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Skullcandy Breaks Ecommerce and Audio Boundaries
with BigCommerce

104%146% 50%
increase in site traffic

increase in revenue


increase in conversion rate


Performance metrics compare Jan–Mar, 2021 to Jan–Mar, 2020
for Skullcandy.com global websites.


See how customisable, cost-effective and reliable
BigCommerce is and why we built it that way.

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Igniting an audio revolution

Rick Alden is a snowboarding enthusiast. He is also a firestarter, a person who sees a problem and uses his own spark of innovation to solve it. One of those sparks came to Rick while snowboarding in Park City, Utah. As he was being carried up and away by the music piping through his headphones and the chairlift taking him to his next snowboarding adventure, a call came in that he needed to take. The problem was he couldn’t easily switch from his headphones to the call. It was the early 2000s and that type of technology wasn’t available.

While suspended over snow-covered slopes, Rick thought there had to be a better way for active people like him to seamlessly listen to their favorite music and have the ability to switch over to a call when necessary. It turns out there was a better way and in 2003 Rick founded the lifestyle audio brand, Skullcandy.

Almost two decades later and through constant evolution, Skullcandy has become a global leader in the audio space. With its immersive technologies for headphones and earbuds, the company remains true to its mission to unleash the visceral power of music for all.

CHALLENGE

Needing a platform to reach and keep up with its audience

Skullcandy’s primary demographic is on the cutting edge. They are youthful and adventurous audio consumers who enjoy music, new experiences and discovering what’s next. To keep up with this audience, Skullcandy needed an ecommerce platform to help them do it. 

For Skullcandy to seriously consider any platform it had to offer four things: versatility, adaptability, affordability and a superior user experience. Its previous platform — Salesforce Commerce Cloud — wasn’t making the grade.

“Salesforce Commerce Cloud was expensive to manage and maintain. It didn’t have a lot of agility and our team was tied to using external development resources that resulted in higher costs,” said Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer at Skullcandy. “We knew that to take our ecommerce to a new level, we were going to have to explore the various platform options from every angle.”

BigCommerce and Shopify were the main platforms considered. Simplification, coupled with better pricing and the versatility to enable Skullcandy to control its own destiny led the company to choose BigCommerce. 

“We wanted to take on some of the management and development of the website,” Hopkins said. “When we were on Salesforce Commerce Cloud, we were heavily reliant on third-party contractors and we didn't have much internal knowledge of the platform.”

Skullcandy wanted to work with an ecommerce provider interested in a two-way relationship. Hopkins says, “BigCommerce is leaning in a lot with us and we're leaning in a lot with BigCommerce right now. It's a very productive relationship. BigCommerce was interested in being a partner to us right from the start.”

Skullcandy was also focused on reducing ecommerce platform overhead and resources to manage the day to day needs of their global ecommerce websites. “One of the most attractive things about BigCommerce was learning that our non-technical team could configure our global stores’ checkout, taxes, shipping and payment types with simple preset selections. Not only were we able to avoid four to five months of custom integrations and development costs, but we can maintain focus on ensuring the best consumer experience,” said Jenny Buchar, Director of Digital Experience and Operations at Skullcandy.



“Salesforce Commerce Cloud was expensive to manage and maintain. It didn’t have a lot of agility and our team was tied to using external development resources that resulted in higher costs.”Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy









“One of the most attractive things about BigCommerce was learning that our non-technical team could configure our global stores’ checkout, taxes, shipping and payment types with simple preset selections.”Jenny Buchar, Director of Digital Experience and Operations, Skullcandy

SOLUTION

Scalability. Adaptability. Flexibility.

“When vetting platforms, we thought about scalability more as a nice to have. But, I don't think any of us could have predicted the kind of ecommerce growth we’ve seen,” said Hopkins. “Now that we've seen how the scalability of BigCommerce performs in terms of its ability to handle increased transaction volume and velocity, we’re even more convinced it was the best solution for us to build on.”

BigCommerce’s open APIs make it easier for Skullcandy to navigate within its existing tech architecture. The platform can integrate whatever Skullcandy needs to ensure its high transaction volumes are processed and systems are keeping up with demand.

“The APIs allow Skullcandy to connect its product information system, keep inventory synchronised, interface with the credit card companies, calculate taxes, and translate all the information into the ERP system for fulfillment,” said Hopkins.

In building out the website, the Skullcandy team wondered if it could maintain things going forward being a global company operating different websites in multiple countries and in varying currencies. Having the design and development agency The ZaneRay Group and BigCommerce on its side, the answer was a resounding yes! A total of seven international sites were launched in three languages and four currencies in just six months. 

“Despite the ambitious launch schedule, our migration went smoothly without missing a beat. Our ecommerce revenue stream and fulfillment process were uninterrupted and the site looked beautiful,” Hopkins said.

Highlighted Applications:

Technical Features:

  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
    • SAP By Design
  • Order Management System (OMS)
    • Customised
  • Product Information Management (PIM)
    • Jasper PIM
  • Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)
    • MuleSoft
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
    • Coming in 2021


Using apps and integrations to keep pace with the business

Through BigCommerce’s vetted network of apps and integrations, Skullcandy is better able to meet daily and quarterly challenges with access to the latest apps and integrations that work with BigCommerce.

“We benefit from the vast array of ready-made, third-party integrations that BigCommerce makes accessible to all clients. Two of our bigger service partners are Yotpo for product reviews and Klavyio for email marketing. Integration of these services was smooth and fast to get up and running,” shared Buchar.

“The plugins enable us to quickly pivot. It's not a huge rodeo every time we want to make a change or take on some new functionality. It's very straightforward to adapt and keep pace with the business,” Hopkins said.







“The APIs allow Skullcandy to connect its product information system, keep inventory synchronised, interface with the credit card companies, calculate taxes, and translate all the information into the ERP system for fulfillment.”Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy























“The plugins enable us to quickly pivot. It's not a huge rodeo every time we want to make a change or take on some new functionality. It's very straightforward to adapt and keep pace with the business.”Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy
“We are really taking bets on social commerce, leveraging built-in BigCommerce integrations to serve product catalogs across social channels where orders start in the social channel, and seamlessly drop into BigCommerce’s control panel for streamlined fulfillment.”Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy
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RESULTS

This is what success looks like

Skullcandy has figured out the beat its customers like to groove to and it is reflective in the brand’s online performance. In a YoY comparison between Jan–Mar 2021 and Jan–March 2020, Skullcandy experienced a 104% increase in site traffic, a 146% increase in revenue and a 50% increase in its conversion rate.

Social media is playing a significant role in Skullcandy’s overall digital success. Use of the Facebook Shops integration enables Skullcandy customers seamless shopping on both Facebook and Instagram.

“We link every single product to Instagram every time we have an athlete, musician or influencer helping us launch a new product,” said Kathryn Smith, Global Brand Director at Skullcandy. “We make sure the content throughout the entire ecosystem links to Instagram shopping. From the consumer standpoint, it is awesome. We just love having the ability to offer shopping through Instagram.”

“We are really taking bets on social commerce, leveraging built-in BigCommerce integrations to serve product catalogs across social channels where orders start in the social channel, and seamlessly drop into BigCommerce’s control panel for streamlined fulfillment,” Hopkins stated.

Because Skullcandy is built on BigCommerce, an Open SaaS platform, its team no longer has to worry about site hosting and can now focus on the merchandising and growth aspects of its online business. In addition, it is operating within an extremely agile environment that can quickly change to meet business needs — and on top of all that, the company is saving a significant amount of money on development and overall platform costs.

“We make sure the content throughout the entire ecosystem links to Instagram shopping. From the consumer standpoint, it is awesome. We just love having the ability to offer shopping through Instagram.”Kathryn Smith, Global Brand Director, Skullcandy

LOOKING AHEAD

Unbound and Unstoppable

In 2019, it was 12 Moods. In 2020, it was Mood Boost. Now, in 2021, Skullcandy is inspiring its customers to break boundaries, real and imagined, with its latest campaign, Sound without Boundaries.

These campaigns tie into Skullcandy’s “content to commerce” strategy and provide a wealth of fresh content on social media and the website that changes on an ongoing basis.

“When we started these campaigns we knew we were going to be changing things up, and over time we have increased the pace. So, in hindsight, it’s good we selected BigCommerce because it’s a platform that is easy to keep updated with fresh content,” Hopkins stated.

Going forward, Skullcandy will continue to choose systems and services that make sense for keeping the total cost of ownership of its website low. And, according to Buchar, it’s not out of the question for Skullcandy to consider strategically piecing together the best services to end up with a headless commerce solution in the future.

“It's an ever changing world and we really need to make sure we're not sitting back and just riding the wave of our success,” said Hopkins. “We're thinking about what's next, what do we need to be aware of and where do we need to be focusing our efforts. That’s how we want to approach the future, taking steps to break our own boundaries and drive an amazing ecommerce experience.”




Published: June 2021

“When we started these campaigns we knew we were going to be changing things up, and over time we have increased the pace. So, in hindsight, it’s good we selected BigCommerce because it’s a platform that is easy to keep updated with fresh content.”Mark Hopkins, Chief Information Officer, Skullcandy

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