A Shopify success story… ARgENTUM — where science meets poetry

A Shopify success story… ARgENTUM — where science meets poetry

7 min read

ARgENTUM is a luxurious brand of skincare products. Their stunning Shopify store is custom-built to tell their beautiful story. We interviewed the power couple behind the brand.

The story of Joy & Sam

Sam and Joy from ARgENTUM

Your serendipitous crossing of paths is a delight to read in the about section of your website.
We won’t deny readers that pleasure. Instead we will ask:

What gets you up in the morning?

While our 2 year old is, in all honesty, what gets us up in the morning... It’s an eagerness to get involved in what we have set out for that day:

Gym… Time with Jax.. Time alone on the drive to work…. Then time at the new store (More on that later). It’s about the excitement of seeing the dream we have been building come to life. We are integrally involved in creating something every day.

A creative director once told me, “It doesn’t get more personal than what we do. If you’re passionate about what you do and believe in it, it doesn’t get more personal than that.” If it’s personal you care about it. If you care about it, it gives you reason to give so much of your time to it, as we do. The thing ends up shaping you and you end up shaping it.

Is your business and life two separate things, or one?

We do have a good balance, but they are totally intertwined. The business exists because of our lives and our lives are what they are because of our business. The business is incredibly personal to us and we love it very much. It allows us the time we have with our family and friends, and affords us our experiences. That’s what we are here for right? The experiences.

Soaking up some poetic science

Your brand is beautifully intertwined. We love your slogan, “Where science meets poetry.”

Tell us about this marriage of product and brand?

ARgENTUM is the result of a great deal of time, in depth conversation, and creative thought processes, which made it what it means to our colleagues, our suppliers, and our customers, today.

— each card delivered by chance but always with love —

Everything we do is driven by the ARgENTUM archetypes, the belief that 12 become one. Through the years, these energies have affected our products, our website, our writing style, typography choices, and the psychological aspects.

Argentum Apothecary

The science behind each of our products is phenomenal. We are one of the most scientific natural products on the market. When we talk about poetry and science meeting, we talk about creating a space where there can be love and feeling around something you can use that can actually benefit you. It’s bringing together the illustrations, the poetry, the psychological aspects, and the science.

Science meets poetry is the beautiful amalgamation of everything that we are as a brand. A brand is about feeling, so experience is everything. We work tirelessly to create experiences. It’s like falling in love across a crowded room, whether with a person or a painting. You want to know more.

Why Shopify?

There are so many reason why…

  • There is a team of people constantly developing the platform and offering support
  • The backend automation and integration of accounting software and inventory management
  • It’s easy for our finance manager to integrate with the accounting software
  • Reporting is brilliant
  • Being able to extend its capabilities through Shopify experts, like ShopCreatify
  • The ability to fully represent the aesthetic of the brand
  • Creating an experience while having solid backend support
  • It’s constantly evolving
  • Content management wise, there are a few work arounds you have to find to make it work well, but it eventually becomes second nature.
  • While we will always do our due diligence, I don’t think we will ever leave Shopify.
  • It’s a platform that always recognizes it can do better and you can’t help but appreciate that

Why did you go the 100% custom designed Shopify store route?

Because we are ARgENTUM and we don’t do anything off the shelf (Laughs). Our website could be more sales driven. But our priority is to create a feeling and share a positive experience. Custom builds help you do that. If our website looks like someone else’s, it just doesn’t tell our unique story. There was no other option but to go custom.

ARgENTUM Products

Chicken or the egg?

Do you attribute your brand’s success to going the custom route or did you need to go the custom route because of the success of your brand?

A bit of both; they run alongside each other. The decision to go custom is more because of our brand’s DNA. It’s the only way we could go. It needed to be an extension of who we and ARgENTUM are. We are not “normal,” whatever normal is. Its uniqueness was the logical way to go. Then the custom design came in to it’s own and helped us grow.


Have you got any regrets going the custom designed shopify store route?

Absolutely no regrets at all. We would outright recommend it. The cost is completely worth it and I wont even over talk it. As mentioned earlier, there are a few things that take a little longer for us to get done. But custom design all the way, for sure.

What would you tell an aspiring online merchant ‘the recipe for success’ is?

Be true to who you are. Whatever your product or service is, be true to that. Be 100% real, honest, and truthful. Anything less than authentic… customers pick up on.

Everybody's recipe for success is individual. Of course, there are things that work across the board. A good product, a good visual, a good approach, a good financial structure, good support, a good logistics and supply chain, the ability to monitor your inventory, a good plan, great campaigns. All these things are ingredients that help something succeed…

However, you have to go through the decision making process to bring it all together. We have an idea, we have ingredients… how should we package that? The materials, the shape, the tactile experience, the psychological experience, the branding and so on… From the beginning, we knew we needed to pull all these ingredients together in a narrative, that's what we did.

If you don't know enough about what you're doing, work with somebody that knows more. Take time to find and align yourself with the right experts though. We spoke to many before we chose ShopCreatify. By and large that was because, on speaking to Ross, it wasn't just Ross's ability to talk me through what we could do. It was Ross himself. Ross and I have shared many a conversation about many different things that have absolutely nothing to do with ecommerce. It was a delight.

ARgENTUM Science Page

What’s ‘in the cards’ for ARgENTUM?

That's a big question…

We have new products coming out including an eye serum.

We have 13 fragrances, which use a water based carrier, no alcohol. There's a fragrance for each archetype. The 13th is called Become – the 12 become one. The fragrances actually come in a collection that's one of 13 in a volume of fragrances. If you line them all up, it looks like an encyclopaedic range on the shelf. And each one of those is an individual popup book.

There will be smaller discovery kits for the fragrances, new gift sets, a cosmetics bag, a complete packaging redesign, everything now comes delivered in a book box, and every product comes with an illustrated archetype card, not just the hero products.

We've moved into our new retail store in Notting Hill, 119 Portland Road. It’s been stripped and we're just about to start the refurb, which is really cool. It’s the evolutionary step for ARgENTUM, from luxury skincare to luxury lifestyle. This flagship store is where we will tell our story exactly how we want it told.

There will be a beautiful mural on the outside and we’re turning the downstairs area into treatment rooms, using our products. Our coffee shop is opening, where we'll have silver shots and copper shots, and even our own coffee blend.

The store will host wonderful events, like live poetry evenings, which we will call ‘across a crowded room.’ We work with musician Tom Rosenthal and he's absolutely wonderful. We're hoping we can do more with him. So poetry across a crowded room… music across a crowded room… and so on.

Finally, we’re not technically an independent anymore. Last year, we were working on a deal with our Asian territory partners, they are now actually our business partners. There's an awful lot that will be happening in the world of duty free.

So yes, a lot going on. It’s really exciting!

Sam’s final nugget of wisdom:

If you look at a brand as a child, you give birth, you love it and care for it, you nurture it. Then, baby becomes toddler, toddler takes steps. You set boundaries for protection. They grow a little more, run around and ride scooters – It's another level of learning not only for them, but for you. Then they become 8, 9… 10… and they're off into different things. They become a teenager, an adult… then they're off at university. At that point, your child has become their own person.

A brand is similar. You give birth to this baby, which you help nurture and grow, and you yourself are learning along the way. All these things are happening until this brand, your baby, has a life of its own. People feel different things when they engage with it, and talk about it. It's at that point you realize that maybe you can step back and let it be its own person. On this journey, don’t forget to trust experts and accept help.

It takes a village, right?

Daniel Connor
Daniel Connor

Hi, I’m Daniel. I was just a Creative Copywriter until ShopCreatify handed me the green pill and I entered the Shopify Matrix. ShopCreatify is basically my Morpheus. Let's see how deep the rabbit hole goes...