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Ruggable goes headless and scales to 8 markets with Shopify

Ruggable brand image

Industry

Home Furnishing

Products

Shopify Plus, International sales tools, Shop Pay, Shop Pay Installments, Shop app

Use case

Headless, Growth and Scale, International Expansion, Augmented Reality and 3D

An interview with Daniel Graupensperger, director of product management at Ruggable, by Génesis Miranda Longo, head of consumer goods marketing at Shopify

We sat down with Daniel Graupensperger, who leads the marketing technology team at Ruggable as director of product management, to talk about Ruggable’s rapid growth journey. With a decade of experience in ecommerce and digital health, Daniel has been pivotal in the transformation and growth of Ruggable’s digital infrastructure, launching innovative, personalized customer experiences at scale and propelling global expansion into eight new international markets.

With Shopify, Ruggable has:

  • Expanded into new sales channels and eight international markets.
  • Reduced checkout from three pages to one.
  • Achieved exceptional Black Friday results with 100% uptime.
  • Greatly reduced new market launches to within a month.
  • Reduced testing and setting up a new store to a matter of days.
  • Improved site speed, stability, and SEO.

The following content is based on our interview with Daniel, presented in his own words. It has been edited for clarity and length.

About Ruggable: Stylish, durable, timeless

Ruggable created a two-piece machine washable system for area rugs, runners, bath mats and doormats—all designed to be durable and spill-proof. With a Ruggable rug, if you spill on it, you can peel it up, put it in your washer, and it comes out looking good as new.

Our founder, Jeneva Bell, created Ruggable out of frustration. One day, her dog had an accident on her rug, and she couldn’t wash it. With the single goal of offering premium style that still felt livable, she took matters into her own hands and started selling her products out of her car.

Since then, Ruggable has been gaining traction with customers. However, it was during the COVID-19 lockdown that people spent an increased amount of time at home or purchased new homes. This sudden shift in lifestyle sparked a strong desire to decorate and improve the space they lived in. Ruggable was right there to fill that need, resulting in tremendous growth.

Pushing the boundaries of ecommerce

At Ruggable, we are pushing the boundaries of what a rug actually is with our two-piece washable system, so it makes sense that our website pushes the boundaries of ecommerce as well.

At Ruggable, we are pushing the boundaries of what a rug actually is with our two-piece washable system, so it makes sense that our website pushes the boundaries of ecommerce as well.

Ruggable

When it comes to purchasing rugs, the customer journey is not an instant decision. It’s not even a one-day process. We find that customers may take up to 10 days to search, browse, and find the perfect rug. Some customers may even take longer, initially showing interest in a rug after clicking an ad on Facebook, only to forget about it until they see another ad on Instagram a month later, reminding them of their desire for a washable rug without knowing which one to choose.

That’s why we strive to maintain touchpoints with our customers over time, continuously bringing them back to our site until they find the ideal product that fits their needs. Our goal is to help them create a beautiful space in their homes.

Ruggable and Shopify: A partnership built on constant evolution, innovation, and reliability

We’ve enjoyed working with Shopify over the past several years. Shopify for us has grown as we’ve grown—they’ve really pushed the boundaries with tech. We’ve been thrilled to have a partner that supports speed at scale and is stable. A good example of this was Black Friday, when we had 100% uptime and we were thrilled.

On Black Friday, we had 100% uptime and we were thrilled.

Ruggable

Expanding reach and streamlining operations

Buying a rug isn’t a snap decision, so we want to make sure that we’re reaching customers on different devices, at different times of day, on different apps, and at different locations. On Shopify, we’ve been able to easily add apps, expand into new sales channels, and grow to new international markets.

We’ve been using Shopify to create custom apps that seamlessly integrate with our back end and streamline our operations. We’ve also been able to use third-party apps to fill in the gaps. Additionally, we have leveraged Shopify’s sales channels for Facebook and Google, enabling us to connect with customers across various marketplaces within one platform.

These marketplaces are a great way for us to reach our customers. Our focus has always been on meeting the customer where they are. As people use different social apps, browse on different devices, and visit different websites, we want to ensure that Ruggable is always top of mind. So when the time comes and a customer is ready to purchase a washable rug, Ruggable becomes the preferred choice, as they already know exactly which rug they want to buy.

Growing into new markets and geographies

In terms of international expansion, we’re up to eight total markets now. We’ve been able to get things down to launching a new market in under a month.

We’ve been able to get things down to launching a new market in under a month.

Ruggable

Because we’re able to start testing markets earlier, we’ve decreased the process of launching to within a matter of days, including translations and setting up a new Shopify store. We’ve been able to do this by maintaining a single code base and a composable approach to our website.

Easing launch stress with Shopify's international sales tools

So far, we’ve expanded to Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, France, Netherlands, Australia, and the US. Shopify's international sales tools have made it much easier for us to have currency conversion and easily update the product prices as we launch in a new market. We don’t have to worry about things like manual pricing or tracking the currency conversion over time. Shopify does it all for us.

We don't have to worry about things like manual pricing or tracking the currency conversion over time. Shopify does it all for us.

Ruggable

Adopting a composable approach to commerce

Our website is entirely powered by our CMS now. This has enabled us to keep pages, product pages, collections, the homepage—even navigation—all within our CMS.

If we need to create new content for a locale, it’s easy for us to create a new section within our CMS.

Boosting site speed and conversion with headless ecommerce

In 2023, we launched our headless website, partnered with Shopify’s checkout extensibility. We leverage Shopify’s APIs to make this happen. We’ve been thrilled at the reliability and site stability since launching, as well as the overall site speed. The site is so much faster for our customers, leading to conversion and SEO boosts. Google sees our website as being much faster now and is sending a lot more traffic to us, which is fantastic.

The site is so much faster for our customers, leading to conversion and SEO boosts. Google sees our website as being much faster now and is sending a lot more traffic to us, which is fantastic.

Ruggable

Improving the checkout experience

Rugs are not a small purchase. That’s why we aim to ensure our customers feel confident, knowing that we offer free shipping and hassle-free returns.

We strive to ensure checkout is as easy to use as possible, so we migrated to checkout extensibility and reduced our checkout from three pages to a single page, which not only makes the process much faster for the user but also allows all payment information to be visible for them and is painless to use.

Reaching new audiences with Shop Pay and collaborations

We use Shop Pay for all transactions on our site. Customers also have the option to split their purchase into regular payments with Shop Pay Installments. We particularly love that we can customize the Shop app to match our website checkout for consistent branding.

On Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2023, we ran a very exciting campaign using Shop Cash within the Shop app and saw positive results.

Additionally, we use loyalty apps to reward returning customers.

Collaborations are also a great way for us to reach new audiences and expand our collection. We’ve collaborated with major brands like Barbie and Disney. I personally like our Morris & Co. collection that’s brought the designs from 1800s England—we’ve really modernized it and brought it into a beautiful rug design.

Ruggable’s commitment to personalized experiences that respect customer privacy

For us, personalization means meeting the customer where they are. As we’ve grown and launched new collections and different product types, we want to make sure that what our customers are seeing is what actually matters to them and what they want in their homes.

Enhancing conversion rates with the Ruggable Rug Quiz

One of the key ways we personalize customer information is through a tool we call our Rug Quiz, where a potential customer selects the designs they like. We found that if we can get someone to take our Rug Quiz and answer all the questions, our conversion rate will be four times higher because the tool helps to select the right product to fit their style.

We found that if we can get someone to take our Rug Quiz and answer all the questions, our conversion rate will be four times higher because the tool helps to select the right product to fit their style.

Ruggable

We’re able to find the right rug for a potential customer simply by using the information they have willingly provided.

Using AI to empower Ruggable’s own tools

We view AI as a way to empower our own tools. For example, a customer could choose to upload an image, and AI can analyze the style of the room, the colors, and the furniture in the space—eliminating the time and effort needed for customers to describe the space themselves.

As we’ve tested different AI tools, we’re already very impressed with the results from the out-of-the-box functionality. This enables us to keep costs low while helping our customer narrow down choices for a rug that would be ideal for their space.

Harnessing AR, VR, and 3D for improved customer decision-making

Additionally, we use augmented reality to help customers visualize the rug within their own space. It does a fantastic job, even just with the native iOS and Android tools. Our customers can see the rug sitting beneath their couch and chairs. It’s fantastic.

We’re leveraging Shopify for this initiative. We upload the 3D files to Shopify as if it were a product image, and we’re able to render the 3D image on our product page and then launch an AR experience from there.

Innovating the future of rugs with Shopify

As someone with a technical background, I love that Tobi is still coding and that Shopify is really making a concerted effort to push the boundaries of headless ecommerce. We’re thrilled to partner with someone that is moving quickly and innovating like we are.

Shopify is really making a concerted effort to push the boundaries of headless ecommerce. We’re thrilled to partner with someone that is moving quickly and innovating like we are.

Ruggable

Dedicated support and collaborative roadmap

We’ve really enjoyed being able to have such dedicated support. If we need something, Shopify is always there for us—and that even includes the roadmap. We’ve been able to help make changes to the roadmap and advocate for things that we find most important. Shopify is right there to help make those changes for us.

Ease of use enables seamless development

I had no Shopify experience when I joined Ruggable, but I was able to learn quickly thanks to Shopify’s great resources and training. They were able to get me up to speed quickly so that I would be able to use the platform right away.

Specifically speaking with our developers, Shopify is very easy for them to use: great documentation, intuitive APIs. Shopify was not a concern for us when we started launching in new markets or when we launched our headless ecommerce site. We were able to do it in just a couple days and start placing test orders. We’re very happy that Shopify makes things a lot easier for us.

Using Shopify resources to maximize growth

At Ruggable, both on the product and tech side, we want our customers to elevate their space so they can live their life to the fullest in their home. On the tech side, we want to find new ways and push the boundaries so that they can find the right rug for their space and make it the best it can be.

In doing so, there’s a big difference between build versus buy. If you’re building it all yourselves, that’s going to slow things down. You’re limited by the resources that you have.

We’ve been able to partner with Shopify, and they’ve been able to do a lot of the building for us.

Shopify builds the features before we even need them, and we’ve been able to scale using their enterprise ecommerce. It’s been great for us.

Shopify builds the features before we even need them, and we’ve been able to scale using their enterprise ecommerce. It’s been great for us.

Ruggable

We look forward to continuing our partnership, leveraging Shopify to fuel Ruggable’s business growth and success.

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What business challenges are you dealing with? We can help. Get in touch