Knock out the Competition with our Build a Business Bootcamp (Plus: 8 Shops to Beat)

Shopify Build a Business Bootcamp

Ready, set, go!

We’ve pushed past the halfway mark, racing towards the finish line in this year’s Build a Business Competition. But there’s still time to join. And even win.

Each year, we challenge budding entrepreneurs to take the plunge and start a new business. The strongest of the competitors – those who sell the most in any two-month period – win spectacular prizes, mentorships, and of course, serious bragging rights. This year, Build a Business VI winners will take part in the Entrepreneurial Experience of a Lifetime, including a week at the famed Great Gatsby Mansion where they'll rub elbows with the likes of Tony Robbins and Russell Simmons.

We know: starting a business is already hard work without the added element of competition. Like any olympic feat, though, success depends on training.

Whether you’ve been flexing your entrepreneur muscle since the launch of the competition, or you’re just starting out, we’re here to help. Beginning today, we’re hosting a free 30-Day Build a Business Bootcamp

    JOIN NOW: Start a free Shopify trial by signing up for the Build a Business competition, then request access to the Bootcamp. 

    This exclusive Facebook Group will offer:

      • Early access to mentors like Marie Forleo and Tim Ferriss
      • Daily tips to keep you pumped up
      • Engaging Q&As with past winners like MVMT Watches
      • Idea-sharing with a thriving community of entrepreneurs 

    We’re getting right into the grind (you didn’t think we’d take it easy on you, did you?) with a live video Q&A with Daymond John, today at 2PM EST.

    Daymond John Q&A

    And who are these competitors to beat, anyway? While we’re not giving away any spoilers, we’ve definitely spotted a few noteworthy contenders vying for the top prize. These early frontrunners caught our eye with innovative products, beautiful site design, and creative marketing strategies.

    Get inspired by these 8 Shopify merchants punching above their weight class:

    1. Masala Pop

    MVP (Most Valuable Product): Gourmet popcorn infused with Indian flavours. The convenient PIY (pop it yourself) format is perfect storing size for popcorn emergencies.

    Power Play: Masala Pop leverages the power of their about page to connect customers with the people behind the brand.

    Masala Pop Indian Popcorn

    2. Covry Sunwear

    MVP: Sunnies with “Elevated Fit” for those with low nose bridges and high cheekbones. Longer nose pads and reduced frame curvature prevent annoying slipping.

    Power Play: Covry’s Instagram game is strong – they’ve curated their feed using user-generated content, crowdsourced from their happy (and influential) customers.

    Covry Instagram

    3. Frostbeard Studio

    MVP: Soy candles for booklovers with cheeky names like “Sexy Librarian”. Back-to-school-inspired “Bookworm” promises notes of apple, newsprint and crayon.

    Power Play: Frostbeard’s product photography caught our eye – clean, crisp products on white backgrounds pop on collection pages.

    Frostbeard Studio Candles for Booklovers

    4. Canvas & Willow

    MVP: A massive catalog of play tents and teepees for kids.

    Power Play: We love their use of blog content to tell a story about their product and inspire and educate customers.

    Canvas & Willow Blog

    5. Burly Stone Soap Co.

    MVP: Clean stuff for dudes.

    Power Play: The guys (and dogs) behind Burly Stone win with product descriptions that sell. They use this valuable real estate to tell a story about their products and the people who use them. It isn’t just soap, “it's like being outside on a snowy day and smelling a fire burning inside.”

    Burly Stone Soap Co.

    6. Hidrate Spark

    MVP: A water bottle and iOS App combo that makes sure you’re staying hydrated.

    Power Play: This smart product idea solves a customer pain point: it remembers the need for 8 glasses a day, even if you don’t.

    Hidrate Spark

    7. Purrly Cat

    MVP: Recycled (and recyclable) litter boxes that give back to rescue cats.

    Power Play: Purrly understands the value of social proof, prominently featuring customer reviews on their home page.

    Purrly Cat

    8. Lolli & Pops

    MVP: Delicious truffles in pretty, gift-worthy packaging.

    Power Play: The merchants behind Lolli & Pops use beautiful lifestyle photography that doubles as sharable content for Instagram and Pinterest.

    Lolli & Pops

    Thousands of new merchants like these are already competing for Build a Business glory. Get in the game by registering your business idea and joining our 30-Day Bootcamp!

    “Life's not about how hard of a hit you can give. It's about how many you can take, and still keep moving forward.” ― Rocky Balboa

    shopify-author Dayna WinterAbout the Author

    Dayna Winter is Shopify's Social Media Lead. She follows more dogs than humans on Instagram and isn't a real redhead.