It’s always a pleasure to talk with someone like Guido X Jansen. The world often forgets that true meaning of ecommerce. Many still think that ecommerce is something technical. Build a website, put some ads, and you’re set.
Sadly, it’s not that simple.
Fortunately, it’s very easy. How come? It is because people like Guido are there to guide you. As a cognitive psychologist specializing in ecommerce, he knows how to convert data into dollars. The best thing about Guido is that he loves to share his knowledge.
Both his website and his podcasts are filled with actionable advices that can level up your ecommerce game.
Devrims: How are you doing Guido? To kick things off, tell us about your exciting journey from the early days of Mambo and Joomla! to Magento and now as an evangelist at Spryker.
Guido: The journey from Mambo to Spryker has been nothing short of exhilarating. Each platform represents a unique phase of my career in Community Building. Mambo/Joomla! was where I cut my teeth, learning the basics of open source, CMS and organizing community events. With Magento, the focus shifted to e-commerce, which allowed me to delve deeper into understanding customer behavior online which was a great fit with my background in psychology. The events got much bigger and the scope became much more global. Now, at Spryker, I’ve taken on a role where I can share my experiences and insights as an evangelist and lay the foundation for the next generation of enterprise commerce technologists.
Devrims: How much does psychology help in understanding the customer’s perspective? And after studying psychology in college, what made you jump into the e-commerce world?
Guido: Psychology is the backbone of understanding end-user perspectives. It was during my college years studying psychology that I discovered the intriguing intersection of human behavior and digital platforms. The transition to e-commerce was almost natural as it allowed me to apply cognitive principles to run a lot of experiments (which is what we did at the university as well), enhance user experiences and ultimately drive conversions.
Devrims: Being a global evangelist surely seems like a fun job and you clearly excel at community building and evangelist marketing. Do you have any advice for brands that want to build a strong and active community?
Guido: It’s the best! Building a strong community revolves around genuine engagement and providing value. My advice to brands would be to focus on creating a culture of openness, support, and continuous learning. Engage with your community on a personal level, provide platforms for them to interact, share, and grow together.
Devrims: You have worked closely with both Magento and Spryker. Apart from Spryker being headless, could you highlight some key differences between these platforms?
Guido: Both Magento and Spryker are robust platforms, but they cater to very different market needs. Spryker’s headless architecture provides enterprise businesses with a flexible and customizable platform that can evolve with their needs. On the other hand, Magento has a more out-of-the-box approach, which might appeal to businesses looking for a more standard solution.
Devrims: What resources, tools, or approaches do you find most invaluable for your e-commerce optimization work? Why are they so critical?
Guido: For the many years I ran (CRO) optimization teams, qualitative research has often been the most insightful source for optimization ideas. Everyone has quantitative data (often Google Analytics), but combining that with qualitative data really brings it into context and makes it much easier to prioritize the most important issues. I’m eager to see how AI makes combining qual and quant even more powerful.
Devrims: As an industry senior and expert, where do you see the future of e-commerce optimization heading in the next 5 years? How should brands evolve?
Guido: I’m having a hard time to not include the term “AI” here 😉
Devrims: Time for some quick rapid fire questions:
|Magento or Spryker
|Coffee or Tea
|Tea (Earl Grey with Honey)
|Favorite vacation spot
|What would you like to do when you retire
|What I do right now, but with a nice beach as my home office.
Devrims: For more than a decade you have worked with Magento, from being a Magento Master to being on the Board of Directors of Magento Association, tell us a bit about your Magento journey.
Guido: My tenure with Magento was filled with learning, growth, and community building. Being recognized as a Magento Master and later serving on the Board of Directors of the Magento Association were both honors and opportunities to contribute back to a community that had given so much to me.
Devrims: Can you show us what your workstation looks like?
Guido: My main workstation is a Mac mini M2 Pro surrounded by some gear from RØDE and Elgato to level up my podcasting/vlogging game 🙂
Devrims: Phew! Ending this interview, For those looking to make their first steps into e-commerce, what foundational advice would you give? How to get started on the right foot?
Guido: For those venturing into e-commerce, my foundational advice is to start with a clear understanding of your target audience. Build a user-centric platform and team, continuously learn from your users’ behavior, and be ready to adapt to the evolving market trends.
Devrims: Name a few individuals that you would recommend us to have on our Devrims TechTalk series.
- Denis Turkov
- Michael Türk
- Vladimir (Volodymyr) Lunov