Marketing Podcast for Shopify Merchants: The Ecommerce Coffee Break

The Future of Shopping: Mobile Commerce and Storytelling | #186 Jesse Pujji

May 16, 2023 Claus Lauter: Ecommerce Podcast Host | Shopify Partner | Marketing Optimizer Season 4 Episode 49
Marketing Podcast for Shopify Merchants: The Ecommerce Coffee Break
The Future of Shopping: Mobile Commerce and Storytelling | #186 Jesse Pujji
Show Notes Transcript

Discover the power of immersive mobile shopping experiences as Jesse Pujji, Founder & CEO of, shares valuable insights on the Ecommerce Coffee Break Podcast.

On the Show Today You’ll Learn:

  • What merchants can do to get more results through storytelling
  • How to connect products to your content posts
  • What kind of content merchants should push the most
  • How AI is capable to influence content creation

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Claus Lauter: Hello. Welcome to another episode of the E-Commerce Coffee Break podcast. Today we want to talk about the future of mobile commerce. A lot of things have changed, but also a lot of things haven't changed in the last couple of years, and we are going to discuss what you should do as a merchant to get more results through storytelling.

For that, I have Jesse Pujji on the show. He's the founder and CEO of Kahani is a Shopify app that helps merchants transform their mobile shopping experience in a more immersive and engaging experience that drives conversions. Jesse is an entrepreneur, investor, and executive with a passion to help people learn and grow through the power of entrepreneurship he currently serves.

As a founder and CEO of Kahani, a software, as I said, that helps e-commerce stores. And he also serves as a founder of Gateway X and as a executive chairman of Ampush and Growth Assistant. So he has a ton of background when it comes to mobile commerce and we dive into that. So let's welcome Jesse to the show.

Hi Jess. How are you today? Hey, Claus. 

Jesse Pujji: Good. Thanks for having me on. 

Claus Lauter: You're welcome. mobile Commerce, obviously everything has shifted in the last couple of years to mobile, very few people using actually desktop. Tell me a little bit about your experience about this shift. What happened in e-commerce and how it got where it is nowadays?

Jesse Pujji: I started Ampush in 2010 we were running Facebook ads when they were really desktop. They were desktop product. And then some people who are old enough may remember when Facebook didn't even have a mobile app.

They thought HTML five was gonna win. And then Zuckerberg woke up one day and said, you know what? No, we need to build a mobile app or a mobile first. Company they became one of the largest mobile apps overnight, , and then started putting ads in the newsfeed and driving mobile app downloads for people.

That was all back in 2012, 2013. So that was this first shift to mobile. And one of the things at Kahani , we spent a lot of time talking about is the shift. They used to be newsfeed based tech space. You have the burger in the top left, and if you look at most of the mobile experiences on TikTok, Instagram, snap today.

They're these beautiful images and videos. You're tapping, you're swiping, you're not really scrolling through a feed anymore and you're not really reading a lot. You're watching a lot. They're very rich experiences and yet e-commerce sites and the e-commerce experience really has not evolved.

, much beyond that they kind of look like they did 10 years ago. And so that was a big reason for wanting to build the kahani business. And where we see the opportunity is we think that mobile commerce in 3, 4, 5 years, however long it takes us to grow our business, is gonna look and feel a lot more like TikTok and Instagram feel today.

That's where all this , came from as I wanted to start my next venture. 

Claus Lauter: Makes perfect sense. I'm glad to hear that you're a dinosaur. That makes two of us because I'm also very long in that game when it comes to advertising, Facebook ads, , it seems that they're not up to speed for actually what the user behavior is nowadays, and we as humans, we could not through stories.

And I think you found a way to, get , the message of Shopify merchants in a more immersive way, in a more storytelling way out there. Lemme know a little bit about that. How does that work? 

Jesse Pujji: So we've built an app, it's a couple lines of code, takes a couple hours to get installed and styled on a on an e-com site.

And then we have a very powerful CMS that can take the best of the brand's content, whether it's from Instagram, whether it's product shots, whether it's influencer videos, and basically repurpose them it's somewhat of an obvious idea. It's not that hey, we're all used to seeing those circles at the top of the screen.

We can tap on them and then we get that immersive video and picture experience that we're used to. So What I loved about it is, while we think the whole experience is gonna transform. It was a really clever way for us to say, well, you don't have to change your site much.

All you have to do is put this in the header and you can now give that same rich experience to your customers. And guess what? They're used to that experience. It's the highest engagement thing on any page that we put it on. And if you have great content underneath it, it drives up conversion, and a o v.

And we've seen that happen across a lot of folks and a lot of the brands who are using it. The number one struggle they're having is they go, I have all this content and it lives on someone else's platform. I wish it could live on my own site and my own assets. And this is the tool that makes it really easy to do those 

Claus Lauter: things.

Yeah, I've checked it out on your website. It's actually impressive on how you, it works to really get the mobile feeling within a desktop, , site You said that a lot of customers who use that saw immediately some results coming through the door. What kind of content did they have and what kind of content did they, , recycle or reuse, within your app?

Jesse Pujji: it was the best of their influencer content. Either explaining what the product was, explaining why they bought it, showing some of that social proof. It was something along those lines where, There was a very clear, description of the product and easy to use and easy to understand.

And so , that's typically been where people have pulled other content , and shown it. And then people see those circles at the top. They tap on them, they go into that full screen experience. , they watch a video of someone explaining the product or gushing about it, and, and they, they converted a higher rate.

And so that's the user flow from a conversion standpoint. And it's validating our perspective that. That way , of shopping is gonna just become more and more common. 

Claus Lauter: Is that because also people have a very short attention span. They're used to consume content on a very, very high rate.

Does that play into this whole thing? 

Jesse Pujji: have some innovative new formats we're putting together, but the reality it is, we are all used to certain formats on mobile. And so why not start with those and then just bring them into the shopping and commerce experience?

That's how we think about it. 

Claus Lauter: Yeah. Tell me a little bit , about the results that your clients had with kahani. 

Jesse Pujji: What we've seen , is a 10 X ROI in terms of what we charge for the software. The way we calculate that and think about it is we'll look at, what percentage of the traffic engages.

And typically that'll be, 15 to 25% of your traffic actually sees the circles and then engage, like actually taps on them. And then once somebody taps, all the metrics seem to be really compelling. , we'll typically see conversion, by 50%. We'll typically see time on site, double, , and oftentimes depending on the product, we'll see, the merchant will see average order value go up by 25 to 50%.

We'll actually look at the math is we'll say, what was the lift that was created when somebody engages, let's see how many people act multiplied by the number of people who actually engaged. And that's how we think about revenue lift for the product

and then, , we'll have some customers who have run ab tests , and we show real lift on an AB basis, again, tied to those two metrics of amount of engagement and lift when someone engages. 

Claus Lauter: From a, , user experience background, how do you connect the content that you have for the content marketing that you have used on other platforms?

How do you connect that to a product on your store? 

Jesse Pujji: Yeah, that's a great question. So that, is something that we're building as we speak, and what we've done, , to create it is , we can plug in from your Shopify, grab all the product data, what's the best sellers we can get, what are the recommended parts of it.

Then we can pull all your content from either a Google Drive or Instagram or whatever. And then in the process of creating the Khans, we'll prompt you and say, well, which product is it? Looks like it might be this product. And you'll say, oh, yeah, that's the product that it is, and you'll go from there, so on and so forth.

It's something we haven't shipped yet as a feature, but , that's actually one of the big challenges brands we're having is connecting that video to the products. And so we're trying to figure out, what that looks like. 

Claus Lauter: Okay. You said, , you call them Khans.

I like that. So obviously age groups play , a big role in there. A older folk like me, 50, 60 or older, might not be used to consume content in a way that younger people do. How do you split that in your AB testing or in your overall marketing strategy? 

Jesse Pujji: That's one of the biggest, misconceptions.

The largest target users of Instagram are, 35 to 50 year old women. And the fastest growing TikTok user group is 60 plus. It's the least that are on there, obviously, but it's the fastest growing group. We have not seen any meaningful correlation where, some group , that has a different kind of target demo.

Doesn't tap on the stories or does, and I think that's a question a lot of people ask, but I think people at this point are, pretty well trained for it. So we haven't seen any evidence that your target demo's age impacts the usage rate of Kahan. , we've seen some examples , or where depending on the nature of the product, , it's either more or less engaged with, so like I'd say, we've seen somewhere, hey, they don't have that many skews.

And you can see it on the homepage and get it in a second. In that case, people aren't gonna go tap on the stories. They don't wanna learn more. And the flip of that is either a really hard to understand product that they wanna learn more or they have lots of skews and they want to use it to understand and get more discovery.

We haven't seen age as a meaningful factor yet. 

Claus Lauter: Is the content type the way you present your content a big part to make it successful? And if yes, what kind of content would you recommend to push the most? 

Jesse Pujji: One thing again is you have that, , Common user pattern where they look at the top of the screen, they see circles and they tap on that.

So one thing we spend a lot of time on is the thumbnails. Make sure that, those thumbnails are engaging a zoomed in picture of someone's face. We have gifs in the thumbnails, so you can have motion happening in the thumbnails. , cuz you wanna have people to engage first , once somebody taps on that, , we think of it as like, Either have really great photo images of the products or have really, , great u g c videos and explainer videos inside of the kahan.

And One of the first things we'll ask a brand when they want to install it is we say, what's the one thing that somebody in your user journey finds out that makes them buy the product? So we have an example. Customer Halle Hair, they knew that everyone was landing on a PDP and then they wouldn't know what the product would look like on their hair.

Because your hair is a different color than my hair is. And so whether, well, you may have a purple dye or whatever it was I don't know what it's gonna look like, a mine versus yours. So they used kahani to create a series of image stories that said like before and after as well.

Oh, this is a brown person's hair now tap. Okay. That's what the product looks like on their hair. Oh. This is a blonde person. This is a red redhead. And they saw a conversion lift at 14% using kahan by. , being able to , show essentially how the product worked, , on different hair colors or address the customer concern that comes up in the buying journey.

Claus Lauter: I like to get a sample because it shows you that when you think out of the box, it immediately can give you an uplift , on conversions there. When it , comes to the implementation of Kahani into your business, into your store? How does that work? 

Jesse Pujji: The tech side of it is pretty easy.

You drop a lines of code onto, the tops, basically the header part of Shopify. , Wherever you want it to show up. , we have a pretty powerful system for assigning rules against where and when it shows up to new customers, old customers. And then the biggest lift is to actually build a story.

So getting the content in is easy, but then you have to decide, in what order do I wanna show them? You actually have to storyboard, right? I've never seen it take more than two weeks. about a week where someone's sitting there, okay, the first story's gonna be my best sellers.

Then I'm gonna say my new products. Then I'm gonna say, my hero product. Then I'm gonna say, trending on TikTok, and now I need to fill in the content for them. We started to templatize it more and have more automation built into it. 

Claus Lauter: From the customers who is , the perfect person on the other side to work with Kahani.

Jesse Pujji: Yeah, that's a great question. It's something , we didn't know six months ago. We've found so far it's typically , the social content person they've been wanting to find ways to take their content , to more and more places. And they want to get more on the site.

They wanna be able to affect the site, , and they've become really the champion who's in the product every day, who's changing up the videos, who's finds a new opportunity and to put it on. so that's where we've seen the most 

Claus Lauter: from. Okay. You said implementation about two weeks.

Once you have your first stories and everything what learning curve does this content manager need to go through to make it work? 

Jesse Pujji: It's a pretty wizzy wig type manager. You upload it, you can create the content after the first couple weeks of running, , there'll be data.

We'll see how many people engage, which stories we have all chapter and story level data from an analytics perspective. And so they'll look at what's working, what's not. And so I think there is a little bit of iteration in the first couple weeks, say the first couple of months actually, to figure out what content's working and which one they should be featured.

But then after that it becomes kind of part of the way they run their site. And the merchandising. 

Claus Lauter: I like , the way that you can present now or that you increase , your shopping experience on your site. , what people are used to be on other apps. What's the pricing structure?

Jesse Pujji: 

the most important thing is, we wanna make sure the product is driving roi. We wanna make sure it, for every dollar you give us, you're getting 10 out for your store. And so we have a pretty strong guarantee around that r o roi, meaning we're gonna make sure we work with you until you're seeing that lift.

And then we charge in a pretty simple kind of sessions based model. It's $250 for the first 25,000 sessions, and it's a hundred dollars for every incremental 25,000 sessions. And so if you're getting a million sessions a month, you could expect to pay around $4,000 a month for it, but we would be guaranteeing you $40,000 of incremental revenue lift.

if you're getting half a million, it's probably around $2,000 and so on and so forth. 

Claus Lauter: Talking about the future of e-commerce, , I wanna touch on a topic that is around, since November very, very big out, there's artificial intelligence, open AI chat, p t a lot of marketers out there are using, it includes me.

What's your opinion on how will that influence content creation, storytelling and all of these things? 

Jesse Pujji: My perspective on it, having used it a fair bit, we've been using it throughout the companies. Is, I think what's gonna end up happening is it's gonna lead to a much higher quality final product because it makes the early parts of getting a draft going, whether it's written or whether it's pictures easier.

So the ability to visualize what it's gonna look like with 20 different backgrounds, that might have been a ticket that would've taken a designer an hour or two. So really a cycle would take half a day. Now it takes you a second and you're gonna go, oh, it looks really good on the orange with the flowers in the back.

Okay, now I wanna make a better version of that. So, it'll get good enough. I don't know if it's over two years or 10 years to the point where you just walk in the room and you say, please make me this, and then it's beautifully done. Same thing with writing, right?

We've been playing around with writing, as a way to get the first draft out and get ideas, , it's an incredibly powerful tool and I think that's gonna lead to much higher output ultimately. Okay. Yeah, 

Claus Lauter: we're on the same page. I think it's just increases your productivity and shortens the time that you need to work on certain tasks as a marketer.

Cool. Jesse, where can people find more about, , Kahani? 

Jesse Pujji: , follow me on Twitter. It's JS Pui. I have 170,000 followers, and, I talk a lot about entrepreneurship and digital marketing, growth, customer acquisition, and e-commerce. Kahani Is our website. And you can always just shoot me an email, , jesse kahan we're really in the mode of trying to find a bunch of merchant partners to work on Kahani with, but also we're building a lot of new features and product and we want really, , engaged merchants , who are excited to build with us.

Claus Lauter: Cool. Excellent. I will put the links in the show notes as always. Then you just one click away. Jesse, thanks so much for giving us an of Kahani. I think it's a very interesting app that you have created there and I hope a lot of people will try it out. Thanks so much. Great to see you.