Skier, entrepreneur and creator of J Skis, Jason Levinthal has a mission: to “do things different” in skiing. He is the former owner of Line skis and Full Tilt boots, but wanted to try something new. He builds small quantities of limited edition skis, and sells them factory direct exclusively through his Shopify platform. By cutting out the middle men (distributors, salesmen, stores), he can invest more into innovating and building unique, cutting edge skis faster and sells them at great prices.
He collaborates on his designs with his friends, people that he considers to be some of the smartest, most creative, influential and experienced, forward-thinking minds in the ski industry...and he only works with people he enjoys working with. Now that’s the way to work!
Today, we’re sharing some more of his tips for success:
How did you get started?
I’ve been in the ski industry for over 25 years. I started by building the first twin tip ski as a college project in 1995, starting the ski company Line. I eventually sold that company to K2 and then started Jskis.com in 2013 to exclusively sell direct to consumers and leverage modern day digital marketing and ecommerce strategy, something that had not previously been done in the ski industry. More about Jason.
What book would you recommend to other online merchants?
The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding - it’s a bit outdated in its references but amazing in helping you understand the strategy of brand positioning.
What advice would you give to other ecommerce merchants to grow their sales?
The best way to grow sales is to do more of what’s working and less of what’s not working. That’s the overall strategy we all overlook; far too often we keep doing what we’re doing because that’s what we’ve always done and not because it’s necessarily getting us the best return. What worked well five years ago isn’t guaranteed to work well today so it’s important to analyze the results of all your marketing, not just new initiatives.
What’s your number one tip for other Shopify store owners?
Use Shopify Analytics and download sales by time and product model. Then compare it to the previous year, same time frame, to see by what percent you’re growing or declining per model, category, etc. I do this biweekly and it gives you a really easy quick perspective of what you’re doing over the previous year, so you can adjust on the fly.
Aside from Exportify, what are your favourite Shopify apps?
Shopify Chat is awesome for convincing customers to pull the trigger on a purchase on the spot. Stamped is solid for gathering consumer reviews and managing and interacting with the customer’s reviews. TaxJar saves our accountant tons of hours by automatically calculating taxes due in multiple states and making the payments.
How does Exportify benefit your business?
Exportify enables us to download and upload order and product info super efficiently.
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