Friday August 21, 2020 |Notes

There's a Shopify store for that

Back in 2009, Apple ran an ad campaign with the headline, 'There's an app for that'. The campaign promoted iPhone 3g, the 2nd version of it's now famed smartphone, at a time when many customers weren't yet aware of apps. While consumers are already familiar with the idea of online stores, many are not yet aware of how many stores exist online. With over 2 million stores running on Shopify alone, far more than Apple's app store had back in 2009, it's fair to claim there's a Shopify store for nearly every niche market imaginable.

Many consumers default to searching Amazon or perhaps Google when shopping. While there are mounting criticisms of the growing size and monopolistic operating procedure of tech giants, more consumers can move to other vendors for much of their online shopping. On Amazon, and other large marketplaces, there's an algorithm that helps consumers find products that meet their search criteria. These algorithms can be 'gamed' in the sense of companies doing everything possible to get the first listing, including using keywords, generated reviews, ads, and more. The company that plays this game the best gets their products pushed to the top of the listings, typically with some ad spend.

This is generally not the best way to businesses that make the best products. Generally speaking, the best products are unlikely to also be the best at marketing their products for the Google and Amazon algorithms. At times, the system works properly and the best products are pushed to the top. Increasingly, that doesn't happen. Amazon hurts brands and many brands no longer want their products listed on the site. Google offers free listings to stores and promotes those that use Google payment services.

Platforms like Google and Amazon have set standards that are well understood by marketers, not by product makers. Shopify, WooCommerce and other ecommerce platforms allow brands that make great products to create their own homes, set part from competitors on platforms. Getting to those platforms still takes work and access is generally gated by google and social media platforms.

When consumers realize the enormity of the incredible brands available on Shopify, the best brands can stand out with their own platforms that speaks directly to their niche. The Shopify universe is bigger than most consumers realize, and it's mostly undiscovered.

Note: We're working on a project to help find some of the [best Shopify stores[(]. Check it out and feel free to use the feedback button.

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