Do Something You Love Meeting EKM, a UK eCommerce story.
28th April 2022
One of the integrations we have always supported at StoreFeeder is EKM. eCommerce is dominated by the US giants eBay, Amazon, and the rest. So, when a company from the North of England created a simple to use eCommerce platform with roots and values similar to ours, we knew that supporting them was a no brainer.
Recently we had the pleasure of meeting the EKM team at their rather splendid offices in Preston, Lancashire. We thought that it was time that we got a handle on the EKM story first-hand. This week’s blog is all about EKM.
Founded by Antony Chesworth in 2002, EKM became the UK’s first eCommerce platform. Designed through necessity like all the best inventions. Anthony was fed up with figuring out how to set up eCommerce stores and was hampered by how complicated they were. So, he built his own.
Antony’s benchmark for EKM’s user experience was brilliantly unique and one we could all learn from. If his mum could use it, it was good enough to go to market. That simple standard has held EKM in good stead. As well as being the first UK eCommerce platform, they are still the UK’s largest eCommerce platform.
We spoke to Channel Partner Manager Mark Gilbertson and asked him, asides from the user-friendly experience, what else sets EKM apart? Mark explained that EKM has a series of core values that they carry throughout the business. Values that it is essential that the EKM team sign up to. These affect every decision throughout the company, and as far as Mark is concerned, they have helped the business to evolve both for and with their customers.
The first is: Do Something You Love. That is a compelling but straightforward request. The management team at EKM understand that people who love what they do, deliver quality. That is great for both the business and the customers.
Then there is RISE:
When exploring any EKM platform endeavour, the team is asked to consult RISE. What is RISE? Well, let’s break it down:
R – Do the Right thing. When making decisions about the platform or policy, the team are asked, is it the right thing? Right for the groups within EKM? Is it right for EKM’s customers? Is it right for partners and affiliates? If the answer is no, it falls at the first hurdle.
I – Make an impact! Mark tells us that EKM has to be a ‘WOW’ product. If changes, ideas, or innovations do not add to the overall wow factor of EKM, then sorry, next! The eCommerce market is all about innovation, but there’s no need to over-egg the pudding. EKM is a great user experience because it is simple, giving the platform a lot of wow. This doesn’t just cover the platform, though. EKM wants the impact to span across everything they put out, including their service. EKM has a lot of interactions with its customers, and this philosophy ensures that those interactions positively impact the EKM platform users.
S – As stated above – S stands for Simple. Please keep it simple; remember all the original innovations go through Anthony’s Mum. Nowadays, however, EKM hosts feedback Thursdays. These are focused meetings with EKM users where new they listen to what the users feel is working and what isn’t, and they get to show users innovations and features to get feedback before they are launched. This also helps to stick with the overall philosophy of simplicity.
Simplicity will always win the day. A McDonald’s Restaurant on the moon is very clever, but who will use it? Keep it simple.
E – Keep Evolving. eCommerce never sleeps; it is an ever-evolving tech that rises fast to the challenge of the online marketplace. Especially when we have things like pandemics. The philosophy here is that every day should be better than the last. Every update should improve and evolve the platform – if one of the elements of RISE is not met, it’s back to the drawing board. Mark believes that this keeps EKM focused on its customers, innovation, and their core values.
From the very beginning, Antony had to evolve. He built the platform, but then he had to sell it, evolving his skill set to include sales. So much so that he signed the first 100 EKM users himself.
Touring EKM HQ, you can see that RISE isn’t just a jingle or strapline. It’s reproduced throughout the building, and you can see it in practice through the working areas.
Speaking of the office, they have a slide from the third floor to the ground floor. It’s fun; we can’t deny that. They have social spaces and a gym. There is an atmosphere of creativity throughout the building, and we got a vibe of people who really do, do what they love.
StoreFeeder integrates with EKM, enabling EKM users to integrate their stores with Amazon, eBay, Not on the Highstreet, Etsy, and a vast array of couriers and payment gateways. We have always been keen to support this platform, and we’ll continue to do so. Our values are aligned, and the similarities between our two companies amazed and delighted us in equal measure.
If you want to learn more about EKM, please click here.
If you want to know more about StoreFeeder, contact us here.
Thanks for reading our blog – there will be another next week.