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Curt Anderson, Lance Owide, Damon Pistulka
Damon Pistulka 00:02
All right, it is Friday and you know what that means? It means it’s time for manufacturing ecommerce success. I am one of your co host, Damon Pistulka. And that lovely guy right over there. wound that stylin shirt as Mr. Kurt Anderson. We’re having a we’re gonna be talking about powerful ecommerce solutions for manufacturers. With Lance Oh wide Kurt taken away my friend,
Curt Anderson 00:29
dude. Man, it looks like you’re in a little bit of a different background there. Damon you were traveling somewhere
Damon Pistulka 00:35
over there hot on the road today.
Curt Anderson 00:37
Okay. You got a big weekend plan with a wife so we just do an amazing, incredible weekend. Happy Friday. My friend Kimberly like July is like flying by is just insane or no kid. But hey, we’re still in the thick of summer and boy you talk about summer summer sizzling we’ve got a really hot show today, man. We’re going to talk about just limitless potential with E commerce. So guys, drop us a note. Let us know that you’re out there. I’m gonna give a big shout out a warm hot Austin. Welcome to our dear friend Lance. Oh wide Lance. Happy Friday. How are you my friend?
Lance Owide 01:12
I am fantastic. Thank you so much for having me on. It is sizzling here in Austin, Texas. I think it’s about 105 Oh, if you cracked an egg and put it you know on the on the tarmac it would it would cook Yes, it would fry well,
Curt Anderson 01:32
I absolutely love it and I know you and your wife just love the heat so just keep it coming right and so hey, we’re gonna dig deep guys. We have a great discussion here. Lance is with big commerce boy if you’re not familiar with big commerce, we encourage you We invite you We welcome you to check out big commerce if you are manufacturer and you are considering tipping your tone a little bit of the E commerce journey man you are at the right place. So let’s dive in. So last but before we go there, get hate Daymond we got some friends here today. Whitney Happy Friday. Whitney Houston. She’s a fellow Texan. We’ve got we got Sunil here today. We got aImost angers and outs anger. Yeah, happy Friday Dylan’s here we got all sorts of friends. So guys, happy Friday. Keep the college. Yeah, do us a favor drop a note to Lance you want to connect with Lance on LinkedIn and we’re gonna have a deep dive discussion. So now Lance, before we go there I I detect a little slight accent if I’m not doesn’t quite sound like an Austin accent. Do I detect that correctly?
Lance Owide 02:34
Ah, no, this is a this is a native Texan Austin accent I do not know what you’re talking about. How do y’all I’m Lance from Texas. I was not well,
Curt Anderson 02:45
you are way too so you sound way too sophisticated for Damon and myself. But let’s Yeah, let’s go here. We know that you are from the wonderful country of England. You are Londoner, and let’s go here for a second my friend when you were a little boy growing up. Little boy growing up in England. Who was your hero? Who’s your hero as a little guy growing up in England?
Lance Owide 03:09
I this what a great question. Yes, i running around the streets in North London. I’m a big cycling fan. And my heroes Texan it was Lance Armstrong was my hero namesake. You know I’ve got shared share the first name I don’t know if that’s controversial. Now if I can say Lance Armstrong is sort of disgraced. But he was my hero. I grew up watching him in the Tour de France and actually the Tour de France is going on right now for any cycling fans out there. And his ability to just dominate the sport of cycling was just I thought absolutely incredible. And now I can pop to his bike shop here in in Austin, Texas, which I often do grab a coffee it’s about 10 minutes from my house which is pretty cool.
Curt Anderson 03:54
Well you know what fantastic answer and I remember those days vividly and just you know yeah, he was an inspiration hero went through some you know devastating house situations and just overcame for anybody you don’t remember that or go back and Google those days but But what Lance Armstrong that you know what we’re it’s time you know time has healed that wound we’re going to accept that one and I you know, I like that one so guys again if you’re just joining us we’re here with Lance Oh wide now. Damon you know I like doing little funny things with names like you know, so you got soccer here in the United States you the rest of world cause a football but if you’re an American football fan lands Oh wide left is really not a good phrase Damon unite right like if you’re in Buffalo Bills country like oh Why’d laugh was like they lost a Super Bowl on Oh, wide left. So we might go with Oh wide right for today with Lance. So Lance, let’s dive in. Now you took a very traditional path like most people that go into E commerce, you go off to university and you just absolutely crush it. I think Damon I thought he might have been an honors just like you and I didn’t have on or Palo Alto anyway, so Anderson college did an amazing job. He finds himself in investment banking, everybody goes into investment banking before you get an E commerce. Lance, can you talk a little bit about what was how did this happen? How did you go into investment banking? Let’s go there. And let’s transition how you brought your talents, your skills, your superpowers into E commerce.
Lance Owide 05:20
It’s even worse. It wasn’t just investment banking, it was then private equity. Oh, let me know if there if there were two if there was a if there was a natural path into E commerce, THAT’S IT investment banking, and private equity. Yeah, you do it, do it. And, and even though I was in finance, so insurance companies, we were buying and managing insurance companies, that’s what I was doing. But I have always had a passion for entrepreneurship. And for manufacturers for distributors. My father owned his own business, he owned his own dry cleaning company and dry cleaning distribution business. And so I grew up watching him running this business and and as I thought about, you know, what’s, what’s the next step in a in a career, I really wanted to do something that was going to enable businesses around the country around the world to grow. And that that’s ecommerce, right that is that is ecommerce, if I think about, you know, when I come into work every day, I am thinking about how do we make manufacturers successful? How do we make those businesses grow? What are we building that is going to enable them to expand into new regions into new markets? What are we building that is going to help them you know, make their operations more efficient to sell more to connect with their customers in ways ways that they couldn’t before and that’s what really motivated me to come into the the e Commerce Industry. It was a bit of a a bit of a leap of faith I think of big commerce to say hey, then this this banker come and teach us a thing or two about about b2b e commerce but I’ve been now at Big commerce for two years, and it’s been been a truly fantastic journey.
Curt Anderson 07:07
Well, hey, well, thank you for bringing your talents to the E commerce world and get we’ve got some wonderful comments here. So comments are just being rolling. Send LinkedIn profiles, a curtain a chat, you know, we’ve got Sunil here. Hey, Diane buyers coming to eight we’ve got Dan dropped another note. William is here today. Williams is here. So again, guys, we’re here talking about e commerce with Lance Oh, wide, we’re going to take a deep dive quote. So if you are considering that if you’re working in that space, if you have clients, we’re going to space, you have a friend family, your dog is considering e commerce man, you are in the right place. Lance, let’s go there you are now, boy transplant, you are a seasoned veteran of awesome, like you said like you’re now a local and you are big Commerce who and what is big commerce? curious minds want to know?
Lance Owide 07:57
Yeah, that’s a great question. So big commerce is an open SAS ecommerce platform on earth does that mean? That means that we’re an E commerce platform, that is software as a service. And so you don’t have to install servers, you don’t have to worry about upgrading technology, you log into a website, and you can purchase a plan and spin up a store in minutes. That’s what at the core big commerce is all about. But we have a unique specialization for manufacturing and distributors. We’ve supported them for five plus years on our platform. And we’ve helped numerous merchants sell online, bring their businesses online and build unique and engaging b2b buyer experiences for manufacturers to engage with both potential end consumers, but also distributors as well that they might be selling to and so big commerce is built as an open platform. So we’re not trying to limit technologies that manufacturers can use. We know there are lots of specialized ERP platforms out there, specialized CRMs, etc, etc. And we want you to be able to work with any platform that you wish and so big commerce is open in that will connect to all of those, all of those wonderful platforms out there that are built for those unique specialized manufacturing industries that really understand the processes that manufacturers go to work go through. Sorry, when they’re building those those those products and that’s, that’s at its core, really what big commerce is, is all about empowering those manufacturers to sell more and grow their business.
Curt Anderson 09:42
Well, you know, in Diem, if you don’t mind, I’m gonna let’s Yeah, it’s a good segue. Let’s go.
Damon Pistulka 09:48
Danny’s got some good comments here. Yeah.
Curt Anderson 09:49
What kinds of data is flowing from big commerce to ERP systems? Is it bi directional and with info coming back from the ERP into big commerce, what do you do? Oh, man, just throwing a fastball right off.
Damon Pistulka 10:02
Yes. And we love it and right into it. Dan,
Lance Owide 10:05
we’re going straight into the technical questions. I love it, I love it. The answer is bi directional, yes, and an awful lot of data, everything, you know that you would need to run an E commerce platform. So you start with product information and product data, right. And we’ve got to remember, manufacturers can often have large products producing lots of products and detailed information, tech, not tech specs, dimension information, etc. And lots potentially lots of variants, you may have lots of variations of a specific product, different colors, different sizes, all of that information, syncing up, you know, on a daily basis, hourly basis, as frequently as you need that information updated into big commerce covered up to 600 variants on one single SKU, so that product data, customer data, company data, who are you selling to as a manufacturer, you’re selling to individuals, but you’re also saying to companies, so all of that data syncs into big commerce so that your customers, your buyers can log in using their login, but login on behalf of the company and make purchases, order data, flowing back and forth, invoicing quotes, pretty much everything that you can imagine, is being synced back and forth. And and if you see, you know, Damien’s laughing over there, you know, you can create custom fields and sync the data, your credit limits, and all weird and wonderful things. So yeah, well, lots
Damon Pistulka 11:29
of guys will happen, because most ERP systems have horrible customer facing ordering systems, right. And big commerce really gives you the the ability to design one that’s a customer friendly, easy to use, and the data flows nicely. So that’s really, that’s really what’s cool about it, I think,
Lance Owide 11:49
yeah, to your point, we often say, and I often say when I’m talking to manufacturers, big commerce, we’re, you know, we’re we’re replacing that kind of custom platform that’s been built on top of an ERP, that is an experience that no buyer wants to have to go through and use. And that’s often you know, when we look at the platforms that we’re replacing, where manufacturers come to us, number one, is a custom platform, something that was, you know, built bespoke, and just, it can’t keep up with the modern demands of of a buyer. And it just looks so outdated. I can see Dan came back with a question there about about, you know, custom part numbers, yes, you create custom fields, and you sync it up. You know, it’s it’s that simple. So you just have a little custom field attached to a product, which is, you know, that’s the case for the majority of manufacturers got lots of custom information that you need to sync back and forth with your with your ERP, and you can and can build a connectivity to handle all of that.
Curt Anderson 12:52
Perfect, perfect. So let’s go hey, what about this one here? Is Big commerce. Is that a pretty deep dive question? Or how about that one?
Lance Owide 12:59
I love that question. We get that question. You know, all the time, there are actually lots of manufacturers out there already using AI and AI and machine learning. And, you know, we have to remember, it’s not new, this isn’t really a new concept. If you’ve got ever used product recommendations, if you’ve ever had, you know, custom searches that are specific for a specific customer, that really that’s a that’s machine learning. That’s, that’s what it is. And so, a lot of the sites we use, as you know, retail shoppers have AI machine learning built into them. Amazon does Walmart does target does, they all do, and many manufacturers already do. And especially when you’ve got really large catalogs, you know, in the automotive industry, we see a lot of automotive manufacturers using machine learning AI to, to try and handle and manage those those large, those large, large catalogs. But there are some, some new things coming, you know, product descriptions, help write product descriptions with AI, there are already some apps in our app store that help manufacturers do that. I think it’s a really cool one. Sorry. Yeah,
Curt Anderson 14:13
no, I this is this is phenomenal. And so a couple things that I want to hit here is, you know, we can get a little sophisticated again, guys, keep the questions come in. We’d love the comments, connect with Lance, you know, take conversations offline. This is exactly what he’s here for is we want you know, we’re here to help you on your ecommerce journey. And maybe if some of those things, I kind of like, Hey, this is kind of floating over my head, dude. Like, I’m just trying to put my website online. I mean, we can take it as simple. You know, when you’re exploring shopping carts and you’re looking for solutions. You can take it as simple as you want. You can get as sophisticated as you want. We’re going to dig into some really fun examples here. But you know, Dan majority folks here are entrepreneurs. We love that really exciting, juicy entrepreneurial success story. I’m going to take a step back real quick. Big Commerce has a fascinating, fascinating origin story. It’s two dudes that met in a chat room back in like 2003. Can you just share a little bit and these guys are hanging out down in Australia, just give us a little bit of background of like, you know, a dream that turns into a publicly traded company. What’s the story here at Big commerce?
Lance Owide 15:21
Yeah, it’s a it’s a, it’s a great origin story. And it speaks to the entrepreneurship that manufacturers have right? To honestly mention Eddie, they met in an online chat room, quite incredible. And they built a product because they were looking at the entrepreneur landscape and realized how hard it was to sell online. And so they built an online shopping cart. That’s how it started, they wanted to help entrepreneurs sell. And they started just by building a shopping cart, and it went live 2009 It went live. And right, we’re sitting here years later, we’re now a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ. And it’s the product has just gone from strength to strength to strength, we are based here in the US rather than Australia, where, where it started, we’re headquartered here in the US. But From those humble beginnings, you know, we haven’t lost sight of of what it is that we’re trying to achieve. And what we focus on, which is customer first, and our customers are manufacturers, they are builders. And our job is to help them sell into your point code. And I think you were kind of talking about it, we went 10,000 feet deep there, I think very, very quickly, to bring that back up. Yeah, manufacturers who are looking to get online, don’t have to start by biting off the whole apple, you know, you can get online just by getting products online. You know, if you’ve never had a website before, just put products on a page, that immediately opens you up to a whole new potential customer who can find you online, find your products, and then pick up the phone and give you a call. Right. And once you’ve done that, then you can start to think about selling online. And so we think about it for manufacturers are a crawl, walk, run. And then actually at their at their distributor here here in Austin with there’s a liquor distributor called Twin liquors. They’re a big company, they’re on big commerce and I had them on stage with me or our Partner Summit. And they said, This is our crawl, walk, run fly strategy. And so I’m not even fly into into that. And that’s, you know, take taking off and landing globally. And that’s how we think about
Curt Anderson 17:41
it. I love that. And so let’s let’s uncover that. And then we’re going to dig into some examples here, Lance. And again, guys, keep the comments coming. Hey, Logan says he started his first e commerce business in 2011. That’s
Damon Pistulka 17:52
awesome. Early one,
Curt Anderson 17:54
that was one. So again, for our early adaptors out there, that’s great. And the thing is, like, if you feel like man, I’m late to the game. Lance, you and I were just talking about the like, the party is just starting, you are absolutely not late to the E commerce game. Especially if you’re a manufacturer, especially if you’re in b2b. And you talked about like the walk, run, you know, crawl, walk run formula, I have the honor and privilege, you know of work with one of your partners above the fray we’d like on it like going in those phases. Like he lets us really bucket this in phases. And a lot of manufacturers out there that you know, they’ll say, oh, man, Logan, she my bed? I’m blind man, I can’t so sorry about that. So you know, so with manufacturers out there, you might be like, Hey, I don’t have a proprietary product, I don’t have a finished good. However, Lance, you just hit on head, there’s all sorts of opportunities. And when that customer engaged that by definition that is ecommerce, we’re going to talk about, like submitting that RFQ configurators. Let’s go there for a little bit for that custom manufacturer that doesn’t have that finished. Good talk about some of the big commerce solutions.
Lance Owide 18:59
Yeah, sure. So you know, you’re building that finish line, how do you configure it? What potential options are there? Configuration is a key part of manufacturing. And it’s a key part of that sales process. And that may be today on the phone with a salesperson so the salespeople are key, speaking to the buyer, helping them understand the variations understand the optionality walk in, through best practices, etc. And so you know, we have a number of, of merchants on big commerce that have built that functionality into their e commerce offering, right and who, through their their e commerce portal, you can now configure those products to then be to then be purchased. And I think that’s really a key part of what ecommerce can offer. You know, it’s not replacing that sales team. It’s making them more efficient. You know, if I as a buyer can go online and start to play around and start To configure that product before I get to the sales process, or before I phone up the salesperson, you know, I’m a step further one of the businesses that I often call out here, they do actually produce some finished products here, but they’re caught up lift desks, they produce desks that rise with a manual element or through an electronic element. And they have one of the most beautiful configurators that I’ve ever seen built online. It’s fantastic. You go on their website, and you can edit this morning again. Yeah. founded here in Austin, Texas, it’s fun. Sorry,
Damon Pistulka 20:39
and I think you make a great point, Lance is is this kind of technology enhances the sales process, right? Like you’re saying, I as a customer, then can come in and learn a lot about the product, I can configure it, I can look at a lot of things. Or if I’m an existing customer, and I really don’t need to talk to the salesperson, I know what I want, I go through and I can configure, I can go back and reorder, I can do so many different things. And what it does for the salesperson, because it allows the salesperson then to go talk to that customer about life about other problems that they have building relationships, rather than worrying about giving them product specifications or walking them through configurations. They’re really just answering questions and building relationships, which is that is so much more important than handing someone a spec sheet or something like that. It’s just cool how it all works together if you can do it, right.
Lance Owide 21:38
Yeah, I couldn’t, couldn’t agree more. It’s about you know, enabling that sales team to do what they do best, which is build relationships and sell. It’s not answer. You know what? It’s not, as you said, sending a spec sheet that is value add. And actually what you find is that most buyers today, we were used to shopping on our phones, we don’t actually want to speak to someone to art to get that spec sheet. We want to find it online. Right. And so if you’re offering that, that is making the process better for your sales team, but also for the buyer too, and they will you know, they’ll appreciate that. Right? Absolutely.
Curt Anderson 22:13
Lance, why don’t we let’s jump in and why don’t we take a look at some different examples. And I’ve got, do you want to share? I can actually I have the dust company pulled up on my computer. Go ahead, Kurt. Go ahead. You’re awesome. Let me see how we do. Let’s see, let me share my screen. Let me share my screen and let me do window. Let me do let me do window. And let me do that. That. And can you see what do you see Damon? anything? Nothing?
Lance Owide 22:45
Oh, I can’t see anything.
Curt Anderson 22:47
Let me try it again.
Lance Owide 22:52
Technology. Yeah, it’s always fun.
Damon Pistulka 22:54
There we go. About There we go. We see the uplift desk. We got it.
Curt Anderson 23:00
So let’s go to so let’s let’s talk about this company a little bit what’s going on here?
Lance Owide 23:04
Yeah, so look at so look at that configurator that you’ve got there. If you click on any one of those desks. It’s a it’s a beautiful site. It’s so engaging. It’s such an engaging site. It’s fantastic. But when you click on that desk, you are then given options the size of the desk, but widgets on the desk, the How are you controlling it? Is it through a remote is it not? etc and they are selling both to to businesses but also actually direct to consumer as you can imagine pandas. Business boomed absolutely boomed. And so I did the math a few days ago. If you take the total number of permutations of these desks, there’s about 10 million permutations of the kind of how you could configure this desk and you can do that all online with that configurator great as you change the the material and color of that desk that image that you can see there on on on Kurt’s screen, that’ll update and you’ll see it change and you can you know, see and put it so if you if you on the right there if you go look you can also add your little standing standing wallboard I guess they might call it to practice your your core and your filing cabinet. Like yeah, up the top
Damon Pistulka 24:28
30 so cool.
Curt Anderson 24:29
Look at the look. You’re changing office, you’re changing as you’re doing it. This is phenomenal.
Lance Owide 24:36
And and I call this out because I think it’s just such a great example of what is possible. And when we’re talking to manufacturers you know, they’re selling let’s you know machinery or they’re selling you know, H fac units and you know, do I how wide Why would I need a configurator like this or or what’s possible. Well we get this up you know, these guys are manual, they’re a manufacturer and this is what have built not just for, you know, their direct to consumer that they have built and do have, but also for their largest businesses that they’re selling to. This is how they’re purchasing because as an office manager, when you’re making the purchase, you’re able to see what you’re buying. And this is, you know, I think applicable to all manufacturers, the more engaging you can make that that buying process, the more likely you are to convert. And it’s true. In you know, whether you’re selling to distributors, or you’re selling to consumers.
Damon Pistulka 25:30
Yep. And John, John Buck Leno makes a good point here, it’s, you don’t have to be this polished to start, because this, this is a pretty, pretty incredible site in and of itself. But, you know, you can start off simple it can be color variations, it can be the other things and not even not updating like this, obviously.
Lance Owide 25:48
This is in that crawl, walk, run fly, this is the fly.
Curt Anderson 25:53
But yeah, it’s just it’s exploring, it’s encouraging manufacturers to just kind of like open up our minds, just like what is possible, what could I do for my product for my solution for my widgets? And even Lance? You know, you know, we’ve been talking on numerous different projects. You know, when you look at the end game, like the Steven Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, right, look at the end game, and then reverse engineer it. One thing that I wanted to call out, you know, I love this. Look at 734, five star reviews. You talked about like, now, on top of everything, you’re getting that social proof, I just absolutely love this.
Lance Owide 26:32
Damon Pistulka 26:33
And I tell you from the, from the other side of this, the manufacturer side of this, this helps so much, even customer service people internally in the manufacturing companies, it helps because how the heck is someone supposed to understand all the variations and all the options? Are the salespeople? How are you supposed to do this? The customer can go through and get exactly what they want, not the salesperson have to interpret it. And then we have to get the order entered. Right? And then make sure you know, because how, how easy would it be to screw up the base color? Or the laminate? Oh, I got I picked the wrong tone. You know, just, there’s so many things that this helps with throughout the process. And just exciting. This exciting.
Curt Anderson 27:18
Yeah, it just it makes the buying process so much easier for Lance in please continue.
Lance Owide 27:24
Yeah, you know, and I was going to say, you know, to to the point I think that that John was making, you know, this isn’t where you where you start, you know, this took time to build and develop. And one of the merchants in in Kurt, you know them well, that we’ve both worked with is psycho, they’re a manufacturer, you know, of, of antennas, these antennas go on a put on emergency emergency vehicles, you know, very, very important work that psycho in the team are doing. They’re based out of out of Buffalo, New York, family run family founded Fantastic, fantastic business. And they came to be commerce and to our partners above the fray and Kurt to an MEP, to help them get online. But they didn’t start by, you know, building a site that has all of the bells and whistles that we see when we get on to Amazon. They understood that their buyer, their buyer, what do they need? What do they want? Well, they are local emergency vehicle specialists. And they are attaching these antennae onto those vehicles. They’re going to need specific information about how do you fix that antenna what’s right for their particular use case. And so what they decided is they weren’t going to start with a site that you can take a product and put it in a checkout and then purchase no but through the site, you can create a quote, because they knew and they know from from from understanding their buyer journey, that 90% plus of their orders come through quotes, building out a quote working with the buyer to understand their needs. And so from their site, which you can see here, which which Curtis syrup showing and this is powered by big commerce, they can take these items and put them to into a quote, they get them in the quote. And then they speak to the salesperson, but it’s a fantastic way to educate the buyer. And to shorten that sales funnel if you like, right, so by the time the buyer is speaking to the salesperson, they already have an idea of the products that they want, how they’d like them configured, etc. And I think this is a really good example of kind of probably crawl walk, I’d say this is there are definitely a few a few steps ahead of, of crawling here, but it’s a great example of how you can start with a with a with a with a site online.
Curt Anderson 29:51
Yeah, and I love what you’re seeing here Lance and what they you know, for many manufacturers, you know what that phase one can look like this. You’re like, you know, I’m not really calm. Well, we don’t have the expertise, we don’t have the bandwidth, the budget to put ourselves out there. Somebody’s going to click the Buy button. What we’re really working closely with with clients is like, how do you create that customer portal? How do you make you know Damon, your favorite word, frictionless. Right? How do you remove friction? And like back to the dusk, example here. You know what I love about this configuring? We’ve got another example with show Lance. You know, the preach that we love to give is like, how do you help your ideal buyer make that buying decision on a Friday night at midnight without having to wait for you to open up your door on Monday morning. You know, it’s just businesses 24/7. And it’s just you’re just really, you’re showing that dedication, you’re building that trust to make the buying process so much easier. Lance, let’s take a look at this one.
Lance Owide 30:46
Yeah, this is an eco enclosed sorry, they’re an eco packaging. Manufacturer. These guys have some fantastic customers like Addie das and their materials. But they they started the business because they wanted to make eco packaging, that was environmentally friendly, biodegradable, minimize the use of plastics, in that in that packaging, right, I think a really fantastic, fantastic mission founded by two friends who just you know, passionate about using eco friendly materials. And, and as you can see from the site, if you’re building packaging, you have to be able to customize that packaging, and so online, you can pick different sizes, different shapes, and add your own branding, add your own coloring like this is a, I would say this is a a run to fly type of a solution that they’ve built here. You know, when you select that box that you’re looking to order, and you want to customize it, you can right there in the site, you upload the upload your logo, pick your coloring, and place the order, you know, 1000s of boxes and 1000s of orders being done online. Without having to speak to a salesperson in this instance, obviously, you can you can pick up, pick up the phone and speak to their sales team. And you can see they’ve got a nice little chat widget down there in the bottom, which I think is fantastic. And that’s another area that we you know, we mentioned AI right at the top. That’s another area that a lot of websites have already using kind of machine learning and AI and large language models have been used for a while is in is in support of customers. When you’re on a site, you know, we go on to Amazon or Walmart today, there’s a chat bot down at the bottom, we can start you know, typing away, we know we’re not speaking to a person, we’re getting some some canned responses here. And manufacturers can can do the same eco enclosure and a perfect example of it, you pop up that chat, you can start asking questions, what materials are used to build these to build to build the boxes, etc. And you’re gonna get answers that are being powered, you know, by an AI model, really a large language model. That’s how, how they’re being how the the answers are being produced. And so there are there are a fantastic company with a with a fantastic mission. Love it.
Damon Pistulka 33:13
And the thing is you’re showing what’s really cool about this that was harder to do years ago is it was easy to pick options, pick options, but like you’re saying to upload a logo and stick it onto your your product, add it, you know, there were some bigger companies that were doing this long time ago. But I think now that how big Commerce has really put it into their, their suite of things you can do that customization that some manufacturers are doing just got a lot easier. You know, by by not just picking a color or size or something now you can customize it with your own graphics or things like that, which is what was
Lance Owide 33:53
we had a term for that internally. I don’t know that I’ve ever actually use this term externally, but we call it democratizing b2b, democratizing b2b. We believe that this same tools that the largest manufacturers, the largest distributors out there are using should be available to the entrepreneurs out there as well, their mom and pop shops, the solopreneurs, etc. And that’s what we’re we’re trying to do and it’s at the heart of, of how we’ve built our team, and our ethos, democratizing e commerce for manufacturers, putting those tools in the hands of the people that need them, want them and can really grow their business by being able to build these awesome experiences.
Curt Anderson 34:39
Well, you know, that’s a perfect segue. Daymond I found this really cool quote, If you recognize this, quote, b2b brands can create buying experiences that help them sell more, convert at a higher rate and influence repeat purchasing and loyalty. Lance, do you know where that quote came from?
Lance Owide 34:55
I don’t know where that quote came from.
Curt Anderson 34:57
It came from my buddy Lance Oh wide and it was a An article I found on digital commerce 360, my friend, and so that came from you. Well, that quote right there. So, Lance, it’s deal, David and I get just super fired up. Oh, yeah, with all these solutions, how about is what’s going on here with this company?
Lance Owide 35:16
Yes, dermaclara, manufacturer of custom labels. And so many folks on the call, will probably actually have seen their labels and just never realized it right. If you’re a manufacturer out there, you know what it’s like, you’ve got safety labels on your equipment, you’ve got custom labels that you might have over over your factories, someone like you or Mark has built them, right, they built them for you, and What process did you go through? As you had to buy them? Was it simple? Was it easy, maybe if they were out of the box, but not if you had to customize anything, I promise you, it wouldn’t have been what different sizes can you purchase, etc. And so your mark have built this incredible site that makes it so simple and easy to make that purchase, to be able to customize the label that you’ve got to purchase, change the sizing, change the coloring, etc. And you can you can actually, again, you can upload your your own logos and put that on to the onto the onto the label as as well. They’re they’re a fantastic business. Concern. No, no, go
Damon Pistulka 36:30
ahead. Go ahead, sir.
Lance Owide 36:31
Yeah, they they’ve been around for about, you know, 15 years odd. And they’re just a fantastic merchant that we love to work with.
Damon Pistulka 36:40
Yeah, we used to have to buy these big accents, expensive machines that would make custom labels, that’s what we would do, right. But, you know, we would use it like, when you build a plant, you put all kinds of labels up. And then after that, you might make one a month, right, so there’s this is, this is a great distributor made it so much easier, so much easier for people now, with someone like Durham Mark,
Lance Owide 37:03
I was gonna say we got one of my one of my faves out there is is tech trends, these guys, manufacturer of of hydraulic equipment for vehicles, originally based in Canada, but now have bases in in the US who’ve been in business for 50 years, you know, doing 10s of millions of dollars of business of revenue. And they came to big commerce because they needed to improve, they wanted to improve customer satisfaction. They wanted to have all of you know, these are reasonably technical pieces of equipment that they’re selling, you know, they’re connecting the cab of a vehicle to the back. And so they wanted to have all of the technical information online and really make that buying experience. Great. And you can see they’ve done that, and see all the details. When Kurt clicks into the products, you can see all the tech specs, they’ve got video descriptions of them. So we talk about sales teams, you know, being more efficient, a salesperson being able to record a video, and then put it on the site. It’s just, you know, it’s fantastic, amazing, awesome, you know, they went live and big commerce years ago now. And they saw 100% increase in the number of orders that they were taking 30% increase in the average order value. If you think about average order value through E commerce, that’s really a judge of how good is the experience? Are you giving the buyers the information that they need when they want it? Are you making recommendations of products that you know, may work well with etc. And they’ve kind of are a great example of, of all of that kind of coming together in one site. I may get the number slightly wrong, but I think when they when they launched it increased revenue by about 150%. Quite you know, that’s those are incredible numbers. Can you imagine as manufacturers on the on on the on the cars today that we have today? Can you imagine if if ecommerce can deliver that for your business? I mean, it’s meaningful. That’s a meaningful impact. Just
Damon Pistulka 38:58
just that’s just crazy. It’s cool. Just cool.
Lance Owide 39:01
Yeah, they’re a great business.
Curt Anderson 39:03
Okay, I’ll come back to you guys. Let me hit me find the shop stop sharing. So okay, that was a man what a tour that was Lance. How exciting just looking at all these manufacturers just taking their company to a whole new level. And again, it doesn’t need to be daunting, overwhelming. Let’s go here. Lance. Any advice that you have for folks that are just kind of like the sole marketer, the entrepreneur, the manufacturer out there limited team limited budget, where do they what’s like a good starting point, like how can they like tip their toe to get into this ecommerce realm?
Lance Owide 39:36
Yeah, I always actually start by by not focusing on E commerce but by focusing on the customer, a buyer, you know, understand their journey that they’re going through as they purchase your product and make that decision. You know, make your decision about e commerce based on what your buyers expectations. czar and how you can make their buying process easier. You know, it might not be the case that ecommerce is the right solution for you. I know that sounds crazy coming from a person working at Big commerce. And I probably think for 99.9% of businesses out there, you should be online, but the 1%, you know, maybe. But, you know, a great example here, this is, you know, we’ve got a manufacturer, they’re a liquor sales person, they actually produce liquor here. In Texas, we got distributors and manufacturers, and they are, you know, they gotta sell through distributors, they’ve got, you know, specific rules they have to follow, what they realized is that this is true, when you’re selling alcohol, the products are very similar. They’re pretty much the same, especially when you get into liquor, there are only so many products you’re producing. And your distributors, they know, the skews of those products. And this is applicable to so many industries out there, they know the skews, they don’t need fancy pictures, they just need almost a spreadsheet online that they can type the SKU in and type the quantity into. Right, and there are other industries that’s applicable to and so what did they start with, they built a site, that’s basically an order pad, it’s an order pad that you can log into, you type the excuse in, you can actually search for the product to, you know, you can type in the bobbin that they’re selling or bourbon that they’re selling, depending on how you say it, and then a quantity. And that’s it. And so, you know, that sounds like the most basic and simple starting place. But they they got to that solution, because they spoke to their buyers. And they understood that, you know, they don’t, they’re not looking for fancy catalogs and sites and images and descriptions, because they don’t need it. And it’s not, it’s not important in their industry. And so that’s always the first thing I say is start with with the buyer. And then Advice number two, break the project down into manageable chunks. And it is that crawl, walk, run, hopefully fly kind of strategy, but set realistic goals. Don’t look at that beautiful uplift desk site and think I’m gonna build that and we’re gonna be live in, you know, three months, let’s make it happen. That’s what G verbal, you’re not going to get there. I don’t want to break it to you. And you’ll end up being disheartened. And you’ll lose momentum. But if you break it down into those minor manageable chunks, like I said, if it’s just about getting products on a site online with descriptions and pictures, start there. And then you’ll be surprised your buyers will start looking at your products online, they’ll start doing that research and using it and then worry about transacting later. You know, as long as it’s getting as long as you’ve made that process more frictionless. And you’re stepping towards making that process as frictionless as possible, you’re heading in the right direction. And so that’s kind of the those are the two main pieces of advice that I give to all manufacturers, as they’re as they’re embarking on an E commerce journey, and an starting staring down what is usually a pretty scary project.
Curt Anderson 43:25
Well do drop the mic on that, because that was just fantastic advice. Absolutely. Love it. Go ahead. Well,
Damon Pistulka 43:32
I think I think back to some of the companies that I was running, even if we would have taken our service supplies are expendable are the kind of replacement items just simple like that, you know, if you’ve got belts and pulleys and wear items that you need to replace, just get those online, because everybody needs it, right? It makes it easier. And you take that load off Eureka, customer service people and they can order them like I want and just start at the simple spots, like you said, and help your customers begin to understand and you have to understand how to do it. So lots of cool stuff today.
Curt Anderson 44:06
That’s a good stuff. A lot of good comments. Dan, thank you for all your comments here today. You know, great comment here. The examples that we just gave, and if you guys missed it, well hit the rewind button, go back and check out the examples that we just showed gals here today. Gail, thank you, man. We appreciate it. And what I love here is you know, along with these comments, you know, on your website, so back to the manufacturer, you see you have 1000s of skews 1000s of configurations. I don’t know about you, Damon, but you know, you’ve ever heard of like that little Is it the Pareto rule. Do I have that? Correct? Right, the 8020 there’s that little 8020 thing right Lance suit, right. And I say that yeah,
I never heard that before.
Curt Anderson 44:47
Let’s talk about that for one second. So Damon, you know my mom’s favorite book, right? My mom’s favorite book is stopped being the best kept secret. Hey, there it is. I’ve heard of it before. There it is right there. Your little ecommerce resource guide shamelessly good Amazon by that my mom will love you. But anyway, what we’d love to talk about is how do you cap you know, take like your 20% Top profit items or 20%. Top Sellers just focus on that 20% And Lanchester that ahead. What is your customer asking you for? And like start there, that could be your crops that can be your phase one. Start with the products that you know your customers love you for then buying for years and years. Make it easier, start there and then build from there. It doesn’t need to be the whole project. Lance. I know. We’re and I’m having such a good time. Is there anything you wanted to share on your screen? Did you want to show any examples? Anybody? Yeah,
Lance Owide 45:39
I wouldn’t mind sharing a little demo of what the buyer experience of big commerce looks like. Let me see if I can. I will share a screen. I can
Damon Pistulka 45:52
give me a good point here so much this relates to many industries, that’s for sure. Well,
Curt Anderson 45:59
I think one thing that the three of us on stage here totally have in common, I think, Lance, I think you throw out a number 99.9% Like it’s hard to think of a company. I’m very biased on E commerce side of things, and especially on configurators. But boy, just like man, just tip your toe because once you get a taste of it in once you know somebody mentioned they got an E commerce in 2011. I hate like I’m so ancient Damon was 99 right was 1995 when I got my first shopping cart, and Lancer your What were you doing the 9095? Dude, we’re he was fine. He was just, you know, it’s
Damon Pistulka 46:35
funny. Lance is i i What’s that? What’s that show that website WayBack or something like that? Yeah, Wayback Machine. I looked at Kurt’s initial website. It all my goodness, that was that was a ride,
Curt Anderson 46:50
ride. And it was wild. And the thing is, is like when you get that first order in Austin, you come in on a weekend, or you come in on a Monday, and now you’re in business 24/7. And like Lance said, you’re focusing on your customer lands taken away my friend.
Lance Owide 47:04
I just just to that point I just wanted to call out for this isn’t manufacturing, it’s a distributed by just thing. It’s just such an incredible story of how e commerce can supercharge your business. There is a distributor of books on big commerce. And they reached out to us back in February, I think it was they have an average order value of about 100. Nursery $1,500. So that’s a big order for them. They came in on a Monday morning, there was a million dollar order sat in their big commerce portal from a customer they had never heard off before. Real All right. All right.
Curt Anderson 47:46
I gotta call a timeout. Right there. I got it. So Lance, you’re new to the program, Damon. So I’m on the east coast. So it’s like lunchtime. And Lance we caught like we have these moments of silence when like, like, when you dropped the mic. That’s one thing. But when you take it to the next level, we’ve got to have a moment of silence right here. I’m you know, I’m not a young guy anymore. I didn’t hear the number. What was the sales number that you said it was a
Lance Owide 48:08
million dollar order? A million
Curt Anderson 48:10
dollar ecommerce? Got that is awesome.
Lance Owide 48:15
Yeah. million an average order the normal average orders $1,500? That would not? Yeah, I mean, incredible for the business that would you know, that that would not have been possible without their sights and without being on E commerce. And we asked them, we said, this is an amazing story. Can we use your name? Yeah, we can’t, we don’t want to really shout about this. We don’t want to tell people how amazing we’re doing and how great it’s been. And I understand that, you know, they’re looking at their competitors. So I didn’t mention who they were, but just an incredible, an incredible story. And you know, that that that’s the potential of E commerce, I’ve got a bit of a demo store. What I’ve done here is I’ve added some of our b2b specific functionality. And so you can see here, I’m on my product detail page. And as well as being able to check out, I can now add products to lists. Or I can add them to a quote right directly from the product detail page. These lists here that you can see, they’re shared amongst everyone in your company. So you can have a junior buyer who is responsible, you know, for putting together the list and the senior buyer who’s responsible for checking out and you can set those permissions, right, and many, many of our merchants and manufacturers are using that. And then where I really think the magic is is in this what we call the buyer portal is specifically built for manufacturers and distributors, buyers. And so when I’m coming into the site, as a big commerce as a buyer of your products, I don’t know why won’t load Give me one second, let me refresh. It’s always fun when you’re, you know, in in your live and and recording and then you have to refresh. But this is the site. This is when you know, when we’re so used to this kind of retail type experience that’s just been adapted. Let’s be clear for b2b for manufacturers. And it doesn’t really serve the purpose of a b2b relationship b2b. It’s about quotes, it’s about invoices, it’s about being able to reorder as fast as you can. And so this is the view that any manufacturer that’s using big commerce gets out of the box. This, this looks and feels like you, the manufacturer have built an app, just just for your buyers just for them to use to be able to view that orders manage their orders reorder. And so you can see here, I can see all of my orders, I can also see all of the orders from everyone in my company. If I click again, I can see this orders waiting awaiting pickup, I can reorder with the click of a button, one button push, and I’m reordering, I can view the invoice related to that order. All in this site. And the way we think about e commerce and this is kind of a bit of a fly, I think of that crawl, walk, run fly. But it’s about more than transacting. It’s about being able enabling your buyer to be able to manage their relationship with you. And so when I come into my quotes, I’m the buyer, I’ve just added products to the quote, I can type a message and I can send a message to the to the salesperson, you know, please give me a discount. It’s always it’s always the right thing to ask. I think I can add new products to the quote very easily. We said we spoke about knowing the skews, I can type in the SKU and putting the quantity built in out of the box. I can also add attachments, write custom specs, I could upload a my logo and put in the message, you know, please see my logo, please add it to this beautiful looking Canvas laundry cart. And then the invoices, they’re all sat right here waiting for me to pay, I can see I’m overdue. On some of the invoices here with this with this manufacturer. Luckily, I’ve got 60 day terms, but I’ve reached the end of my 60 days and I owe them you know, $13,000 I can click on these invoices pay them, I can pay them straight from this portal, right incredible. You can see here I’ve actually paid off some of this top top invoice all already. And this is, as I said, out of the box. This is this is the functionality that you’ll you’ll have. And I’ll kind of I realize people generally don’t like to see, you know, demo demos all day. But I want to finish here with our kind of quick order pad. We know, as you said it, Damon buying the same things again, and again, repeating repeating those purchases, especially for consumable goods, and so on, you know, things that were out pulleys, etc, I remember I placed an order back on a certain date, but I can’t remember what it was filter for those dates and find that specific order, select those products, I can add them easily to a cart to just take them to check out and buy auto quotes. Or maybe into that list, right, I’m the junior buyer and I need my senior buyer to go in to go and approve it. Or just you know, type in the skews or I can search for those products. You know, or you know, I didn’t type anything in that’s why nothing came up or I can you know, search through the product catalog and pick the products that I need and add them into this view. So you know and all those options that we kind of saw those will all be available. So you have 600 of these options. You know, that’s more than you know, I think most of us can can imagine but we saw it with the uplift desk, six desk example. Just how many you can have. I think I’ll pause there
Damon Pistulka 53:46
is still cool.
Curt Anderson 53:49
That was moment of silence number two right there because I literally man, we’ve got Mike Anderson here. So he’s with a great manufacturer and state of Indiana. He came to us through the Purdue MEP. I call him my cousin my cousin Mike How are you dude? And I man I don’t want to upset anybody but just kind of light that fire for inside of all of our sales reps out there any manufacturer I would love for you to almost dread or almost like just almost loathe. The next time the customer has to call you the customer has to send in an email that just a process of like now you’re somebody on your team has to do data entry to add order into your process into your system. Like I don’t feel the pain, like no pain, uncomfortable it can be in how efficient your life could be by moving forward. Dan, I think I saw Dan jump another great comment here. I’m thinking I could use big consulting. And then hey, he wants to read an article Dan let’s absolutely have that conversation. I know Lance would love you guys and hate Daymond I would love to be part of that as well Lance, to Rocco so take us home dude I’d like I do I know like,
Damon Pistulka 55:00
Curt Anderson 55:01
you’ve got so many. So many businesses what? 60,000 customers? Plus, then there’s 1000s 1000s More waiting for your expertise for your solutions for your superpowers. Dude, let’s take us home. How do you let’s wrap tie it up in a bow? How can you take it home for everybody here today?
Lance Owide 55:18
Yeah. Oh, that’s a lot of that’s a lot of pressure. I don’t know if I can look, we think about and there are there are five imperatives, ecommerce but but really these are for manufacturers, as you’re thinking about your business, what do you want to do? One, you want to attract new customers, new buyers. That’s point one. Ecommerce is a fantastic way to do that you open up that customer that you can find, think about that distributor example that I that I that I spoke about earlier, that million dollar order that can be possible with ecommerce, anyone can find you, you’re available on search engines. Secondly, you need to engage your customers, right? This is true, not just in E commerce, it’s true offline too. You can with E commerce, you can build fantastic looking sites with all the information a buyer could want. And need, right that doesn’t take away from the salesperson. This is omni channel, it’s across all channels, you’re unifying that online and offline journey. We’ve got a manufacturer in Australia, they sell, manufacture sinks, and you can have they have a virtual showroom online. And then you take that virtual showroom that you’ve built online, you know that the that you’ve gone through the showroom, and you’ve you’ve kind of put your your your sink together and your bathroom, and you can take that into the real showroom. Now of course, that’s quite a DTC like experience. But that’s applicable to manufacturers to three, right, so we’ve got we’ve we’ve attracted the customer we’ve engaged in, we’ve got to convert them, right, you need them to close, you want them to set to get to that sale. As you said, Damon, it’s it’s 2am. And I need to place an order ecommerce, I can do it without having to speak any speak to anyone. And if you’re offering the terms that the buyer wants, the payment types that they want, right, you’re offering their 60 Day net terms through the through E commerce, there’s no barriers or blockers, right to getting that order. It’s fantastic. So we’ve attracted the buyer, we’ve engaged them, we’ve converted them, but you have operations, you have to think about, right, you have orders, you’ve got to ship. And we’re all about simplifying those operations, connecting with your ERP connecting with all of the other systems that you use that data just move seamlessly amongst all of your technology stack. And that is really, really important, right and simplifying operations for the sales team. That’s what ecommerce does. And lastly, expansion, you want to grow your business. And you might be doing that by spinning up new, new sales channels, right? Selling on marketplaces could be a way, maybe you’re thinking about actually going into new regions. So you need a site that sells in that region that’s in the language, really, really easy to do on big commerce. And lastly, that kind of other way you might be thinking about expanding, maybe you’re expanding and organically, you’re you’re buying other companies, you’re merging with other companies, you got a friend you build a similar business and you’re gonna merge together. Ecommerce is a great way to bring those two companies together, you know, have one login for your bias, they can use both you can cross sell and upsell amongst those two businesses. Just fantastic. And so that’s, you know, kind of the five imperatives that we think manufacturers just have to get spot on. And when you do that it’s a rocket ship
Damon Pistulka 58:50
drop the mic. Okay. Yeah, yeah. Once again,
Curt Anderson 58:54
this was Lance incre. We had high high expectations here for Lance Oh, wide right or wide left and man, he just absolutely he had to feel good. Right down the middle. Damon hit the field. That right. So let’s, let’s let’s do a little recap number one, attract. Number two, engage. Number three, connect number four operations number five expansion, guys, if you want to just boy hit the rewind button hit that again. That’s what I love up on this. What I absolutely love is like helping support those entrepreneurs. Every entrepreneur is a dreamer. And so the team at Big commerce statement I don’t know about you but they are dream supporters man supporters it’s what How admirable what thank goodness that you and your wife came over here to the States and you brought your talents to the world of E commerce because like you’re just helping folks make dreams come true. So like open up your email and see there’s a million dollar order in the system. How exciting is that? So guys, how about if you’ve been hanging out with us, you’ve been sitting around for the past hour man, this is a great time to stand up, stretch it out. about we give a big standing ovation to our big friend, Lance. Oh wide from big, big big commerce man,
Lance Owide 1:00:07
you guys and everything you did think, Hey, big dreams,
Curt Anderson 1:00:11
big innovations, big inspiration. So there’s a lot of bigness going on here with. Alright, so we’re gonna take it home. Damon, what recap what was your biggest takeaway today?
Damon Pistulka 1:00:23
I’m so excited. I can’t even tell you, man. And I feel like Lance and I were, you know, like, a couple of decades after I was born, he was born. And we were born like our brains are working. Because the stuff you’re showing today is stuff that if I would have had years ago, when I was running companies, it would have been it would have been a game changer at that time. And I can only see what you guys are doing today. And how cool that is. Right. Thank you.
Curt Anderson 1:00:53
Thank you. Yes, thank you guys. And boy, you guys in in. What a great competitive advantage. Just think of like, you know what get to the point where like your customers just really they hate your guts because you’ve gotten so far advanced with your ecommerce strategy. They’re like that those dashcam competitors. How did they get so far ahead? Why did we sit on this? Don’t let that happen. You don’t wait any you know, it’s not complete. But boy, let’s not wait any longer. So thank you, my friend. Appreciate you more than you know, and any parting words we want you to we want folks to connect with you on LinkedIn. Go to big commerce. Any word last words for you, Lance?
Lance Owide 1:01:34
As you said, connect with me on LinkedIn reach out if you have questions. Want to perform, just just let me know. But I have to thank you guys so much for having me on. This has been fantastic.
Curt Anderson 1:01:46
Awesome. Awesome. Guys. Have a great, amazing, incredible weekend. We appreciate you. Thanks for everybody in the chat. Dan white bow gal. Inger everybody dropped a comment. We appreciate you join us week in and week out Daymond close us out, brother.
Damon Pistulka 1:01:59
All right. Well, thanks, Kurt. Thanks, Lance. Oh my goodness. My goodness. That chat was on fire today. Dan Aldridge, my friend. We got lots of good stuff like you said Gail employment back through here. So many people, I can’t even name them all. But Lance, you showed us some things about b2b e commerce solutions from big commerce that man I didn’t know what were available out of the box like this now all the way from, you know, I can have a consumer facing I can have a b2b facing right on the same thing with the same its products and services, and then how it integrates into our, into the ERP systems behind it. So we can actually, like you said, we can process those orders and get those things shipped, and get that information back to the customer. Yes, I’m very excited about this. This is so cool. Thanks so much, Lance. Thanks everyone else for being here today. We’ll be back again next week. Take it easy. All right.