27 March 2017 | 21 Comments
Kickstarter recently revealed two notable improvements to their platform, one small and one big. I’ll discuss them in detail below.
If you’ve ever run or participated in a Kickstarter campaign, you know that the same questions tend to get asked over and over in the comments, even after they’ve been answered many times.
Part of this is an issue with the way the comments are organized as one long thread. But the other part is that the FAQ section of a Kickstarter page is located way down at the bottom of the page. Some people simply don’t know it’s there.
So it was with delight that I recently noticed Kickstarter has moved the FAQ to its own tab at the top of the page:
It’s such a small, elegant adjustment, but in my opinion it makes a huge difference. Look how close it is to the comments tab! Surely this will make it much easier for backers to check to see if their question has already been answered.
However, the one downside is that Kickstarter still doesn’t let creators create the FAQ before the project. So if a creator has content that doesn’t belong on the project page (but some people still want to know it), they have to wait until the project launches to create the FAQ. Why not let creators do this in advance?
I’ve used Shopify for a few years, and it’s fantastic. At its most basic level, Shopify is an e-commerce platform. It’s very easy to use, even for someone like me who’s not particularly tech-savvy.
Last week, Kickstarter announced that Shopify now integrates seamlessly with Kickstarter in a number of ways. Really, many of these things can be done using other methods, apps, or platforms, but it’s clear that Shopify carefully studied what crowdfunders need, and they consolidated everything into one place for that purpose. Here are the highlights:
- Create a landing page pre-launch to share news about the upcoming project and let people sign up to be notified.
- A/B test different landing pages simultaneously to determine the most effective marketing materials before you spend money on advertising.
- When the campaign begins, you can send e-newsletters to anyone who signed up through your Shopify landing page (MailChimp integrates with Shopify).
- Accept pre-orders after the project ends.
- Use it as a pledge manager after the project to collect pledge data and accept add-on payments.
- Fulfill rewards by shipping through any fulfillment company that integrates with Shopify (Fulfillrite is great).
- After fulfillment, accept orders directly through Shopify.
The step-by-step instructions are very helpful, and the use of Shopify as a one-stop shop for all of these crowdfunding needs is great. However, there is a pretty big difference between using an existing platform like Shopify that is now integrating with Kickstarter versus other pledge managers that were built from the ground up specifically for Kickstarter.
You can also consider Indiegogo, on which your project page can automatically convert to an e-commerce page for accepting pre-orders after the project ends.
My biggest takeaway from the Shopify announcement is that there are lots of great tools at your disposal at a reasonable price (I pay $29/month). There’s a good chance at least some of those tools could be useful for you.
What do you think about these changes and announcements?