This month we interviewed Darren, our Shopify specialist. We’ll hear all about his role, how Shopify is helping brands to grow, and the recent changes in ecommerce.
Q: What’s your role in Evolution?
A: I’m the Shopify expert on the team! I’ve worked with Shopify for a few years now, and have a Plus Partners certification. I help onboard clients with Shopify – essentially setting them up – and transferring businesses from other platforms. I’m also a developer so I can aid in designing both the front end and inner workings of ecommerce sites.
Q: What sort of jobs do you do day-to-day?
A: I work out what a brand needs in their ecommerce strategy and make sure we deliver it with Shopify. This includes creating digital storefronts, designing the shop, and setting up the catalogue. For existing Shopify users I can also audit their site so we can see what is or isn’t working. Altogether, I help create ecommerce sites that are user-focused while also delivering great visual design.
Q: Why should brands choose Shopify?
A: One of the best features is the automation. Many smaller and start-up businesses don’t have a huge, experienced team to tackle a whole ecommerce and digital marketing process. With Shopify, you can integrate social channels, create promotions with automated timings, and implement automated emails for abandoned carts for example. It’s also a very scalable platform. That means if you’re a small business you can cut out a lot of unnecessary features and reduce costs. But bigger brands can benefit from more features and personalisation, so they can tailor it to their needs.
Q: Who are some of the top clients you’ve worked with?
A: I’ve worked with some interesting clients over the years! I helped out on Deliveroo’s internal stores for workers, and have worked with brands like Roland Mouret and Barry M on their ecommerce sites. I’ve also helped Turnbull & Asser t0 transfer their platform from Magento to Shopify.
Q: What is the biggest struggle for businesses building their ecommerce site?
A: A big issue for clients is the handover process, as complex websites can be hard to use without a developer. This means updating catalogues, creating promotions, and marketing can be difficult for the client to do once they’ve got their website. Shopify makes this process easier since the platform allows clients to work on the products and prices in the backend while the front-end design can remain unchanged. Clients also get to see their analytics with Shopify, showing them how customers are interacting. This can really help inform future decisions in their ecommerce marketing strategy.
Q: Do you think every retail brand will move online in the next 10 years?
A: While this might’ve previously been seen as ‘exclusive’, it now just looks naïve. Most small businesses really benefit from using Shopify and social media to market themselves and would struggle in a brick-and-mortar shop alone. Even if a store has a huge and fast-moving catalogue, offering a small selection of their products online can be beneficial for a brand.
Q: What has been the most significant changes in ecommerce over the last few years?
A: I think the speed at which people can now create an online store, especially with platforms like Shopify, has created a new kind of entrepreneurship that we haven’t seen before. Nowadays, people usually start up online before going into a brick-and-mortar space, if they ever do. The costs of running a website is far cheaper and has a wider reach than most physical stores.
Q: Finally, what’s the benefit of having a Shopify specialist?
A: While the platform is easy to use, it’s important to have an expert help with both the creation and ecommerce strategy. Websites are about more than just looking nice or having all of your products uploaded. Making sure it’s user friendly, works with your branding and tone-of-voice, and has the features needed for a great experience is all part of setting up an online store. Experts can also assist with more advanced design and build, including features that need additional coding. Having a Shopify specialist means clients don’t have to worry about the complex aspects of building an ecommerce site, and can focus on other important areas of business strategy.
We hope our talk with Darren has given you some great insights into the uses of Shopify as a platform for ecommerce. If you’d like to learn more about our work with Shopify, click here.