Recently we had the pleasure of sitting down with Rebuy’s Co-Founder & COO, James Van Erck to discuss the pursuit of customer satisfaction and business growth in an in-depth fireside chat. We dive deep into the world of digital retail, uncovering powerful strategies, tools, and concepts that drive success for merchants. A high-level overview includes:
Dynamic Bundling: Simplifying the purchase journey through dynamic bundling to increase convenience and encourage multiple purchases uplifts customer convenience and merchant AOV. We’ve created a Comprehensive Guide to Bundling, complete with a developer-perspective on setup.
AI-Driven Merchandising: Leveraging AI to create unique customer experiences based on customer preferences, needs, and bundles optimizes the shopping experience.
Data-Driven Shopping: The integration of AI, email, and SMS to offer a retail store-like experience enhances search functionalities and reduces the amount of clicks it takes for a customer to get to checkout.
“I think that with apps like Rebuy; it gives [the merchant] such an opportunity to iterate and really get out there and quickly learn because whether you’re building a bundle, putting in an upsell, integrating with Klaviyo, you’re basically throwing stuff against a wall and you need to figure out what works. And then once you figure out what works, you just hammer down and keep working at it.”
Testing and Iteration: Merchants should test and iterate strategies using platforms like Rebuy to discover what resonates with their audience.
“Don’t just install another app for some little edge-case. Figure out how you can harness the power of what you already have to reduce some of the conflicts, some of the missed opportunities, and I think Rebuy’s a perfect partner for that… It sounds a little bit cavalier but go throw some noodles against the wall.”
Integration: Integrating different tools within the Shopify ecosystem to create a holistic shopping experience. Some top performers are: Klaviyo, Attentive, Tapcart, and Malomo.
Optimized Checkout: Focus on the foundations. Best practices, innovative technology integration, and proactive pursuit of customer satisfaction for success in e-commerce builds great experiences.
“I think it all boils down into really doing the basics well. So, having great product pages, working with agencies like Ambaum, and building these great experiences and leveraging tools like Rebuy to really help optimize traffic so you’re helping folks to find the products that they want or need.”
Hammerhead was established in 2013, founded by Piet Morgan (CEO) and Laurence Wattrus (Head of Technology) when they realized the cycling computer market lacked the tools for cyclists everywhere. Hammerhead has remained committed to cycling products and recently released the Karoo 2, arguably the best cycling computer product in the industry.
Fueled by a desire to enhance user experience, showcase their unique products, bolster their global online presence, and increase conversions, Hammerhead started looking for a partner to help them.
The journey began in 2021. Hammerhead was on Shopify but they relied on a page builder for their website design. While this approach had served them early on, it became evident that they couldn’t scale to meet their evolving operational needs across multiple sites. The primary challenges included:
Inability to achieve the precise design envisioned by Hammerhead’s team
No way to manage content across each geo-specific site
Unappealing user interface (UI) on their current platform
Desire for custom design and specialized functionality, for example adding features like bundling
Scope of Work
Recognizing the need for a comprehensive overhaul, Ambaum scoped the project to include:
Complete reconstruction of the homepage, tailored for various devices (desktop and mobile)
Crafting diverse Product Detail Page (PDP) templates to suit different contexts
Designing collection templates for seamless product categorization
Customization of Articles and blog templates to reflect the merchant’s brand identity
Integration of metafields, enabling global product customization on a grand scale
Automatically tag customers if they opt-in to the Trade In Trade Up within the cart page
Tag orders that used discount codes with specific patterns to provide data insight. This would track customers that journeyed from different promotional partners and campaigns
Central to the challenge was the import of pages originally constructed with Pagefly, which was further complicated by a major Pagefly update. We were able to preserve the client’s design integrity and brand identity while setting the stage for global expansion. Through this, the client was able to open multiple sites across the globe (CA, AU, UK, and EU) just a few months later. But, we weren’t done there. We recognized the need for ongoing maintenance, ensuring the client’s eCommerce operations continued to thrive and remain competitive in a dynamic online market.
In our ongoing partnership with Hammerhead, we’ve implemented a streamlined maintenance process that ensures seamless functionality and a consistent user experience across their five international sites. The process includes:
The client provides us with a Figma file containing essential elements such as copy, images, and creatives all formatted for the US market
We leverage our technical expertise to construct custom templates for each new landing page, updating relevant heads and content, files on the PDP, and checkout pages
The US site serves as the initial testing ground, where any necessary refinements are made before deploying these changes across the other four international sites
While many elements remain consistent across geographies, certain aspects require customization such as images, nomenclature, prices, shipping information, and more. We handle these necessary adaptations for the client to ensure a tailored and region-specific experience.
One of the key principles guiding our approach with Hammerhead is flexibility. We never hardcoded anything into any field, so all content was customizable via one of the following:
Customizer for both older and newer JSON templates
Administrative features such as tags and excerpts, etc
In addition to maintaining the core functionality of the sites, we continuously implemented design updates. This includes:
Monitoring competitor updates and comparisons
Introducing trade-in and trade-up options for older products as new ones are released
Publishing monthly blog posts
Launching new campaigns targeting specific user segments (e.g., e-bike users, mountain bike enthusiasts, recreational riders, etc.)
Keeping the retail locator feature up-to-date by constantly adding new store locations across the globe
This level of adaptability is complemented by our ongoing communication with the client’s Support Team, allowing us to gauge customer reactions and respond swiftly to any emerging needs or issues. Ultimately, our approach empowers the client with the functional implementation of their design while ensuring minimal downtime and troubleshooting. This enables the client to benefit from our professional knowledge and guidance, especially in the face of evolving Shopify and Shopify app updates.
We were able to build the clients tech stack to their unique needs, notably adding Klaviyo and Stamped.
Hammerhead effectively manages a global multi-store review process through Stamped, with Ambaum streamlining the process of collecting and displaying customer feedback across the global sites using Shopify’s metafields.
Notably, the Canadian store, Hammerhead CA, achieved outstanding results, boasting a 71% open rate and an impressive 11% response rate, significantly surpassing the industry-standard response rate of 2-3%. Their Q&A Widget, utilized by 64% of site visitors, and the “Filter Reviews” widget indicate a strong trend towards personalized, segmented reviews. In this context, 7.1% of users navigate to multiple review pages, emphasizing the pivotal role of reviews in the customer journey towards conversions.
“Stamped is proud to work with agencies like Ambaum who build and scale eCommerce brands. Hammerhead’s best practices around asking for reviews at the right time, keeping the asks direct, and allowing customers to filter reviews for specific topics drive great engagement and conversion for the brand”
Additionally, Hammerhead US employs the Klaviyo x Stamped integration for email outreach, focusing on customer interactions with review data on their website. This success can be attributed to their direct and strategically timed email request approach, sent two weeks after order fulfillment to ensure customers have experienced the product’s value.
Through adding Klaviyo, we were able to set up dynamic email campaigns with unique discount code fields associated with them. This assisted with connecting new campaigns and newsletter signup links across each site.
Moving Forward: Shopify Markets
Shopify Markets simplifies global sales management, offering customized shopping experiences for various customer segments. While Shopify Markets Pro assumes there is only US distribution and is geared to reduce the costs and administration of shipping for global growth, Shopify Markets can assist in consolidating the efforts of merchants already at that global level. Since Hammerhead already utilizes warehouses across the globe, we’re exploring the possibilities of consolidating Hammerhead’s multiple international stores into one central store by leveraging Shopify Markets. We have since updated their theme to Shopify 2.0, transferring .liquid code to .json to broaden the horizon for these types of opportunities.
Key advantages of adopting Shopify Markets include the ability to implement price-per-products; a critical feature for dynamic pricing across markets. Furthermore, we can seamlessly introduce translation apps for diverse languages and nomenclature or idiomatic variations. This will ensure the store is both user-friendly and culturally attuned to specific regions.
The client will also be able to implement local SEO optimization with this transition, enhancing the store’s visibility and reach within specific markets. The site’s auto-adjustment feature based on the user’s location ensures a tailored experience, enhancing user engagement and satisfaction.
By implementing Shopify Markets, we project a substantial reduction in manual work, with efficiency improvements upwards of 20%. This transition not only streamlines operations but positions the client’s eCommerce presence and their ability to enter new markets quicker.
This partnership uniquely showcases our ability to deliver comprehensive migration solutions, adaptive technologies and solutions, and ongoing creative implementation across distinct global locations. We’ve transitioned the client’s eCommerce stores on Shopify, setting the stage for an efficient and flexible design and maintenance process. By acting as the client’s outsourced eCommerce team and fractional CTO, we’ve facilitated swift updates and smooth navigation across various tech partnerships.
Looking ahead, whether it’s streamlining a process, customizing the shopping experience, or optimizing global SEO through evolving Shopify apps, we’re ready to provide tailored solutions. Our success in managing international eCommerce and facilitating growth through innovative tech solutions demonstrates our commitment to delivering results. We look forward to the next step of growth in this client journey as we continue to partner together.
The DTC experience is where brands spend the bulk of their attention. However, B2B is arguably more important as you can do more volume via B2B sales.
Buyers have high expectations for B2B that most brands aren’t living up to. At Ambaum, we have helped many brands build B2B Shopify sites, but it’s still only a fraction of our customers. B2B is a big opportunity for brands and here is why:
B2B Buyers are Younger and Digitally Native – Millennials and Gen Z are ages 11-42 and were raised with (by?) a phone and a computer. They are more comfortable in front of a screen and are at home placing orders online.
Placing Orders Online is Frictionless – The old way of B2B selling was to place orders in person over business lunches, send emails (even faxes!) or use the phone. There is nothing wrong with meeting your buyers in person, but also give them a DTC like B2B experience for ordering online.
Buyers Expect Full Product Availability Online – Put your entire product catalog in your B2B store so buyers can get access to everything your DTC customers can buy. Nothing frustrates me more than trying to buy the product I want, not seeing it available for purchase and forcing me to send an email to support to get help.
A bad B2B experience adds friction to the process. Friction wastes time for your customers, causes frustration and ultimately leads to a decrease in sales. In a recent study, 2/3 of buyers were incentivized to switch B2B vendors when they were offered a more DTC like buying experience.
Shopify has entirely revamped their B2B offering and it’s important to note that you must be on Shopify Plus to take advantage of the features that I’m going to cover here. Also at the Shopify Enterprise Summit a couple of weeks ago I got a sneak peak at Shopify Editions 2024 and even more B2B features are headed our way.
If you aren’t on Shopify Plus you can look into Shopify apps or write custom Liquid code (using tags and metafields) to create your own wholesale like experience. You can also contact us to have chat.
Here is an overview of the B2B features in the Shopify Plus solution:
Companies: Create wholesale company profiles with multiple locations and associated buyers.
Product publishing and pricing: Offer a personalized buying experience with curated product selections and price lists. This includes flexible purchasing rules, percentage-based pricing, and discounts, all assigned to a specific buyer or location.
Flexible payment options: Create automated net payment terms, draft orders, vaulted credit cards and invoicing to streamline the order process.
B2B checkout: Show wholesale pricing during accelerated checkout based on company profile.
Customer accounts: Authenticate buyers before they can access wholesale products and pricing, and view and manage account information and order history.
You can also take advantage of custom themes, discounts, Shopify Functions, and Shopify APIs
To summarize, you now have a ton of flexibility in creating your wholesale experience in your Plus store. You can seamlessly embed everything into your primary theme or you can create a stand-alone store. You can vault supplier credit cards by company and set payment terms tailored to different customers. I’m going to explore the details of all this in future posts, but from where I sit it’s an exciting time for B2B commerce on Shopify.
Shopify is upgrading the checkout experience and giving merchants more control. Here are the big developments you need to know about:
Shopify Checkout Extensibility – Checkout.liquid will be fully deprecated for the Information, Shipping, and Payment pages in your checkout on August 13, 2024. Shopify Plus merchants can now use checkout extensibility to customize these pages instead (Shopify has created a handy upgrade guide if you are interested). Shopify Plus stores can use checkout extensibility to add apps and advanced branding customizations right now.
One Page Checkout – On September 25, Shopify launched a new one-page checkout to all Shopify merchants who have upgraded to checkout extensibility. It’s a redesigned experience that’s shorter, faster, and more intuitive for buyers. We are seeing a lot of Shopify Plus merchants interested in testing out one page checkout and it is important to reiterate that your store has to be upgraded to checkout extensibility first.
Shopify Functions – As of August 28, 2025 Shopify Scripts will be fully deprecated and replaced by Shopify Functions. Merchants that leverage Shopify Scripts will need to migrate to apps powered by Shopify Functions before this date. For example, you will be able to use Shopify Functions to create cart and checkout validations to ensure that purchases meet certain criteria before checking out, or completing an order.
There is a lot happening in the checkout space and it’s fantastic for Shopify merchants that want more control over their purchase funnel. In the short term it can be confusing with all the different feature updates and upgrades required, but long term this will give more functionality to Shopify merchants.
Is now the time to take your eCommerce business to the next level? Let’s talk today.
Westinghouse has provided power to Americans for more than 100 years, and aims to bring people together with reliable change. Westinghouse works closely with industry leaders in product development, manufacturing, and design, guided by their history of innovation and quality, to choose high-performing products for residential and industrial customers globally.
The goal of this project was to create a custom Shopify 2.0 theme for Westinghouse, bringing the merchant up to industry standards while respecting their strong legacy. The theme also needed to be functionally integrated with their licensees to create a catalog store. To accomplish this, we carefully planned the layout of their extensive product catalog, creating a sophisticated Mega Nav (or, Mega Menu) with an easy-to-use UI, and organized the admin side of the site to streamline migration.
With this project, our goal was to support the most immediate need for migration and custom theme build, but we needed a platform that would support future growth as well.
In order to protect their rich history, the client provided us with Figma files and asked us for pixel perfection as we built this custom Shopify 2.0 theme. By building within the Shopify Theme we could provide total transparency as we went, and the client was able to view the designs in real-time, without the site being live.
Ambaum created the customized theme that included a home page with sections to easily add, edit, and remove main category pages. As the collections were massive, we coordinated a hierarchical structure for the Main Category Pages, Sub-Category Pages, and Product Category Pages (the Sub-Sub-Category Pages, if you will). This robust Mega Nav allowed easy navigation throughout the site for their collections and sub-collections.
When it came to the data migration, we were able to streamline the task by creating Page Templates. We created Collection and Product Templates to offer various customization options depending on what sets of products the client would like to showcase at any given time. Then, we built full control of the Category Pages into the customizer settings, which made sections such as Product block titles, subtitles, colors, order, and text fully customizable.
The functionality of the Westinghouse catalog store was built with a dual intention:
Provide their customers with an easy and seamless experience as they move from the Westinghouse catalog to the licensees’ stores
Give the client a solid foundation for scalable growth
By building a custom Shopify 2.0 theme, Westinghouse can now reuse this same theme as they integrate their licensees stores. The customer is now able to travel to the licensees’ product detail page (PDP) for purchase while maintaining the same look and feel from site to site.
The client is able to manage the page templates we built with Shopify’s Theme Customizer in the Admin, easily adding their own content, copy, and images. By leveraging these templates, the client is able to easily create and add Product and Category pages for their website after migrating their data, and as they continue to grow.
Even though the Westinghouse store is not directly selling to customers, this custom theme was essential for building this foundation and the seamless customer journey to their licensees’ stores; something that would not have been possible without Shopify.
The goal of our project was to relaunch a 100+ year old brand to industry standard through Shopify. To achieve this goal, we strategized the design of their massive product catalog and categories, ensuring the client’s ease for adding/removing content, images, copy, and text. We adhered to strict design through client-provided Figma files, allowed for theme sections to be fully customizable by the client, built out a complex Mega Nav Menu with intuitive UI, structured massive product collections, and streamlined a scalable strategy when integrating their licensees.
We are excited to have been provided the opportunity to uplift such a strong brand, and confident that the brand’s online presence will continue to thrive. If you are considering an online shop or a migration to Shopify and would like to discuss your options, we’d like to offer a free consultation to discuss how we help. Sign up today.