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How to build an online store from scratch: the Louson Drums experience

(Note that this post contains affiliate codes)

Our company, Louson Drums, was essential founded out of thin air and with zero foundation to work with. In 2015, friends Carson Cashman and Louis Maione decided to start a custom drum company. They soon began building cajon drums and soon after started making the smaller CajonTab drums that would become the primary focus of the company.

For 2015 and most of 2016, we were using Squarespace as our WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) website editor and e-commerce platform. We liked the platform and found it fairly easy to use, but I (Carson, the guy writing this article) wished I had more options. I wanted easier publication of my listings to other platforms, apps to integrate with other services like Google shopping, and better order fulfillment integration with a 3rd party shipping service like Shippo. 

Our current online store platform, Shopify, has allowed us to quickly grow our product listings by offering an easy way to add products via the smartphone app. As a custom drum maker, we're constantly adding new listings of completed custom orders and our new offerings. By giving business owners easy access to free business tools such as free logo makers and privacy policy generators, they've helped us get up and running quickly.

But more importantly, we've seen a noticeable increase in our conversion rates and overall sales since switching from Squarespace to Shopify.

We attribute this partially to easy of navigation and design. Shopify allows the store owner to group products into "collections", which can greatly help navigation and makes the customers experience much easier, leading to more sales.

We've also seen a large boost to our email list signups, due to some very useful (and free) apps that we integrated, prompting our visitors to join our mailing list in exchange for a coupon code or special offer. Various apps exist, allowing the store owner to find the right service to boost email collection and engagement. Its the huge library of possible apps and services that can be added to your store which makes Shopify such a good platform.

As noted in the intro, this post does contain affiliate links to Shopify. This means that if you enjoy the platform as a business owner like we do, you can share with others via your blog post our social media channels. If they decide to try Shopify (they offer a free trial period) and later become subscribers, you can earn a commission. As a small business, we view this as an easy way to gain passive income to help with the companies expenses. By no means am I suggesting you can substantially move your companies bottom line via Shopify links, but you may help another business owner make a smart decision for their company while earning a few dollars for your own! That sounds like a win-win situation to me.