Under the Hood of Michael Bower

Posted by: Ashley Thursday, December 17th, 2015

michael-bower-headshotMichael Bower (@falloutofatree) is Founder and CEO of Sellry (@sellrycommerce), a technically-oriented development agency that specializes in all things eCommerce. Sellry strives to take eCommerce to the next level by providing its clients with the best services and solutions they need to excel.

Within our interview, Michael shares what tasks he takes on throughout a typical work day, gives encouraging thoughts on the future of Magento and much more.

Can you describe what you really do at work?

I’m a very hands-on business owner, wearing all kinds of hats from sales engineering to pinch-hitting on development activities. I love it! I’m constantly learning and get to see a lot of things move forward at the same time. I also head our quality department. The unifying concept is that everything I do relates to helping my clients stabilize and grow their ecommerce.

If money was no object, what would you spend your days doing?

There’s nothing I like more than helping good-minded individuals and organizations get on track and create positive change in the world. In some small way, what I’m doing now is in line with this, but I’d love to have far more time and resources to put toward getting involved with worthy causes.

In your spare time what do you get up to, and how do you balance this with your workload?

Beyond spending time with my lovely wife and daughter, I run, climb and bike a fair amount and go snowboarding any time I can. I am fortunate to live in a part of Colorado where nearly every day is absolutely beautiful out of doors. In a previous life I was a fairly serious musician, and I still like pretending I can imitate Chris Thile on the mandolin. These activities are relaxing and interleave well with work.

How do you see the future evolving for Magento and the eCommerce space in general?

Magento’s brilliance was to provide a single platform that a merchant can grow with all the way. Now with Magento 2 we’re seeing an even more solid foundation for growth, and I’m excited to see where this will lead.

We’re clearly at the point with eCommerce where the word “electronic” is a given. In my opinion, eCommerce merchants should keep the “e” because now it’s all about ENGAGEMENT — finding ways to deliver more compelling value to customers, and doing it more consistently.

Short term, I think this can happen via employing better and more targeted ways to message customers at just the right time, personalized and richer content and social media as a distribution channel.

Thinking a little farther out, things get even more exciting as the barriers between the electronic and physical environments of the shopper come down. We’ve already seen this with beacons, NFC and virtual dressing rooms. In the future I expect to see the user interface of commerce blending into a broader virtual / augmented reality experience or even disappearing completely via predictive algorithms.

What is usually your last thought before falling asleep?

I feel really thankful for having such a great family, friends, team and clients.

Who is your role model, and why?

Many people come to mind. Of those living today, both my parents are role models. They are the type of people who will give you the shirt off their back…extremely others-minded. Historically, I really like the character Daniel in the Bible. He was such a solid, wise, humble yet assertive man — and dramatically influenced two of the most powerful empires in the world.

Whats the worst thing you have to do as part of your job role?

I really hate when I have to fire a worker (or, for that matter, a client).

What motivates you?

Hearing that I’ve made a difference for somebody.

What is the most played song on your MP3 player or phone?

Lay Me Down by Chris Tomlin

Would you like to plug anything?

http://ecommerceqa.tv – 10-12 minute weekly podcast for busy eCommerce store owners and managers. Each week we tackle a line of questions on a particular topic.

http://sellry.com/articles – Articles my team and I write and curate about ecommerce.

http://mage.ninja – My new loadtime / conversion optimization service

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