Big thanks to the ShopPop team for featuring our Head of Commercial Leighanne Phillips on their blog recently. In case you missed it, here's what Leighanne has to say about building Shopify Plus stores that go above and beyond.
In our Behind the Shop series, we take a closer look into the people that have been building your favorite online stores.
The ecommerce and online shopping revolution rages on. We usually only encounter the storefronts, so we asked ourselves: who are the storebuilders behind the scenes? And what can they teach us about building the perfect online store?
This time around, we talked to Leighanne Phillips, Head of Commercial at the leading Shopify Plus agency specialising in luxury and ethical brands, Full Fat Commerce. This agency from Birmingham (UK) designs, builds, and grows businesses on Shopify, focusing on sustainable, ethically-minded, high-growth brands.
Hi Leighanne! Please tell us a little bit about yourself
Hey! I’m Head of Commercial at Full Fat Commerce - primarily looking after the sales process for all potential new clients.
I also look after our partners, and work on ways to build strong relationships with the best integrations in the Shopify ecosystem to benefit our clients.
What’s the biggest challenge Full Fat Commerce is facing as we approach the end of the year?
One of the biggest challenges we are facing is how best to deliver consistent growth for our clients. The ecommerce landscape has changed so dramatically over the last 18 months - and our ways of targeting growth and CRO need to keep up!
So what steps are you taking to overcome this challenge?
We are currently looking at ways to enhance our growth services. We’re taking a strategic approach to each of the key areas we believe provide a solid foundation allowing brands to scale in a way that is authentic to them.
Combining the team’s knowledge and experience, traditional CRO tactics such as A/B testing and UX optimisation plus a focus on future-proofing through customer experience & hyper-personalisation, we plan to accelerate our clients’ growth even more through 2022.
More about Full Fat Commerce. Why do people come to your service and how can you help them?
We’re a team of experts that build and grow Shopify and Shopify Plus stores for ambitious and ethically-minded brands. Our team are experts and know the platform inside-out.
We recently shared our mission statement and company values further establishing who we are as an agency; by delivering best-in-class work, we make a positive impact on the world both through our own means, and via the success of our clients.
We work closely with brands to help them achieve their ecommerce goals, whether they’re at the start up or scale up stages, we don’t take a one-size-fits-all approach to creating success.
We’re sure you’ve heard of the cookie apocalypse and how it will disrupt traditional e-commerce strategies. Could you share your thoughts on this?
The “cookie apocalypse” should be a clear call to action for brands. As we move into this period of hyper-personalisation and experiential shopping expectations, having a great product just isn’t enough to build a sustainable business. What do you stand for?
How your customers experience your brand will be a key driver for ongoing success. Creating a community, best-in-class customer service, clearly defined and actioned values - these are some of the things customers are looking for, and excelling in them will create a loyal customer base that will help sell your product for you.
How do Shopify and social shopping support each other? Any valuable insights into where this is going in 2021 and beyond?
Social shopping is not a new concept, Instagram and Facebook have had the ability to link products for the last few years. What has changed is how potential customers interact with brands.
The appetite for video content has continued to grow, not just with Gen-Z but with millennials too. Anecdotally, I think a lot of us joined TikTok last year during one of the lockdowns and never looked back. I'm hooked.
The recent announcement of the Shopify and TikTok partnership clearly demonstrates that ecommerce platforms are also taking this opportunity seriously.
By enabling brands to accelerate their growth at the source of their engagement, being able to purchase at the click of a button in the app will surely accelerate revenue growth.
With BFCM fast approaching, a lot of merchants are already getting prepared - or should be. How does Full Fat Commerce support them in this seasonal event?
This year, we created a step by step guide to prepare for BFCM, starting in September and taking brands right up until BFCM.
Covering topics like UX optimisation, inventory planning and marketing planning, we’re making sure all our clients are ready to have a successful holiday sales period.
Ultimately the success of BFCM comes from planning and preparation - building a sales strategy that works for your brand and represents your values will resonate with your customers and create success.
Can you suggest 2-3 people from your own extensive Shopify network every agency owner and merchant should follow for inspiration? And why these people in particular?
First up - Mary Portas. I consume every piece of content Mary and her agency create. Books, podcasts, articles - it's all useful. People, Planet, Profit is something I think about every day.
Second would be Steven Bartlett. Each episode of Steven’s podcast is full of actionable insights that will not only change your personal life but power your business too.
Thirdly, it’s Dan Murray-Serter, co-founder of the supplement brand Heights. Dan posts incredible content on LinkedIn and covers all aspects of running an ecomm business, from leadership to growth, with detailed explanations on what works and what doesn't. A must-follow for any brand owner.
Everyday, there are thousands of people venturing into ecommerce. What’s your biggest piece of advice?
Set yourself up for success. There’s a lot to think about when starting an ecommerce business, so get the fundamentals in place and do them well.
Reviews for social proof, email marketing to build your brand voice, customer service, social media (and social selling) and best practice UX and UI will help you start on the right track and give you something to improve and invest in as you grow. Automate what you can but keep your authenticity.