The president of one business has his sights focused firmly on big success for small businesses in America — and his firm has a lot to do with it.
Harley Finkelstein, who runs Shopify, told FOX Business in an interview this week, “It’s quite clear, especially post-pandemic, that small businesses are the backbone of the entire economy. They’re very, very important.”
In the past few years, Finkelstein, who is based in Canada, said that the United States and indeed the world has seen that “the only constant in commerce is change — and that things are just happening so rapidly, including offline retailers moving online now,” as well as online retailers finding a physical presence for their wares, too.
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As Americans approach the biggest shopping time of the year, he also said, “there are a lot of unknowns, especially right now in this crazy economy. But despite the current realities, there are still some real bright spots,” he said.
“We believe that Black Friday and Cyber Monday will still be one of the most anticipated events of the year.”
He said that Shopify, “an entrepreneurship company,” is devoted to “celebrating and recognizing the power of entrepreneurship on this incredible global stage.”
Shopify is a leading provider of essential internet infrastructure for commerce. It offers small businesses the tools to “start, grow, market, and manage” their retail business of any size.
“We’re really the place that businesses get started.”
What his firm does all year ’round, said Finkelstein, “is make it really easy for new businesses to get started. Then, once they get started, they find it really easy to scale something.”
One thing most people don’t realize about Shopify, he added, is that “every minute or so, a new entrepreneur gets their first sale on Shopify. So we’re really the place that businesses get started.”
Yet instead of “keeping economies of scale for ourselves, we give those economies of scale to the millions of stores on Shopify — which allows them to level the playing field in a way that they could never do on their own,” he said.
The end result, said Finkelstein, “is that now you’re seeing a lot of really great businesses that started only a few years ago becoming the largest brands in their particular industry.”
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Jimmy MacDonald, co-founder of Authenticity50, can speak to this precisely.
Jimmy MacDonald started his home products company in 2015 and over the past seven years has seen it grow it tremendously.
He’s a small business owner in Camas, Washington, who uses Shopify.
He started his home products company in 2015 and over the past seven years has seen it grow it tremendously, he shared with FOX Business.
He and his wife, Steph, sell bedsheets, pillows, towels and comforters — and are proud that they make all of their products in the USA.
“It took us a few years to put the supply chain [details] together,” said MacDonald about the early days of his company, “and Shopify was also picking up steam at around that time.”
After the MacDonalds launched their company in 2015, they launched their Shopify store in 2016, he said.
MacDonald noted, “Shopify gives anybody who is willing to put in a little bit of effort essentially enterprise-level resources to manage an online store.”
The number of users on his site went from less than 100 to over 12,000 in the span of a minute, said MacDonald — and there were no issues at all.
He described a recent traffic spike on his site, in which the number of users on his site went from less than 100 to over 12,000 in the span of a minute.
“Most sites would break under that load,” said MacDonald. “Yet Shopify handles that with zero issues at all.”
Shopify, he said, “gives you the backbone to spin up a website really quickly and really easily — it looks really good, too,” he said, touting the blueprints and guidance that Shopify provides to small business owners.
MacDonald noted that virtually everyone who has bought items online has used Shopify-supported sites.
“They [Shopify] power some of the largest brands out there, but their services work just the same for small mom-and-pop shops and start-up businesses like ourselves.”
Shopify by the numbers
Here is a snapshot of Shopify, with facts provided by the company.
It powers millions of businesses in over 175 countries.
If you were to take all of Shopify’s U.S. merchants and aggregate their online sales, Shopify would be the second-largest online retailer in the U.S., ahead of eBay and Walmart.
It provides businesses of all sizes with the “toolkit” they need to remain independent, meet the challenges of today’s business environment and succeed in the future.
Brands that use Shopify include Allbirds, Gymshark, Heinz, Tupperware, FTD, Netflix, FIGS and many more.
Shopify merchants have created five million jobs.
If you were to take all of Shopify’s U.S. merchants and aggregate their online sales, Shopify would be the second-largest online retailer in the U.S., ahead of eBay and Walmart, according to eMarketer in 2021.
In terms of global economic impact, that’s over $444 billion in 2021 from merchants on Shopify, the company says — representing a 45% increase from 2020.
In 2021, nearly 600 million shoppers made a purchase from a Shopify merchant — for nearly 31% growth from 2020 (457 million consumers in 2020; 300 million consumers in 2019), updated as of Q4 2021.
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Also, this past September, Shopify launched POS Go, retail hardware that runs Shopify’s point-of-sale software — connecting a brand’s online and offline business.
To learn more about Shopify, check out this video: