Cart Abandonment and Expecting the Unexpected with Dave Rodenbaugh

Do the Woo - WooCommerce Podcast, Community and News
Do the Woo - WooCommerce Podcast, Community and News
Cart Abandonment and Expecting the Unexpected with Dave Rodenbaugh

Okay, you can not chat with Dave from Recapture without diving into some cart abandonment tips and insights. It’s the just a given. And hearing it from someone who lives and breathes the stuff, well, you always will find gems.

On the other hand, there is that moment where you have to talk about the unexpected. Case in point. Earlier this month, one of Dave’s competitors, Jilt, closed the doors. So we had to find out about expecting the unexpected. With Dave’s great relationship with the community and with Jilt, it was a good story to hear out.

So if you build sites for clients, or are selling products or services for WooCommerce, listen in to hear some great conversation around cart abandonment and running a Woo product business.

A Chat with Dave

Brad and I talk with Dave about:

  • The basics of cart abandonment
  • How the methods behind cart abandonment solutions are viewed now vs. when it first started
  • Why cart abandonment needs to be tilted in favor of the customer
  • What impact cart abandonment plays on the industry or product that is being sold
  • Why you must really understand your customers to make cart abandonment solutions work
  • How did the closure of Jilt affect his business
  • What recommendations Dave would give other product makers on how to be prepared for the unexpected

Connect with Dave

Thanks to Our Pod Friends


Whether you are a beginner or an advanced Woo builder, the new eCommerce course, coming on July 20, 2021, from Yoast Academy, will help you improve sales, competition and grow customers on any shop you build or run. It’s not just not a learning experience, but you will be ready to take action with your new SEO skills


OSTraining has a great collection of WooCommerce tutorials that will help your clients get the most out of their site. And, as a bonus for the builder, you can also find training to enhance your knowledge as they continue to grow their WordPress and WooCommerce developer training.

Brad: Welcome back to Episode #136 of Doo the Woo. I am one half of your co-host team, Brad Williams, joined with the ever-popular, always on BobWP. Hey Bob.

Bob: Hey. I'm the other half, the not so popular other half.

Brad: Yeah, I don't know where I was going with that but somehow... It's the day after the holiday so things are just kind of going to dump out of my mouth. But here we are Bob, it's the day, yeah literally, we're recording this the day after the Monday, when most of the U.S. is shut down anyway coming off the Fourth of July holiday weekend. Bob, did you do anything special for the holiday? Blow anything up? Still got all your fingers?

Bob: Yeah actually it's just noisy. As I've said before on this show, we live on the beach and the only place in our town where you can blow off fireworks is on the beach. So it's pretty amazing. You see it stretching for miles. People just go down and put on a show for like four hours.. If you've ever had fireworks that travel across this kind of low scrub brush and hit your windows, the sound, it sounds like people are just basically pounding on your house all night. So it's a nice relaxing evening in other words.

Brad: Yeah. That doesn't sound terrifying at all. Sounds like a great Fourth of July. You can always gauge someone's age if they start off by saying the Fourth of July is noisy.

Bob: Yeah. Yeah. That's it, yep.

Brad: You're definitely above the 40-year-old mark at that point.

Bob: Yeah, yeah. I am not just “it's noisy, it kind of sucks”, I'm the old man in the yard out there yelling, "Shut up, people." No, I'm just kidding.

Brad: You know what? My five-year-old son is right there with you, so I guess if you start out Fourth of July is noisy you end up thinking Fourth of July is noisy, but yeah, I hear you. Explosions all night long. Sometimes it's fun but it does get a little old, but either way, we're here. I got all my fingers too, so that's how I gauge a successful Fourth of July.

But let's get onto it. We got a pretty good show today. I'm excited to bring on our guest, Mr. David Rodenbaugh of Recapture. Hey David, welcome to the show.

Dave: Hi Brad. Hi Bob. Thanks for having me. I too also have all of my fingers from -

Brad: I was about to ask.

Dave: From the Fourth of July and I'm going to be the outlier too. I am above 40 and I still love blowing things up. So you know, there is that. But I will say, it's getting louder as I get older.

Brad: Yeah. Yeah. Everything gets louder. I was in the lake swimming with my son and you could tell the temperature of the lake because it was all kids. So that's like a clear indication again of a certain age. You can tell when the water is meant for adults or not.

Dave: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.

Brad: It's great getting old, but we're excited to have you on the show Dave. We got a lot to talk about. So David, why don't you tell everyone how you got into WordPress and specifically how you got into WooCommerce? We like to ask, how do you Do the Woo?

Dave: Do the Woo? Do I need to like go WOO? Is that a requirement?

Brad: Yes.

Dave: All right, well I've done that, so we're good now.

Yeah, so I've been part of WordPress community since about 2011. I started out and acquired a couple of plug-ins and built them up. One of them was a classifieds plug-in, the other one was a business directory plug-in. Those were acquired last year by Strategy11 with Steph and Steven Wells and Syed Balkhi and they're doing great with it. I'm loving the fact that they had taken this off and brought it to a whole new level that I wasn't able or willing to do at this point but part of the reason that I was looking to get out of that and onto something else is that I had already started Recapture and so we're an abandoned cart email marketing service and now SMS, and we support a variety of platforms but we are very much heavily invested in the WordPress space, including WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, Restrict Content Pro, and soon a very popular membership plug-in will be supported as well. So we are very much WordPress friendly.

Brad: Yeah, love to hear it. I want to dig in a little bit more into the different parts of the business too. Just for anyone listening that maybe isn't familiar with it. You talk about cart abandonment, but what is the core nature of the product under Recapture and what are you providing for WooCommerce stores and other commerce stores?

Dave: Yeah sure. So abandoned carts are basically something that troubles almost every single store out there and certainly if you're in a high volume store with WooCommerce, you've probably seen where you look and you find that you have lots of visitors to the site, but your overall sales on the other side don't seem to match the number of visitors. You might have 100,000 visitors in a week on your site, and you might only have 10 or 15 sales that comes out of that. So anything that's between those two numbers are people that abandon, and there's really two different flavors of that.

There's sort of abandoned carts and abandoned checkouts and abandoned checkouts are where somebody goes like all the way through your store, they add something to the cart, they make it all the way to the checkout page, and then they just fall off. There's lots of reasons why people get distracted. Might be that somebody was screaming at them to make dinner, their five-year-old came in the room and said, "Hey Mom, I'm hungry," and then they're like, "Okay, they can't check out now, they got something else to work on." They might have gotten surprised by the fees that you're charging or they didn't expect the taxes or the shipping expenses or whatever. All of those sorts of things can knock people off the page. Or that your checkout process was really onerous. Lots of stuff like that.

But to contrast that, then there's abandoned carts, where people add something to the cart, but then they never actually make it to the checkout. So it's a really, it's a two-headed problem right there and Recapture kind of handles all of that. Where we will actually go and track all these carts for you so first of all you can actually see how big the problem is and second we give you some tools that allow you to capture emails and/or mobile phone numbers now as of July 1 so that you can reach out to those people and have them come back and complete the sales on your site.

There might have been some objection that you could easily overcome, tell them maybe they don't trust your brand enough so you could send them some social proof, some reviews or testimonials about your site. Make them feel better about the purchase or whatever. So Recapture can help facilitate all of that sort of stuff and yeah, we've been doing that since 2015. We have like $169 million we've recovered for a variety of different stores, $1.6 billion in gross merchant volume processed, throw out some other weird statistics.

Brad: No big deal.

Dave: No big deal, yeah.

Brad: Those are impressive numbers for sure. I love the the visibility to it because we talk about abandoned cart and I appreciate the overview. I would assume most people listening are familiar but if not it's such a ... We've always said it's just such a kind of a no-brainer, right? If you have an ecommerce store, this should be whether it's your tool, whatever. But capturing people that have left for whatever reason should be pretty high up on your list. Because like you said, some of it is revenue there, some of it is yours to be had if you just ask for it in a thoughtful, hopefully automated way of some sort but the idea that not only does it track abandoned carts, get customers to come back and actually finish those purchases but you can literally just see the data right through the dashboard of, "Hey, we recovered this much revenue because of our system," or this much in a month or whatever, you can really see in realtime how well it's working for you. Which I think is hugely insightful if you're not already tracking this just to see what these numbers could potentially be.

Dave: Right. Yeah, like you said, it's money on the table. There's a lot of people that are surprisingly not totally aware of what the scope of that looks like and so like for the average store in Recapture, we pull back about 10%. If you're a store that's making pretty regular sales, we can get you somewhere between 8 and 12%, 10 is kind of the sweet spot.

Bob: Is there ever that in the history of this technology, was there ever even reluctance on the shop owner or the customer might have said something, the creepy feeling of how did you know this type of thing that I did leave something in there because I thought I just snuck away and nobody would follow me or has that just ... From the very get-go, was that like just a natural, "Oh yeah." Or does it depend on how you handle it.

Dave: Well, so I think historically it's shifted, right? So in 2013, abandoned cart recovery was sort of a "new" thing. I'll say new in quotes, but it wasn't like unheard of, but it definitely wasn't as ubiquitous as we know today. Nowadays, like customers are sophisticated. They kind of expect abandoned cart emails and the really sophisticated ones are basically gaming the abandoned cart emails and waiting for the discount because they know they're going to get hit with a series of them.

Brad: You know you've done that, Bob.

Bob: Yeah.

Brad: Yeah.

Dave: Yeah. I've done it too. I do it too. I totally, and it's not ... So that aspect of it clearly doesn't bother people. They know that they're probably going to get something, so they just sort of wait for the whole thing to come out and then they buy. That's great. So we've clearly shifted consumer behavior. But back in 2013, there was resistance. Both on the merchant and on the buyer's side, both. They didn't really understand. Some people thought it was creepy. There was a while when they would question is this email considered spam, is this considered part of the business. Nowadays it's a little clearer, it's operating in less of a gray area than it used to be. Pretty much all ESPs qualify abandoned cart emails as transactional, at least the first one. After that it gets to be promotional. So you get a chance to let people know, "Hey, you left the stuff in the cart and it definitely is hugely beneficial to both customers and the stores."

Brad: Yeah, I would imagine too just playing around with messaging and having a way that you can kind of build these campaigns and emails would help with that, right? In the sense of kind of informing the user and just making it clear what you're doing, what you're giving them. We've all seen emails that come across super spammy and emails that don't, and I think it's just a matter of probably the wording you use in many of these cases so they're clear on that.

Clearly this is the industry and areas that you roll in but just from my perspective I would agree. Like I think just it's almost expected at this point, so much so that I think a lot of people do game it and say, All right. Let me fill up my cart. Let me get to the step where I enter my email and I'll see you tomorrow," and see what shows up in your inbox, right? Usually within 30 minutes or an hour, there's your 10% off or your 20% off, come on back, and I got one the other day from Google because I was looking at the Chromecast and $30.00 but then it was $10.00 shipping and I was like, "Eh."

Sure enough I'm getting emails and then Amazon had it for $30.00 with free shipping, so guess where I went. That's going to sit in my cart until they abandon that, but it does seem to be highly effective, especially with the clients that we work closely. It's one of the number one recommendations because I mean ultimately it can be a very hands-off solution once you've set it up. I mean you should monitor it and make sure things are working and adjust it and do AB testing however you want but by in large for most stores I think once you get it up and working, it's just again taking that money that's sitting on the table that you wouldn't have otherwise had. It's kind of a no-brainer, and the cost that you're charging, make it even better, so ...

Dave: Yeah. I think if you're going to do an abandoned cart solution, you've got to tilt it in favor of the merchant. Our goal is like to say, "All right, we want to recover at least 20 times more than what you're paying us." Because that just is the only way that I feel like this just makes it a no-brainer. You got to make it so insanely valuable that they're like, "Oh yeah. Totally."

Sometimes that's hard. I don't know what your experience has been at WebDev, Brad, but we have a lot of merchants that want to just send one email and stop and so I'm kind of like, "Hey, you know, these people actually want to buy from you. So push it it a little bit more. Send maybe two or try three. See if you get more sales out of it." Like don't limit yourself, but there's definitely this weird reluctance among some merchants and a higher percentage than I would have ever expected before I got into this about, "Oh, I'm bothering my customers, I don't want to bug them. I don't want to spam them." If you're sending something that's relevant, you're not doing that.

Brad: Right. I mean it's a valid concern, at least to talk about it, right? Because yeah, at least they're aware that hey, we could come off spammy, right? We don't want to send an email every 20 minutes for the next week straight. So I'm glad to hear some companies are being thoughtful from that perspective but I agree. One email, you're right, people want this. They've already been to your site, they added something to their cart. So there's some kind of interest there, right? Something. So it's not a cold email by any means. You've given them your email address and you've interacted with their website, so in my opinion it's a bit of a warm email and one that you should be happy to see. If not you delete it and move on but yeah to that point, I think it's one of those things, just like ... Well anything in our industry, it's never just set it and forget it.

Yeah, you can set a baseline and it will work pretty well most likely. Like you said, maybe you're at 9%, 10%, but with a little bit of effort, maybe you can convert that up to 11, 12, 13% working on messaging or figuring out the cadence that works best for your customers in terms of those emails or maybe the time of day that they get it. If you have maybe an older demographic, maybe you want to send those emails a little bit earlier in the day rather than 10:00 at night. I don't know, like there's probably a lot of strategy I would imagine that goes into this.

Bob: Yeah, I was thinking of that. I was not only thinking of how long you wait afterwards, obviously you don't do it five minutes afterwards and people freak out and say, "Wow, I just left it." You have to cogitate on it a little bit but it also depends on the product, and impulse buying and all these other factors because are there certain products or certain industries where it doesn't work quite as well because people are looking and they're looking for it now and they're not going to be dawdling around for however much time before they get that follow-up, or is it just pretty much across the board it depends?

Dave: Oh it's deeply audience and vertical specific. So let me throw out a couple of examples. So we have a store on Recapture that they do aquarium supplies. One of their number one sellers is fish antibiotics. So you can imagine, this is a very time sensitive thing. So this guy really understands his audience. If somebody adds this product to their cart, they're not doing it because they're like, "Oh, maybe I'll buy this for Christmas." Like no, their fish are sick, they've got a problem right now, and they have to deal with it. So he knows if he hits them hard, he'll send an email at 30 minutes, two hours, six hours, 24 hours, and then follow up a day later than that. So he hits five emails in 48 hours because he knows they need to close this deal and deal with their sick fish, otherwise, they're in big trouble.

So he has really deeply understood his audience and like hits them with a higher frequency of emails. He's crushing it with that campaign. It's 33% conversion.

Brad: Yeah. That's clever.

Dave: Yeah, and it's beautiful. And then of course whatever they have in their cart, they'll just buy it too because they're like, "Oh well you know, I got a sick fish. They need a plant to be happy too." Whatever okay, great. It doesn't really matter, but he does very, very well with that and then other brands, like it's kind of a slow burn, especially if you're doing stuff with like luxury. They might be thinking about it but it's something that isn't super urgent for them to act on and they kind of have to just sit with it for a while and so sometimes it's about reminding them about the benefits of the product or telling them all the great things they'll get to do with the product when they finally get it or here is some blog articles about people that are using the product now and the kinds of stuff they're getting out of it. Those sorts of things and then eventually they're into buying it. But there are things that help generate that interest, around Black Friday everybody is like, "20 hours. 20 hours left. Hurry up, everybody clear out your carts."

But in the middle of the year, it's around seasonality and just whatever's going on with the people and that audience and that product at that time. The smart ones are doing promotions and then otherwise they're just trying to keep people top of mind with other campaigns to say, "Hey, we're out here. You were shopping at us and maybe you're still interested in these hobby things over here. Maybe it's not a burning thing but you're still interested so we want to let you know that we're still out here as well."

Bob: Yeah. That's interesting, the first example because the messaging. I mean you know, how he's putting these things out but the messaging would be so important. I mean you don't send a message and say, "Whoa. Don't want to see your fish belly-up. Hurry up and buy this stuff or something." I mean you got to put that importance on it, but you got to do it in a nice way too that they understand. They don't see you playing on the fact that if I don't do this soon there's going to be a problem.

Dave: Right, yeah. There's a clear product urgency that can be expressed. I don't want to say exploited, because that's not the right term. But you can definitely push the urgency button at that point. If you do that with an exercise bike, it's okay, you can still be fat next week, right? You're not going to die immediately from that. But it's a different thing. So it's very audience specific and it's clear that when you're sending these emails, it doesn't really matter what kinds of emails you're sending or what tool you're using or whether you're doing broadcasts or promotions or the triggered emails like abandoned carts, the tighter and more personal that you can make it, more relevant, the higher that conversion is because the person getting it understands that it's relevant to them, that it belongs to them, that they need something there and that they'll do something with it. That's why this guy gets 33% conversion rates on that one email.

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And now let's head back to the show.

Brad: Yeah, our audience is a lot of creators and developers and implementers, and a really good takeaway from really the advice you said is to work with your clients. No one is going to understand the product better than them. It's their store, or whoever the owner is. Really sit down with the owner and understand from them their products and what they're selling, because they're going to know things like that that I wouldn't know.

Like that's a great example about the fish food. I wouldn't think about that because I'm not in the food industry or I don't have fish, I'm not into that, I wouldn't think about that. But as soon as you said it, of course that makes sense, right? There's urgency. Maybe give them a discount. Maybe upgrade their shipping or something to say, "Hey, we know this is important to you. It's medicine for your fish. We'll give you free overnight shipping if you come back." So working with your clients and really sitting down, more than just turning these things on, but really understanding a little bit more about their products and what sells and who buys certain things and what's more time-sensitive versus not could ultimately really set them up for more successful abandonment purchases down the road. So really good advice I think.

Dave: Yeah. We try to make it super easy to get started. So you sign up with us and like your campaigns are ready to go, you just click to turn them on. But because we don't know your store, we don't know your audience, we don't know your product and there's really no way for us to sort of generate that, we're not going to be using GPT3 to create a bunch of content for you. It's going to be nonsense if we did anyway. You have to go back and specifically add some stuff in. We could tell you, like put this in here and put this in here and put this in here, and it will work much better, but you still have to have that knowledge and so when somebody comes to us and says, "Hey Dave, our emails, they don't seem to be at the level that we went them to be at." I'm like, "Okay. Great. Here's the next step we can take," and personalization is it, and just understanding that audience connection to your product or your store makes a huge difference.

Brad: Yeah. It's no different than looking at like SEO, like yeah, you can turn on Yoast SEO and it will help. But when you really start to configure it to the type of content you have and the audience you're speaking to and really take it to the next level, that's where you start to see some massive improvements in ranking and organic traffic. So it's similar. Turn it on, yeah, it's going to be better than what you have, certainly. But you can take it even further. Spend a little bit more time with it.

Dave: That's a great analogy.

Brad: I'm curious about how the landscape is in your industry. I know one of the bigger players that probably many of the people on the show are familiar with is Jilt, and about a month ago they announced that they are shutting it down, at least shutting down the Jilt that we've known. It seems like they might be pivoting to some other products but Jilt was kind of the big abandoned cart, one of the big abandoned cart players in our space. I'm curious how that's impacted your business. Hopefully for the better I would imagine.

Dave: Well yeah. I mean it stirred up my June, that's for sure. I was thinking I was going to have kind of a mellow, quiet. June, until June 8th hit.

Brad: Good to be busy.

Dave: It is good to be busy. So Jilt being a longtime competitor of ours, and they've been easily around as long as we have if not maybe a little bit longer. I think they've started in 2013 or something like that, we've been around since 2015 and I have mad respect for Max and Beka and the product that they've created. I mean they made a really amazing experience and everybody that used Jilt had nothing but good things to say.

So this caught us by as much surprise as it did anybody else and as soon as we heard this, we were of course very concerned to make sure that these customers had places to land because unfortunately in the WooCommerce space or EDD or Restrict Content Pro or other places in WordPress, the support isn't the same as it would be on other platforms like at Shopify or Magento or BigCommerce. So the options that are there just aren't quite the right fit for WordPress. So we were already here, so we wanted to make sure that we could help folks that are out there doing EDD stores. I had two EDD stores for a long time and when CartHook shut down I don't know, three years or something like that, we were using CartHook and at that time I knew the pain that it caused.

So I felt for these customers that are out there and wanted to make sure that we could help them. Obviously it's a benefit to Recapture too, but that's made my June quite a bit different than I expected it to be. So we've spent a lot of time working on migration tools and I reached out to Beka and we got on their recommended products list and we set up migrations and we are helping customers right now, moving them over with concierge service and stuff like that. We're scrambling to keep up with it, but it's definitely been a busy time.

Brad: Yeah, I think it was surprising. Jilt was a pretty big supporter of WordCamp I remember for years, they were kind one of those logos you were used to seeing at a number of camps across, well the U.S., the ones I frequent anyways, or used to, when we used to have them.

Dave: WordCamps? What are those? My memory's only about six months long, so I've forgotten all of that at this point.

Brad: Yeah. Everything pre last year is a blur. Whole new chapter, but anyways, yeah. It's interesting when something like that seems like you just assume they're going to be around forever because that's just what you're used to seeing out there and you know a lot of people are using them are shifting to something different it sounds like. But one door closes opens up a door for you, right?

So that's cool to hear that you're helping, you're there to support those clients if they're still looking. It looks like they're going to support it for a little bit longer so I would say if you're still out there using Jilt, certainly this looks like a good option to switch over, You can reach out to Dave and talk about the product there and see if it's a good fit for you but yeah, always interesting when something like that happens. So I'm just curious if it was like a tidal wave or if you've seen much difference from that. It's only been about a month though.

Dave: Yeah, there has been a huge spike in interest and now we're seeing like a number of sign-ups. Like any service, some customers are just totally quiet and they're doing it on their own and they're totally happy. And other customers are like very concerned, they've got a ton of questions, and then there are customers that are kind of in between that get stuck in some spot and then you hear from them. So we've gotten a mix of all three of those for sure, but if I looked at my overall numbers of people migrating over, it has spiked quite a bit in the last four weeks here. Particularly in the folks that wanted to do the migration and it took us a while to sort of figure out like what does this migration look like, what's Jilt's export format look like, how easy is it for us to pull that stuff in.

Thankfully it was not too much work on our part, since they're using HTML and we can pull in their HTML and migrate the tags that they might have in the templates and stuff like that.

It was less work than we feared it would be. You take your engineer brain and you're like, "Oh my god. There's tons of work here. We have no idea how bad this is going to be." But yeah, we worked our way through that and now we kind of have the migration stuff under control and we did a release. So we had to kind of do this catch-up as soon as they announced on June 8, we had some stuff in the pipeline that we were planning to release but I didn't have everything totally baked yet and then on June 9 it's like, "Okay. We are accelerating all those plans to the forefront. Everything gets released as soon as possible."

So concurrent with talking with Beka about what's going on with Jilt and how can we deal with the export formats and stuff like that, we're like pushing everything out the door, trying to set up all the marketing, all of the documentation, et cetera, et cetera. So yeah. We managed to get to a sane level of feature parity with Jilt so that customers that were migrating were going to be able to do so without losing to much in there. And then we've got some plans in July to sort of fix what we weren't able to scramble out in June.

Brad: Yeah, this is the fun side of entrepreneurship, the expect the unexpected and be ready to pivot, right? So everything, as much as you can plan ahead, there's always going to be that reactionary component that you can never plan for because you can't predict the future and clearly Jilt shutting down is one of those, when opportunity knocks, you know? You got to open it up and say hi and that's what you guys have done here. So I even see on Jilt, they have a nice Recapture migration guide so you can go over here and walk through the guide and get moved over to your platform.

Dave: Yes.

Brad: Very cool stuff.

Dave: Big thanks to Beka and the team, the customer support team over there for getting that up as quick as they were able to. So that was really awesome of them to do that. We really appreciate that.

Brad: Yeah. That's great. Doing right by their clients.

Bob: So in hindsight, there really is nothing you're looking back on this that you can prepare because something like this as Brad, tt's what you don't plan for. You don't have this whole contingency plan put together that says in case some business goes, decides to make a pivot themselves and we get all their customers coming our way, then we should do this, this, this, this. Anything that you feel that somebody could plan for that or is it just pretty much ... Like Brad said, "Hey, this is the life of entrepreneurship. You pivot when you need to pivot and you tackle what you need to tackle."

Dave: Well, that's a great question Bob, and I don't know that I've got an awesome answer for that one but I will say a couple of things that I think positioned me well for this. So there's a quote that I always think of from Thomas Edison, "Success is where 10,000 hours of preparation meet with one opportunity." This is very much like that particular case. I looked at all of the platforms we could support and it was obvious when I inherited the service back in 2016 that I needed to do some platform expansion and there were clear paths to move forward. It didn't support Shopify so we added Shopify. It didn't support Woo so I added Woo. I had friendships with the Sandhills guys, so I was like, "I am an EDD guy. This place is a natural fit for Recapture. Let's add support for that." I'm already in the WordProcess community so let's deepen our connections to the WordPress community with Restrict Content Pro and other integrations that we're working on and stuff.

So we put in the work but part of that work was a kind of serendipity because the service was built in a way that you could build integration points pretty quickly and pretty easily just by knowing like you have to hook into this and this and this. So that's a question of let's find those three things on this platform, so Easy Digital Downloads has a different set of what those three things are than Woo and they'd be different on Shopify and different on Magento.

So if you could identify those things, then it's easy to build that small bit to bridge to your service because the rest of it all happens behind the scenes. So for us to add in an integration, we've got it down to less than 40 hours of work and it kind of depends on the integration at this point. Like another WordPress integration, I think we can do in half that time just because there's enough knowledge about it. But if we get to something that's a little more exotic, it might be back to the 40 again. So that kind of depends.

Dave: So there was definitely a serendipity, and I had actually talked with the Sandhills folks earlier, they had already done a deal with Jilt and I came to them after that deal was done and I said, "Hey, would you guys be willing to put us up on your page and promote us as well?" They said, "Well, we can't really do that. We've already got this deal in place with Jilt." Well fast forward a year, we already had that conversation, then Jilt says, "Hey, we're shutting down."

Suddenly EDD is in scramble mode and they're like, "Well wait a minute. Dave talked to us a while ago about this, so let's go revisit that again and see if that is something that we can revive," because their customers were in a tight spot and they needed to have something good to say, something positive to send their customers to. So in that sense, being prepared makes a huge difference for these kind of opportunities that appear. So I call that luck surface area, that's a term I borrowed from Justin Vincent of TechZing.

The more you can put yourself out there, the more things that you're trying to do, the more connections you make in the community, the more people that you talk to, the more partnerships that you form, and it's not like things happen immediately, but something that you start today might turn into something a year from now or two years from now or whatever. But if you don't build that today you get nothing in two years.

Brad: Nope.

Dave: It's a two-way street too. I don't want to make this sound like, "Oh yeah, I did all these things and now I'm benefiting." That's not really the point of it at all because it very much goes both ways.

Brad: What do they say, the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago and then the second best time is today?

Dave: Yep. Yep.

Brad: Maybe on a more extreme level but I absolutely get your point. Forming relationships, networking, connecting with people, I've been doing that a lot, ever since starting WebDev and it's one of the reasons I'm confident we're at where we're at because of a lot of that. Grew up with a lot of other companies in the space as we were kind of figuring all this out together. I still do, I still have regular check-ins with peers and friends in the industry. Just to say hi, and some of that stuff can turn into something or other times it's just to say hi.

So it's good advice there I think, it's really advice to plan ahead as best you can. You can't predict the future but setting some things in place like the foundation for your integrations and stuff, setting that knowing that yeah, stuff is going to come, it's going to happen. That is definitely setting you up for success.

Dave: Yep.

Bob: Yeah, and a lesson in there too is don't burn your bridges, I mean.

Dave: Oh yeah.

Brad: That's exactly why I'm co-hosting because Bob has burnt every single bridge and I'm the only person that would say yes.

Bob: You know, it's hopeless. I don't know what to do half the time. So I just get a co-host on and I can just say, "Hey, well you just talk to the people because they don't want to talk to me anymore."

Dave: That's too much.

Brad: Alrighty, well that was very interesting. I love hearing how that all played out for you. I think it's about time we wrap up things. Where can people connect with you if they want to reach out to you and learn more about Recapture?

Dave: Sure. So you can reach out to me on the Twitter's @daverodenbaugh and we'll put that in the show notes here because spelling that can be a little bit of a challenge. You can also find me at Recaptureio on Twitter as well or you can check us out at on the interwebs.

Bob: Cool. Alrighty. Well everyone, appreciate you all tuning in. I like to thank our pod friends again. You heard all about them mid-way through the show, Yoast and OSTraining. You can check them out at and So again, thank you so much Dave for joining us. It was a pleasure having you back on. I know you've been on in the past and I'm sure you'll be on in the future, so I appreciate the time.

Brad: Thanks Dave. Great show.

Dave: Thanks for having me guys. I appreciate it. It was fun.