Top 2022 resources on products
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11 Companies on Pinterest That Are Crushing It
If you think Pinterest is just a place to find recipes and fine-tune wedding planning details, think again. With over 431 million users coming to Pinterest every month to look for inspiration, Pinterest is an effective platform for building your audience and getting your product in front of potential customers who are ready to buy.
Topics: products, product, search, account, companies, crushing, pinterest, users, brand, brands, content, pins.
20 Platforms to Sell Digital Products
Creators and merchants are producing innovative ebooks, courses, software, and more. Here's our all-new update of ecommerce platforms that sell and manage digital goods.
Topics: goods, plans, courses, digital, software, platforms, products, platform, sell, price, start.
20 Top Selling Shops on Etsy
Etsy is the go-to marketplace for sellers of unique, handmade jewelry, crafts, gifts, and creative supplies. Here are the top 20 shops on Etsy.
Topics: selling, shop, sale, jewelry, shops, sells, offers, leather, supplies, products, etsy, transactions.
25 Home Based Business Ideas That Let You Work From Home
When you think of owning and operating a business, you might think about renting commercial real estate, commuting to an office, or managing employees. But there are plenty of ways you can pursue entrepreneurship with your headquarters at home.More
Topics: based, start, selling, business, sell, online, let, ideas, homebased, products, youre, work, create, social.
3 Sure-Fire Ways to Drive More Online Demand for Your Products
Use these three levers to drive the best online traffic to your product pages.
Topics: products, conversion, surefire, quality, need, product, consumers, digital, demand, brands, content, traffic, online, ways, destiny, drive.
47 of the Best Affiliate Programs That Pay the Highest Commission
Every day, thousands of publishers benefit from a recurring cash inflow by partnering up with other companies via affiliate programs.
Topics: website, earn, commission, affiliate, programs, program, products, life, marketing, highest, pay, online, best.
5 Content Marketing Ideas for February 2022
Content marketing drives search engine rankings and inbound traffic. Every month since 2014 we've published a list of content ideas for ecommerce merchants. This February 2022 installment includes topics such as National Freedom Day, Bob Marle's birthday, and more.
Topics: ideas, american, shoe, marketing, day, publish, heart, content, national, freedom, products, month.
5 Content Marketing Ideas for May 2022
The May 2022 installment of our long-running content ideas series suggests focusing on competitors, specialized reports, local content, product profiles, and "National Brother's Day."
Topics: brothers, shoes, day, industry, produce, products, content, marketing, example, shipping, ideas.
5 Examples of Off-site Social Proof
Social proof can reassure shoppers that a merchant's products are worth buying. We addressed on-site social proof examples in January. This piece looks at off-site uses.
Topics: example, consumers, products, proof, examples, testimonials, product, page, social, endorsement, offsite, instagram.
5 Often Overlooked Ways to Thrive on Walmart Marketplace
Learn how to grow your business by harnessing this emerging ecommerce platform to its fullest potential.
Topics: overlooked, customers, images, thrive, ways, product, walmart, marketplace, shipping, sure, strict, pricing, products.
5 Social Commerce Must-haves for 2022
Social media is upending global ecommerce. In China, the world's largest ecommerce market, online buying is a social experience, with live-streaming, in-app purchases, and content. Elsewhere, Facebook's impact will only increase given its massive size, native data collection, and growing set of ecommerce tools. Here are five social commerce must-haves for 2022.
Topics: influencer, musthaves, commerce, content, ar, instagram, social, media, audiences, ecommerce, products.
6 Try Before You Buy Brands [+What Marketers Can Learn]
Recently, I took a leap of faith and bought leggings online.
Topics: marketers, try, buy, items, mattress, customers, consumers, trial, shopping, products, trybeforeyoubuy, brands, learn.
7 Business Models for Monetizing Digital Content
This post was originally published Novemeber 4th 2012 and has been updated to include more descriptions and add relevancy.
In our latest webinar Monetizing Content in a World of Digital Disruption I covered a number of examples from across industries of innovative ways to get paid for digital products and content.
While I encourage you to check out the replay for all the juicy details, this post recaps the various business models represented by the examples.
"Just free" is a legitimate business model, though not a sustainable one (unless you're lucky enough to get bought out by a big fish). Many startups charge nothing in order to get a critical mass of users and word of mouth before figuring out how to profit (think Twitter in its early years). While it's not a viable long-term strategy, it can make sense in the short-term. (Remember, no business is married to just one business model over the life of a product or service.)
Simply free may also be a way to drive sales in another channel. For example, the software is free, but the company makes money on services and/or sister products.
The subscription model is common for all types of digital content - software, gaming, e-newspapers, e-magazines, telco services and streaming content (Netflix, Hulu, Spotify). Many of these types of content use paywalls.
A paywall is a method restricting content to members that pay a fee to the platform. They perform by interrupting content and urge viewers to subscribe to create an account.
Paywalls may be presented immediately, after a free trial, or be "metered," appearing after a certain number of page views or content views/listens. 78% of newspapers use a metered paywall, which allows them to generate more ad revenue than shutting visitors out.
Publishers can experiment with "soft paywall" alternatives like Google Consumer Surveys and Double Recall - interactive surveys and ad-units that provide inexpensive market research for brands and greater recall than banner ads.
Selling content by subscription is getting harder for newspapers, and publishers must figure out how to mitigate disruption from news aggregator apps like Apple News, The Week and Flipboard. Curated news is gaining popularity, but it threatens the appeal of subscribing to individual publications while at the same time potentially drawing in new customers. For example, the New York Times allows its subscribers full access to stories through Flipboard, while non-subscribers see only the top 10 stories in full text. Non-subscribers are given the opportunity to subscribe, and teasers within Flipboard may create that desire to unlock full access. However, revenue driven through Flipboard must be shared with Flipboard.
We have even seen habits shift to a Twitter-like summary of the news, rather than full articles. A 17 year-old recently raised millions in capital for his app that shrinks daily news down to 3 or 4 paragraphs. Says the teen founder “I designed Summly because I felt that my generation wasn’t consuming news in the traditional way any more."
However, other subscription verticals like gaming, software and media are thriving, themselves disrupting the old model of ownership of physical products.
Microtransactions are what they sound, piece-meal access to digital content and applications, being either pay-to-play (streaming content, time-limited access to content or applications) or pay-to-own (download a track, movie, article, image, etc.) This model pre-dates the common use of the Internet - think pay-per-view movies and sports and arcade games.
iTunes is a prime example of a microtransaction model, and O'Reilly publishing has been offering books by the chapter for years. Newer examples include Google's freshly launched micropayments option for Wallet users (a paywall alternative for publishers).
The question remains whether this model will work for news and magazine articles, which are typically one-time reads, where music and video track downloads are more sticky.
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The hallmark of freemium model is offering basic features for a product or services to consumers at no cost but charging a premium fee to access more advances features. There are a few variations of this model:
Free and paid version (e.g. lite use and power use, personal vs. business use, ad-supported vs. ad-free, basic vs. enhanced features, etc.)
Free with in-product transactions (e.g. virtual goods and currency in-game, which accounts for 72% of Apple App Store revenue)
Free and premium with microtransactions (buy ad-free Angry Birds, buy levels and goods within the game)
Ad-supported free products are common across digital verticals, from newspapers and magazines to games and software, on-demand video, music services and social networks. But it goes beyond banner ads. Viggle was an example of innovative ad opportunities in the mis 2000's
Its second-screen app (companion to television) is not only free for users, but rewards users for engagement with TV shows and ads through its own loyalty program. Points accrued from check-ins to favorite TV shows, ad viewing, trivia and other actions are redeemable for real gift cards like Starbucks, Amazon, Groupon, Fandango and Facebook. This differentiates it from other second-screen apps like GetGlue.
Another differentiator is its own proprietary audio recognition technology (similar to Shazam) that verifies a user is watching a program.
The company's also created new ways to watch TV, like MyGuy, a fantasy sports app that allows you to pick your star player for a game, and win extra points when your player is doing well.
Ad revenue comes from TV networks looking to promote their shows and brands that advertise within the app. A TV show pays for point value, which increases the attractiveness of checking into the show. They may also pay for placements in other contests and promotions.
The long-term goal for Viggle was to become an AdWords-like platform where network shows use real-time bidding to drive tune-ins and engagement for their shows. Unfortunately Viggle's goals were shortlived with the advancement of more technology
Today we have Google Play Movies & TV and AMC app which continuously provide content you may be interested in to keep you on the app. For example, if you are watching a tv show they have prompts to upsell sound track and additional content based on what you are watching.
Back in the mid 2000's there use to be Kindles with ads and sponsored screensavers are available at a discount price. This was great for its time, but over the years we have shifted digitally and most freemium models have been provided for software instead like with DropBox and Trello. For DropBox you get access to a limited amount of storage space for free but if you want to get more, you have to pay a premium. Similarly, Trello gives access to all of its boards for free but if you want to integrate it the app with any other system, you have to pay a premium.
The affiliate model is essentially based on commissions. This model allows your company to be compensated for generating traffic, leads, or sales to another company's products and services. These are usually tracked through coded affiliate links. Let's take a look at Shazam for example.
Shazam is an audio recognition app that helps you discover or remember who sings that song you're hearing right now. "Tagging" a song searches its database and presents the answer along with affiliate links to download tracks or buy tickets to local gigs.
Shazam began as all-free, and moved to a freemium model. Its free version was limited to 5 song tags per month, and unlimited access for a one-time payment of $4.99.
Down the road, Shazam dumped its freemium scheme for free-for-all access, a move that can potentially increase it's revenue greatly. Providing everyone unlimited tagging widens its opportunity for affiliate revenue. More tags = wider funnel.
Services like Spotify license content from record labels and independent artists, Hulu and Netflix from Hollywood. Software products white-label. Publishers syndicate content. There are many examples of licensing digital goods.
Beyond content, innovators can license their proprietary technology to others. Shazam could license audio recognition technology to other companies to add an additional revenue stream.
Many content producers are sitting on piles of existing and legacy content that can be remixed into new experiences and licensed to third parties. I covered Pearson's API on the Elastic Path blog, along with 7 other wicked applications of commerce APIs.
The Last.fm music service sits on a mound of listener data, and can offer advertisers highly targeted campaign opportunities. An example is for Puma's Deadmau5 running shoe. The brand was able to target the band's fans within a social network using Last.fm's technology features.
Selling data is an opportunity for additional revenue for digital products and services that collect it.
Similarly, pieces of content can be remixed into new products, or derivative products, used internally or licensed to developers. Two examples mentioned in the webinar are Hark and Eyewitness.
Hark is a YouTube for audio clips from popular movies, TV shows and even political quotes (how timely). It streams sound files and enables social sharing and embedding, with links to rent or buy full content from Amazon.
Guardian's Eyewitness mobile app features its famous photographs, repurposed for iPad. The app is freemium, sponsored by Canon (a fitting partnership). Free users get a daily photo, paid users get an extra 3 photos per day and sports photos for £1.49 per month.
More examples can be found in our webinar, available on demand: Monetizing Content in a World of Digital Disruption.
Topics: app, users, products, digital, free, monetizing, business, access, tv, revenue, models, model, content.
8 Ways Social Proof Sells (Much) More
Consumers need confirmation of their shopping decisions. Social proof can be the nudge for online shoppers to complete a purchase or sign up for a newsletter.
Topics: proof, reviews, products, include, page, sells, social, shoppers, purchases, display, share, ways.
9 Product Category Marketing Examples to Inspire Your Own
Imagine shopping at a grocery store that doesn't have any signs pointing you in the right direction. Odds are you'd spend a lot of time wandering the aisles until you found what you needed.
Topics: products, dog, consumers, product, categories, inspire, marketing, company, works, examples, category, brand.
9 Types of Influencer Marketing Campaigns
How, exactly, should ecommerce marketers use influencers? Blog posts, social media, videos, other? We explain nine types of proven campaigns.
Topics: sales, marketing, build, influencer, influencers, campaigns, brand, campaign, drive, types, products, example, product.
A Model for Choosing Products to Sell
Commodities typically have lower profit margins than manufactured goods or transformational products. For merchants, understanding the difference could determine success or failure.
Topics: manufactured, competition, product, model, profit, face, sell, gilmore, choosing, pine, products, relatively, goods.
A ShopWired Review: Is This The Best Solution for UK Entrepreneurs?
If you’re a wannabe UK entrepreneur looking to dabble in the waters of eCommerce, you’re in the right place. Today we’re reviewing ShopWired, a UK-centric eCommerce platform. More specifically, we’re listing ShopWired’s most notable features and pricing so that hopefully,…
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Topics: best, solution, uk, products, shopwired, customer, customers, variations, entrepreneurs, review, platform, product, stock, create.
Amazon is Primed for online domination
We talk about bulls in china shops, but what about bulls running through the streets of entire shopping districts, or other neighborhoods? This morning, Amazon unveiled a new feature that will test just how much of a bull it can be online — beyond its own china shop, so to speak. Prime — its membership-based […]
Topics: shopping, domination, primed, amazons, thirdparty, prime, merchants, free, techcrunch, pay, amazon, online, products.
Amazon must pay $2M and end program after price-fixing investigation by Washington AG
Amazon must pay $2.25 million and permanently shut down a previously suspended sales program, following an investigation and lawsuit by the attorney general of Washington alleging it was essentially price fixing. “Sold By Amazon” basically worked like this. Amazon would contact a third-party seller and they would agree on a minimum price for an item. […]
Topics: shut, amazon, pricefixing, end, program, ag, sellers, products, pay, profits, sold, investigation, 2m, price, washington, ags, techcrunch.
Ampla raises $40M Series A for its business of providing credit to commerce brands
Ampla Technologies, a startup that provides financing to small-to-medium sized consumer-facing businesses, announced today it has raised $40 million in a Series A round of funding co-led by VMG Partners and Forerunner Ventures. Existing backer Core Innovation Capital also put money in the round. Shortly before and separately from the equity investment, Ampla has also […]
Topics: million, financing, techcrunch, products, ampla, ecommerce, businesses, working, raises, commerce, brands, series, capital, providing, credit, 40m, business.
Ankorstore reaches $2 billion valuation two years after launching its wholesale marketplace
French startup Ankorstore has raised a $283 million Series C funding round (€250 million). Founded in November 2019, it took Ankorstore around two years to reach a post-money valuation of $2 billion (€1.75 billion). The company operates a wholesale marketplace for independent retailers across Europe. Ankorstore lets independent brands sell their products to independent retailers. […]
Topics: retailers, products, working, startup, billion, marketplace, wholesale, ankorstore, brands, items, launching, company, reaches, techcrunch, valuation.
BNPL in 2022: 4 fintech investors discuss regulation, trends and how to stand out
To get a better picture of where the BNPL market is at right now, we spoke with four active investors about their expectations for the space, upcoming regulation, scalability, default risk and more.
Topics: credit, regulation, stand, fintech, discuss, products, financial, believe, investors, opportunities, bnpl, companies, techcrunch, financing, consumer, trends, market.
Best Ecommerce Platform for Artists in 2022
Choosing the best ecommerce platform for artists is one of the most important initial steps you’ll take as a creator to sell your work online. The digital landscape, with its host of easy-to-use website builders and sales tools, has opened…
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Topics: artists, online, website, access, best, sell, ecommerce, platform, month, selling, package, products.
Blidz raises $6.6M to expand its Pinduoduo-inspired social shopping app
Gamification and social hooks have become cornerstones across every category of consumer apps these days, and today one that’s using these to build out a new e-commerce platform in Europe is announcing a seed round to give its growth a boost. Blidz — a social shopping app that offers big discounts (many items in categories […]
Topics: pinduoduoinspired, diercks, 66m, social, goods, blidz, shopping, market, raises, products, app, techcrunch, platform, little, expand, pinduoduo.
Branch carves out new furniture collection as folks return to the office
Customers can purchase premium furniture without having to go through a dealer, saving on average 50% over buying from traditional retailers.
Topics: business, office, collection, techcrunch, return, company, carves, furniture, folks, hayes, products, including, branch, way.
Brand Values: A Competitive Advantage for Your Business
Build life-long customers and differentiate from competitors by developing enduring brand values for your business.More
Topics: products, better, advantage, company, brand, business, values, companies, companys, businesses, competitive, customers.
Calii bags $22.5M to build Latin America’s grocery shopping future
The mobile grocery app automates the supply chain, enabling customers to choose over 5,000 products delivered via a network of micro-fulfillment centers in less than two hours.
Topics: grocery, company, products, 225m, arrambide, techcrunch, market, montemayor, bags, items, calii, savings, shopping, supply, build, americas, latin, future.
Canada Fulfillment Services for Brands Inside Canada (And Shipping there)
Whether your company is in Canada or you'd like to ship to Canadian customers, it's important to find a Canada-focused fulfillment service that provides fast shipping, high-quality storage environments, and affordable rates. The goal of this article is to identify…
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Topics: fulfillment, shipping, shiphype, services, costs, inside, products, brands, shipbob, orders, canada, shopify.
Craving ‘wild’ foods? Foraged’s marketplace uncovers all that and more
The community marketplace for wild and specialty foods provides foragers with a place to sell food items they dig up.
Topics: sell, hamrick, food, products, foraged, uncovers, craving, marketplace, foods, techcrunch, forageds, foragers, company, mushroom, specialty, wild.
Don't Build an Ecommerce Site If You Don't Have These 7 Things Covered
If handled correctly, your ecommerce platform can provide a solid basis for success.
Topics: experience, covered, dont, site, help, website, providing, customer, things, strong, products, build, customers, ecommerce.
Ecommerce and Creator Tools Will Merge
If engagement is central to broad economic growth, creators are a key financial driver. And that could give rise to a new generation of tools and services.
Topics: economy, creator, shopify, merge, engagement, ecommerce, tools, creators, products, marketing, software.
Egyptian social commerce startup Brimore raises $25M led by IFC and Endure Capital
The Egyptian social e-commerce market will be worth over $14.8 billion by 2024. The opportunity in the market can be attributed to the growth in online social sellers in the country, over 1.25 million them, helping little-known brands sell and distribute their goods via different networks. Brimore–a market leader in the country and, to an […]
Topics: commerce, raises, sellers, techcrunch, products, led, endure, brimore, market, platform, suppliers, capital, ifc, infrastructure, egyptian, different, startup, social.
Facebook Marketing: An 11-Step Guide to Growing Your Business on Facebook
Topics: facebook, growing, guide, products, page, audience, target, marketing, 11step, content, media, followers, business.
February 2022 Top 10: Our Most Popular Posts
Of the roughly 40 articles we published in February, readers preferred topics related to content marketing, SEO, influencer marketing, and B2B ecommerce — to name a few.
Topics: popular, articles, consumers, workspace, published, read, reality, products, rundown, posts, month, ecommerce.
Fed-up Toy Company Responds to Knock-offs
Viahart is a manufacturer of educational toys. Having experienced repeated intellectual property theft, its owner, Molson Hart, responded with a new company, Edison Litigation Financing.
Topics: toy, viahart, fedup, lot, company, knockoffs, intellectual, pay, products, reporting, responds, amazon, selling, sell, brand.
Former Ecommerce CEO Asks, ‘What’s Next?’
Entrepreneurs can find themselves looking for work rather than hiring it. That's the case of Andrew Faris, a successful digital marketer and ecommerce aggregator.
Topics: asks, products, career, im, amazon, youre, ecommerce, dont, modern, need, brands, whats, ceo, million.
Gelato Review: Is This POD Solution Worth Considering?
The print-on-demand business is on the up. So it’s undoubtedly a business area worth digging into a little deeper. In fact, the global print-on-demand market is expected to reach $10,810m by 2027. That's a projected growth of almost 34% per…
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Topics: free, print, product, gelatos, solution, pod, considering, gelato, printondemand, products, images, shipping, worth, review, design.
How 25 Brands Are Using Instagram Stories
There are over 200 Million businesses on Instagram. And, according to the platform, 90% of people on Instagram follow a business.
Topics: great, using, products, content, instagram, customers, product, audiences, example, youre, brands, brand.
How 3 Childhood Friends Without Business Experience Built “The Best Brand in Denmark”
In this episode of Shopify Masters, we chat with the founders of the recently named “best brand in Denmark,” Shaping New Tomorrow. The three friends, Christian Aachmann, Kasper Ulrich, and Christoffer Bak were able to disrupt the menswear industry, build multiple physical stores, and scale beyond 8-figures in annual sales.More
Topics: experience, childhood, pants, menswear, friends, tomorrow, shaping, built, good, scale, denmark, brand, best, business, lot, really, products.
How FactoryPure Mastered Google Ads and Scaled to 8-Figures in Annual Sales
In their quest to alleviate their allergies, brothers Eugene and Michael Ravitsky procured the ideal air purifier together they launched FactoryPure, and expanded their business to include heaters, generators, air compressors, and other household machinery. In this episode of Shopify Masters, Eugene shares their strategy to finding eight-figure success in a high cost, low margin industry.More
Topics: annual, keywords, actually, sales, product, generators, didnt, factorypure, scaled, products, lot, ads, theres, google, mastered, 8figures.
How Fluide Weathered the Rise and Fall of Lipstick During the Pandemic
After falling during the pandemic, lipstick sales are on the rise once again. Here’s how one beauty brand is handling the trend.More
Topics: fluide, products, fall, launched, sales, really, pandemic, weathered, lip, mask, rise, lipstick, laura.
How Information Design Drives Conversions
Understanding visitors' goals and the steps you want them to take will help determine the layout of your site's information. We explain in this post, using four examples.
Topics: drives, objections, free, action, conversions, simple, information, proof, design, products, signupfocus, newsletter, magnet, ingredients.
How Merchants Combat Inflation without Raising Prices
Inflation could be an opportunity for merchants to improve their businesses. Subscriptions, updated products, new markets, heightened productivity — all are potential alternatives to raising consumer prices.
Topics: retailers, products, combat, example, inflation, raising, market, prices, business, company, upset, merchants, price.
How This Founder Built A 7-Figure Business While Keeping A Full-Time Job
Roc Pilon was just 19 years old when he turned his passion for power lifting and working out into a business. He launched Gymreapers, an equipment and apparel company that makes affordable, stylish products or gym goers and athletes. In this episode of Shopify Masters, Roc shares his methodical approach to building a multimillion dollar business—all while working full time.More
Topics: business, fulltime, market, 7figure, product, dont, need, brand, job, built, able, products, youre, founder, work, keeping.
How to Break Into the Creator Economy in a Digital Age
More than 50 million people worldwide consider themselves to be creators -- here's how they're doing it.
Topics: creator, writers, media, age, economy, break, youre, successful, digital, social, way, content, products.
How to Create Product Variations With Elastic Path Commerce Cloud?
Since the emergence of eCommerce, marketers, merchandisers, and catalog managers have been continuously tasked with the difficult responsibility of creating streamlined online experiences that mimic the personalized, in-store shopping experiences that we are all accustomed to. However, rather than having customers available to interact with your products and sales associates directly, to help them easily find exactly what they’re looking for, your teams now have to design new functionality to achieve the same goals.
One of the more challenging functionality that eCommerce teams have struggled with is product variation. As a merchandiser, you want to be able to clearly present all the options you have available for your products to make it easier for customers to visualize them and influence a potential sale. This is no easy feat with antiquated, traditional eCommerce platforms. In this article we’ll walk through how you can easily tackle product variations with Elastic Path Commerce Cloud.
What are Product Variations?
Product variations refer to the options that are available for customers to choose from, that relate to a parent product. This can be better explained using footwear. Let’s say you manage a shoe store that sells the Runner 5000 running sneaker (the parent product). That running sneaker could come in different: colors (black, blue, white, gold); fits (standard, wide, narrow); sizes (6-13); and fabrics (canvas, nylon, recycled). Each combination built from these options is known as a child product, and together all make up the complete product variation list for that parent product. The same idea could be applied to our phones that come in different colors, sizes, and memory storage, or our furniture that comes in different dimensions, materials, fabrics and more.
Product variations essentially represent the combination of options by which a parent product varies. Providing these variations under a single product brings great value to the customer, as it grants them a way to easily navigate between the various combinations and find exactly what they’re looking for instead of searching through endless product listing pages. However, many traditional legacy platforms have not been able to keep up with the needs of eCommerce teams to create and manage their product variations.
The Problems Merchandisers Face Today
Most traditional platforms like Salesforce Commerce Cloud and Shopify, and even modern solutions like Commercetools, only allow for 200 variations at a time. This can be quite burdensome for fashion, apparel, furniture, and cosmetic brands that come in thousands of variations. Due to the limitation in variations, eCommerce teams are usually forced to devise strategies for how they can break up their high degree of product variations into smaller categories, in order for them to work within their platform’s restraints. This ultimately leads to less efficiency, delayed launches and less time left for experimentation and innovation with other digital strategies.
Lack of Customizations
In addition to variation limits, traditional legacy platforms also lack the flexibility to allow eCommerce teams to customize their child product variations. Traditionally, when child products are generated from a parent product, they inherit all of the same product attributes, such as price and product details etc. These platforms were built in a way that causes products and attributes to be tightly coupled together. This makes it very difficult to isolate and customize each child product to allow for separate merchandising. For example, let’s say you wanted to spin up a Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign, that would group all pink products under a new category with sale prices. Rather than being able to leverage your pre-existing product data to build your new category, you would be forced to build each product again with the new corresponding pricing for that campaign. This type of process limits the ability for your merchandising team to move quickly and capitalize on unique campaigns that appeal to your customers.
However, with the newly launched product variations inside of Product Content Management from Elastic Path Commerce Cloud, these problems are issues of the past!
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How Can I Create and Manage Product Variations with Elastic Path?
Product Variations from Elastic Path eliminates the need of coping with painstaking workarounds and allows you to create and manage up to 10,000 variations in seconds. Compared to traditional platforms that only allow for 200 variations, this is a 50X increase in the industry standard. In addition, the decoupled architecture of Product Content Management also allows you to leverage one product data repository to build and customize many catalogs within the same store, for multiple uses. This means brands will now have the flexibility to use their existing product data and customize different attributes and child products to build different catalogs for different users and occasions for innovative merchandising.
Follow along with the video below and see how easy it is to set up your product variations.
You can also follow along with the steps below:
Step 1: Navigate to Products under Product Content Management in the menu to the left.
Step 2: Navigate to Configurations under Product Content Management in the side menu bar.
Step 3: Navigate to Variations under the Configurations menu.
Step 4: Click “Add Variation” to create your new variation.
Step 5: Name your variation.
Step 6: Click “Next” to add your options.
Step 7: Create a name and a description for each option you create. (Ensure that there are no spaces in your naming convention. You can use hyphens “-” to separate words). Add as many variations until you need.
Step 8: Add as many variations until you need.
Step 9: Repeat steps 4-8 until you have recorded all of your variations.
Step 10: Navigate to your parent product under Products in the side menu bar.
Step 11: Click into your parent product and navigate to the Variations tab.
Step 12: Click “Associate Variation” and each variation you want to be associated with the product.
Step 13: Once you have associated all the desired variations, under Child Products click “Rebuild Variations” and you’re done!
Once you’ve built your child products, all child products will appear under the Products and you will have access to customize each child product as you see fit. It’s that easy!
This has already begun to save many of our customers a lot of time and hassle when merchandising their products. We hope this was helpful and as always, if you have any questions on how this functionality works or would like to learn more, you can always reach out to us!
Topics: commerce, parent, product, child, products, cloud, path, variation, navigate, platforms, ecommerce, elastic, create, different, variations.
How to Design a Character for Your Brand
Have you ever searched stock image websites and thought, None of these truly represent my brand?
Topics: using, company, products, characters, brand, business, product, marketing, customers, character, design.
How to Get Your Brand Into An Oscars Gift Bag
Come behind the scenes to find out how products are chosen for the lavish gift bags that are given out to nominees at the Oscars, Grammys, and other award ceremonies.More
Topics: brand, product, bag, óscar, worth, products, nominees, oscars, bags, media, chai, gift.
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How to Make Money on Pinterest: 9 Ways to Monetize Your Pinterest Account
Home to countless cookie recipes, laughable memes, and perfect last-minute gift ideas, there's certainly already a lot to love about Pinterest. But what if we told you that it’s possible to make money on Pinterest?
Topics: keywords, users, account, products, shoppable, ways, content, traffic, links, monetize, pinterest, pins, affiliate, money.
How to Sell CBD Online
The CBD market is booming, and the growth of eCommerce will only amplify it. Now is the time to build and launch a CBD online store. Learn how to build your website and get the top tips for boosting your CBD sales.
Why you Should Look to Start a CBD Online Store?
1. The CBD Market is Growing
CBD is a budding business.The cannabidiol (CBD) market is booming but starting this post with a pun was unavoidable.
In a report released from the Brightfield Group, a company specializing in predictive consumer and market intelligence for the CBD and cannabis industries, they noted CBD sales are expected to reach $20 billion by 2022, with a compound annual growth rate of 147%. While forecasts aren’t set in stone, historical numbers can’t lie.
Ninety-seven percent of cannabis users primarily took CBD for chronic pain relief, while 50% of 100 respondents said they used CBD to reduce stress or anxiety. Looking at the same CBD usage statistics, 45% stated they took CBD to improve a sleep disorder, most commonly insomnia.
Numbers aside, it’s hard to miss the explosive growth and use of CBD products. People of all ages, backgrounds, and lifestyles seem to be avid consumers and it feels like almost everyone has experimented with various forms of CBD for one reason or another. It is truly becoming a mainstream component of today’s culture, which means there is a huge market opportunity for business owners.
Whether you’re already in the CBD business, or looking to break in, now is the time to launch your online store. For those with brick-and-mortar shops who might be wondering whether to expand, you honestly don’t have a choice. Taking an omni-channel approach to your CBD business will be the key driver behind continued success and growth, because if you don’t, your competitors will.
2. ECommerce in General is Exploding
In the United States, sales of CBD in the e-commerce channel are forecast to increase from approximately two billion U.S. dollars in 2021 to more than six billion U.S. dollars by 2026.
The new shopping mindset of the consumer is pushing more companies than ever to turn their sights to the internet, and you don’t want to get left behind.
3. The Constraints around CBD Have Loosened
The passing of the 2018 Farm Bill federally legalized the production and sale of industrial hemp in the U.S., the plant where CBD derives. Legislation helped facilitate explosive growth in CBD products by reclassifying CBD and disassociating the compound from its cousin, THC, giving growers and businesses the ability to legally manufacture, sell, and ship hemp-derived products. This in turn gave consumers easier access to CBD, and as we know today, convenience in shopping is everything.
Positive public perception surrounding weed in general is on the rise with legislators on both sides of the aisle looking to support the full legalization of cannabis.
More than two in three Americans (68%) support legalizing marijuana, maintaining the record high level, according to a Gallup poll. The same research shows Democrats (83%) in support of full legalization, with Independents coming in at 71%, and Republicans on the fence at 50% supporting full legalization.
4. Consumer Demand is High
From recreational use to treating everyday anxiety and stress, or even alleviating the symptoms of more serious medical conditions like Parkinson’s or PTSD, the reasons for consuming CBD are expanding, and just as with any product, consumers like having options.
You can find CBD coffee shops as well as established spas offering CBD massages. Companies even sell CBD pet products. From CBD oil to gummies, chocolates, creams, supplements, vapes, or even chap stick and nasal spray, manufacturers and distributors are getting more creative with what products they’re infusing with CBD.
The Bottom Line is Consumers Want CBD. The Demand is There.
Nine million people started using CBD for the first time due to the pandemic; on average Americans spend an average of $20–$80 per month on CBD.
One in three American adults have used CBD oil, and over 66% of the population is familiar with the product. Moreover, about 40% are using it for chronic pain relief.
What does the average CBD oil user look like? 20% of U.S. adults aged 18-29 personally use CBD products, with the percentages decreasing as the age groups progress.
An expanded customer base means more potential sales and opportunities for your CBD business, but it also means you need to find and define your ideal customer and product. The first step, however, is making sure your business is legal.
Ensuring you Sell CBD Online Legally
The answer to the question, “is it legal to sell CBD online?” is yes and no. If you’re looking to expand your existing company or are interested in starting an online CBD business, I’m sure we don’t have to tell you this, but we’ll restate it anyways – selling CBD oil or other products, online or in-store, is not the same as selling marijuana. They are different; marijuana is in fact still federally classified as a Schedule I narcotic by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).
A Quick Overview: CBD vs. THC
Without getting into the weeds, the high-level differentiation between the two is that the compound CBD is typically extracted from the hemp plant, while tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), is extracted from the cannabis plant. CBD contains minimal to no traces of THC and is non-psychoactive, so it does not affect the brain the same way that THC does (also, if you caught that last pun, I promise there are only one or two more).
While federally legal, CBD is still highly regulated both nationally and at the state level. The Farm Bill shifted oversight from the DEA to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which means there is a whole array of testing that needs to be done and labeling regulations that must be meticulously followed.
States also have the final say as to whether it’s legal to buy, possess, manufacture, or sell CBD products within their borders. Using hemp-based CBD for recreational or medicinal purposes remains illegal in in Idaho and Nebraska.
Do’s and Don’ts of Selling CBD
Know your state-by-state laws. CBD sellers and buyers should know where CBD is legal. This is a two-way street. As a business owner however, you need to ensure that your online CBD store is built to handle the varying regulations.
To legally sell CBD, all products must be within the THC limit of 0.3%. You need to be 100% positive the products you're selling, or if you’re manufacturing and providing wholesale options, that your CBD products follow this guideline and don’t surpass the legal limit.
Do not make health claims. The FDA has issued warning letters against making health claims. While both marijuana and CBD have documented health benefits, there is only one FDA-approved drug that contains CBD at the moment, the epilepsy medication Epidiolex.
Some states have legalized medical marijuana and the grip on CBD is loosening, so the opportunities for researching cannabis and running studies to understand marijuana and CBD benefits are expanding. Until it’s been thoroughly vetted however, it’s best to steer clear of making health claims.
Finally, your products must be labeled correctly. Your label has to say CBD (among other things). This is essential for you to not only ensure your FDA compliant, but for shipping carriers to acknowledge and mail your products.
Finding a CBD distributor whose products comply with FDA regulations is vital, and just like your customers would expect to trust you as a business, you need to know you can trust your source. There are many components to a CBD business, and your distributor is just one piece of the puzzle.
Starting a CBD Online Business
So you’ve decided to dive in. You’ve researched how to sell CBD oil (or other CBD products), sculpted a business plan, and are now ready to build and launch your brand. There are several pieces you need in place to start selling and making revenue.
1. Finding a Reputable CBD Supplier
If you already own a CBD shop, you can skip ahead to part 2. If you’re just getting started and are looking at reselling CBD products that have already been manufactured or are interested in creating your own, you need a high-quality CBD supplier. There are a number in the market today, both U.S.-based and international that you can choose from.
Many wholesalers in the U.S. have been sourcing their CBD from Europe, where farmers have had years more experience in growing hemp, so sourcing from abroad is an option. With the 2018 Farm Bill in place, I would expect the national options to be on the rise.
Regardless, there are two key documents you’ll want to make sure any distributor has - the cGMP and COA.
Certificate of Analysis (COA). Make this mandatory and make sure you know how to read a COA report. It is essential for you to vet the quality of the products or CBD extract you’re purchasing and ensure you’re running a legal business. The COA is a report that provides the test results and analytics (usually run by a separate 3rd party lab), of the supplier’s CBD goods. It will confirm what plant species the CBD was extracted from, the levels of CBD and THC, and verify you’re within your legal 0.3% limit.
The COA will also give you a detailed analysis and the percentage breakdown of the other components that might be found in the CBD, including heavy metals, pesticides used on the plant (sample below), and terpenes, an aromatic oil that is secreted from the plants (it’s what gives off that skunky or sweet smell). If you’re ever in doubt, you can always get a test run yourself. Neither you nor your customers should be surprised by what’s in your products and you don’t want to be responsible for health risks.
Current Goods Manufacturing Practice (cGMP). GMP is set of rules and regulations set forth by administrations, like the FDA, to ensure that products are safe for human consumption by outlining standards for how they’re manufactured, cleaned, packaged, and handed. Manufacturing facilities that meet these standards will be given a certificate, which is a good indicator for you that their practices conform to FDA and individual state guidelines.
2. Building and Launching CBD Websites
Your online store will be your most powerful tool for driving revenue, so you’re going to want to make sure it’s aesthetically pleasing and user-friendly. Ecommerce platforms come in many shapes and offer a myriad of capabilities and features. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. You’ll want to pick one that meets your business requirements.
Option 1: Pre-Built Templates
If you find yourself short of a web developer and need a solution that provides front-end themes, store templates, and other UI components out-of-the-box, companies like Shopify and BigCommerce might be a good choice. Platforms like these will also include other business critical features like shopping carts, but often provide flexibility when it comes to customizing.
Option 2: Custom Stores
If you want to provide a unique shopping experience tailored to your brand and consumer and have decided to go with a custom front-end, you will need an ecommerce solution that provides core services and features like shopping carts, checkout processes, and catalogue management. These pieces will have to tie seamlessly into your website and companies like Elastic Path or Commerce Tools will offer the type of solutions you’ll need.
Either way, an attractive website with easy-to-understand navigation and fast loading times will make your users’ journey convenient and frictionless, the key to a higher conversion for you.
Due to the nature of the CBD and marijuana industry, insurance companies, merchant account providers, and payment processors consider CBD businesses ‘high-risk.’ Many won’t take you on as a customer.
Payment gateways and payment processors are no different, but there are a number that specialize in helping high-risk CDB businesses such as Payment Cloud or Easy Pay Direct. Make sure that whichever provider you choose, you can seamlessly integrate it with your full eCommerce platform or cart and checkout process. Without the ability to accept credit cards and process payments, an online store is pointless.
A note on cannabis-focused cryptocurrency
You can accept payment types outside of the typical credit card payment. For example, CBD companies like BlueBird Botanicals accept cryptocurrency on their website. Accepting and processing cryptocurrency payments gives you a broader array of payment pathways you can give your customers, many of whom may be trading cryptocurrencies.
From household names like BitCoin, to industry specific options like HempCoin, there are a number you can look at. There is some concern that cryptocurrency will fail soon and that this link between industries will flop by association. However, it hasn’t yet and there seem to be close cultural ties between Cryptocurrency providers and CBD supporters, which is why many speculate the two industries have looked to each other for support.
4. Shipping Carriers
With CBD being federally legal, you won’t face a lot of restrictions here, if you make sure you follow the guidelines of whoever you decide on using. The United States Postal Service has guidelines on shipping hemp-based products. UPS will carry your CBD products, just make sure you’re keeping tabs on what’s required.
Top Challenges with Selling CBD Online & Suggested Solutions
Everything we’ve discussed so far is just the tip of the iceberg. Once you’ve guaranteed your CBD products are legal, built your website, and found funding, the real eCommerce challenges begin.
1. Banking and Payment Processing
We just walked through a short overview of why these are important but finding a payment processor and merchant account for your company is probably one of the most frustrating parts of bringing your CBD business plan to life. Providers that specialize in helping ‘high-risk’ merchants usually have higher processing fees, more restrictions, and will give you less time to solve chargeback issues.
If you’re only selling CBD products online, you’ll have to choose a 3rd-party provider that will process payments for CBD goods out of the gate. If you sell other goods and have decided to expand your product catalogue to include CBD, you already have these systems and providers in place.
This means you may need more than one, and your back-end website logic will have to treat CBD products differently. You’ll have to handle any payment restrictions or limitations at the product-level. This will add a lot of complexity to your site architecture and will require a higher degree of customization in the back end.
Resources for Finding online CBD Payment Processors or a Merchant Account for CBD
The Best CBD Merchant Account Providers
CBD Payment Gateways
2. Risk of Losing Access to your 3-party Providers
You’re at the mercy of whichever merchant account provider, eCommerce solution, or payment gateway you choose. It’s not unheard of for these companies to update their acceptable use policies on a whim and add new limitations to what their platforms can be used for. With CBD still a gray area legally, you’re pretty much always at risk of losing access.
Tip for Reducing Risk: Build a website that decouples your front end, or what the customer sees, from the back end and take a component-based approach to building your eCommerce experience. This is a technical tip but taking these steps will give you the flexibility you need to switch vendors quickly if needed and will give you complete control over your website.
What we mean by this is, don’t lock yourself into a single vendor that offers everything ‘out-of-the-box’ with a particular list of integrations they suggest using. Giving yourself options and flexibility will reduce the risk of you losing the ability to keep your business running.
3. Tying State Regulations into your Cart and Checkout Process
If you’re selling a mix of products that aren’t just CBD-based, you need to make sure your online store can implement product-based shipping rules that will guarantee you stay within safe shipping zones depending on what’s in your customer’s cart.
Different taxes may also apply to different goods and depending on the state, so your shopping cart will need to be able to access the right data and apply it accordingly.
4. Competition and Differentiating your Business
Earlier in this post, we talked a lot about the extensive market opportunity that CBD provides business owners and how the rise of ecommerce is geared up to support the continued growth of the industry.
Unfortunately, with opportunity like this, comes great competition. The ‘green-rush’ is very real. Everyone, from your next-door neighbor to your local coffee shop, gas station, and even multi-national organizations are looking to take advantage of this increase in market demand. Many pharmacies and retailers now carry CBD products. The good news is, it’s still not a reality to sell CBD products on major platforms like Amazon and eBay.
Tips for Beating the Competition: This is why it’s vital you build a trustworthy brand that consumers will love and follow. This starts with you providing a custom, customer-centric online experience. It’s like that saying where you have seven seconds to make a first impression. In this case, your website will have to do that for you.
5. Marketing CBD: Advertising and Promotions
Anyone’s initial thoughts on how to build awareness and beat the competition would be jump on the online advertising bandwagon. Sorry again, but you’ll face huge limitations here as well. Google and Facebook Ads will not run CBD ads. This means you can’t leverage some of today’s biggest consumer platforms to market your products, like Instagram, in the same way other retailers can.
This is a key reason you see brands vying for the attention and support of influencers, which, is a great tactic to explore. However, short of getting the Patriots’ tight end Rob Gronkowski to partner with you and publicly back your business and product, you’ll have to get a little more creative in how you advertise your business.
Tips for Advertising your CBD Business
Focus on increasing website traffic with an SEO strategy and blog posts. We can’t state this enough, but your website is really the heart of your business. Build and implement a solid SEO strategy around CBD keywords and your products. Start a blog and publish regular, educational, and informational content.
The goal here is to establish yourself and your business as an industry leader, or at the very least, as a knowledgeable and trustworthy brand. Blogs are also a powerful tool to connect to other 3rd party CBD companies or industry publications. Offering to link to them in exchange for a mention on their site will increase your backlinks and make you more favorable in Google’s eyes.
Leverage industry publications. Speaking of publications, there are several marijuana and CBD magazines and sites with both print and digital editions, all of which offer advertising in one form or another and have Facebook and twitter followers in the thousands. Take a look at some of our favorites:
Cannabis Culture Magazine
Marijuana Business Daily
Emails. Seems basic but drive site visitors and blog readers to subscribe or leave their email so you can continue to send them information.
Tradeshows. This is huge. Due to limitations surrounding online advertising, you may want to place a higher priority on making it to in-person events. There are several shows globally, multiple times a year - and they’re expanding rapidly.
Tradeshows are not only a great place to meet potential customers and other CBD business owners (if you’re B2B) but also CBD suppliers, growers, manufacturers, labs for testing and analytics, flavor suppliers, and distributors. You might even meet a law firm or eCommerce platform that specializes in CBD.
Top Features to Look For in an eCommerce Solution for CBD
We’ve talked a lot about how your website will be the key to success for your CBD business. All aspects of your business will flow through that online portal and because you’re selling regulated goods, some aspects will be more difficult to manage. Here’s the three key attributes you should look for when building your eCommerce site:
Scalability. Whether it’s handling a larger volume of traffic and order placements, to a growing product catalogue, your site, and primarily your cart and checkout process, should be able to grow with you as your business scales.
Flexibility. You need to seamlessly integrate with a multitude of 3rd party providers that address steps across the entire customer journey to keep the engine running. Just as you should be able to easily weave one into your architecture, should you be able to replace one.
When your payment processor decides to stop handling payments for CBD products you don’t want to be stuck and risk losing the ability to accept credit card info. If you’ve decided to accept bitcoin payments for your products, you ecommerce site will need to be able to handle multiple payment types. Long term, as you expand, you might want to start using multiple languages and accepting foreign currency.
You will also need to implement a variety of tax specifications and shipping regulations by state. If you decide to include an age-verification step in your checkout process, your site will need to be able to accept and process this data.
Speed. You lose revenue for every millisecond your site doesn’t load. We’re not kidding. Amazon did a whole study on it. Your site’s architecture and the tech stack that supports it will directly impact your site performance.
Building your eCommerce Experience with Elastic Path
You only get the true flexibility you need from an eCommerce site that has an API-based architecture that decouples your front-end from your back end. Yes, I’m talking about headless, but merely picking a headless solution isn’t enough - you need a headless approach that is also ‘services based’ (meaning each part of your eCommerce journey is a separate microservice component that can be assembled together).
We’re not talking about using a platform like BigCommerce, Salesforce, or Shopify that offer a form of ‘headless,’ where the APIs are bolted onto the infrastructure already in place, but about building CBD websites with a natively microservices-based back end completely built on APIs. This will enable you to create an eCommerce site with fit-for-purpose components and provide only the features you need.
You can learn more here, about why a headless approach to ecommerce is the best option for regulated or high-risk businesses. With Elastic Path you can easily manage complex back-end logic and alleviate many of the challenges you’ll have to face when building and launching your online CBD store.
Let us know if you want to learn more about how Elastic Path can help you launch and manage your CBD business.
Topics: business, products, need, youre, cbd, sell, payment, ecommerce, marijuana, online, site.
How to Sell Subscriptions on Shopify (Jan 2022)
Convenience is the name of the game for online subscriptions. People like to know that their mega pack of toilet paper shows up on their doorstep every month. They want access to an infinite supply of streaming channels instead of…
Continue reading How to Sell Subscriptions on Shopify (Jan 2022)
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How to Start an Ecommerce Business: Build an Ecommerce Store
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How to Use Pinterest Advertising to Promote Products and Attract Customers
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I F*cked Up: Three Entrepreneurs Get Real About Their Biggest Fails
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Inflation Could Harm DTC and Premium Brands
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Instagram Live Shopping: Everything You Need to Know
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Inventa poised to enter Mexico, Colombia with its supplier marketplace
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Jarvis ML snags $16M to help companies personalize their products
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Need Repeat Customers? Try Low-tech Selling
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Needing Deodorant, Curie Founder Made Her Own
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New Release Powers 50X Increase in Product Variation Support and Further Empowers Merchandising Teams
If you’re in the eCommerce space, I’m sure it’s no surprise to you that it’s taking a lot more to keep customers engaged and satisfied. It’s been recorded that 47% of consumers report that if they continuously encounter poor customer experiences, they’ll spend money with a competitor, despite having been a faithful customer for years. In addition to more innovative digital experiences and convenient shopping channels, customers also expect to easily find and engage with the products they want, at the right prices, consistently across brand experiences.
This poses a problem for brands stuck on traditional legacy platforms, as not only do they now have to deliver in a highly competitive digital landscape, but their unique requirements can not be supported by their existing eCommerce merchandising capabilities. In short, they have outgrown their commerce platform. In this post, we will dive into how Elastic Path continues to address these problems by making it simpler for merchandisers to bring their complex requirements to life with a collection of newly launched eCommerce merchandising features inside of our Product Content Management capability.
How Are Merchandisers Being Impacted Today?
You can have a great set of products and a strong brand presence, but without engaging, flexible, and relevant commerce experiences at every touchpoint along the customer journey, your brand doesn’t stand a chance against the competition. Prior to the vast advancement in technology in the eCommerce space, customers were satisfied with shopping the web from their desktop and happily accepted however the brand decided to bring their content to them. However, over the years, we’ve come to see customer expectations for personalized and engaging experiences continue to shift. For example customers want to be able to do things like:
Shop a curated look
Shop personalized bundles
Shop by occasion
Virtually impose products in their room
Easily navigate brand sites in seconds
Easily identify if their variation (size, color, etc.) of choice is out of stock or for sale
So how will brands continue to meet these customer expectations? A key step in their success will rely on leveraging flexible eCommerce merchandising features tools that allow them to address requirements such as building 100s product variations, merchandising by attribute, creating dynamic bundles, and seamlessly updating navigation. However, these are all easier said than done. Keep reading to hear some of the challenges that brands often share with us:
Time Consuming Product Variation Builds
When customers shop in-store, they have the ability to browse the product assortment in person. That meant they had full access to truly assess product variants such as style, color, and size up close and personal before making a purchase. To replace the physical interaction with products, merchandisers have to carefully curate an online experience that replicates the in-store one. This means they must clear descriptions, images, and accurate representation of the product variations they have available.
This oftentimes requires a degree of customization that traditional legacy platforms can’t support out-of-the-box. Therefore, merchandising teams are forced to spend copious amounts creating workarounds or waiting on IT resources to create customizations. This ends up delaying launches to market and reduces time for merchandisers to innovate.
Lack of Customization of Product Attributes
Customers like to be able to shop for similar items together. Whether that be items of similar color, category, brand, or price. Merchandisers who can easily consolidate these themes into collections help to create a more seamless shopping experience. However, due to the rigid coupling of products and their attributes in traditional legacy platforms, it makes it difficult to isolate each attribute to allow for themed merchandising. Additionally, eCommerce teams also lack the flexibility to customize the attributes of child products and merchandise them separately from the parent product due tight to tight product coupling as well.
For example, let’s say you need the price of a child product to be different from the parent product because it is considered as a special size. You would most likely have to build this product from scratch rather than leveraging the child product. This ultimately leads to less flexibility to merchandise products in more innovative and efficient ways that propel revenue growth.
Rigid Product Bundling
Customers tend to shop with the intention of getting the best value for their dollar. One such way that merchandisers appease this need is by bundling multiple products together under one price. Through the understanding of customer purchase data, merchandisers are able to create personalized bundles that allow them to cross sell and upsell products. However, some traditional platforms have limits on how brands can customize bundles. This increases the risk of missing potential sales and reducing customer satisfaction when compared to competitors.
Slow Navigation Updates
Customers want to be able to easily find what they are looking for when they enter a site. Having a user friendly main navigation is key to allowing customers to search your site intuitively and hassle free. As things change, merchandisers have to optimize their navigation to maintain a consistent brand experience. However, for most traditional legacy platforms, merchandisers have to wait on frontend developers every time they want to make a change. This could lead to a delay in launch time and less flexibility for merchandisers to test new navigation layouts.
Addressing the above merchandising challenges is no easy feat with traditional legacy platforms. To truly bring your complex requirements to life with creative precision, you will need modern merchandising tools that grant your teams the flexibility to customize your eCommerce experiences to your unique vision. That is exactly why at Elastic Path we have been working hard to bring your teams new modern merchandising features to achieve your goals.
New Modern eCommerce Merchandising Features
These merchandising features enhance the previously released Product Content Management capability, to allow merchandisers, catalog managers, and marketers to further customize their product offering according to their unique vision, to address customer expectations. These features include:
Product Variations allow eCommerce teams to create up to 10,000 variations in seconds to account for varying product attributes such as size, color, material(silver, gold, bronze), and more. Compared to traditional platforms that only allow for 200 variations, this is a 50X increase in the industry standard. This means merchandisers now have the flexibility to generate thousands of child products in seconds, without the help of IT. Take look at a demonstration below
Modifiers allow eCommerce teams to augment the properties of a base product when building a collection of child products. Rather than being restricted to the original configuration settings of the parent product, modifiers allow eCommerce teams to alter product properties during the child build process. This means merchandisers can now customize individual attributes such as price or category for products to be separately merchandised.
Configurable Bundles grant eCommerce teams with a variety of ways to compose and configure products to be sold as a single unit for one price. Whether a merchandiser would like to create a bundle from product SKUs that already exist or package multiple products together under one SKU to be sold together, they have the freedom to do so.
Node Sorting allows eCommerce teams to have full control of how their nodes/categories/menu items are organized for shopper consumption, without reliance on their frontend development team. This means merchandisers now have the ability to freely rearrange their nodes and have that immediately be reflected on the frontend without the need for frontend reprogramming.
These new Product Content Management features allow eCommerce teams to:
Enrich product data and merchandise product to customers how they see fit
Reduce time spent waiting on IT to build complex workarounds
Outpace the competition by finally powering the innovative experiences that that rigid technology has held them back from.
And there’s more where that came from!
The Elastic Path team continues to develop new features that make it simpler to bring your complex requirements to life. In the next two months you can expect to leverage:
Product Importer that allow quick and easy uploads of all of your product data.
Pricebook stacking that allow you to impose two pricebooks together to account for varying pricing for subset of products.
Anonymization that enables full compliance with GDPR, CCPA and other privacy legislation to protect your user's personal data.
Catalog Support for account management that extends our B2B capabilities through the ability to assign catalogs to accounts which may contain custom pricing, hierarchies and/or products.
We’d love to connect on how you can leverage these new merchandising features to help you unlock your goals today. In the meantime, feel free you can stay up-to-date on our latest features by checking out our product innovations page, here.
Topics: allow, features, teams, merchandising, merchandisers, products, customer, variations, ecommerce, product, traditional.
Novo, the SMB neobank, nabs $90M at a $700M valuation
Novo, the startup building a new kind of banking service from the ground up for small and medium businesses, has closed a significant round of funding to take the next step in growing its platform. It has raised $90 million, a Series B round that values the Miami-based startup at $700 million, funding that it […]
Topics: 90m, techcrunch, growth, novo, company, 700m, nabs, neobank, small, series, businesses, round, smb, valuation, products, built, rangel.
Nowadays puts its spin on plant-based nuggets
Its first product is a crispy, plant-based riff on chicken nuggets that is made with just seven ingredients.
Topics: puts, techcrunch, nowadays, product, spin, products, companies, elder, protein, meat, process, plantbased, company, million, nuggets.
Online Shopping Has Shifted to the Edge
In a bygone era, shoppers entered an ecommerce site directly or via a search engine. No more. In 2022 it's social media that increasingly starts the process, creating opportunities and challenges for merchants.
Topics: shopping, edge, brand, product, shifted, revenue, traffic, products, social, shoppers, prefer, consumers, online, site.
Ownit helps brands sell products, at the point of discovery, with one click
Its technology connects social, commerce and payment options at the point of discovery with little interruption to you social media scroll.
Topics: media, shiue, sell, pay, techcrunch, companies, social, discovery, payment, nejati, products, checkout, click, point, brands, ownit, helps.
Papier inks $50M Series C to in a run to lead the online stationery market
Papier, a startup leveraging technology to bring very non-tech products into the world, has raised some funding to continue expanding its business on the heels of strong demand for its personalized notebooks, planners, cards and other paper-based stationery that it sells online. The London startup has raised $50 million, a Series C that it will […]
Topics: brand, atighetchi, papier, online, technology, digital, today, way, series, stationery, run, products, startup, consumers, techcrunch, inks, market, c, lead.
Peeba raises $4.2M to digitize Asia’s B2B wholesale market
Over the past two years, Asia’s retailers were forced to do virtual meetings instead of visiting in-person trade shows or conferences to source new brands and products due to the pandemic lockdowns. A startup called Peeba has built a B2B wholesale online platform that connects independent retailers across Asia with unique brands around the world. Peeba […]
Topics: wholesale, asias, retail, raises, lai, products, market, peeba, retailers, 42m, platform, asia, digitize, brands, unique, b2b, techcrunch.
Pros & Cons of Dropship eCommerce
Dropshipping is one of the easiest, low-barrier to entry businesses provided you have access to the internet. If you’re not familiar with the dropship business model it’s relatively simple; you set up a virtual storefront and sell items at retail (without holding inventory), to which you forward for fulfillment by a wholesaler, and you in turn keep the profit.
How Popular is Dropship?
Dropshipping is still a viable business given that dropshippers have the leverage to earn more than 50% profit than those who keep their own inventory; and with eCommerce steadily on the rise even post-pandemic, there is opportunity to reach customers where they are with this method. Suppliers also stand to gain with 18% more profit selling their products to dropshippers.
Sounds simple? It is and it isn’t. In this post we’ll take a second look at dropship and review the pros and cons as a business model. We’ll start with the pros:
#1 Pro – Turn a Profit if the Product is Right
You’ll want to do a fair amount of brainstorming and market research before venturing into the world of drop ship. The key to success is finding your product niche. With eCommerce heavily influenced by competition, you’ll need to stand out in the marketplace. Look at what’s trending; are there upticks in a particular industry such as health and beauty, driven by a social media influencer touting the next greatest skincare regimen? Is there a new craze in mobile accessories targeting the 18–24-year-old set?
Current trends point to increased spend within women’s clothing, baby items, and tools (think specialized all-in-one kits for the home or car), with beauty products not far behind.
#2 Pro – No Inventory Management
Without the pressure of where to store product, you have freedom to test products without buying in bulk. Less overhead, less to worry about. Your biggest upfront expense is how you will host your virtual storefront, but more on that later.
#3 Pro – Work with Trusted Vendor Partners
A good partner is crucial to your success. You’ll want to work with vendors who offer ease of use, support, and speed, such as selecting a reliable Order Management System (OMS). We commonly work with Jetti and FluentCommerce for order management integrations specifically related to drop ship. We cover more top OMS providers in our blog for more insight as to Who’s Who in the market, and what questions you’ll need to ask to determine what provider is right for your business.
#4 Pro – Speed to Market
You’ll be off the ground and running in no time. With no physical retail space and inventory to manage and insure, your startup costs are minimal. Your focus with any dropship business as we’ve mentioned above is the product mix; you’ll want to focus on a niche market or what’s trending like fire in the market. It’s also a good idea to test products since you don’t need to purchase in bulk.
#5 Pro – Scalability
Dropshipping is highly scalable considering you can sell about anything and ship it to anywhere in the world, provided your fulfillment vendor has service there.
And now for the inevitable Cons:
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#1 Con - There will be Upfront Costs
You are essentially creating your own personal storefront, so you’ll need the platform to build it out and go live. Vendors like Shopify, WooCommerce, OpenCart, and Drupal are common in the market, with WooCommerce known for its economy especially when starting small dropship stores. A basic WordPress site could run between $1,500 - $3,500, however if you need advanced features, you’re looking at additional spend for plug-ins and customizations.
From the Shopify side, it’s an estimated monthly charge of $30 to create and host a site, along with their selection of themes and branding tools.
Building rapport with your customers begins with a name. Choose a domain name that fits your brand style and is memorable. The average domain cost is between $5-$20/year. If you need help selecting a name with a ring to it, try using a domain name generator to see what’s available.
You’ll need to invest in advertising. As your business grows organically you may scale the budget back, but when you launch take full advantage of mobile and social ads to get your name out there.
Ask Plenty of Questions
Look at the basic features offered by a provider such as product, catalog, payment gateways, taxes, and shipping methods, and determine what you’ll require to get up and running. You may not even require additional plugins at this stage in the business.
You’ll also want to consider ease of use with clean user interfaces, and the all-important scalability factor. I recommend looking at several vendors to compare your needs to go live quickly, and where you see yourself in a year.
#2 Con – This is Not a Get Rich Quick Business Model
If you’re looking for overnight success, dropshipping is not the right business for you. It’s not simply opening the virtual storefront and advertising while your fulfillment partner does all the work. A growth mindset will serve you well.
Knowing what to sell and for how long is key to dropshipping success. Bear in mind again with so much competition you’ll need to stand out with the product and how you sell it in your store. This article offers tips on how to make your dropship offer unique and profitable.
#3 Con – You Have Less Control of the Customer Experience
In contrast to a B2C or D2C channel, you have little control over outcomes such as shipping and packaging; especially if you are drop shipping overseas. If there are customer complaints regarding shipping delays it’s out of your control to fix it, if not prohibitive. This is where finding a reliable fulfillment vendor is so important; you’ll need to build a relationship with them and know their limitations and strengths.
#4 - Lack of Quality Control
You’re selling a product sight unseen with little shipping control. The condition of the product once it’s received can be unpredictable. If you have concerns about a product’s initial quality, it’s recommended to order a sample to see and touch for yourself. This is also a perfect opportunity to create product imagery or content for your storefront to put the product’s best foot forward.
Dropshipping May be Just the Right Model for You
A fair number of pros and cons in the drop shipping model, however if you do your market research, keep an open mind, pick the right vendors, and strike while the iron is hot you stand to fare well.
Topics: storefront, need, business, pro, products, ecommerce, cons, product, shipping, pros, youll, market, dropship.
Sellzone Review – Everything You Need To Know
Are you selling products on Amazon as a secondary source of income next to your online store? Or, are you strictly an Amazon seller without an ecommerce site? It seems like an Amazon seller account is a must-have if you…
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Topics: sellzone, amazon, keywords, traffic, listing, keyword, product, products, review, search, need, tool, know.
Seven DTC eCommerce Trends in 2022
The world of digital commerce is constantly changing, and with the rapid shift to online retailing as a result of the COVID pandemic, 2022 promises to be no different. With this trend in online shopping, the DTC eCommerce industry will only continue to grow. In 2021, U.S. direct-to-consumer (DTC) eCommerce sales reached 129 billion, and are projected to reach 151 this year. Now isn't that crazy!
As DTC businesses continue to prioritize digital commerce experiences, brands are facing more market competition than ever. With that being said, in this blog, I will give a general overview of seven major DTC eCommerce trends you should keep an eye on for your brand to succeed in 2022.
What is DTC eCommerce?
DTC eCommerce is an eCommerce business model in which brands sell directly to their end customers, as opposed to using third-parties such as wholesalers, distributors, or other retailers. There are many benefits of selling direct to consumers, including:
Differentiation: Having full power on decisions, brands can better differentiate themselves as well as their products in the marketplace.
Boosted Customer Loyalty: As a result of the direct relationship brands can facilitate with customers, they can build a more loyal customer base.
Better Customer Experiences: By being able to have a close relationship with consumers, brands are able to collect direct feedback from them that can be used to create better customer experiences in the future.
Direct Control: Without having to rely on parties to sell their products, DTC businesses are able to have direct and full control over their pricing, products, and branding.
An example of a DTC eCommerce brand is Glossier, a company in the beauty industry, which uses the platform Contentful to facilitate their sales channels. Through Contentful and social media, Glossier has created a strong, loyal customer base and enhanced customer experiences. Their instagram page consists of 2.6 million followers with a content mix of customer reviews, product promotions, and influencer partnerships to draw in more customers. Today, Glossier is a billion dollar brand company that sells online beauty products, branching into millennial and Gen Z target audience through brick-and-mortar shops to provide the best brand experience possible.
Top 7 DTC eCommerce Trends
1. Social and Live Commerce for Expanded Shopping Experiences
Shopping on social media platforms and livestreams has become increasingly popular in recent years. According to Swirl, from 2015 to 2020, revenue from online video commerce went from $3.5 billion to $17.6 billion, and that number is expected to be $25 billion by 2023. Platforms such as Instagram offer tags on photos that direct consumers to a brand’s website, where they can quickly purchase the product they were viewing. This immersive shopping experience appeals to consumers as they are able to purchase products that are endorsed by their favorite celebrities or influencers. Livestream shopping is similar to QVC (a televised shopping service that showcases live retail programming 24/7), but consumers now have access to the products at their fingertips.
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2. Consumers Becoming Increasingly Sustainability Conscious
Sustainability is at the forefront of consumers’s minds nowadays and companies are following suit. According to a global survey, "66% of global consumers would pay more for sustainable businesses and products." With that being said, many brands are becoming environmentally conscious and shifting away from plastic in packaging and now include the origin of materials used, as well as information on how to recycle them. In addition, many companies now include data about their carbon footprint with their customers. Overall, these trends depict the shift in consumer and brand consciousness toward our natural environment, leading to a bright future for eCommerce businesses.
3. Omnichannel Shopping Leading to Better Customer Retention
According to Omnisend, “customer retention rates are 90% higher for omnichannel versus single channel.” An omnichannel approach to eCommerce is being adopted by companies to make the customer experience more convenient. For example, allowing a customer to shop online but return in-store guarantees that the customer has a seamless shopping experience. Furthermore, integrating digital channels enables a company to maintain a consistent brand appearance across all devices.
4. Personalization Means Better Brand Experiences
Personalizing the customer experience increases the likelihood that the customer makes a purchase and has a positive experience with the brand. According to Accenture, “74% of consumers would find ‘living profiles’ valuable if they could be used to curate the experiences, offers, and products they receive.” With direct access to customer data, such as browsing history, interests, and searches, brands are able to create unique experiences like hosting a live stream event or even creating a hologram. The ability to personalize also allows companies to more easily adapt to trends, by making changes such as new colorways for products.
5. Delivery and Return Policies Will Become a Key Service Differentiator
Studies have shown that delivery fees and return policies are important factors when customers are choosing where to shop. According to Forrester, “about three out of five French, UK, and US online adults prefer retailers that offer free return shipping; about two out of five prefer retailers that provide refunds via the original form of payment.” Free delivery and free returns are services that customers strongly desire, and can cause customers to choose one brand over another. Brands who care about the customer experience should invest in streamlining their delivery and return processes.
6. AI Creates Innovative Ideas
AI plays a significant role in omnichannel planning, which enables companies to capitalize on business opportunities in real time. Machine learning is especially useful in forming the demand plan for product attributes, marketing events, and style or color forecasts for the lifecycle of a product. AI automates these processes and drastically reduces the time needed for planners to create manual “SKUs”.
7. Subscriptions Build Up Customer Loyalty
As DTC eCommerce continues to grow, many companies have adopted a subscription model that has shown great success with traditional retailers. A subscription eCommerce service offers consumers a lower-cost way to buy what they need. Around half of companies surveyed in 2019 stated that they would implement subscription services to boost customer retention.
What’s Next for DTC eCommerce?
DTC eCommerce offers tremendous opportunities for brands due to the growing trend in online shopping. Large retailers such as Nike have already begun to shift their focus to appealing to the needs of online shoppers. The cost savings achieved through DTC eCommerce is directly transferred to the consumer, which leads to people preferring DTC eCommerce brands over traditional retailers.
Also, DTC eCommerce allows companies to be more adaptable and in control of their distribution. In a fast-paced world where trends are ephemeral, a digital presence is vital. Digital commerce enables DTC brands to keep up with consumer trends and gives them a significant advantage over traditional retailers.
Above are just a few of the DTC eCommerce trends that represent how companies are adjusting to the post-pandemic digital world. As companies adopt these trends of sustainability, AI, and personalization, DTC eCommerce will continue to become an approach more companies will look to expand to. For more information on DTC eCommerce, check out our DTC eCommerce page here.
Topics: companies, products, consumers, shopping, brand, seven, customer, ecommerce, direct, trends, brands, dtc.
Shopify launches new ‘Linkpop’ link in bio tool with built-in e-commerce features
Shopify has entered the “link in bio” market with the launch of a new tool called “Linkpop.” The new offering is aimed at creators and allows them to sell products directly from their Linkpop page. Creators and merchants can include important links on the page and also launch storefronts to sell directly on the platforms […]
Topics: features, link, links, builtin, tool, techcrunch, page, linkpop, directly, products, launched, shoppable, shopify, merchants, launches, bio, ecommerce.
Sneaker e-commerce platform Kicks Crew raises $6M Series A
The global thirst for an up-charged pair of Yeezy’s or limited edition Jordan’s combined with a growth in a digital ecosystem is creating new opportunities, particularly in the sneaker resale market, for companies like Kicks Crew, a Los Angeles- and Hong Kong-based sneaker and apparel platform. The company just raised a $6 million Series A […]
Topics: 6m, kicks, crew, sneaker, footwear, techcrunch, platform, yip, products, raises, product, startup, market, ecommerce, series.
Solidus.io Review: Everything You Need to Know
Solidus.io is a community-centered, open-source eCommerce framework that's 100% free to use. It’s powered by the ruby on rails framework and maintained by a passionate community of web developers. Initially, it was designed to help businesses, brands, and developers create…
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Topics: products, solidus, know, framework, review, store, ecommerce, extensions, solidusio, need, product, community, soliduss.
Stockly Review: Outsmarting Out-of-Stocks
In this Stockly review, we’re introducing you to one of the many exciting new French startups making their way into the changing consumer market. Stockly is a company committed to help keep the inventory of a number of ecommerce websites…
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Topics: customers, sales, review, outofstocks, customer, products, stock, company, outsmarting, item, product, companies, stockly.
Stryx, a DTC Brand, Prepares Rollout in Target Stores
Stryx is a pioneering direct-to-consumer seller of men's cosmetics. The company is soon to launch its products in 950 Target stores. The decision comes with risks.
Topics: tiktok, cvs, target, products, retailers, prepares, brand, dtc, rollout, stores, stryx, experience, thats.
The Best Ecommerce Content for Pinterest
Pinterest may be the best social media platform to introduce products and drive online sales. We explain how to use boards and pins for ecommerce in this must-read piece.
Topics: products, videos, users, ecommerce, ideas, content, best, pinterest, unique, product, pins, boards, search.
The Best Ecommerce Content for Twitter
The best ecommerce content for social media depends on the channel. We've addressed content for Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. This post discusses content on Twitter.
Topics: best, media, questions, content, polls, social, sales, products, example, twitter, followers, ecommerce.
The Creator Economy Draws Entrepreneurs
Is attracting an audience via content a better way to start and build an ecommerce business? The creator economy appeals to many would-be entrepreneurs.
Topics: online, creators, selling, retail, economy, products, ecommerce, audience, store, creator, sell, draws, entrepreneurs.
The Must-Have Product Characteristics for E-Commerce Domination in 2022
To be successful, you'll need these to stand out from the competition.
Topics: domination, product, need, characteristics, ecommerce, usp, products, feel, brand, demand, musthave, mental, online.
The ROI on AR: How Augmented Reality is Boosting Ecommerce Sales
It’s easier than ever to add AR and 3D experiences to your store. and data shows that shoppers are craving more personal experiences.More
Topics: reality, using, sales, getting, used, products, product, ecommerce, 3d, richard, conversion, roi, ar, augmented, boosting, shopping.
The co-founder of Brazil’s first unicorn bags $6M for new grocery startup
Mara, a São Paulo-based startup that aims to “reinvent” the grocery shopping experience for the underserved in Latin America, has raised $6 million in a funding round co-led by Canary and Caffeinated Capital. This round caught my attention for a few reasons. For one, Mara was founded by Danilo Mansano and Ariel Lambrecht, the latter […]
Topics: 6m, cofounder, techcrunch, products, mansano, grocery, orders, help, business, brazils, startup, unicorn, mara, lambrecht, brazil, bags.
The eCommerce Catalog is Dead
I am a prolific on-line shopper. I’m not trying to brag… but I have spent countless hours perusing online shops, from makeup to shoes to furniture to everything Amazon has to offer, especially during the pandemic. And I will bounce off a site with lightning speed if I cannot find what I’m looking for, or if the site makes it difficult to find and purchase my desired item. What offenses are these sites committing that make me shut down my browser, or head to a competitor?
A few examples: Quickly finding something in the size and color I’m looking for on the ‘virtual’ sale rack. Perhaps I’m not the only one who has had this experience, trying to identify what’s on sale in your size only to have the page cluttered with items that are your size but not on sale.
Or worse yet, when you are redecorating and go to a furniture site that has a ‘shop the room’ page, yet when you click on one of the products you are not taken to that style and color, but rather the generic product page. There you must sift through every color/fabric option to find what was promoted on that shop the look page. Shop the look, indeed… more like hunt for the look!
Most of these merchandizing no-no’s are a result of the commerce platform’s rigid catalog structure, that has brands adhering to what the technology dictates - rather than the platform supporting the ability for merchandizers to create the site experiences their customers want and need.
I first began my career in eCommerce at the start of the 2000’s. Back then, most organizations would create their product catalog by pushing the structure directly out of their ERP. Commerce Catalogs were built to support this type of rigid structure.
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However, most ERPs (then and now) are not built to support the experiences customers need and want, they are built to support internal business processes. And yet, in the many years that have transpired since then, that rigid catalog structure has not changed in virtually all commerce platforms.
So, what have organizations done to mitigate this problem. Exactly that: they’ve created workarounds, complex integrations, data replication, etc. When an organization wants to adapt their product experiences based on, let’s say, a new product offering, a flash sale, or any kind of merchandizing change, all those workarounds must be addressed. This results in a delay in getting those new experiences out to customers, affecting the ability to generate revenue.
Elastic Path has an alternative to this antiquated, rigid approach to product catalogs. Rather than accept that there is only one approach to managing a catalog, as other platforms do, Elastic Path has decomposed all the parts that make up a product and catalog experience, allowing our customers to create product and merchandizing experiences easily and efficiently, when they want and how they want, without relying on any complex workarounds to make it happen.
How are we able to do this? Each component of the catalog has been isolated into its own set of microservices, that can be managed separately. Merchandizers can create any combination of products they want into a flexible set of hierarchies. Price lists are managed separately from the product, so again, merchandizers can create multiple pricing strategies (to support loyalty pricing, for example). Then, with just a few clicks, a catalog experience can be ‘composed’ by choosing the hierarchies and price lists that the merchandizer wants to make available for their targeted customers.
Do you want to offer a new product range to your best customers first?
Create a loyalty hierarchy with those products, assign it to your loyalty catalog (alongside your standard categories). Then, simply apply your loyalty rule, and in just a few clicks, your best customers will have access to those new products.
Do you want to separate just a few size/color combinations from the master style into your sale category, without having to copy and/or remove them from their main category?
Easily done with just a few clicks (and no calls to IT!). Open your sale category, assign those select SKUs, and republish! Now your customers can easily find the products they want without having to sift through products that are not relevant to them. This ability to separate a ‘child’ product from its ‘parent’ is often a challenge and is typically solved with workarounds or another technology.
Remember that shop the look example? Doing this well is all about merchandizing the individual SKUs separate from their parent product. The possibilities are truly, quite endless once you have the flexibility to work with each individual component of the catalog separately!
My frustration as a shopper is somewhat born out of my experience with eCommerce platforms. I understand why some of the experiences I have online are the way they are. I’ve worked with many customers who have convoluted product data management practices, created so that merchandizers can create the experiences they want.
I’ve worked with customers who have tried to overlay other technologies on top of their commerce catalog to enable a better experience for shoppers. And I am not the only one. This collective experience, both with platforms and with our own shopping experiences, is what has inspired our product innovation team at Elastic Path to develop the world’s first truly Composable Catalog.
Topics: experiences, workarounds, product, ecommerce, customers, sale, products, catalog, support, create, dead, experience.
Twitter expands e-commerce efforts with launch of mobile storefronts, Twitter Shops
Twitter today is introducing a new shopping feature called Twitter Shops, which will allow merchants to curate a collection of up to 50 products to showcase on their Twitter profile. The mobile-first feature, which is free to use, aims to encourage users to go from talking about products on Twitter’s platform to actually clicking through […]
Topics: mobile, shops, efforts, merchants, shop, users, techcrunch, products, platform, feature, twitter, expands, video, storefronts, ecommerce, launch, shopping.
Victoria's Secret launches store for its beauty products on Amazon
The iconic brand, which previously only sold directly through its stores or e-commerce platform, is exploring new options to reach its potential consumers.
Topics: beauty, store, amazon, unis, stores, victorias, reach, secret, launches, products, customers.
Viya, China’s top livestreaming influencer, vanished from cyberspace after receiving a $210m fine for tax evasion.
On December 20, 2021, the State Tax Bureau of China announced that Viya would be fined $ 210 million(¥1.34 billion) for tax evasion. This is the highest fine levied on an individual in the country's history. Later on the same…
Continue reading Viya, China’s top livestreaming influencer, vanished from cyberspace after receiving a $210m fine for tax evasion.
Topics: products, cyberspace, vanished, livestreaming, receiving, china, market, chinas, evasion, sales, viya, ecommerce, tax, influencer, livestream, kols, fine, product, shopping, taobao.
Voila raises $6M for its AI-powered storefronts for online creators
Voila, a startup building infrastructure for social commerce, is bringing concepts from China’s e-commerce market to the U.S. The company offers an alternative to the “link in bio” solutions used today by creators, like Linktree and Beacons, which direct followers to creators’ social profiles, personal websites and other recommendations. Instead of a link list or […]
Topics: aipowered, voila, social, raises, online, products, product, storefronts, shang, million, techcrunch, links, 6m, creators, items.
Weee! delivers second big funding round in a year, this time backed by SoftBank
This new monster round comes about a year after another big fundraise of $316 million in Series D financing.
Topics: delivers, product, big, million, liu, second, techcrunch, company, weee, funding, offer, products, backed, ethnic, round, food, weees, softbank.
What Is Brand Perception? How to Measure It and 4 Examples
If you take a second to think about your shopping habits, you'll probably realize that a majority of the products you buy are influenced by brand perception. You're not the only one — 77% of B2C consumers make purchasing decisions based solely on the brand name.
Topics: think, perception, consumer, examples, products, competitors, brand, company, customer, recommend, consumers, measure.
What are Instagram Guides? [+ How to Create One]
If you're on Spotify, chances are you've curated a playlist with all your favorite songs — and rearranged them in a specific order. But did you know you can do something similar on Instagram?
Topics: instagram, way, guide, guides, content, create, favorite, share, promote, products.
Why Every Company Needs to Know Its Core Competencies
Every resume has a skills section. It’s an opportunity to highlight your top professional attributes to attract employers. Core competencies serve the same purpose for brands and their customers.
Topics: brand, company, know, competencies, value, needs, product, competitors, proposition, products, youre, core, marketing.
Wish Standards Raises the Bar to Reward Merchants
A new genre of YouTube video took the Internet by storm in the late twenty-teens: the Wish unboxing. Through a…
Topics: products, online, download, wish, bigcommerce, wishs, visibility, raises, pdf, merchants, bar, reward, standards.
YC-backed Curacel unveils new API platform that enables tech-led businesses to offer insurance
Curacel, the YC-backed startup that is developing insurance infrastructure for the African market, has launched a new interface that allows digital businesses like those in retail, fintech, e-commerce and logistics to add insurance to their core products. The API-based tool, dubbed Grow, has so far been integrated with 22 tech entities across Africa including Topship, […]
Topics: curacel, products, insurance, companies, ycbacked, market, offer, techled, businesses, unveils, infrastructure, africa, system, including, enables, technologies, platform, techcrunch.
YC-backed Remedial Health raises $1 million pre-seed to digitize pharmacies in Nigeria
Remedial Health has secured $1 million in pre-seed funding to digitize pharmacies and stem the supply of fake and substandard pharmaceutical products, starting with Nigeria before expanding to the rest of Africa. The round was led by Global Ventures and Ventures Platform, with participation from Ingressive Capital, Voltron Capital, Opeyemi Awoyemi’s (Jobberman co-founder) Angel Syndicate […]
Topics: digitize, supply, pharmaceutical, pay, preseed, system, million, ycbacked, products, nigeria, pharmacies, techcrunch, remedial, using, health, raises, pharmacy.
Yami bags $50M Series B to boost its online Asian marketplace
When Alex Zhou, founder and CEO of Yami, moved to the Midwest for college in 2007, he had limited access to Asian groceries and products. Zhou had to drive two hours to purchase his favorite Asian products at the nearest local Asian market. The experience inspired him to launch Yami, a direct-to-consumer marketplace for Asian […]
Topics: bags, americans, products, boost, 50m, asian, b, data, marketplace, zhou, told, techcrunch, technology, yami, series, million, online.
Zubale bags new capital to match gig workers with LatAm e-commerce fulfillment jobs
Now flush with new capital, the company plans to launch some embedded financial products for the independent workers using its marketplace.
Topics: products, techcrunch, financial, capital, investors, month, qed, order, ecommerce, workers, jobs, latam, fulfillment, retailers, zubale, gig, company, match.
eCommerce Landscape 2022
We’ve put together sixteen quadrants of top eCommerce vendors in these categories: eCommerce platforms, Search, Payment, Loyalty/Rewards, CMS, CRM, PIM, Conversational Commerce/Chatbots, ERP, Email Marketing, Social Media, System Integrators, Tax, Analytics, & OMS.
What’s Driving Innovation?
Using AI to cross and upsell, and visualize purchases (virtual dressing/show rooms)
Buying behavior influenced by a strong sustainability practice
Multichannel customer support
Growing B2B segment with enabled automation
Growing D2C segment
How to Stay Competitive:
If you sell everything, you’ll end up selling nothing. Carve out your niche by knowing your customer. Successful brands create demand for their products by speaking to customers shared beliefs, lifestyles, and goals
Map the customer’s buying journey from end-to-end with specific touchpoints
Monitor customer data and respond to it with testing and engagement
Optimize the experience for all devices
Barriers to Entry:
Cybercrime, security issues
Intellectual property issues
Why Do People Shop Online?
Broader access to brands
With So Many Pros to the Online Shopping Experience, What is a Major Drawback?
Not being able to touch, feel, or try a product prior to purchase (51%) followed by possible breakage, no physical store experience, no interaction, fraud, and delivery issues.
Source: 50 Consumers Online Shopping Behavior Trends [Survey] 2022 (brizfeel.com)
With the experience of online shopping driving its popularity and growth, brands must optimize the journey every step of the way. By removing friction points (simplified checkout, diverse payment options, quick loading pages, advanced search, mobile optimization), the path to purchase is easy. Leveraging loyalty programs, AI-powered technology to predict behavior, and merchandising options are crucial tools to conversion and retention.
How Are Customers Finding Brands?
In the initial brand awareness period, retail websites and physical stores (see showrooming), influence a customer’s first pass at a product; however when the buying journey heats up it shifts to more word-of-mouth (product reviews) and social media (social proof) impacts.
What Are People Buying Online?
It may not be surprising to find that electronics and tech top the list for the most popular items purchased online, however, with a saturated market, niche items have emerged in popularity such as shapewear, travel accessories, and health and beauty products.
Source: 50 Top Trending Products To Sell Online in 2022 for High Profits (cloudways.com)
See How Elastic Path Delivers Unique Customer Experiences
The Elastic Path Demo Library features multiple demos that showcase the power and scale of our products.
Go to Demo Library
Adobe Commerce Cloud (Magento)
Salesforce Commerce Cloud
SAP Commerce Cloud
Handshake by Perficient
Preferred Patron Loyalty
Salesforce Experience Cloud
White Label Loyalty
Salesforce Marketing Cloud
SAP Business One
Salesforce Marketing Cloud
Salesforce Marketing Cloud
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS)
TA Digital (Formerly TechAspect)
Sirius Computer Solutions
CCH Sure Tax
Thomson Reuters Onesource
Topics: landscape, product, customer, experience, path, customers, marketing, products, social, online, ecommerce, shopping.