCHIT. Download the Cinch app to get started (Find it in the app store currently under Cinch Delivers), or visit www.cinchdelivers.com.

By Miri Wagner

 Bergenfield’s Miri Wagner is a Queens College junior and a summer intern at The Jewish Link.