Why Polar Analytics was born?
In this post, you'll discover how consumer brands moved from Marketplaces to the need for Independence. What is the issue with current BI tools, and why do they need help to scale? We will talk our Mission, Vision, and what's next ;)
Indie brands are the future
From marketplaces to independence
A marketplace was required to sell online from the 1990s through the early 2000s. The first online marketplace, Book Stacks Unlimited, was launched in 1992, followed by Amazon three years later. Alibaba debuted in 1999. The usual business model was for brands to pay around 15% fees to the marketplace in exchange for distribution and web presence.
They had no other options since establishing a store, receiving payments, and finding consumers online was very difficult at the time. But the world changed in the last 10 years. Shopify was founded in 2009, allowing anyone to open a store online. Then Facebook Ads debuted in 2011, turning distribution into a commodity and making it possible for anyone to locate consumers online. In 2011, Stripe made it simple to collect payments.
This is a major shift. Consumer brands can now opt to forego the 15% fees they used to pay to marketplaces and instead invest in technology partners, which offers them complete control over their customer experience and independence.
And this trend is accelerating! In 2020 the market share of Amazon declined vs. the Independent Alliance for the first time!
While supporting independent businesses is inspiring, it's also beneficial to society.
A virtuous cycle for consumers and society
A new form of consumer brand has emerged in the last decade: Digital Native Vertical Brands. By cutting middlemen in all areas of their business, from the factory to consumer, they are able to keep costs down, while providing high-quality products. (If you have doubts, take a look at this 350€ handmade textured leather bag from Polène).
So while Brands become independent, customers can benefit from more affordable products with higher quality. And society as a whole benefits from a more decentralized tissue of brands rather than a couple of big giants. And by controlling the materials, they are able to provide more local and environmentally friendly products, as shown with the B Corp certification received by Allbirds.
The "Actionable Insights" pain
From the first sale to a successful brand
While Shopify, Stripe, or Facebook Ads have reduced the barrier to entry. It is still difficult to scale an independent brand.
As a result, several new technological partners have emerged for an ecosystem that has matured, enabling these brands to evolve from the first online sale to a multi-million dollar success. Klaviyo helps with email marketing, Gorgias provides advanced Customer Helpdesk, and Yotpo provides advanced Marketing tools. But they are still flying blind when it comes to Data.
The problem with current tooling
According to a Gartner Study, analytics team spend more time wrangling data than building insights. And that's even more true for DTC brands that have very limited to no analytics teams. Manually pulling data rather than focusing on analyses (1 day per week) is wasting their time and flying blind. E-commerce managers are frequently overworked.
Following the introduction of Redshift in 2012, the initial genesis of the modern data stack began. At the time, firms were moving to the Cloud and the market for cloud-based data tools, was so small that players had no other options but to create narrow horizontal solutions that served all kind of businesses (as long as they stored their data in the cloud). Tools like Looker, Data Studio, Super Metrics or Metabase emerged during this time.
While this first wave helped with adoption, building a modern data stack for an e-commerce brand comes as a result with stitching together technical and expensive tools. And for the ones that do it, it becomes hard to maintain and still doesn't do a great job at empowering business users to save time making the right decisions for, who often prefer a good old spreadsheet.
But by now, these products are ready to act as a foundation on which successive innovations can be built.
Empower consumer brands to compete with retail giants - through data
Polar Analytics is a Full-Stack Business Intelligence Solution for Consumer Brands. A powerful, yet simple solution for business users to get the insights they need to succeed and make the right decisions.
Let's take a look at Full-stack and its three core blocks:
- Connectors (connect all their tools with one click ELTs)
- Analytics (self-service data exploration with a reports template library, as well as no-code custom analyses)
- Activations: Powerful features and algorithms that may be used to achieve their goals
Providing essential services: Monitoring, analyzing, sharing, and improving KPIs.
All of this is made possible because we concentrate on the commerce vertical and develop for platforms like Shopify.
We partnered with over 100+ brands in over 10 countries in less than 12 months, collecting a 5/5 average customer rating on the Shopify app store.
We want to build the #1 winning solution in the market and support 100,000 merchants by 2030.
We're looking for talented Software Engineers, Brand Marketers, and E-commerce Experts who are eager to work on a team with a culture that is built around Ownership, Egolessness, and Growth. We hope you enjoyed reading this post; if so, there's so much more to discover and learn on this journey!