client site launch: molly mutt

We’re excited to announce the launch of molly mutt, the dog duvet company! Molly has been fabulous to work with, and we’re absolutely in love with her adorable designs. Almost makes us wish we had a dog!

mollymutt dot com

couldbe studios on Pixelsoup

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The good folks at jadedPixel (the team that brought us Shopify) published an interview with Matt today! He talks about our business, our clients, and why we recommend Shopify so damn much. Check it out, and join me in a rousing chorus of “woo hoo.”

Munchkin Designs

We just launched the new site for Munchkin Designs, and I couldn’t resist placing an order – you know, just to test the system. It came a couple of days ago, and check out the cuteness:

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Lisa Komer, Munchkin Designs’ owner, makes the most adorable custom-designed printed materials. And her site is pretty cute, too, if we do say so ourselves. Drop by and check out her new line of tees!

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Green Girls Guide

We were very pleased to see that one of our clients was picked as a ‘Shop of the Moment’ by Jaded Pixel today.

The Green Girls are cool people with cool, eco-friendly products, so check ‘em out folks!

We’re really proud of the site, which is a wordpress / shopify integration that we think works quite well.

Our first Dashboard Widget

Pretty much since Mac OSX came out we’ve been itching to try our hand at creating a dashboard widget for it. The only problem was, we didn’t have a reason to, so we just kept putting it aside.

Well, we finally bit the bullet and took a stab at it.

For our first widget, we’ve connected the new Marketplace on Shopify.com directly to you dashboard. Check it out here
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We’re pretty happy with the results and we hope others will use it too.

Let us know what you think would ya?

Cheers!

Matt Beck
Partner
CouldBe Studios

Shopify Pricing Changes

The folks over at Jaded Pixel created quite a big kerfuffle with their recent pricing changes for Shopify.

Like a lot of designers who work with Shopify we were mystified. We felt betrayed by people who we had previously sung the praises of, we scratched our heads and fumed. We wrote forum posts questioning their methods, sent them feedback and commiserated with other designers over the way that it was handled.

The problem we had with the situation was not the new rates which are actually quite reasonable, but that the change was carried out in secrecy, which left us in a potentially sticky spot as we had bids out to potential clients which were based on their old pricing model, and even worse projects currently being developed that had their pricing model changed! How were we supposed to handle that? We’d quoted people based on their old pricing model, started working on the site and then had it change mid-way through.

Outrage! Snarl! All of that!

Well, as it turned out the folks at Jaded Pixel grandfathered all of our projects back to the old pricing without any fuss, so it worked out all right. And, even better they are making a real effort to improve their communication with their user base and the design community.

After dropping the pricing change on us in secrecy, they have actually been fairly open about the reasons.

Tobias Lütke, JadedPixel’s co-founder had this to say:

“First of all, there was no announcement because it was not practical in our situation for two reasons:

a) There is no change to any of our existing customers. The only thing which changes to people who use Shopify is that the signup page of our brochure page quotes a different pricing structure. We grandfathered every one of our existing customers for lifetime. This includes people who were in the middle of setting up a store and had no prior sales yet. It did not however include people on demo accounts ( the ones which say that they are automatically deleted ). However we have grandfathered everyone who send us an email with a demo account if the store was about to be launched.

b) Because shopify is free in signup we could not announce this change because it would have meant that people would have set up hundreds of accounts to be grandfathered which they could then sell later on to people who feel that the old pricing system was better.

Speaking of which, i know that the feedback here on the blog is pretty negative but this is by no means a fair reflection of the feedback we are receiving here at jadedPixel. A lot of our customers are saving a good deal of money and expect to save even more when they grow bigger. The only pricing model was prohibitory expensive to some of our clients and this had to be addressed.

That being said, we are incredibly sorry about the inconveniences the switch may have caused to our designers, advocates and pitchers out there. We are establishing a new communication channel with our affiliates so that such changes can be announced in a controlled manner. Not that there are any more such changes in the pipeline, mind you.

Thank you for understanding. We launched with a pricing scheme which was unsustainable in the long run and had to correct the problem. We believe that the shopify software delivers value far greater then its cost and we hope you think the same, especially with the new pricing system.”

Perhaps the best thing to come out of this however is that Jaded Pixel is now taking a very proactive stance on improving their communication with the designers who build the themes and sell the storefronts. Today they announced the creation of what they are calling the Shopify Advisory Council. Which basically is a group of designers and users of Shopify who will act as a sort of think-tank for customer relations.

Jaded Pixel’s willingness to admit that they made a mistake with the way they handled things recently and their willingness to learn from their mistakes has done much to restore our faith in them and their platform.

does your copy hold up?

Our first article is up at Digital Web Magazine, and we couldn’t be happier. We talk about optimizing text for a quick scan in order to make websites more accessible to new viewers. With all the RSS feeds we read every day (189 at last count) we appreciate it when articles are written in a way that facilitates scanning. Who has time to read every word? Though clearly you should read every word of our article. That just goes without saying.

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