Insider Interview: Shoprocket CEO Anthony Gale
Shoprocket CEO Anthony Gale: “The time is over for the closed tech game”
Can you explain a little about Shoprocket for us?
Over the past 10 years, eCommerce software development has completely stagnated. Solutions are complex and clunky, and as a result, not very user friendly. Shoprocket was built on the premises of delivering eCommerce that’s fast, seamless and more than anything else – simple.
Shoprocket is a completely scalable and secure eCommerce solution that can be added to any website using a single line of code. Through that one line of code, we feed all of your products, payment gateway, and complete checkout process into your website.
What advantages does that have?
79% of users shop online, and 2015 is expected to be the biggest year yet. By using Shoprocket, brands and retailers can manage all their eCommerce efforts in one place while providing their customers with a native experience. Sending customers to third party sites and breaking the user journey ends here.
It’s an alternative to spending a fortune on building a solution from scratch or the expense of trying to get a hosted solution to integrate with your site and achieve the look and feel of your brand. In addition, you would have to be able to host and maintain those systems.
With Shoprocket, there’s no need to worry about big servers, usage or scalability – our system scales based on our customer’s needs. Our integrations with Stripe and PayPal make payment secure and safe. People are passionate about their products and their brands and they want their websites to reflect that – Shoprocket makes that easy.
We’ve heard impressive things about your set-up times.
The fastest project we’ve ever done took just six minutes – it was for a very basic site, but it really shows just how quick the integration can be.
How and why did you set up Shoprocket?
We used to run a digital agency in Shoreditch, and building eCommerce systems for clients had really become a pain. It would take months to deliver higher-end websites – time we would need to charge for. During the process, we also realised there were several issues with checkouts; people would need to register, create passwords and as a result, baskets were abandoned and revenue lost. Between 70-75% of baskets were abandoned, on mobiles that this number was even higher.
We wanted to create not only a more time and cost effective solution, but a checkout process that would be more intuitive and help the user complete the purchase. The changes we made drove down the basket abandonment rate to about 25 to 30%.
And what does Shoprocket mean when it talks about ‘fair commerce’?
‘Fair commerce’ really means that our goals are in line with the customers. We don’t charge a setup fee and there are no monthly costs – we make money from a commission rate on sale, which is set to a fixed 2%. This means we’re reliant on our customers to make those sales – so in order for our customers to make those sales and for us to get our commission, we need to provide them with an eCommerce system as effective as possible. It’s a two-way street, really.
Can you give some examples where Shoprocket has been used?
Chop’d uses it for click and collect and Roux was built from scratch using Shoprocket. Roux sells fashion streetwear and they wanted their shop to look cool and contemporary, but as a startup they didn’t have a big budget for a development fee, so Shoprocket worked perfectly for them.
We work with bigger businesses too. Hedonism wines, which features around 60,000 products, are converting their site using Shoprocket.
We heard you are going to be starting meet-ups for eCommerce professionals – can you give us a few more details on these?
The aim is for people working in eCommerce to network and discuss what innovations are out there, as well as talk about community issues and problems. It’s not to promote our business, it’s about learning as much from other people as they can learn from us.
The first one is next month, so get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in coming along.
And what’s next for Shoprocket?
We’re looking at connecting different technology – the time is over for the closed tech game. We want to make it easy for businesses to run whatever tools – whether analytic/marketing tools – they’d like. We aim to offer the complete solution, whether that’s on the high street or online. We want to make it easy for consumer, so they buy as much as possible.
Who do you think are doing interesting thing in eCommerce?
We like Shopwave. We also work closely with Stripe, the payment processor. They’ve really disrupted the industry. Their checkout is amazing, the support is great and the tech is great as well. We really look up to them.
Images courtesy of Shoprocket