“At the end of the day, 99% of your problems can be solved if you just sell what you’re trying to sell. But many people don’t want to do that because it’s hard work,” says Chase Clymer, host of Honest Ecommerce.

When Chase first got into the ecommerce industry nearly a decade ago, there was what he describes as an “ugly underbelly” of get-rich-quick schemes ready to part eager people from their money. Most prominent among these was drop shipping, which, for most people, isn’t going to be lucrative. The lower the barrier to entry, the more someone’s intelligence, product, or novel take has to stand out.

His advice on an alternative course of action is age-old: work hard. Add value, provide a solution, and your brand will grow steadily. Flashy things will always be tempting, and Chase admits they catch his eye, too. However, for those eager to get started, the best strategy is to learn just one valuable skill, work for a brand you love, and the rewards will be far greater than instantly being able to buy a Ferrari (that the guy posing in front of doesn’t own, by the way). 

Success stories born of good old-fashioned hard work populate his aptly titled podcast “Honest Ecommerce,” so much so that extra episodes have had to be made. He interviews brand founders and subject matter experts on how they got their start, what they’ve achieved, and what their future looks like. 

Chase is quick to say his own business Electric Eye, does two things: builds highly performant and beautiful Shopify themes and optimizes existing stores, making the customer experience better. It’s as important to make clear what your company doesn’t do as it is to showcase what it does. Promoting a product’s or service’s benefits is far more effective than promoting the features of something. 

Lastly, Chase suggests that listeners focus on gaining customers, who, in return, become a hugely valuable resource. Don’t be afraid to ask every person you sold a product to what their impression of it was. Ultimately, you’ll want to incorporate that feedback into the second incarnation of the product and address the questions on the company website. Dax talks about the lessons the author Amy Radin teaches in her book “The Change Maker’s Playbook” and how she substituted big research budgets for simple conversations with customers in her corporate America days.

So, in the end, ecommerce may not be easy, but it is simple. Data and numbers drive your sales, and you need to stop overthinking it.

The Honest Ecommerce podcast is the essential companion for anyone in the ecommerce industry and critical for EVERYONE using Shopify.

Recent Honest Ecommerce Episodes include:

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Episode Quotes

  • “When I got into the industry seven or eight years ago, there was this ugly underbelly of Youtube. Lots of fly-by-night, get rich quick, buy my course and you’ll get a Ferrari stuff out there. I just thought, ‘That’s not real. That’s not true.’ What it takes is hard work.” (0:37-0:54 | Chase) 
  • “The original idea was just to interview people smarter than me.” (0:57-0:59 | Chase)
  • “Drop shipping is just a race to the bottom and it’s not an industry you want to get into.” (3:51-3:55 | Chase) 
  • “The barrier of entry has never been lower to start a business or to learn ecommerce, but that also means the delta between being good is that much wider (6:41-6:52 | Chase)
  • “At the end of the day, 99% of your problems can be solved if you just sell what you’re trying to sell. And that’s what a lot of people don’t want to focus on because it’s hard work.” (9:22-9:31 | Chase) 
  • “You can get a lot of CRO information by just asking your customers what questions they have about your product and answering those questions on your website.”(10:07-10:15 | Chase)
  • “Ecommerce is math. Don’t overcomplicate it.” (11:10-11:12 | Chase)

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