On September 17th, RCFG hosted our first event of the year – an Instagram Live session where RCFG member, Heather Yuan, interviewed Maggie Adhami-Boynton, Founder and CEO of ShopThing, a live shopping platform that bridges the gap between online and in-person shopping.
Creation of ShopThing
Maggie has always loved fashion and shopping and while she was passionate enough to line up at 3:30 am for sales and live drops, she realized that other people, like her sister, don’t feel the same way! This is how the idea of ShopThing was born – Maggie saw the opportunity to create a tech start-up that revolves around live video commerce, where passionate shoppers shop for the customers. After extensive research, piloting the idea on her personal blog and social media, and implementing the necessary technology tools, Maggie quit her job and made ShopThing her full-time career.
ShopThing bridges the gap between online and in-store shopping
Pandemic Impacts on ShopThing
When the pandemic first hit Canada, Maggie and the entire team were scared about their future. Given that they were unable to go out and shop, the team focused on scaling up fulfillment and inventory. However, once restrictions began loosening, the team found that the pandemic had an opposite effect than anticipated – sales skyrocketed and the firm experienced an exponential growth curve. This trend shows that customers missed shopping as much as
With inventory discounts, due to stockpiling of items, and the strategic offering of ShopThing, the company has managed to remain successful during the pandemic. Amidst the pandemic, more people are looking to digital businesses as they are more conscious about going into physical stores. Uniquely, ShopThing is NOT an online retailer. Instead, shoppers are committed to curating a look and providing a live shopping experience for customers, without them having to leave their house! Unlike online retailers, where you just see pictures of items, ShopThing offers the ability to work directly with a shopper who will provide you with detailed information about the fit, sizing, and colours of items.
Future of ShopThing
Maggie shared a few exciting plans in the works for ShopThing. In the next month, the company is looking to launch a partnership with manufacturers, allowing them to bring factory prices directly to their followers. In the long-term, ShopThing hopes to continue serving as a platform where shoppers can join without any initial investment or inventory and act as an industry disrupter to move the fashion industry forward to a new reality.
ShopThing hopes to act as an industry disrupter to move the fashion industry forward to a new reality
Maggie’s Tips for Students and Entrepreneurs
- Do Your Research
- Hustle – Maggie discussed how difficult it is to operate a start-up and a company. It takes hard work and determination. Maggie was still working at Havas and spent the nights and weekends working with developers to create a system for ShopThing. Maggie emphasized that you need to be passionate about what you do and hustle for what you want!
- Balance (but not in the way you think!) – Maggie isn’t talking about getting 8 hours of sleep at night or having a balanced lifestyle. She’s talking about giving up the balance and the normality we associate with jobs. You cannot expect to have a 9-5 schedule, nor should you be following that if you want to push yourself to achieve more.
Thank you again Maggie for taking the time to share your story, insight, and tips with us! Also, special thank you to Heather for leading the event.
Make sure you follow@shopthinglive so you do not miss any shopping sessions and can stay updated on all of ShopThing’s future endeavors!
-Heather Yuan and Katie Brasseur