Off White Records: Selling Indie Records with SnipcartJune 11, 2015
If I listed a top 5 of my favorite things in life, music would without a doubt be in there. I mean, have you ever stopped to think about how powerful this stuff really is? It can make you smile, cry, reminisce, run, dance, lift, jump, write, paint... Oh and it can also make you code. When our lead engineer and co-founder Charles has his headphones on and his ears filled with music, he codes like a beast. It's safe to say we're all music lovers here at Snipcart: every Friday afternoon, we turn on the "Snipcart Radio" (which is basically just me taking special requests in a dedicated Slack channel) and blast some tunes throughout the office.
So for this month's featured user, we chose to chat with Buzz Hiscock from Off White Records. We hope you enjoy learning more about this cool Snipcart user.
What's Off White Records exactly?
Off White Records is a simple, indie-focused store for music records. Their parent company, Rocket Records, is an established music distributor in Australia. The thing with music is that there's a ridiculous amount of it out there that can't be stocked in every record store: that's where Off White comes in. They offer music lovers a chance to purchase most of the records they couldn't find in their general record store. As of right now, their online inventory holds about 10 000 different records.
Full interview with Buzz from Off White Records
Q: Though question: could you give us your personal top 5 records of all time?
A: Ha! The question all music business people hate!... Well I'm fortunate in that I have a constant flow of brilliant records floating onto my desk on a daily basis. That said I do have four classic albums that are never far from my stereo: Air - 'Moon Safari', Miles Davis - 'Kind Of Blue', Boards Of Canada - 'Tomorrow's Harvest' and Gabriel Yared - 'Betty Blue (Original Soundtrack)'. And to round out the 5 I'll throw in my favourite album of 2015 so far... Blanck Mass - 'Dumb Flesh'.
Q: How has the feedback been from your customers regarding your online store until now?
A: Well, we're not aiming to do anything too fancy, but the response has been very good. We've managed to fill an important niche here in Australia.
Q: As an offline record store, what made you decide to go fully transactional online?
A: We have a huge database of music products, and a great distribution ERP system, but we were only exploiting the retail distribution channel. It was just a matter of finding the right software components so we could enable a B2C store, and expand our reach direct to music fans.
Q: What kind of records are you biggest sellers online, CDs or vinyl?
A: I'm sure everyone is aware of the explosion of vinyl sales over the past couple of years. In general we'd probably sell about twice as much vinyl as CDs (but CDs are definitely still kicking and possibly increasing in popularity recently - yep you heard it here first!)
Q: How and why did you end up choosing Snipcart for your e-commerce needs?
A: We have a database with a ColdFusion engine running a user interface for our own ERP system. Building a web store in ColdFusion is not all that difficult but I was concerned about the security of the shopping cart and personal data not being robust enough in our store without investing a stack of money on external developers.
Q: What’s the one thing you liked the most about our shopping cart platform?
A: The Snipcart platform was a breeze to integrate into our ColdFusion store. About 5 lines of code added to a page and it was done! This was fantastic for us.
Q: We’re keen on user feedback here at Snipcart, so: how could we improve our product to make it an ever better e-commerce solution for you?
A: It's been a while since I've looked at this part, but I remember I found the shipping rates were a bit laborious to enter. (This may have changed since I did it - about 12 months ago). Shipping rates seem to be confusing at best in every platform. Time spent ironing out this area would be well worth it.
We'd like to thank Buzz at Off White Records for collaborating with us on this post. It's always a blessing for us to learn and share inspiring stories from awesome merchants using Snipcart. We'll be back next month with a new featured user! In the meantime, don't hesitate to tell us what your favorite top 5 records are in the comments! :)