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Website Builder, Ecommerce and Mobile Apps Specialized for Running Retailers

Published on | Rob Anderson | News & Updates

Before the turn of the century, Dave Finger ran high school cross country with Jon Beck in Fairport, New York. Years later, Jon founded Red Coyote Running and Fitness in Oklahoma, and tapped his old teammate Dave to design the website for his store. Word got around (as it does in this industry) and running stores across the country leveraged Dave's expertise to build their websites as well.

Fast forward to 2018, and a contingent of these stores approached Dave with a problem: due to the nature of run specialty, ecommerce felt nearly impossible. Between navigating complex POS systems and multi-dimensional grids of products, it took far too much time, effort, and money to stand up and maintain a presentable ecommerce presence.

These storeowners posed a challenge: could Dave build an industry-specific ecommerce solution that solved the problem of untenable maintainability by leveraging automation in an innovative way? Dave posed this same question to Jeremy Tellier and Rob Anderson, who had worked together with him in enterprise software development. Together in 2019, they founded the Run Free Project to tackle the automated ecommerce challenge and create digital tools, such as mobile apps and omnichannel solutions. These tools, historically available only to national retailers with deep pockets, were made accessible to run specialty retailers in an affordable, powerful, automated package through Run Free.

Dave, the company's CEO, is a UX designer by trade, while Jeremy, our CTO, is a veteran full-stack developer. I am COO, and have decades of experience in product development and marketing. Each of us are dedicated, albeit lackluster runners.

Run Free’s support team and staff of developers run the gamut when it comes to experience, from database administrators to MMA fighters and everything in-between. Regardless of background, the entire team shares a commitment to automating and simplifying the tools and knowledge the run specialty industry requires to meet the challenge of an evolving landscape of consumer behavior in the digital world.

The Run Free Project is a web-based software as a service (SaaS) platform that acts as the command center for our suite of products. All of our solutions integrate seamlessly together and are managed from a single dashboard.

  • Website builder: An easy-to-use, free block-based website builder that enables running stores with no coding experience to create and easily update stunning, secure, responsive websites that look great on every device.
  • Integrated ecommerce: We make running store ecommerce easy with the only solution that syncs with your point of sale (POS) system, automating inventory, orders, gift cards, customer records, and more. When you add a new product into your POS, it automatically adds itself to your ecommerce store, pulling in pictures and a description from our Metabase, all with no delays or human intervention necessary. Plus, automate social media marketplaces, integrate 50+ third party solutions, and offer your customers an endless aisle of product selections with our connection to your favorite vendor inventories with Relay at no extra charge.
  • Mobile loyalty app: Your customers can have an immersive experience with your custom-branded app on Apple and Android devices. Rewards for in-store and online purchases are redeemed in-app, as are event registrations and check-ins. By integrating with popular fitness trackers, our app provides an avenue to gamify your customers' workouts and customize how they interact with your brand. Plus, group tagging and customizable push notifications ensure maximum engagement. Mobile app users are 10 times more likely to engage with push notifications than email, and those who use the app to check into events are 51% more likely to shop with you on the same day.

Running stores have the freedom to choose whichever combination of these products works best for them. No matter which they choose, our support staff is available 24/7/365 to help, and our development roadmap is determined entirely by our member store feedback. We listen to your ideas and make them a reality.

The Run Free Project is one of the featured associate brands at Runchella this month, and we'll be hosting a series of workshops focused on learning, using, and mastering our tools as well as instruction around gamification and SEO, both enormous avenues for driving engagement from a running store's customer base online. Check out

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