Knives. Ship. Free.

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is my new knife dealer. I’ve been lurking over on KnivesShipFree for quite sometime now. Recently I decided to purchase a Great Eastern Cutlery Sleeveboard (#26) as I’ve had a bit of a resurgence with slip joints. I find myself obsessing over them with Greg Gurdak who frankly is a bad influence. We lurk KnivesShipFree as well as Face Book groups such as Slipjoint Paradigm, and then Ebay sending links to knives back and forth regularly. While surfing through KnivesShipFree I found myself returning to the #26 by Great Eastern Cutlery in Buffalo Horn and just had to have it. Greg recently gifted me a KABAR Doghead Coppersmith slipjoint so I thought I’d do the same for him. I messaged him and asked his thoughts on the #26 and he said it was on his short list and that he liked the Ruby Red. So, I signed up for an account and I purchased the Great Eastern Cutlery #26 in Ruby Red for Gurdak and the #26 in Buffalo Horn for myself.

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Instantly I was no longer a lurker. I was a part of the KnivesShipFree family. I say family because honestly that’s how Derrick Bohn makes you feel. I immediately received a welcome email and then an introduction video. Yes, I said video. He actually sent an introduction video. All of this while they traveled across the country moving from Oregon to Michigan and during a Holiday weekend. Each step of the way when the knives I purchased moved along in the shipment process I received an email communication telling me what was going on with my shipment. And when it shipped I received an email with my tracking number. The package arrived via free shipping a few days later and inside was a KnivesShipFree branded leather slip sheath as well as a hand written postcard from Derrick. Now, I’ve been buying knives for sometime and never have I received such fantastic customer service and on top of that I was made to feel like I was part of the KnivesShipFree family. Now I understand that the emails were automatic but he wrote them in such a way that it felt like he was speaking to me not just some customer. I think Derrick Bohn has me hooked and I’m sure that was his ploy all along. I enjoyed my buying experience so much I sent Derrick a message and asked if he would answer a few questions about his business for the FloridaKnifeGroup family.

Upon signing up for an account with KnivesShipFree I began receiving email notifications from your company regarding the status of my purchase as well as an Introduction video. You obviously value communication. I’ve not experienced that kind of customer service with other knife retailers. Can you talk about how and why you value communication with your customers?
We spent a lot of time working to make sure all of our automated messaging is good for the customer. I went through and wrote them as if I were writing each individual person.

I feel like that communication is very important because when a customer purchases a knife from us, they are spending a lot of hard earned money and they need to know the progress of their order.

We began doing business back when ordering over the internet was a little sketchy and so we wanted to make sure we let people know they were working with a real company that actually cared about them and their business.

As far as the follow up emails, we want to provide helpful information for people to enjoy their new knives.

In reviewing your web site it would appear you are very selective in the knives that you stock for your customers. How do you decide what knives are offered through KnivesShipFree?
Great Question. I have a rule. No Junk. We don’t violate that rule.

My bread and butter knives are knives that you can’t just pick up anywhere. They are knives that are beautiful, functional and often hard to get.

We want knives that come from companies and makers that have a great reputation of #1 producing quality knives and #2 take good care of their customers. We have hit some home runs and we have missed a few, but on the whole, we have great knives from great companies.

The name of your company is KnivesShipFree. I noticed that I could choose to have free shipping or I could pay for upgraded shipping. I chose the free shipping because… well why pay more than I need to? You used USPS and I still received the package within two days of the shipping receipt from you. When you started the company what made you decide to offer free shipping and name your company KnivesShipFree?
That one is easy. When we began, every other knife site on the planet gouged people for shipping and we wanted to distinguish ourselves from them. It was a hit.

As time progressed, people started having very strong opinions on how things should be shipped and so we offered people a choice at a price. Most of our customers still use our free shipping.

It is quite obvious you have a passion for knives. What knife started it all for you?
It was a buck stockman of some sort given to me by my maternal grandfather. He always had one in his pocket and it was a whittler. I wanted to be like him and once my parents gave the green light, he handed me a brand new knife of my very own.
In reviewing your web site, while it appears you are selective in what you sell you also have a great variety of a wide range of knife types. What kind of knives do you, as a knife lover, personally carry?
I use and carry a variety of knives. I almost always have a Northwoods slipjoint in my pocket, but I also almost always have a Benchmade 761 or a ZT0770 in my pocket as well. When I carry a fixed blade, it is always a Bark River.
I noticed that over the Labor Day weekend you moved your operations. Will you have a brick and mortar store in your new home state or will you cater specifically to internet sales?
We will have both. The brick and mortar is almost all set up and ready to go. It will always be secondary to the internet sales, but I, personally, love working with the retail store and so it will always be a part of our business.
What can we expect to see from KnivesShipFree in the future? Do you have any specific knife makers or knife companies that you plan to add to the line up? Are there any special projects coming down the pipeline
One of the keys to our success is searching out and finding new and innovative knife makers and products. We are in the process of adding a number of regionally known custom knife makers that I believe will really impress people. I know I am impressed.

We have some new Northwoods coming and those are always popular.

I noticed on Friday you sent out an email regarding “Weekly Deals” . Does this happen every Friday? If so How do you decide what lands in the “Weekly Deals” email?
We send that out every week. It is crazy how much people look forward to that email each week. If we are just a bit late with it (a few hours) we have emails of people wondering if it is coming.

I try to put the knives that arrived that week in the newsletter. Sometimes I feature something we are running a special on.

In reviewing your FAQ Page I found some very helpful questions and some very comical questions. What is the funniest question you’ve had to answer?
I suppose it was the guy who called in and was upset that the sound his knife made when it opened was different from another. He proceeded to make the sounds to help me understand.

I’m hooked on KnivesShipFree. If you’re looking for a reputable knife dealer? A knife dealer that communicates with you and cares? Derrick Bohn with KnivesShipFree is your answer. Check out his introduction video below and head on over and check out his wide array of knives. There is something for everyone.

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2 Responses

  1. Aaron Johnson Aaron Johnson says:

    Great article and interview JR! I am intrigued and will check out knivesshipfree!

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