Under The Hood: Jack from Duradry
Interview With Jack Benzaquen, the founder of Duradry.
It’s never gonna be super linear. Our growth path looks more like a staircase. We find something that works, scale that, plateau, and then work towards finding the next thing that works.
What have been some big “staircase” wins?
It’s not been the media buying, not the creative, nor the copywriting specifically. It’s been our in-site funnel - which is about taking a customer from cold to hot in the least amount of time possible, from the ad click to the purchase. It’s the full view of the journey.
Secondly I would say after iOS 14.5, we’ve had to think about acquisition in a more holistic way. It's very difficult to track conversions these days, unless the path to purchase is very straight-forward. So I’ve shifted our approach to “lift tests” in different channels. Meaning we spend on one channel while keeping the rest stable to keep the data as clean as possible & track performance on individual channels.
I know you’re spending on TV. What’s that like? Any learnings?
The important thing here is to find an attribution partner to help you understand this data. We’re using Rockerbox and the data we get back is way more realistic & conservative than what the actual ad platforms report, meaning the results aren’t as magical as advertised.
Tell me more about CTV though - how does one go about scaling that channel?
You have two ways to advertise on TV. CTV and linear TV.
Connected TV is mostly streaming. There are a number of channels to choose from - one of the big ones being Hulu. And then you have linear TV which is cable / regular TV.
To structure a media buy on CTV, one option is to go directly to Hulu and they'll ask you for a minimum spend. Another option is to use a media buyer like “Tatari”, “MNTN” or “Keynes Digital”. I do recommend a media buyer because the targeting is quite different from Facebook / IG and other paid social platforms and you need someone with experience.
Last question on CTV: Does it work for you?
We’re still in testing mode now. The numbers look decent, now we gotta see how much we can push the channel from a spend standpoint, without degrading performance.
Let’s talk retention. Any key wins?
Number one is honestly making sure you have a great product, otherwise - no one will repeat.
We’ve also gotten savvier with emails, loyalty programs and SMS. Plus, we’re leveraging Repeat.io which is a tool that sends smart segments of our customers an SMS to re-order, taking them straight to checkout. That’s been useful too.
Any CRO wins?
We're constantly making changes to the site. Reducing the time for a customer to understand that our solution is the best fit for them. Today, we’re using our homepage as a landing page which works wonders. We’ve added a bunch of social proof which helps too.
And a fun recent win has been adding badges on our checkout page. “100% refund guaranteed”, “Fast Shipping”, “Protected shipment” - that’s increased our checkout page conversion rate by 10%.
Now let’s chat about your operations. Any improvements you've made over the years?
We were working with a mom & pop 3PL. They were great, but they were getting behind on orders and it became a bit of a mess. So we switched to a dedicated fulfillment facility for e-commerce companies called Shiphero.
Second thing is that I think we're moving into a world where brands have to fulfill from multiple facilities, with the objective to offer 2-day shipping just like Amazon does. So that’s something I’d like to explore.
What about financing? Any insights on that?
I have met with all of the non-dilutive financing firms. There are so many, it's kind of tricky to know where to go, but I’ll say this:
It can be a good option for you - but PLEASE take some time to understand the math. Don’t take what they say at face value, because the numbers don’t usually work out how you intended them to. Their terms can be very predatory.
A tip is to check out this loan calculator by Finaloop which lets you enter the name of the partner and the terms they’ve presented you with, and you can calculate the actual cost from the loan from there.
Do your own research, but Wayflyer seems to have some of the best terms because they can cap your daily payments. Amazon’s got a good offer too, and Marcus by Goldman Sachs also had an interesting offer. And checkout Parker too which is a credit card with 60 day credit.
Let’s talk about your stack: What are some of the tools that you're using?
I’m super excited about Toki who’s in the Web3 space. I know we’re at the tipping point of what’s about to come with Web3 in eCommerce and I want to be ahead of the game - so we’re working on leveraging their tech now.
Next is Videowise - a killer app that I believe will be picked up by many stores. They allow you to display videos on your website, almost like Tik Toks. The videos load super fast, you can add products to them for people to buy directly from viewing them; you can turn them into video testimonials etc. The app’s great for educating consumers & increasing conversions.
Another one is Postpilot. They allow you to send hand-written postcards to your customers with coupons, product announcements - whatever you want. It integrates with Shopify so you can create audience segments such as “customers who haven’t purchased in the last 30 days”.
For analytics, we're using SourceMedium, it’s a super advanced suite of analytics for data geeks.
And finally, we started using Fondue. They replace all of your discount offers with cashback incentives. A really clever model because a lot of merchants give away way too much in % off discounts when those could easily be cashback offers that customers may or may not redeem, and when they do redeem them - they can be redeemed in the form of store credits.
Last question: What would you attribute your success to on Duradry?
Persistence. Every day, working on the product, working on the site, working on the conversion rate, working on the creative… Persistence, persistence, persistence.
Jack - Such a pleasure to meet you. Thank you for your wisdom. Cheering you and Duradry on!