Cordova Laptop Hero@2X

Cordova Outdoors Finds Growth and Adventure with New Ecommerce Platform


246%1,189%1,036%
increase in conversionsincrease in ordersincrease in revenue



Metrics represent Apr. 16-Jul. 31, 2020 compared to Jan. 1-Apr. 15, 2020.


From Crabs to Coolers

Who would have thought a crab boat captain featured on the popular television program Deadliest Catch would become the founder of an ice cooler company? That’s exactly how things happened for Scott Cambell. 

Scott had just bought a new MasterCraft boat and was out on the water with friends when the unthinkable happened. On this 100+ degree day, the inexpensive cooler the boat was outfitted with didn’t keep their beer cold. Convinced that he could create a better cooler that would keep things cold, Scott made a bet with his friends; and the rest, as they say, is history.

Scott launched Cordova Coolers in 2015 and grew the business until he sold it in 2017. One major milestone he accomplished before selling was clinching a deal that placed his personally-designed Cordova cooler into every MasterCraft boat.

A New Captain at the Helm

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

Scott sold Cordova Coolers to local businessman Doug McMaster in 2017. Doug took the whole rotomold process for making hard-sided coolers and expanded the product line with new sizes and colors. He also extended our overall product offering by adding soft-sided coolers, drinkware, apparel, and specialty items. It was at this time Cordova Coolers became Cordova Outdoors to more accurately reflect the range of our offering.


Woes with WooCommerce

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

Things just kept growing from there, but our ecommerce platform made us work for every inch of progress we made. Just about any challenge we could have faced on WooCommerce we did.

Integrations didn’t integrate. Our payment processor didn’t work correctly. There was not a simple way to take an order to update the website or add multiple sales channels. We knew we couldn’t continue with WooCommerce and be successful. Our only solution was to find a better platform to build our business.

Deciding to Go Big

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

At the top of our platform vetting list was that it had to be simple. If I go on vacation, I need to know someone can easily step in to view and pull an order and ship it without having to know the ins and outs of the website to get it done.

Another criteria was the new platform had to save us time. It couldn’t be as time consuming as our previous platform. We are working hard to grow our business and we don’t have time to babysit the technology.

The final decision came down to BigCommerce and Shopify. I’ve known about BigCommerce. I've recommended people to BigCommerce. I’ve steered people towards BigCommerce in the past. When I joined Cordova Outdoors and saw where the company was and where they wanted to go, it was kind of a no-brainer. 

Needless to say we chose BigCommerce. If we decide to go back to scaling our wholesale arm, BigCommerce has better integrations for that. Also, we have a lot of SKUs and BigCommerce is robust enough to grow with us as we add new products and scale our business.

“I’ve steered people towards BigCommerce in the past. When I joined Cordova Outdoors and saw where the company was and where they wanted to go, it was kind of a no-brainer.”Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager
Once we began using Metricstory, the analytical insights gave us greater visibility into the inner workings of our online activities and helped inform our business decisions.Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager
Cordova Tablet@2X

A World of Integrations that Work

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

We launched on BigCommerce in mid-January of 2020 and I’m happy to say the integrations integrate. We’re using all kinds of apps and integrations — Printful, MailChimp, Adwool to name a few. But the one we use most is ShipStation. It’s been a great app. Everything comes over seamlessly and when we can ship it changes status. I mean, it's one of the easiest tools ever to use. We also integrate with eBay and Amazon.

We’re getting a lot of traffic from Google AdSense, Google Ads, and Facebook. We never really had traction on Google before. It has grown quite a bit for us. We’re just getting traffic from all over, which is great!

I worked directly with BigCommerce’s Enterprise Account Management team and their Solutions Architect team. I literally had no issues getting my questions answered or any problem solved. The Solutions Architect team helped us troubleshoot our ecommerce environment and our Account Manager facilitated meetings and kept the project on track. We were able to launch ahead of schedule and seamlessly integrate into our existing systems.

I also appreciate BigCommerce always being accessible and open in sharing information that will help us grow our business. I like getting a heads up about new products coming out that might be good for Cordova. In particular, I’m looking forward to using BigCommerce’s new Page Builder.

“I worked directly with BigCommerce’s Enterprise Account Management team and their Solutions Architect team. I literally had no issues getting my questions answered or any problem solved.”Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager

Metricstory + Keyword Genius = Informed Business Decisions

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

When I started working at Cordova the company was spending quite a bit of money on marketing, but we really didn’t have an idea where it was going or what effect it was having. Once we began using Metricstory, the analytical insights gave us greater visibility into the inner workings of our online activities and helped inform our business decisions. 

It’s nice to get those reports and have the ability to monitor what's working and what’s not. If I need to get with the development team to fix something, add photos to a campaign, or recreate some ads, Metricstory shows me where I need to refine our strategy.

Then there’s Keyword Genius that’s powered by Metricstory. It’s a simple, but powerful app that helps us tap into new revenue streams directly from our website. I can log in and in a matter of minutes, look at the recommended keywords for how I can drive more traffic to my site, and see what the cost per click average is on the recommended bidding for the keywords. For instance, between December 30, 2019 and May 25, 2020, we spent $2K and realized a nearly $72K return using Keyword Genius. That’s an approximate 3,500% return on ad spend. Having this functionality built into the web platform makes things so much easier.


What’s Next for Cordova Outdoors

As told to BigCommerce by Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager.

Currently, there’s probably not a metric out there that we haven't grown in the hundreds, if not thousands, percentile across the board. We’re going to continue to focus heavily on online sales and we plan to double our efforts next year. New products are being added to the website and we are continuing to grow our business with new boat builders.

Literally, any kind of way we can add new products to diversify our lineup we’re looking at it. We are considering using our rotomold to create a kayak. It's definitely an exciting time for us at Cordova Outdoors and this year is looking like it's going to be a very good year for us.

“I like getting a heads up about new products coming out that might be good for Cordova. In particular, I’m looking forward to using BigCommerce’s new Page Builder.”Sean Andreas, Cordova Outdoors, Ecommerce Manager

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