Every year, tens of thousands of art lovers flock to Miami to visit Art Basel Miami Beach. In 2022, the popular brand Doodles made a splash by bringing DoodlePutt—an immersive tokengated experience featuring a mini-golf course, exclusive merch, and NFT prizes—to life.
To support its activation, Doodles needed flexible, easy-to-use point of sale (POS) technology that could support selling products at its merch store, managing DoodlePutt tee times, as well as checking-in NFT holders and non-NFT holders.
Tokengated commerce is a growing use case that most technology partners aren’t experienced supporting. Rather than work with multiple vendors, Doodles found the flexibility they needed with Shopify’s suite of handheld POS solutions: POS Go and Tap to Pay on iPhone.
Equipped with Shopify POS, Doodles was able to:
- Bring its tokengated Doodle Putt experience to life with a seamless check-in process
- Keep checkout moving fast while beating attendance estimates by over 75%
- Transact all day at the merch store, without queues or disconnecting Bluetooth card readers
Challenge: Supporting multiple use-cases with one POS
The Doodles brand includes a collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) represented by colorful characters created by artist Burnt Toast. An NFT is “a unique digital asset that you can own and is provable via blockchain technology,” explains Mackenzie Keast, Doodles’ Head of Live Experience.
In-person experiences are an important way for digitally native brands like Doodles to engage their communities. DoodlePutt at Art Basel Miami Beach was a way for Doodles to provide a “really exciting experience and environment for people to fully immerse themselves in the brand and have fun in a new way, integrating blockchain technology and digital asset ownership into that experience,” Mackenzie says.
Doodles wanted to offer an unforgettable mini-golf experience to both NFT holders and the general public. NFT holders could leverage ownership for exclusive perks (a strategy called “tokengating”) at the activation, like pre-registration for tee time. Walk-ins had to purchase and register for tee times at the event. With 2,000 people expected to attend over the two-day event, Doodles needed a fast and foolproof way to check in Doodles NFT holders and register walk-ins for DoodlePutt.
Doodles’ second challenge was ensuring a speedy, line-free checkout at its merch store. The brand was selling a new line of merchandise to the general public at Art Basel. Then, after the art show, only NFT holders would be able to purchase the products online.
We needed point-of-sale technology that was flexible enough to support both our mini golf experience and our merch store. It also had to support tokengated commerce to really help us bring value to our NFT holder community.
Solution: Flexible IRL experiences with Shopify POS
Doodles needed a flexible POS system that could handle mini-golf check-ins efficiently for NFT holders, quickly register walk-in golfers, and speed up merch store checkout. The brand found a solution with Shopify.
For mini-golf, Doodles chose to install the Shopify POS app on iPhones and use the fully integrated check-in app, Experiences. This helped staff both check in NFT holders and walk-ins who weren’t NFT holders with nothing but an iPhone.
“Our POS technology was critical because it had to recognize who’s a Doodles NFT holder, what benefits ownership unlocks, and making that process feel smooth,” Mackenzie says. “It also had to facilitate checking in and accepting payments from non-NFT holders. Shopify’s Tap to Pay on iPhone functionality was what helped us bridge those two use cases and do everything from one device. It felt very smooth and worked out great.”
At the merch store, Doodles used both a traditional cash wrap checkout and POS Go, Shopify’s all-in-one mobile POS terminal.
“Having a stationary cash wrap was great because it gave shoppers a fixed point of reference,” Mackenzie explains. “POS Go was a great solution because it enabled our staff to move around and react to crowd dynamics in real time. If we saw a group of customers, we could just approach them and serve them without ushering them to the cash wrap.”
Shopify has been such a robust partner. It enables us to run our ecommerce as well as these IRL experiences from the same back office. Everything is linked together, which offers us incredible efficiency as well as data for future decision-making.
Results: A seamless experience for NFT holders and walk-ins alike
With Shopify POS, Doodles brought its tokengating experience to life and ensured a seamless experience for NFT holders and non-NFT holders alike.
“The DoodlePutt check-in experience with Shopify POS was fantastic,” Mackenzie says. “We’ve never used a POS device to check in attendees for activations up until now. From an attendee experience perspective, it was by far our smoothest registration and check-in process to date.”
Attendees who didn’t own a Doodles NFT could quickly purchase a tee time for DoodlePutt from staff using Tap to Pay on iPhone for Shopify POS, check in without a wait, and have fun. “We were incredibly capacity-limited for the activation. We could only run about 45 people going through every hour,” Mackenzie says. “Shopify worked really well for us to sell those tee times, check the general public in, and allow them to experience the activation in a really efficient way.”
Equipped with POS Go, staff were able to transact all day at the merch store—no card readers or additional peripherals necessary. “It was so intuitive to get our merch store set up and transactional. We just signed in to our Shopify account and were off to the races,” Mackenzie says.
Shopify ensured our mini golf and merch store ran smoothly for NFT holders and walk-in attendees alike. It definitely exceeded expectations.
Looking ahead: More Doodles experiences in the real world
With the success of DoodlePutt at Art Basel Miami Beach, the Doodles brand is keen on producing more real-world activations in partnership with Shopify.
“IRL experiences are an incredibly important part of our brand,” Mackenzie says. “We’re just scratching the surface in terms of what that means. I think in 2023 you're going to see a whole host of new ideas, experiences, and opportunities for people to immerse themselves in the Doodles brand—not just digitally, but physically in the real world.”
“Shopify POS was so easy to set up and use, and it supports edge cases in the NFT space that other POS systems just can’t. We’re super excited about what IRL means for the brand exploring bigger, better, and more immersive activations in the future.”
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