I met some early entrepreneurs devising what should be their idea of business. What product they should start and how they should make a monopoly around it. They work on breaking their heads to see if they can come with an idea so grand and unique that they stand monopoly and rule the terms.
They even feel it will be easy to sell if they are all alone.
Monopoly is negative, unfair, and business that needs to be controlled by someone like a drug lord. Monopoly is not good for any business.
The idea should be around creating a larger economic pie for all, instead of fighting in the same market and dividing region. It should open up alternative possibilities that are not available to business houses within the existing cost value structure. Enabling higher value at a lower cost.
Shopify stood everything that I meant above and defined its market with value, affordability, and easy-to-use strategy.
E-commerce was not new when Shopify had come up and there were tons of enterprise software to take your products online market. So what made Shopify so successful?
Out of many reasons, here are some stand out features that made Shopify unique in the market.
- 14 day trial—no one is sure about their strategy and would like to test before they are life. Shopify eased entrepreneurs to try. They even got nag about how easy it is to use Shopify.
- Payment Gateway—We all know, banking is tough, and getting a payment gateway was tough in those days. Shopify got this as a feature.
- Hosted Solution—We all get cold feet when someone mentioned pre-requisites to host a solution. Shopify hosted everything for you.
- Inbuilt Marketing tool—If you have your marketplace, then you need to sell it efficiently. Shopify had this inbuilt.
- Ease of using—Shopify converted most tech-driven implementation to DIY. This helped the adoption.
- Easy on the pocket—Monthly billing helped e-tailers to pay as you go with an affordable price.
- Advanced functionality—Shopify with ease of interfacing with enterprise software made it viable for individuals, SMB and enterprises.
With such features, there was no looking back for Shopify, and today this Canadian giant is valued at $100 billion.
Coming back to our topic, how should you plan your company which is not a monopoly but drive great sales. You needn’t have to be a tech firm to be successful as Shopify, even non tech firms like Absolut Vodka, Harry grooming kit, WePay, Tomme Tippee and more, stood by their strategy to stand out.
Here are some easy tips that can help you stand out:
- Current stage—Be clear about the current state of play. About your offering, competition, market you in and what new demand you can cater to. This will help you think about points to work on, points to rethink on, and points to settle with the existing situation.
- Uncovering—Working on uncovering the hidden industry. Shopify with DIY enticed solopreneurs and e-tailers to come on board, which otherwise was uncovered market. These non-customers moved on to Shopify, bringing a flood of e-tailers.
- Rethink offering—If DIY was not an option, managing non-customers (who become customers) would have been tough. They designed the onboarding process to meet non-technique opened floodgates of users on Shopify.
- Rethinking Price—Easy on the pocket, so much so that people tried their luck on e-tail business. From pickle makers to handmade shoes or dog caps to fishing equipment, everything started selling on Shopify.
- Be ready for the shift—Shopify was all set and ready for the shift. Pandemic helped Shopify more and today it stands out with an 80% market share of individual e-commerce.
It is important to note that once you discover, you will have a first-mover advantage. The competition will follow soon, but this process of discovery needs to be constant to seek new opportunities.
You can be unique and eye-catching, but being in a monopoly is no great. Build your strategy to stand out of crowd and excellent like Shopify.