A must for Musicians
Templates and Design - 60%
SEO - 21%
Products and Inventory - 85%
Marketing Tools and Integrations - 31%
Ease of Use - 87%
Technical Support - 61%
Tumblr for eCommerce
It would be easy to pick Limited Run apart for it’s lack of features and limited options but it is precisely what it markets itself as, a small niche shopping cart for record labels and boutique fashion labels. From the look of it though it is clear they are firmly pointed at the musicians more than the clothing labels.
It is refreshing to see a cart with a narrow focus, too many carts these days are losing direction under the tonne of features they feel compelled to add. being targeted like this has allowed Limited Run to produce something excellent that meets a need properly instead of spraying features left right and center in the hopes it appeals to enough people to be successful.
More information about Limited Run and the new shopping cart platform they recently released is available here.
Whats good about it?
Ability to allow customers to “name their own price” – of course you set a minimum but it os very unique and a great way to generate buzz and sales
It comes out of the box super simple with most “features” turned off. They are one button away (and free) when you do want them. This is great it means the interface is simple from he get go and gets more complicated one step at a time
Uses a similar template engine to Shopify which means two things. Firstly more developers will be able to help you, second you can easily convert shopify designed themes to work with Limited Run. There is also a built in editor so you will not need any special software.
There are very few things to configure. In fact I added and confirmed my paypal email address and I was selling. Probably not what a serious e-tailer want but the software is not for you – it is aimed at independent labels/musicians and clothing companies – and these people don’t want to pay a developer every time they need something done.
What would I change?
No HTML editor when you add a product description. You can add your own HTML which is nice for blokes like me, but “normal” people don’t know HTML – I can understand why it is left out though – it makes the process cleaner and simpler for designers and developers as well as store owners. maybe a limited editor that allows simple HTML tags like bold and italic would be a nice compromise.
Features. Just list the Features
The most impressive feature is the digital download server that allows artists to upload a lossless audio track and have it automatically converted to any number of formats (MP3, FLAC, AAC etc) – a great time and money saver for small artists.
Earlier I said that you had to enable the extra’s if you wanted them, I guess now is a good time to lay them out for you.
Sound Cloud Integration (I said it was aimed at musicians)
Discount Coupon Codes
Delayed download/delivery date
History – I think this is for creating discographies or catalogs
Roster – for profile page sof artists, labels, designers
Track listings for product pages
Customise order confirmation emails
How is Limited Run’s support?
No idea to be honest, I haven’t had time to test it. I read the online documentation and is is well thought out and thorough. Not sure why you would need it though, the interface is so simple a child could use it. There is a note saying that if they don’t answer the phone they are looking after this gorgeous little puppy but that might just be a ploy to distract me.
Would I recommend it?
If you are a small record label, fashion label or independent artist or designer then this cart could open your world right up. For anyone else it may not be suitable, but if you are looking for a low cost (or free for 5 or less products) shopping cart take a trial and see how you go. I would use it happily if I had a small product line.
After I wrote this I sent a copy through to Thomas at Limited Run and got he following reply. Given it was 5am I guess that answers the question about how good is there support. No doubt he is following this thread so feel free to leave comments or better yet sign up and give the cart a trial – they are doing some good things and deserve the support.
A note on variations, almost every store we have uses multiple variations per product. Let me give you a few examples:
* A record almost always comes in multiple formats: vinyl, cd, digital.
* A tshirt always comes in multiple sizes.
* Custom toys often come in multiple color variations.
* Art prints often come in variants like stand paper and foil.
Additionally, there are a few very important points where variations make things really flexible:
* Every variation can have its own shipping profile which means logically putting up an album as a single product and letting your customer pick the vinyl, cd or digital version means you get to only use up one of your X products rather than 3. Also, customers are interested in buying your album, they shouldn’t have to click around to multiple pages to find the right format.
* Every variation has individual (and optional) inventory tracking, price, cart limiting, and optional digital item. Cart limiting is important here because often a record comes in multiple variants (black, clear, blue), where one variant is very rare (~100) vs another that isn’t so rare (~1000). Optional digital per variation means you don’t have to bundle digital with physical versions of an album if you don’t want or you can bundle extended versions with certain variations. Additionally, while we offer “upload lossless and we’ll convert to multiple formats and let your customer choose”, some stores choose to sell different formats at different costs (MP3 vs FLAC, for example) as different variations.