Our Top 5 Spooookiest Stores

Happy Halloween from Bigcommerce! In the spirit of the holiday, here are some of our favorite scary stores.

Halloween FX Props

Take your Halloween decorations to the next level with more than 6,000 professional-grade props, costumes and more.

Global Zombie

Shamble on over for scary and less-scary toys, gadgets, pop culture gear, geek clothing, and, of course, plenty of zombie wares.

Digital Dudz

Eerily cool interactive shirts use your mobile device to create startling effects.

Science Bob Store

These toys and gadgets that harness the power of SCIENCE are perfect for scaring trick-or-treaters and co-workers alike.

Zombie Steve’s

Australia’s finest zombie-related shop caters to geeks, gamers and fans of general zombiery looking for clothing and gifts.









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Want to join our team? Come to our next career night! (Nov. 1, 7-9pm)

When you talk to people at Bigcommerce, they’ll tell you that our culture and people separate us from other companies they’ve worked at in the past. We have an open, honest culture where everyone’s opinion matters.

We also have lots of fun events through our culture and wellness groups, which allow us to bond as teams, get to know each other and also serve the communities we live in. Talk to anyone in the company and they’ll tell you that we take bringing in the right people very seriously.

We call these people “A players,” which means they love what they do, are passionate and are great to work with. Coming up on 200 people across the company (in Sydney, Australia and Austin, Texas), we’re again looking at growing our sales and client success teams — fast!

To get us underway, we’re having another career night in our Austin office. If you’re dedicated to helping clients, have a passion for learning and want to help EVERY small and medium business in the world grow at rocket speed using e-commerce, then we invite you to stop by.

You’ll get to meet some of the folks in our sales and client success teams, there will be lots of food and drink, plus you’ll learn about open roles and will get an idea of what it’s like to be part of our team.

You can RSVP now on our website

When?
Thursday, November 1 from 7-9pm

Where?
Bigcommerce Austin
2711 West Anderson Lane, Ste. 200
Austin, TX 78757

Why work at Bigcommerce?
We’re the leading SaaS e-commerce platform in the world and have helped our clients process well over $1BN in sales since we launched in September 2009.

We offer a cool work environment in our Austin office, a fun, employee-driven company culture, and competitive benefits. A few reasons our employees love working here:

  • We only hire the best of the best
  • We have a sweet games room
  • We like to party: booze cruises, paintball, casino nights and more
  • A fully stocked kitchen and beer fridge
  • An experienced senior leadership team that loves to play Street Fighter
  • A career opportunity — not just a 9-to-5 job









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Client Spotlight: YETI Coolers

We mentioned earlier this week that our client YETI Coolers was number 5 in the over $10 million category of this year’s Austin Business Journal Fast 50, a list of the fastest-growing private companies in the Austin area.

We love to see our clients succeed, especially ones who make such cool (pun!), class-leading products. YETI makes coolers that are nigh indestructible, creating them from a single piece of roto-molded polyethylene — the same process that’s used to make whitewater kayaks — and insulating them with up to three inches of polyurethane foam.

I know what you’re thinking: “But are they bear proof?” You bet. YETI Coolers are certified grizzly proof by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee, which is a thing I just found out exists. Not only that, but they’ve been known to keep ice for over a week, even in the dead of summer.

The company was founded by brothers Roy and Ryan Seiders, after Roy became fed up with the ineffective, flimsy coolers on the market while involved in his previous endeavor, building custom fishing boats. They began producing their own coolers in 2005, initially selling them to dealers like camping and sporting goods stores.

After quickly building a fanatical following, the Seiders decided to open an online store to sell directly to consumers. After evaluating e-commerce platforms, they chose Bigcommerce because it’s a stable, one-stop solution that has all the bells and whistles they wanted built right in. They felt it was the best option for re-creating the brick-and-mortar environment, which was key for them.

Now YETI Coolers is the recognized leader in their space, revered by hunting, fishing and cold beverage enthusiasts around the world. In addition to being in the Fast 50, they’re also a member of the prestigious Inc. 500.









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Our big night at the Fast 50 awards

Last week, the Austin Business Journal held the reception for its Fast 50 awards, which go to the 50 fastest-growing private companies in the Austin area. The awards rank companies based on compounded annual average sales growth over three years, divided into 25 companies under $10 million in revenue and 25 over $10 million.


We sent a fine-looking group (pictured above) to represent Bigcommerce at the awards, and I’m happy to report that we are the 15th fastest-growing company in the over $10 million category! Last year we were third in the under $10 million group — so not only did we jump up to a new category, but we’re solidly in the top 20.

We’re obviously proud of the award and what it means for our business. But what we like to see even more than Bigcommerce doing well is our clients doing well. We were very pleased to see that Yeti Coolers took the number 5 spot in the over $10 million category.

I want to personally thank all our clients for helping us get to this point. These kind of awards are even more a testament to your success than our own. I’d also like to give a shoutout to everyone on the Bigcommerce team. I know how hard you’re working to serve our clients, and I truly appreciate your dedication and passion.









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Redesigned control panel, carousel builder, new default theme and social media icons rolling out to all stores, starting today

Introduction

After 5 months of design, development and engineering effort, I’m happy to announce that our redesigned control panel, carousel builder, new default theme and social media icons are currently in the process of rolling out to all stores. The rollout is phased and will be available in all stores within 2 weeks.

To try the new design when it’s available in your store, you’ll see a bar along the bottom of your control panel inviting you to opt-in. By clicking the link, you’ll immediately see the new design, carousel builder, new default theme and social media icon support, which are only available in the new version. If you don’t have time to explore the new version or want to opt-out for whatever reason, you can do that to. We’ve even built in a nifty feedback widget which you can use to tell us why you’ve opted out.

We decided to take an opt-in approach for a few reasons, but the main one was to give you time to ease into the new design. While the overall layout of the control panel and most pages isn’t too different with this release, we know some people love shiny new things and will jump in straight away, while others will take their time. And that’s fine with us.

Let’s take a look at what’s new. Click on any screenshot to see a larger version.

Redesigned control panel

The current design. Notice the blue bar along the bottom which lets you opt-in to the new design

The new dashboard, with better insight in to orders, revenue and visitors

The new orders screen

The new product screen with drag and drop image uploading support

New default theme

The home page of our new default theme

The category page of our new default theme

The product page of our new default theme

Carousel builder

Social media icon customization

A few final words

What you’ve seen here is just the start of the continual improvements we will be rolling out to the product, both in terms of design and ease of use over the next few releases. We will also begin rolling out quite a few new themes shortly, all beautifully designed for specific verticals such as apparel and health.

These themes all support the carousel builder and social media icon customization and ship with sample products that fit the vertical. For example, our new apparel themes no longer include sample products from Apple (gasp!) but instead feature designer t-shirts, jeans, shoes and accessories. All complete with beautiful photos and typography to give you an idea of what your store will look like if you choose that theme.

The new version includes a “New Look Feedback” tab on the right side of each page, so if you like (or even dislike) our new design, please let us know. Also, if you have an idea for a new feature or improvement, remember that we’ve recently launched our new ideas portal. You can submit ideas, vote on existing ideas from other clients and talk with our product managers as well.

Thanks, and on behalf of the 30+ product managers, designers, developers and engineers who worked on this project, we hope you love it!









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App Store Update: new apps, popular apps and almost $500,000 paid to developers!

As you probably know, we have hundreds of apps you can add to your Bigcommerce store to integrate with the software you use to run your business, drive more traffic or get a better understanding of how people shop in your store.

There are apps from heavy hitters like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Hubspot and Google Analytics, as well as amazingly useful apps from up-and-comers like SumAll (analytics), StitchLabs (inventory management) and Ordoro (dropshipping).

If you’re a developer, make sure you check out our $2M integration fund for building an application or integration with the Bigcommerce platform. We’ve already given away almost $500,000 to developers who have built more than 100 apps, for everything from inventory management integration to social media loyalty programs and analytics!

Here are some of our newest and most popular apps that you may find useful.

New/Popular Apps

Shopalize Purchase Sharing

Purchase Sharing lets your customers easily share purchases with their social networks. After buying, they’ll get an order confirmation page where they can share products on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. You can even incentivize your customers to share by giving them coupons or rewards points. Built-in metrics show you exactly how well it’s working.

Daily Deal Bar

Drive sales by adding a bar that displays a promotional offer to your customers on every page of your site. You can schedule promotions months in advance and Daily Deal Bar will automatically update your site and social media accounts on the pre-configured days/times.

 

Time2Buy

Time2Buy helps convert browsers into buyers by monitoring their behavior on your site and displaying time-sensitive offers that encourage them to purchase. You can target different shopper segments with unique promotions and manage offers in real time to maximize your results.

Lexity Google Shopping

Transitioning to Google Shopping from Google Product Search is easy and painless thanks to Lexity Google Shopping. You’ll get daily listing updates, automated bid management, detailed reporting and automatic syncing with your catalog.

 


Lexity Retargeting

E-commerce Fact: only 2% of visitors to your site will end up buying on their first visit. Lexity Retargeting helps you recover lost sales by displaying your ads on other sites. It takes only minutes to create professional, personalized ads to draw prospects back. The app includes automatic bid management and detailed reports.

Ordoro

Ordoro helps you manage your inventory across multiple storefronts and online marketplaces, automating tasks that would normally take you hours. It also lets you order dropshipping or restocking with just a few clicks from your control panel and streamlines shipping label printing from all the major carriers.









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We hire big thinkers

At Bigcommerce, we pride ourselves on hiring the best of the best (JCVD style). We’re always looking for talented, creative people who fit in with our company culture. Not only because we like working with smart, fun people, but because it helps give our clients an amazing experience. Maybe that’s one reason why our customer support just keeps getting better.

Two of our support ninjas were hired because they had a great idea on how to stand out from other applicants, then took the time to absolutely kill it on the execution.

Steven and Garrett were already Bigcommerce fans before applying here. In fact, they were clients, with three successful stores on our platform. They loved the company and the product so much that they applied for two positions on our support team, despite the fact that the jobs were in Austin and they lived in Fresno, California.

They decided to do a video resume to get noticed.

This video is a perfect example of what we’re looking for: it showed their passion and experience in a fun, creative way.

Our co-founders Eddie and Mitch took notice, as did the entire Bigcommerce staff — Steven and Garrett became instant celebrities (nicknamed “the YouTube dudes,” because we’re pretty good at nicknames around here) when the video was shared around the office.

After a few Skype interviews, they were hired, and recently relocated to Austin. They were a great fit from day one, and we knew they would be thanks to their mad video skills.

Are YOU looking to join the leading e-commerce platform in the universe? We have tons of jobs open in our Austin and Sydney offices.









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More speed, more sales — your store is now powered by the Bigcommerce CDN

Our engineering team has been working hard in the background for the last few months to launch our Content Delivery Network (CDN for short), and as of last week the rollout of the Bigcommerce CDN is complete.

What is a Content Delivery Network?

A CDN helps your store load at lightning-fast speeds for all of your shoppers, no matter where they are in the world. So if you’re located in California and sell to shoppers in the US, Canada, Australia and the UK for example, your store will load extremely fast for everyone.

Without getting too technical, here’s how it works. Our CDN basically copies all of the photos and other files (what we call static assets) from your Bigcommerce store to over 20 different data centres (these are known as CDN nodes) around the world. Then, instead of loading these files from our main data centres in Dallas and Seattle, they are loaded from the data centre that is closest to where your shoppers are.

Enough of the technical mumbo jumbo — let’s get to what you care about most: How will a CDN help you sell more?

Faster Page Loads = Better Conversion Rate

You don’t need to understand how it works, but a CDN is so important because page load times are critical to the conversion rate of your Bigcommerce store, which is the percentage of shoppers that turn into paying customers.

The longer a page takes to load, the higher the chance of a shopper “bouncing” — that is, visiting your store once, leaving and never coming back. This chart from our friends at KISSmetrics shows just how important page load times are in relation to bounce rate, or page abandonment:

KISSmetrics have put together an excellent infographic discussing page load times and the effect they have on bounce rate, which you can see here.

How Much Faster is My Store?

The biggest speed gains will be experienced by shoppers who are closer to one of our CDN nodes, which are located in London, Los Angeles, New York, Sydney, Tokyo, Sao Paulo, Hong Kong and Singapore.

How Website Performance Affects Shopping Behavior

You can see from the chart above just how important page load speeds are in reducing page abandonment, and a CDN is one of the best ways to increase page load times; but how does a website’s performance actually affect a shopper’s behavior?

As you can see from the stats above, the performance of a website is absolutely critical in turning shoppers into buyers. The most important metric from the stats above is:

A 1 second delay decreases customer satisfaction by about 16%

Long story short — your online store needs to be lightning quick for shoppers, no matter where they are and a CDN makes that happen.

CDN = Better Search Rankings

Search engines are increasingly factoring page load times into their ranking algorithms, so the Bigcommerce CDN may also help your store rank better in search engines such as Google.

How to See Your Page Load Times

Google Analytics (free) includes a nifty Site Speed Reports section where you can see how long pages in your Bigcommerce store are taking to load.

As of last week, you’ll have started to notice your store’s page load time trending down as a result of the Bigcommerce CDN rolling out. Remember, the measurements reported by Google Analytics are an average taken from the shopper’s browser, and the speed gains will heavily depend on where your shoppers are physically located and the quality of their broadband connection.

You need to have Google Analytics enabled on your Bigcommerce store in order to get the Site Speed report. If you haven’t already enabled Google Analytics, it’s easy to do. Just read this article in our knowledge base and follow the steps.

Do I Need to Enable the CDN?

No, there’s nothing you need to do to enable the CDN on your Bigcommerce store. It’s already enabled (as of last week) and is of course absolutely free for all clients on all plans. We hope you enjoy the decrease in page load times and increase in your conversion rate.

The CDN rollout is one of many things we’ll be announcing between now and the end of the year which have been designed to help you sell more, in line with our new tagline. A CDN isn’t something you can “use” per se, but as you can see, it can have a big impact on page load times and conversion rate.









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Share ideas, talk with our product managers and get updates on our roadmap. Introducing BigCommerce Ideas.

As of today we’ve moved the “Feature Requests” section of our community forum over to its very own home on a platform we’re calling Bigcommerce Ideas.

With our new ideas platform, you get a robust voting system that allows you to submit and vote for ideas and improvements you want to see in the Bigcommerce platform. You also get a better way to search for similar ideas and the ability to connect directly with our product managers who are working alongside engineering to improve the Bigcommerce platform.

The top features and ideas from our community forum have been migrated over to Bigcommerce Ideas and all other existing features and ideas have been reviewed by our product management team. The existing ideas section of our community forum will be closed down in a few weeks so if there are any useful posts, tips, tricks, etc that you’ve bookmarked, it would be a good idea to make sure you have a copy of them.

Here’s how we’re going to use Bigcommerce Ideas to incorporate your feedback in to our product design decisions:

Why Launch A Voting Platform?

  • We want your opinion. We know that you need a robust e-commerce platform so we want you to tell us about the ideas and improvements you need to help you grow your business. We’d love for you to tell us your ideas for the Bigcommerce platform – this is a place where you can suggest them directly to our product managers.
  • Talk to our product managers, get status updates. Our product managers will be actively reviewing your feedback about product ideas, improvements and what is and isn’t working for you when it comes to Bigcommerce. They will reply to comments and will let you know the status of suggested features/ideas as they progress through development.
  • We can’t build everything. We want Bigcommerce to be the best e-commerce platform to help you sell more, so sometimes that means saying no to a feature or idea. Some things you suggest may not be able to be built or may not align with the vision we have for the platform and we will try to let you know as early as possible in the decision-making process if this happens. We will of course include clear reasons on why we’ve made that decision.

Play Fair – Guidelines

  • Innovate: This is a place that thrives on creativity and insights on how you use our platform, so don’t hold back – tell us everything you can about what you need and why. However, for support issues it’s best to go to http://support.bigcommerce.com
  • Collaborate: Help others, help us, and help yourself by commenting on other posts and using your votes. You have a budget of 7 votes. Votes get returned to you when we close or progress the thread you voted on. Note that the number of votes does not necessarily mean that an idea will progress – data, design, and business strategy are also considered in our roadmap planning process.
  • Be Positive: Our product managers will spend lots of time on Bigcommerce Ideas, so make sure your feedback is constructive and positive. Share your experience and ideas in a way that helps us to help you and that’s exactly what we will do.

Our Promise

  • Our product managers will spend considerable time reviewing ideas and participating to keep you updated and informed
  • We will consider your ideas and perform due diligence around potentially adding them to the Bigcommerce platform
  • The status of those suggestions that are being actively investigated, built, declined, or implemented will be updated to reflect the most recent decision on that topic in a timely manner
  • Whenever a feature is being built that originated from Bigcommerce Ideas, we will give credit to the community for suggesting the idea
  • We will publish release notes on a regular basis. You can stay updated on our product releases by subscribing to our blog (http://www.bigcommerce.com/ecommerce-blog) or liking our Facebook Page (http://facebook.com/bigcommerce).

Thanks for reading and we hope you’re as excited as we are about Bigcommerce Ideas. We hope you find it useful and will take the time to tell us how we can make Bigcommerce a more valuable e-commerce platform for you.









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Client Spotlight: Mountain Dog Chews

Nearing his 35th birthday, Corey Davis was a private equity attorney working for one of the largest law firms in the US. He had received both his law degree and MBA to prepare him for his career, but the work didn’t fully satisfy him.

As he watched his son and daughter grow, he thought back to his own youth spent around the trails, hunting stands and trout streams of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains with his family and Labrador Retrievers. He realized that outdoor pursuits were his true passion, and he wasn’t getting many opportunities to enjoy them due to the demands of his job. So Corey set out with plans to use his private equity skillset to build a portfolio tapping into his core interests as a sportsman, outdoor enthusiast and lover of sporting dogs.

That’s when he founded Mountain Dog Chews, a family-run business that sells premium, naturally shed elk antler dog chews hand foraged in the Rocky Mountains. When he wanted to sell online, he chose Bigcommerce to power his first store.

Corey worked with our design/development partner Madwire Media to create a beautiful store that really showcases his products and brand, and launched in June.

“From platform functionality to Bigcommerce’s investment in integrating the most relevant new apps to keep merchants on the cutting edge, you’ve empowered my venture to reach our goals on an accelerated timeframe,” said Davis. “The Bigcommerce team has built a tremendously powerful and scalable platform that is both best in class and insanely cost competitive.”

Since launching the store, Davis has received dozens of compliments on the design, as well as questions from other merchants on which e-commerce platform he uses. Now he’s especially happy to have an awesome site to present to customers, because Mountain Dog Chews is featured in the fall issue of Modern Dog magazine! The magazine has a subscriber base of more than 300,000, and was sent to every veterinarian in the country.

Corey is a great example of what Bigcommerce is all about — empowering people to do what they love by giving them the tools to sell more online. We hope all of our clients are as successful and happy with Bigcommerce!









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