Ecommerce DIY with Shopify

By GravityFed

Posted on March 09, 2018

Many brands in the outdoor industry start small, scratching and clawing to develop products and get them in the hands of influential people who will help spread the word.

What begins out of necessity or a labor of love could someday become a global brand name. Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia's founder, made his first steel pitons in 1957 from an old harvester blade because only soft iron pitons were available at the time.

We know you're out there...the passionate climber who has developed a new product that others should have. At some point the question becomes whether or not to bring that product to market. This may seem like an insurmountable task, but getting started selling on the Internet is within your reach. In fact, you might be surprised to know how easy it is to not only launch your own ecommerce store, but execute a marketing strategy to get traffic and buyers to show up.

Step 1: Get a domain name

Domain registrars are plentiful. One of the most popular is GoDaddy, and aside from the slightly aggravating up-sell measures they take, their domain manager is relatively easy to use. When thinking about your domain, look for one that's short, brandable, unique, and ideally a .com extension. That's easier said than done, however there are now hundreds of domain extensions to choose from if your preferred name is not available as a .com.

GoDaddy Logo

Step 2: Find an ecommerce platform

Without a doubt, Shopify has the most powerful tools and services for web retailers getting started. But not only that, they are also robust enough to power web stores for some large, national brands including shops for Tesla, Red Bull, and Lady Gaga. So as your ecommerce business grows, you will have a platform that can scale with you. Just as it's a challenge to migrate a website, the same holds true (x10) for changing ecommerce platforms once you're up and rolling.

Shopify Logo

Getting the ecommerce platform right is key, especially if you're the DIY website builder trying to avoid paying a developer to set-up shop. Once your Shopify account is set-up (there is a 14-day free trial, which means you don't have to pay until you have your shop built), you'll find everything needed to build a shop, showcase products, and process payments. In a nutshell, Shopify offers:

  • Theme Store (free and paid themes) to make your shop look great.
  • App Store (free and paid apps) to expand your shop functionality.
  • Dedicated payment provider to accept credit card payments.
  • Growth opportunities including enterprise services.
  • Blog and publication resources to connect with customers.
  • Experts who can help set up, design, and market your shop.
  • Dedicated support team available 24/7.

Step 3: Execute a marketing strategy

Driving brand advocacy and growth through content has been gaining momentum. With the emergence of influencer marketing, and the platforms that facilitate it, brands are now laser focused on marketing partnerships with bloggers and social influencers. The best part about marketing with influencers, at least in the outdoor space, is that you can pull it off without paying a dime out of pocket.

Outdoor influencers are very passionate about their activities, gear, and travels. This makes them the perfect, authentic marketers. Identify and engage with those interested in reviewing your product(s), and get them a sample. If you target "micro-influencers" (10,000-100,000 aggregate followers across all social media platforms), it's likely that all they will require is the product sample to do their thing. This could include anything from blog reviews to dedicated YouTube videos featuring your brand.

Why Use GravityFed

If you're thinking that it must take time to discover and engage with influencers for product review campaigns, you're right. Influencer discovery and campaign management can be time consuming, and we are solving this problem with GravityFed. With our diverse population of influencers, campaign marketplace, and content network for reviews, we are consolidating these efforts and solutions.

Once you have your Shopify store online, set-up a brand account on GravityFed to..

  1. discover new influencer partnerships.
  2. verify influencer social and blog analytics.
  3. post product review campaigns to the marketplace.
  4. get engagement metrics (comments, likes, shares) for executed campaigns.

GravityFed has been in the business of promoting outdoor brands through content since 2000. In addition to the platform itself, we offer an array of agency services including ecommerce site development and campaign management. If you're not the DIY type, contact us.

Disclosure: We are a professional review site that receives compensation from companies whose products we review. We test each product thoroughly and give high marks to only the best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.

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