At Shopify, we’re always excited by the incredible shops that grow into successful businesses. That’s why we created the Build A Business Competition – to celebrate and reward those successes.
This year marks our fourth annual competition. Our partnership with The Huffington Post as well as 10 well-known and respected mentors has meant that we’ve blown every other year out of the water.
With two months left to join, we already have more entrants than we did at the end of last year’s competition. But it’s still anyone’s game: although the last day to enter is March 31, you have until the end of May to ramp up your revenue and produce a two-month period of solid sales. Every entrant is judged by their best two months of sales.
If you have a business idea that’s been brewing inside of you, launch it on Shopify and you could win $50,000 plus a VIP trip to NYC to meet your mentor.
Let’s take a look at the competition so far. Our entrants are divided into 10 different categories:
Here’s a highlight reel of some of this year's most interesting entrants:
Going From the Corporate World to a Blown Glass Studio
Entrepreneur Lee Ware explains how he beat five years of depression by leaving a job he hated to purchase a blown glass studio. Ware provides the steps he used to facilitate his life change.
How Building the Next Doorbell Turned Into Building a Business
The DoorBot is a video doorbell for your smartphone. Entrepreneur Jamie Siminoff came up with the idea after getting fed up with missing important packages while working in his garage workshop.
3 Things Missing From Women’s Bike Apparel and How We’re Changing It
ILADORA Apparel explains how they integrated strength, style and beauty into a pair of women’s bike pants. Finally, cyclist apparel that women aren’t embarrassed to wear in the office – with cool features like magnetized cuffs to protect from bike grease.
How These Entrepreneurs Are Reinventing the Map
Great Little Place is a UK-based startup that makes their living sharing hidden gems within cities – the great little places that everyone loves. They also build limited edition illustrated prints mapping out those treasured spots.
Idahoans Crowdfund a Giant Potato Drop for New Year’s Eve
Move over, Time’s Square. This year, a group of Idaho residents organized a community event where a giant potato dropped at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve. It drew thousands of spectators and global media coverage. The neatest part? They used Shopify to crowdfund the money they needed to run the event.
4 Lessons I Learned in the Shark Tank
Julie Busha is the heart and soul of Slawsa – a condiment that’s a cross between salsa and coleslaw, and is now sold in thousands of stores across North America. When she was featured on ABC’s Shark Tank last year, she didn’t secure a deal with one of the sharks, but she did walk away with some lessons that she shared with us.
14-Year-Old Girl Successfully Launches Adorable Pillow Startup
High school student Sydney Loew designed her first stuffed animal for an entrepreneurship class. She fell in love with being in business, and recruited the help of her family to launch a Shopify store. That store now sells a variety of Poketti Plushies, which have a pocket on the back to contain cell phones, notebooks, or headphones.
How We Turned Pinterest Into Our Biggest Traffic Driver
Southern Swim is a swimwear company that highlights the culture of going to the lake, floating in the river or hanging out by the pool – not just surfing the ocean. Their photography became very important because they wanted to promote a lifestyle, not just their products. The founder shares his tips on how he used the power of Pinterest to push sales to his Shopify store.
There are plenty more fascinating stories in the pipeline, and we’ll soon be sharing some Q&A sessions with each of our 10 mentors.
If you haven’t entered the Build A Business competition yet, now is your chance! There’s never been a better time to be an entrepreneur.