From In-Store Excellence to Global Expansion: A Conversation with Alexandra McNab from Bared & Jordy Heis from Shopify | #393   

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Alex and Jordy share how to put customers first with Shopify POS Go + Terminal

Alexandra McNab is Chief Operating Officer of Bared Footwear, a Melbourne-based brand making shoes that feel as good as they look. Alex joined Bared in 2015 and has worked across all areas of business operations, with particular emphasis on team development, and enabling the brand’s online growth.


Jordy leads growth and retention initiatives with Shopify’s ANZ Retail merchants. He works as a trusted advisor to fast growing brands like Incu, JULY, LSKD and Oz Hair & Beauty. A retired graphic designer and confessed data addict, he uses both art and science to help brands grow.

This episode of Add To Cart is brought to you by Shopify and is a true exclusive, because we are discussing the launch of Shopify POS GO and Shopify POS Terminal – both of which have been eagerly anticipated by Australian omnichannel retailers for some time. And I have two absolute superstars to explain it for us. 

First up we have Jordy Heis, Senior Retail Product Consultant for Shopify in ANZ. I have been lucky enough to know Jordy for many years and have had a number of in-depth conversations with him following the evolution of the Shopify POS product – this is a very exciting day for him and you won’t find many people in Australia who know more about enabling in-store tech in retail than Jordy. 

Joining Jordy, we have Alexandra McNab, Chief Operating Officer of Bared Footwear. Founded in 2008, Bared has grown into one of Australia’s most respected and successful retail brands with a focus on quality products, sustainable practices and a new level of customer delight as you will hear today. Alex is one of the OG’s at Bared and takes us behind the scenes as to how they connect the online and offline experience, how they empower their customer service teams to take care of the customer no matter what and how they are ramping up to go international with their Soho store. Bared runs on Shopify with Shopify Plus so we get to hear first-hand how they are making use of the new developments in-store. 

No-one likes to use platforms that don’t serve you. That’s what’s incredibly empowering for us to put a technology in a merchant’s hands that allows them to drive maximum value.”

Jordy Heis
Senior Retail Product Consultant, Shopify ANZ

The anti sales people

(Alex) “All our team members who work in any customer facing role at Bared, one of the first things they get told is we would rather you talk a customer out of buying a shoe than put them in the wrong shoe and have them walk out the door. So that’s something that the founder owner and  founder Anna has just pushed, like it was the same message I got 16 years ago when I first worked at Bared and that really hasn’t changed.

For us, it’s about building a genuine connection with the customer, genuinely helping them. If you walk into a shoe store, you might not be wanting to purchase that day, but you should work out knowing how we can help you in the future if you are wanting to purchase something different.  And what is different about our shoes, because we do have that strong point of difference. They are better for your feet. They are designed to be more comfortable. We’ve got a really heavy push on sustainability, particularly in the last few years, that’s been an enormous focus for the brand. And we’re hoping to, you know, I mean, there’s a long way to go, but we’re hoping to make it seriously sustainable product in the future. 

So we would want someone who walks into our store to feel first and foremost that we have heard them, helped them, and if that results in a sale, great. And if it doesn’t, then they know what our brand is about and what we focus on.”

Respect for customer 

(Jordy) “Probably the thing is understanding, okay, what does leveraging Shopify POS in store, unlock us and enable us to do?  Is it ship to home? Is it click and collect? 

I think one of the sleeper features that doesn’t get a lot of airtime is the ability, if someone’s in store and, shoes are a classic, but also bedding and linen, if you’re in store, you’ve created this cart with the team in store, you built this cart, you need to get secondary approval at home or you need to colour match something, you’re able to actually take that pre-built cart and the instore team can say, hey, I know you need a little bit of time to think about this and get that budgetary approval as you need. Let me just email you a link. This card is preloaded. So when you’re ready, you can actually do that in your own time, which is beautiful.

 I think it doesn’t lose the time and effort and expense that you’ve done going in store and just again, it’s a way of respecting that buyer and how far on the journey that they’ve already come.”

Plug and play

(Alex) “Alot of people say to me, oh, how was the rollout of POS? How much planning, how long did it take? And I say about 25 minutes in the store the night before it opened! 

It really was that.  We did a sort of pilot launch in our Fortitude Valley location when that opened and thought we’ll give this a turn, we’ll see how it goes. We’ll try it for a few months and then we’ll bring the rest of the business onto it if it’s successful. 

And honestly, myself and Nicole, who’s our e-commerce manager, we were teaching the team how to use it at six o’clock the night before we opened and we opened the next day. It was opening day and we’d promoted it and it was the biggest day that we’d had in a retail store outside of sale periods and… no problems.”

Questions answered in this episode include
  • What are capabilities of the next generation of Shopify POS and your favourite features?
  • What are the foundations of the Bared customer experience?
  • What touch points does Bared use to connect online and offline customers?

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