Modern Brands That Use E-Commerce Really Well (Part I)

E-Commerce is an extremely powerful tool for any retail or brick and mortar business to invest in...

Ana Rios - Copywriter

Sep 16, 2019

E-Commerce is an extremely powerful tool for any retail or brick and mortar business to invest in. Studies have shown that there’s extreme stimulation in the pleasure and reward centre in the brain when people shop online. Dopamine is released when a person checks out their online purchase and again when that package arrives. But there is a practicality to shopping online, anyone can shop anytime and anywhere as long as they have internet access. Customers are easily able to compare prices and quality between different products and across different brands. As a business, you are able to extend your reach to potential customers where you are able to ship to. Increasingly going to the physical store ends up being a waste of time because they sell niche items online only As a brand you have options in terms of e-commerce platforms in the way of mobile apps or a website. We’ve already discussed the benefits of different types of mobile platforms, if you wanna check it out click here. Otherwise, we’ll be delving into the pros and cons of apps and websites for e-commerce for retail businesses.

E-Commerce Mobile Apps

It might seem like a no-brainer to opt for a website when considering e-commerce, however there are some advantages to investing in an app. According to some studies conducted, users tend to spend more time on apps than on websites. A good app will be designed around the user experience, moreover, apps take advantage of smartphone features making it possible for to grab a customer’s attention in innovative ways.

Creating your brand’s own app allow you to customize the experience to your target demographic, create a community for your customer’s and provides a platform to generate sales. Investing in apps will allow you to showcase and move stock free of any commission and it allows you to stay connected and update your customer through push notifications.

Let’s talk about the marketing advantage.

You can create loyalty programs and store coupons through a wallet feature right in the application. Apps are also a great investment for generating loyal clientele, when creating a loyalty program you can get creative and use aspects of gamification to make a unique experience for users. Points and rewards are a great way to keep your users engaged and logging into your app often. Moreover, in terms of social marketing you can hook up your brand’s social handles and take advantage of social integration features with popular social medias like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Often times, apps require the creation of a user profile. A user profile can gather data about your customers which can be an asset for research, product development and marketing. Moreover, it can give you and your team unprecedented access to new information such as buyer behaviour. Information about customers can help your team make data driven decisions.

Another consideration for apps is that technology is constantly evolving, over time you have the option to add new features such as virtual reality to keep users entertained or geo-location capabilities to connect with users in real time.

E-Commerce Websites

Online stores are also a great alternative to e-commerce apps. We’ve already talked about the differences between native apps and mobile apps, if you’d like to check it out click here. With an e-commerce website you still have all the benefits of online retailing. You can create an account/ profile method to store a shopping cart and checkout method. You have the ability to collect the same data, institute a rewards program and extend your market reach. Websites can also run as an optimized mobile apps through browser capabilities on a phone. If you’d like your business automation to be scaled in small segments you can always start with a website and see what works and what doesn’t in terms of your customer base. Alternatively, if your business is new and you want to invest your resources wisely, it may be beneficial to consider a website over an app in the beginning. Investing in the right team with the necessary qualifications will ensure that your final platform is polished and efficient.

Pact Coffee

Pact Coffee delivers fresh coffee to your doors whether you’re a household or a business. From a very quick visit to their website I was able to navigate to their about us page and learn all about them. Their differentiating factors are quality, ethically sourced coffee delivered fresh to you. Their website is easy to navigate, not the most beautiful website but it is very cleanWhen you try to purchase a coffee, you are taken through a survey that finds out what your needs are and seamlessly end up on a checkout page. I think that was the most impressive part. How seamless the survey takes you through educating you about what your needs as a customer are and what Pact Product offerings are. They have a newsletter check box and accept all main forms of payment, powered by Stripe. It doesn’t really get simpler than that.

Based on my experience, I would also say convenience both online and offline (through) delivery on subscription service, are also differentiating factors.

They have a coffee tasting visit and all sorts of cute ways to establish a relationship with their customers.

When you visit their Instagram, it is clear what the companies goals and values are; they care about design but not too much, they have photos of their coffee bean providers and cool product and package photos. Their brand is absolutely on point.


Tattly started in 2011. Tina Eisenberg, started the company after being tired of putting crappy temporary tattoos on her daughter. The company launched online and even though it had a handful of tattoo designs, it received thousands of orders from all around the world. Now the company employs at least 10 or more people and gives out a lot of the proceeds back to the artists and designers of the tattoo art. The business model is a lot like RedBubble’s model. The website is very youthful, fun and bright. You can create an account to get discounts, search the website and of course there is a shopping cart. Unlike Pact Coffee, they just add your orders to the shopping cart and let you keep browsing. The prices are very low. The e-commerce is handled by Shopify and their website is built by an external agency. So you get a well thought out checkout page, although very standard one from Shopify. Again very simple but effective.

The coolest part about their website is one, they let you browse by artist. There is a lot of benefit to doing this, which we’ll get into in another post. Two, they have floating button at the bottom, that says Tattcoin. Which is an iFrame, which takes you through what that is. It is basically a reward program. With simple ways to earn some Tattcoin, like sharing on social media, purchasing stuff and referring friends. This company is using every thing that e-commerce offers in an appropriate way for its target demographic. Their website design and Instagram are also amazing!

Final Considerations

E-Commerce platforms have other benefits to consider. With an online store or app you can consider your business open 24/7. If you have the resources available, consider a retail app since you are able to customize and elevate the user experience. If you’d like to slowly ease into tech and automation, consider a website and scale based on your business’s needs.

Stay tuned for more exciting companies doing exceptional work in the Part II of this series. Maybe you’ll take away a lesson or two from them.

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