Basics Brands

An ecommerce solution and marketing support for a fun pet brand.

A pet food revolution for the tailed and discerning eater.

Basics Brands approached us to help with launching their brand site and shoring up their ecommerce web design. Specifically, Basics needed  a high level of woocommerce customization and configuration to achieve their goals.

They wanted a  streamlined checkout experience, and to create an overall strategy for the digital presence and email marketing to facilitate online sales.

Client: Basics Brands
Services: Woocommerce, design, email marketing

Taming Woocommerce

Woocommerce, the most common ecommerce software for online shops running WordPress, is a bit of a beast out of the box. Many features that we take for granted when we shop online are not built into Woocommerce.

As a result, it needs a high level of customization (and a number of complimentary plugins) in order to begin to look and operate like best practice ecommerce sites, and to employ shopping psychology in an effective way.


Basics Brands had some really fun illustrations and elements to work with in putting together the first iteration of their site, as well as a strong brand identity. We used these elements playfully and liberally as we constructed the first draft of the site.

Email campaigns and Business Automation

The backbone of successful modern ecommerce is email automations and email campaigns to nurture potential customers through incentives, foster loyalty and relationships, and bring existing customers back to the store to shop for more. We wrote and designed Basics’ incentives, purchases, and restock emails to delight customers and keep them coming back.

Transitioning to Shopify

When WordPress released Woocommerce 3.0, it lead to a small crisis for the Basics Brands site: namely, that the upgrade broke some of the other Woocommerce plugins that the site depended on to process the entire Woo purchase transaction. Over the course of a weekend, the team at Basics fielded a number of messages from frustrated customers who couldn’t check out.

This prompted the head dog at Basics, Gracie, to urge her humans to think about transitioning the entire shop’s transaction system to Shopify and off of the Woocommerce for the compelling reason that others have made the same decision: because Shopify’s underlying code is proprietary, if it breaks, they have to fix it – and they have support on call 24 hours a day to handle any situations that arise. And when they fix things in their code, it rarely breaks site functionality.

We worked with Basics then over the course of 6 weeks to translate their existing Woocommerce-based website code to the Shopify platform and templating language, liquid. Such a transition comes with caveats. Shopify doesn’t support multiple forms or much beyond simple text form submission out of the box – making it not a good match for people looking to integrate form information with Customer Relationship Management systems or really any other third party software. Likewise their integrations with email providers leave much to be desired. Shopify as a solution works best for businesses without the need for many advanced features or who are hoping to execute more complicated  modern ecommerce marketing strategies from their site.

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