Over the past decade, eCommerce has become an indispensable part of the global retail framework. According to statistics, over 2 billion people prefer shopping online.
While brick-and-mortar stores are still making more sales compared to online sales, the adoption of eCommerce is still rising, mainly because of the increased speed and convenience of online shopping.
Therefore, starting an eCommerce platform could set you on the right path to building a futuristic business.
Here are some real life success stories of starting a ecommerce platform:
1. Secret ($216K/year)
Jean-Loup Karst (from Paris, Ile-de-France, France) started Secret over 4 years ago.
I am Jean-Loup Karst, the co-founder of Secret. Secret is the first platform of exclusive deals on services and software for startups. Entrepreneurs can sign up and save up to $50,000 on 70+ SaaS deals (Airtable, Pipedrive, Mailjet, etc.). It’s 100% free! It's a no-brainer.
When we launched our beta in April, our 100+ first users paid an annual subscription of $50 per year (roughly 1% conversion rate on our website). We generated $5K+ in revenue and decided to switch to a free model to grow user acquisition faster through network effects and monetize the database later through premium deals and affiliation with our partners.
2. StoreYa ($16.8M/year)
Eyal (from Tel Aviv-Yafo, Tel Aviv District, Israel) started StoreYa about 11 years ago.
Hi, my name is Eyal Reich and I'm StoreYa's co-founder and COO, along with Yariv Dror, the CEO (and my brother:) and Pasha Zaft, the CTO.
We launched StoreYa 7 years ago, with the idea of building a valid business, one with a strong business model behind it. As opposed to many startups that pursue their dream and don't think about how to make money in the early stages, we didn't want to be dependent on fundraising, we wanted to reach the profitability stage as soon as possible. We raised a seed round of ~$900K when we first started and for the past 3 years, we've been profitable, generating an average of $700K MRR.
Learn more about starting an ecommerce platform:
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4. DataCue ($36K/year)
Shahram Anver (from Singapore, Singapore) started DataCue almost 6 years ago.
Hi everyone! I'm Shahram Anver and I am the co-founder of DataCue. We help eCommerce entrepreneurs sell more and improve conversion with an easy-to-use personalization platform. Unlike other personalization and upsell solutions, we change the entire experience, meaning we show each visitor relevant banners, notifications, and product recommendations.
We make $3.5K in monthly revenue and have been growing at 40% m/m after the company was founded 18 months ago. We've raised $150K in equity-free grant so far. We invest everything back into the business. Our goal for 2020 is to be profitable so we are focusing on growth and marketing at the moment.
5. Really Simple Store ($1.2K/year)
Drew Thomas (from Austin, Texas, USA) started Really Simple Store over 4 years ago.
I’m Drew Thomas, and I made Really Simple Store. I’m still making it. Really Simple Store is the ecommerce platform for people who “simply have something to sell,” and it takes less than ten minutes from signup to live selling.
I launched to the public quietly in January 2019, but I got most of my signups from a Product Hunt launch in April. I’m currently generating less than $100 per month, but there’s a lot in the pipeline that I hope to capitalize on.
6. KOGLAND Commerce Pvt Ltd ($360K/year)
Mr. Varghese Samuel (from Kochi, Kerala, India) started KOGLAND Commerce Pvt Ltd over 7 years ago.
Hello there! My name is Varghese Samuel, and I am the CEO and Managing Director of KOGLAND Commerce Pvt Ltd.
We partner with the top and cutting-edge medical technology partners to enable the availability of high-quality medical supplies. With a vast & wide range of medical consumables and healthcare products listed on our website, KOGLAND today is one of India’s fastest-growing online surgical supply stores with a ten-fold increase in revenues, steady growth in online traffic, aggressive hiring, and scaling up plans.
7. Dropout SRL ($1.68M/year)
Kola Tytler (from Milano, Metropolitan City of Milan, Italy) started Dropout SRL about 5 years ago.
In the second part of the year, we will increase our focus in providing our vast traffic (over 500 thousand unique visitors have landed to dropoutmilano.com between December 2021 and February 2022) with dropout branded products to suit the taste of streetwear wearers.
8. Checkout Page ($26.4K/year)
Sander Visser (from ) started Checkout Page over 5 years ago.
Hey! My name is Sander and I’m the founder of Checkout Page, a checkout and payment software for independent businesses. I started the company 4 years ago as a side project to make it easier for people to accept payments online without code. I’m in the process of teaming up with a co-founder, Andy, to grow the Checkout Page past the side project stage.
Last year we processed over $1 million in transactions with $13k in annual revenue. People use our software to sell products and services on their site and with payment links via chat, social media and QR codes.
9. FriendsWith limited ($174K/year)
Paige & Daniel (from Auckland, New Zealand) started FriendsWith limited about 3 years ago.
We are Paige Patten & Dan Hubbard, a couple of duo from Auckland, New Zealand. Our business is a social commerce platform called FriendsWith designed for the modern-day consumer.
10. Launch Cart, Inc. ($600K/year)
Greg Writer (from ) started Launch Cart, Inc. about 4 years ago.
Hi, my name is Greg Writer. I'm the CEO and founder of Launch Cart - a new, faster, better, higher converting e-Commerce platform to compete in the e-Commerce space. This allows entrepreneurs, small business owners, and brands worldwide to build and sell online in their e-Commerce stores.
What's unique about us is that we also have a "Source and Sell Marketplace" that allows entrepreneurs to source products to sell on a drop-ship, affiliate marketing basis, what we call On-Demand, as well as offer a distribution channel for people who have products they want other people to sell.
11. Ultra Growth Marketing ($720K/year)
Matthew Larsen (from Calgary) started Ultra Growth Marketing almost 2 years ago.
Hi. My name is Matthew Larsen and I run Ultra Growth Marketing. My company is a hybrid between an eCommerce Marketing agency and a holding company that runs three separate eCommerce Brands. I also have an investment wing where I invest in eCommerce companies with high potential. My business model is a triple-threat.
Through this business model, I am earning over $60,000 per month in recurring revenue, with 100% of leads being captured using Facebook Ads. While most people advertise to a landing page, I have opted to use Lead Generation ads and have had great success doing so. Where it would cost me between $7 - 10 to get a download on a landing page, it costs me between $1.60 and $2.10 to get a download using Lead Generation forms, and the conversion rate from lead to a customer is the same (1.06%).
12. Gumroad ($4.2M/year)
Sahil Lavingia (@shl) and Justin Jackson (@mijustin) join Courtland (@csallen) and Channing (@ChanningAllen) for a special debate-style episode. It's four dudes talking about Elon Musk. What could go wrong?
Sahil Lavingia (from San Francisco, CA, USA) started Gumroad almost 13 years ago.
- Gumroad was started by Sahil Lavingia in 2011. This platform is used by writers, designers, game developers, musicians, artists, and filmmakers to monetize their works.
- The main purpose of Gumroad is to provide digital content creators with an incredibly straightforward e-commerce tool so they can profit from their creative efforts.
- The company is generating $350K in monthly revenue and assisting creators to earn over $5M/month.
- The Gumroad website has approximately 5.31M visitors per month.
- Lavingia asserts that he receives about 30% of the gross revenue.
Listen to the full podcast on indiehackers.com ➜
13. Custimy.io ($600K/year)
Kristoffer Degn (from Copenhagen, Danmark) started Custimy.io about 3 years ago.
While the first year was mostly spent on developing and optimizing the product, we have been in the market for about a year now. During this time, we raised the biggest pre-seed funding round in Denmark at that time, and are currently having 50K USD in monthly recurring revenue.
We naturally expect this to grow exponentially as our solution gets into more markets and more stores learn what they can do when they have easier access to high-quality data for their decision-making.
14. On Brand ($1.8K/year)
Brian McEuen (from Chicago, IL, USA) started On Brand over 3 years ago.
My name is Brian McEuen, and I'm the founder of On Brand. We help guys shop for clothes online by curating personalized selections as if they were walking into their very own store. We're like Spotify for clothes! Another way to put it: imagine those “Top 25 T-Shirts for this Summer” lists curated just for you down to the right size, fit, style, and color!
I currently have about 75 users and an annualized revenue run rate of $1800.
15. Maynuu ($36K/year)
Aaron D'Cruz (from Singapore) started Maynuu over 3 years ago.
Hello, I’m Aaron, the GM of Maynuu. I’m 43 years old and live in sunny Singapore. I ran a restaurant for 13 years and a bakery for 7 years. I sold them both in 2019 to learn how to code and pursue my first love - web development.
Last month we made about $4,300 with average monthly revenue of $3,050 in the last 12 months. Growing about 200% in the last year. This may sound like very little in USD, however, when you convert it to MYR (Malaysian Ringgit), we’re making enough to support at least 3 full-time Malaysian team members at present.
16. Upper Limits ($1.44M/year)
Matthieu Fortin (from Springfield, IL, USA) started Upper Limits over 10 years ago.
We have a glassblowing facility on site where our customers can see our glass artists working every day. Our team also produces high-quality, bulk-promotion glass hand pipes where we custom etch company logos right into the glass. This has been a widely popular and growing area for us.
We faced challenges head-on and have learned a tremendous amount both in our industry, and organic business growth. The reward for this unbridled passion is apparent through our swaths of satisfied customers resulting in a business that generates 366% greater sales revenue than our industry peers.
17. Gopuff ($1B/year)
When the pandemic hit, Gopuff cofounder and co-CEO Rafael Ilishayev saw a giant surge in orders at his 9-year-old delivery startup. Hear how he’s ridden the ...
Yakir Gola and Rafael Ilishayev (from Philadelphia, PA, USA) started Gopuff almost 11 years ago.
Gopuff, a leading food & consumer goods delivery service, was started in 2013 by two Drexel University students, Yakir Gola and Rafael Ilishayev.
Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the business began as an on-demand hookah delivery business but has now grown to provide food and supplies.
This consumer products delivery business operates on an on-demand basis. The firm mostly fulfills deliveries for food, drinks, alcohol, home essentials, and other necessities you typically find in a convenience shop.
GoPuff's business model is distinct from those of other delivery firms. The firm operates its warehouses, where it stockpiles items and fills orders on demand.
Rafael, born in Russia, began his career at his father’s sandwich restaurant and afterward at a banquet hall that his father had purchased. Yakir, the son of an Israeli immigrant, used to work in his father’s cash-for-gold store.
The genesis of GoPuff began in 2011, when its creators, Rafael Ilishayev and Yakir Gola, met in a Business 101 class at Drexel University in Philadelphia.
In less than a decade, the company has evolved into a multibillion-dollar corporation serving over 1000 locations. In 2021, GoPuff generated $1 billion in revenue, three times what it did in 2020.
GoPuff has raised $3.4 billion over nine rounds, with its latest $1 billion funding round in July 2021. The company is valued at a massive $15 billion.
Read the full story on blog.wishpond.com ➜
18. CartHook ($1M/year)
The startup podcast with more than 500 episodes to help you launch and grow. 10 million+ downloads. 500+ five-star reviews.
Jordan Gal (from Portland, Oregon, USA) started CartHook over 10 years ago.
CartHook, a Shopify app created by Jordan Gal, helps users increase their income and AOV (Average order value) by allowing them to make genuine post-purchase offers to their customers.
When many sellers were moving to Shopify to sell their physical products, Jordan saw an opportunity to provide these Shopify merchants with post-purchase offers as there was a massive gap in the market for this feature.
The tool enables e-commerce businesses on Shopify to add a new income stream to their checkout through post-purchase upsells. This DTC checkout optimization software has handled over $1 billion for their merchants.
Jordan also previously launched an e-commerce business and generated roughly $500k in revenue in 12 months before selling it.
Listen to the full podcast on thegood.com ➜
19. Clankart ($14.4K/year)
Nitesh Garg (from Bathinda, Punjab, India) started Clankart over 1 year ago.
Hello! I’m Nitesh Garg, the founder of Clankart. I’m a computer science engineer with an ardor for entrepreneurship. We are based out of Bathinda, India, and are trying to build a marketplace for students helping them to sell their used books online in India.
20. Bagisto ($600K/year)
Saurav Pathak (from Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India) started Bagisto almost 5 years ago.
We currently have more than 70K downloads, about 5k GitHub stars, around 5000 community members worldwide, and more than 150 contributors who regularly contribute to Bagisto to enhance its features.
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22. Gun Made ($180K/year)
Brady Kirkpatrick (from Omaha, NE, USA) started Gun Made over 3 years ago.
Hello! My name is Brady Kirkpatrick, and I’m the Founder of Gun Made. Gun Made started as a blog about guns, ammo, accessories, guides, and more.
23. CartFox.io ($18K/year)
Simon Terbovšek (from Mengeš, Slovenija) started CartFox.io over 1 year ago.
Hello Starter Story! I started an eCommerce business first, with a 5K EUR investment inherited by my grandma. I first tried to sell sunglasses on aftermarket online marketplaces and realized it could be a perfect business.
This is the picture of founder Simon and part of the team in Sofia, Bulgaria, Balkans eCommerce Summit 2023
24. Sockrates Custom Socks ($6.3M/year)
Sam Moses (from Boca Raton, FL, USA) started Sockrates Custom Socks over 5 years ago.
My name is Samuel Moses and I am the Founder and CEO of Sockrates Custom Socks. We specialize in producing the best high-quality custom socks, with an unbeatable 7-day turnaround for our B2B clients all over the world.
We started Sockrates 4 years ago and we did 10-15 orders a month in Canada and the US. Today, we can expect anywhere from 150-350 orders a month from all over the world. Our major markets are the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, Israel, and Denmark.
Hey! 👋 I'm Pat Walls, the founder of Starter Story.
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