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7 E-COMMERCE START-UPS THAT ROCK IN 2020

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E-Commerce in 2020: trends and obstacles

Time, convenience, and sustainability – three main factors that influence your customer’s decision. We live in the era of globalization and consumerism where there are so many options that it’s a daunting task to make a choice. From a pair of jeans to furniture and cars – everything can sell off online. E-commerce companies consider these factors and follow trends by
 

1) saving our time allowing to order from homes;
 

2) making it convenient by offering free delivery, flexible design, and personalized solutions;
 

3) using eco-friendly shipping and sustainable products. 

This way, top e-commerce startups encounter many problems on their way to the first perceptible revenue:
 

  • lack of funding. There are already so many products and companies. Who needs another one?
  • A lack of new ideas. We won’t buy a reinvented wheel for 59$ for sale!
  • lack of innovative vision. Selling the fur in an ecologically conscious society is a leap in nothing. 


The best e-commerce startups need to come up with something so revolutionary yet so simple that the funding companies will fight for the possibility to join. Below are the stories of those who succeeded and keep rocking in 2020! 

Snackpass – changing the social perception of takeaway food

About: On a usual day at Yale, students go round and about in searches for food. To study well, you need to eat well – this is the rule. Energy does not occur from the sun. Kevin Tan was one of those who spent recessions listening to the stomach rumbling. The idea came to his mind in 2017 when he was sitting on the economy lecture. First, there was only a website. The app occurred later and was only used at the Yale campus. Today the students of 16 different campuses can order food takeaway. The app is unique for its social impact as it is often used to flirt by sharing the bonuses and sending gifts.
 

Funding: First, there was no funding at all. They went to the shops and arranged cooperation with the owners. To spread awareness about the app, the founders printed out fliers and handed them in throughout the campus. When the app gained popularity, and it was understood that youth appeals to takeaways, the funding was no longer a problem because even such giants as Y Combinator and General Catalyst took part in donating money. 
 

What is the use?
 

  • pre-order the food;
  • skip the queue;
  • earn bonuses;
  • exchange bonuses for discounts/food;
  • send gifts (dishes/bonuses) to friends.


The app works with hundreds of restaurants and cafes, including Popeyes, Papa John’s, Subway, Salads Up, etc. It is spread in 16 different campuses like Harvard, Brown, Yale, Dartmouth, and Michigan. It is useful not only for students but also for coaches and parents. They can order a meal plan – pay for many dishes beforehand – and order a portion of food either for many people at once or many meals for one person. 
 

Snackpass saves time because you order food, and as soon as you get to the place, it is already made. You gey it by clicking which is faster than talking on the phone. You earn bonuses which save you money. The gift sending function is giving a feeling of social media presence. It feels like pressing a like on the post – you give credits!

Wheels – innovative commuting

About: The startup aims to provide convenient and greatly designed bicycles for commuting. This way the founders Jonathan and Joshua Viner strive not only to enhance the road to work, shop, or cafe but also to improve the environment with the reduction of exhaust gas from cars. The company wants to spread its ideas to more and more cities. Now it operates within San Diego, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, and Scottsdale. 
 

Funding: The most recent one was in October 2019 – a $50 million donation by DBL Partners. Before that, they had almost 30 million dollars in the fund. 
 

What’s the use?
 

  • rent electric bikes to commute;
  • be safe with a helmet (“Helmet now included!”);
  • use bikes speakers to listen to music;
  • enjoy sustainability and friendly design.
     

Wheels solve two main problems of 2020’s society – the impact of urbanization on the environment and convenient commuting without jams. It saves customers time and allows them to enter an environmentally conscious community. 

MistyRobotics – E-Commerce innovations

About: It’s a tool for developers, educators, and researchers that is to help with the implementation of robotic technologies in life. “Misty opens up robots as a development platform”. Later, MistyRobotics aims to bring science-fiction movies to our homes because this creature will do a lot of things. 
 

Funding: $11 million in equity. Last September the company announced that it will deliver the robots to its crowdfunders. The number of them is 500. In October they allowed a pre-order for 2 899$. 
 

What can Misty do?
 

  • recognize people, detect who they are;
  • hear, record voice and answer;
  • possess personality traits chosen by the user;
  • respond to touch;
  • capture images;
  • collect data;
  • share data;
  • stream video;
  • integrate with other APIs.
     

Misty is available in three versions: Basic, Standard, and Enhanced. The target of the company is to accelerate the implementation of robotics in everyday life. Their E-commerce website contains information about the customer and user cases because the founders understand: the robot is not what you buy in the first place. Misties are used for elderly care, in laboratories, and educational processes. 

Verishop – exclusive E-Commerce solution

About: The startup was founded by the previous executive of Snapchat Imran Khan and Cate Khan. The main purpose is to provide users with exclusive products in clothing, kitchen utilities, and self-care. Convenience, enticing delivery solutions, great website – all of it is already implemented with numerous fashion e-commerce shops. Verishop focuses on brand curation. The company offers handpicked products without the inclusion of third-parties which is represented in the name. Verishop = verified shop. 
 

Funding: currently reached 30 million dollars. 
 

What’s the use?
 

  • find small exclusive shops in one place;
  • shop in a non-mass-market place (Verishop collaborates with other startup-brands);
  • get products recommended by influencers (Tastemakers shop);
  • join the environmentally-conscious movement by purchasing in The Responsible Store with sustainable products.
     

The startup combines sustainability and focuses on youth trends like reliance on social media and a desire to lead an exclusive lifestyle. 

Girlfriend Collective – innovation in E-Commerce fashion

About: It is a Seattle-based startup founded by Ellie and Quang Dinh which focuses on recycled sportswear. Their first products were leggings. Each pair made of 25 recycled bottles, it was sold for… 0$. It’s an example of how the startup gains awareness and trust during the first stages of development. Now each pair costs a minimum of 65$.
 

Girlfriend Collective focuses not only on sustainability but also on the celebration of diversity. They support body positivity, producing sportswear in the range of sizes from XXS to 6XL. On the website, you can see different models, not only traditionally skinny ones. They celebrate racial, ethnic and national diversity. The clothing is produced in Vietnam and Girlfriend Collective reassures that the factory pays fair salaries, has acceptable working hours and safe conditions. “We know. We go there”
 

What’s the use?
 

  • personalization: access to all sizes, ability to pick the length of the leg;
  • get Oeko-Tex certified and guaranteed recycled sportswear;
  • get the athleisure of good quality and great minimal design.
     

Here the company joins the movements celebrating diversity and sustainability which is one of the main trends in E-Commerce as well. However, they are not trend-followers, they are trendsetters. 

TapRm – a successful American E-Commerce startup

About: Jason Sherma once wondered why only 0.2% of beer sales are operated online. Yes, people consider the process of buying a beer in a bar almost traditional. However, what if you want to drink it at home. And what if you want the beer that is not accessible in the shops in your area? TapRm provides its customers with exclusive drinks from 102 different craft breweries. This way, they introduce small brands to the world and make the beer e-commerce industry more familiar. 
 

Funding: Last December TapRm got 1.5 million dollars to tackle issues of legal alcohol delivery. Now they can distribute beer not only to the restaurants but also to each customer via the website. According to the founder, online retail is a priority. 
 

What’s the use?
 

  • get access to different beer types;
  • order a large shipment for your birthday celebration/restaurant/college party;
  • get free shipping if the order exceeds 25$ (before the quarantine the minimum sum for free delivery was 50$);
  • make sure it is all legal because TapRm has all the necessary documents and sells only to those under 21. 

Cazoo – the most recent E-Commerce startup in 2020

About: Cazoo is an example of how online commerce step by step replaces brick-and-mortar shops because it delivers used cars. Alex Chesterman met the demands of 2020’s society and solved two customers’ problems: 1) he provides only cars of good quality 2) he delivers them to clients’ homes for free. Startup users won’t have to spend time comparing different variants and detecting whether there are any damages in the car. The system does it for them. 
 

Funding: on the 23rd of March the founders have announced raising 100 million dollars on their startup. Before, it got its first donate one and a half years ago. 
 

What’s the use?
 

  • find a used car of good quality (the company fully reconditions them);
  • get them delivered in “as little as 72 hours” with safety standards;
  • get a 7-day money-back guarantee;
  • have access to MOT and service history as well as the info about previous owners.
     

The company has strict rules when it comes to delivery because of the recent coronavirus spread in the world. It does not deliver cars if people self-isolate. In such a case, they put an order in a line and perform it after the end of the quarantine. Also, Cazoo ensures they perform the delivery with all protecting equipment. 

If you want to enter the market – live in the future. You just blink, and the e-commerce industry is already changed. 
 

1st blink – they sell robotics through the Internet;
 

2nd blink – they deliver beer to your home;
 

3rd blink – they recycle bottles and make clothes out of it;
 

4th blink – they certify a used car and deliver it right to your doorstep.
 

Keep up – sell to the people of the future. 

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Have you ever tried to open any web-site on your phone’s browser? If you have, you’ve probably noticed how clumsy it can be. Yeah, opening and utilising a web-site on a PC with a big screen is pretty convenient, however doing the same on smartphones, especially older models with screens smaller than 4 inches is less satisfying. The text is really badly read and the buttons are small, ads may cover too much of your humble space.In order to cope with these and other issues at the dawn of the smartphone age PWA technology was developed.

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SAPIENTPROHow to update your marketplace app in 2021?

Creating a successful marketplace application may seem a Herculean task to cope with. However, its maintenance is not a simpler task either. Here we come across the helpful app upgrades. But why do you need to upgrade your application and what features a renewed app should have? Let’s dig deeper into these questions.

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SAPIENTPROHow to upgrade your old website for 2021?

Living in a hectic constantly changing world, you can hardly ever find something that remains the same. This statement relates not only to daily routine, but also to any job issues such as keeping your website updated. If your site doesn’t adjust to the latest trends and you haven’t done any rebranding or upgrades for ages, you risk to appear old-fashioned and stagnated. Here is some good news, too. You can always come to grips with reality and start to develop your own upgrading plan for a website. In order to speed up this overwhelming journey, we recommend you to stand still for now and scan carefully the information presented in this article.

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SAPIENTPROHow to build a successful development team? (Part 2)

You have already got acquainted with the aspects of first and foremost importance related to forming a successful development team. Let’s proceed with our journey and dwell upon the matter of adequate maintenance of the enhancement team on a certain level. Which characteristics and skills should remain firm with the flow of time for your web development process to be successful?

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SAPIENTPROHow to build a successful development team? (Part 1)

When you begin to work on a new (especially large-scale) project, organizational moments themselves look quite intimidating. Despite all the possible challenges, take a deep breath, count 1,2,3 and think carefully about the particular task the team is supposed to solve and what’s the team role within the project frames? Clear targeting and coming up with first juicy ideas will set you a decent start on the way to forming a successful development team.

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DEVELOPMENTChoosing Technology Stack for custom eCommerce Development: a guide for the non-tech entrepreneurs.

If only there were an analogy of Hogwarts’ sorting hat for software development… Imagine: you enter your idea of the product, how much budget you have, and get the list of the technology stack and contacts of the development team that would work ideally with your niche! In the real software development world, choosing a technology stack requires planning, discussions, and analysis. Some technologies will work better with your project, and our task is to detect which ones. However, you also need to understand that the tech stack is not something fixed. As your product grows, there comes the need for new and better tools. This way, software development requires flexibility. Thus, prepare that your initial technology stack may not stay with you forever. You may need to scale your project or implement new features and store more information. There may be better versions of some tools available. Prepare to be flexible. Prepare to change and alter things when the upgrades require it. That’s what will make you competitive from a technological standpoint of leading an E-Commerce business. In this article, we will tell you about the most popular technologies that power E-Commerce products. Next time you communicate with your development team, you will know all the essential information and, most importantly, you will ask the right questions.

Kate

8 min read

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SAPIENTPROCommunication in the software development workplace

IT office jungles are filled with computer forests, cable lianas, and rivers of coffee. The temperature varies between 24 and 27, depending on who keeps the conditioner remote control. The sunlight mainly comes from computer screens and lightbulbs. Developers are working like bees: they take the pollen of code and create honeycombs of apps. It is a beautiful environment filled with the magical power of innovation, creativity, and agility. However, this ecosystem only works if there is one more component. This component is communication.

Kate

6 min read

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DEVELOPMENT10 reasons to update your website

The day has come. Your once successful and well-performing website wears off. And you know what? It is okay. It happens to the best of us. Even while you are reading this article, we are revising our website to improve your experience with it. So let us explain how the updating process works, and not just because we are a software development company but because we understand. Right now, our designer is creating a fresh way of delivering cases, and our backend developer is engaged in the improvement of the admin panel.

Kate

7 min read

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DEVELOPMENTECOMMERCE REPLATFORMING GUIDE: SWITCH FROM ONE CMS TO ANOTHER

Outdated CMS may be among the reasons why your business hit a plateau.Developing and launching a website is not where the work stops. Besides, you have to maintain it constantly and implement profound changes. As for the latter, sometimes you may need to do something more than a simple redesign, and that may be a switch from one CMS to another. If your e-commerce business is continuously evolving and growing, it brings along more work to do. New technologies are always here to make your life easier. When it comes to CMS, there is also a great variety of opportunities you can use. In this article, we will walk you through the reasons, things to consider, and steps of CMS replatforming.

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DEVELOPMENTGUIDE TO BUILDING SEO FRIENDLY E-COMMERCE WEBSITE IN 2020

Let us be clear, the absence of SEO may result in the absence of website visibility.What people usually do when they need to find some information? Of course, they google it. The same goes for online shopping. When someone wants to buy or just compare prices for a certain product, Internet users simply open their devices to find necessary items online. Although you can now hardly find a person, who doesn’t have a computer or a laptop, people still use mobile devices more often. Thus, 93% of all internet activity starts with a search query. This number is for you if you doubt the importance of search engine optimization (SEO) for your website.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW TO BUILD & IMPLEMENT DYNAMIC PRICING FOR E-COMMERCE

Bear in mind, the whole purpose of dynamic pricing isn’t all about making sales.Price is among the key priorities when the consumers make their final decision whether to buy a product or not. Too expensive or too cheap offers can easily avert the buyers from your store. What if other stores have smaller prices? Or similar products of cheaper brands attract visitors more? The solution for not losing the client base is keeping track and controlling the costs on your website with the help of dynamic price strategies.

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DEVELOPMENTCOSTS OF E-COMMERCE PROJECT REDESIGN

The rise of sales, increased traffic and positive reviews are just a couple of benefits you may get from a website redesign.If you want your e-commerce business to grow and develop (we believe you do), you need to keep track of events in the online retail industry and, of course, implement on-time updates. Sometimes, small changes are not enough, then significant renovations should take place. Those may include changing the offers you provide and product lines, updating the website and finally redesigning. The question of redesign should be taken up seriously, as the first impression is what most people rely on when it comes to the Internet and its tough competition. Be ready to invest enough effort and budget to the renovation that will increase your business’s value. To know how to determine your budget. It’s important to consider at first the features, reasons, and type of changes, necessary for your website in the process of redesign.

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DEVELOPMENTADDING AN ONLINE STORE TO YOUR WEBSITE: DETAILED GUIDE

Adding an online store to your website will cost you less than developing it from the ground up.Selling online is never a bad idea, especially nowadays, when people wish to buy everything they need right from their cozy homes.What if having a ready website a business owner decided to sell something? Good news! There is no need for you to start all over again. There is a solution – adding an online store to the existing website. The opportunities of eCommerce are growing as fast as the customers’ demands.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BUILD AN E-COMMERCE WEBSITE IN 2019-2020

The e-commerce development company you choose will certainly affect the money you have to pay.The e-commerce website can definitely enhance the profit you receive from your business. But how much does e-commerce website cost? The figures you will hear in an answer to that question can vary a lot. Even after development, you will have to invest money into maintenance, improvement and adding brand-new features that are constantly appearing on the market. That’s in case you want your e-store to be attractive and profitable, of course. It’s even difficult to tell the average cost of how much should I charge for an e-commerce website. The numbers will vary due to different factors. In this article, we’re going to discuss them all in detail to help you grasp some idea about the money you need to pay for the e-store. First of all, you need to decide what you want your e-commerce to offer the customers. It may be anything from small business e-store up to a large website with a big amount of integrated (useful or just good-looking) features. It is also a good idea not to wait until everything becomes outdated. We strongly recommend to update all the features continuously and save money for more innovations.

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DEVELOPMENTGUIDE TO PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING FOR E-COMMERCE

To avoid the negative consequences, start with determining what you intend to achieve.The popularity of e-commerce is growing at a blistering pace. Many companies around the globe regard the internet as a powerhouse with high commercial capacity and opportunities to boost their business and attract more customers. Those companies are completely right – more and more people prefer clicking the mouse over walking for hours when they need to buy something. Online stores nowadays provide their customers with more possibilities for less effort. But how to make people buy on your website, not any other? The answer is in thorough planning and management of e-commerce.

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DEVELOPMENTWEB DEVELOPMENT TEAM STRUCTURE AT SAPIENTPRO

We don’t say there isn’t enough knowledge, because our specialists are always broadening their abilities, delivering first-rate products and making the customers satisfied.Being a client of a Web Development company doesn’t mean you have to know all the ins and outs of the development process. However, what may be interesting for you is the stages and main characters of the project delivery. You cannot address front-end developer directly if you need to add a new payment method. Even this, as you may think, simple task involves a well-thought teamwork. So, here is a brief insight into the mechanism of SapientPro Clockwork.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW IT OUTSOURCING MAKES UKRAINE ATTRACTIVE FOR BUSINESSES AROUND THE WORLD

If a customer wants to find a development company they can work comfortably with, the staff becomes a really important point to encounter for making a choice.Without any doubt, while visiting some websites, buying goods online or even using a digital map to reach your destination you don’t think of the fact that Ukrainian IT specialists might have taken part in the development of these apps. A great number of companies around the world choose to outsource web development to Ukraine and they do have strong reasons for that. So, let’s give a detailed look at the biggest of them:

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DEVELOPMENTMAIN FACTORS THAT AFFECT THE COST OF THE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT

As software development is a many-stage process, every its element contributes to what you have to pay for an application.Before starting something new, people usually ask: “How much will it cost me to do this?” If you expect to hear the exact sum once you come to the software development company, here is something you need to know. The factors to be considered for the cost estimation are numerous and most of them depend on how you want your website or app to look like.As software development is a many-stage process, every its element contributes to what you have to pay for an application. Let’s have a closer look at three most important factors that affect the client’s budget.

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