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eCommerce Operations Lessons from a SaaS CEO with Dennis Roland Mortensen of x.ai

Dennis Mortensen, CEO and founder at x.ai, jumped onto the ecom ops podcast to share insights on how SaaS companies are creating better alternatives for eCom operators, his secret recipe of SaaS-based eCom automation and how x.ai can help streamline eCom ops. To check out other episodes, click here.

Key Facts

  • Dennis’s LinkedIn
  • x.ai’s website
  • Dennis has spent over five years working on x.ai 
  • Dennis has been doing startups for twenty-four years
  • x.ai is Dennis’s 5th venture 
  • Dennis started as an employee at a company which later went bankrupt, leaving him with the assets. He used this money to start his first-ever startup

Key Takeaways

  • x.ai is a smart SaaS tool which handles your meetings without having to do it manually 
  • Dennis talks about how their team transitioned from manual processes to automation, which includes the usage of a unique IP (internet protocol)
  • x.ai even allows the users to email their agents and directly tell them their schedule so that x.ai can take care of the meetings and schedule from there onwards
  • What makes x.ai different is that they see themselves as a scheduling engine, which lets the users connect all their calendars, so x.ai can extract the extra space to schedule the meetings in 
  • x.ai cares about the privacy of its users and so lets them control whatever data they have exposed. x.ai allows them to customise the whole experience 
  • Dennis initially wanted to work for IBM as he studied computer science and did not want to be an entrepreneur. All of his close family members are entrepreneurs, so he knew how hard it was 
  • Streamlining eCom operations in business is essential; hence x.ai helps its users in streamlining the process with its scheduling and automation capability  
  • Identification of processes that you need to automate is critical to analyse 
  • Dennis talks about proliferating skus as his biggest pet peeves in eCom ops.  He talks about the three “skus” that they have, free edition, individual edition ad-team edition. He says that his job is to figure out ways to take advantage of these existing skus without new product development
  • He mentions that inventing new SKUs will mean sitting with those SKUs till the end without being able to get rid of them. It slows down pace as you move forward
  • eCom businesses are better at immediate experimentation and campaigns, whereas SaaS companies are better at continued support. Dennis says that we can both learn from each other 
  • One of the things that are event-driven and happens a lot with retailers is abandoned carts. x.ai has dozens of programs on particular events schemed on when and how they happen

Key Resources 

Dennis’s key influences 

Dennis gave a very detailed answer to this question mentioning two kinds of people who teach a person a lot. The first kind being authors whose book you have read which left you a different person. The second one is intimate and close friends who you can open up to.

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