Chris Thomas on Data-Based Idea Validation and Building A Virtual Business On The Side

Written by: Reinder de Vries, November 18 2016, in Interviews

In this episode of The Reinder Show I’m joined by Chris Thomas from, who explains how exactly he built his e-commerce store selling earmuffs for sleeping.

It turns out that validating a product idea for an e-commerce store is very similar to validating an app product idea! Chris used tools like AdWords, Google Suggest and Kickstarter to prove that his “earmuffs + eyepads” product idea was worth pursuing – and he turned out to be right.

Listen to this episode to find out:

  • How to use freely available market data to validate your ideas
  • How to build an MVP with Kickstarter
  • Why tenacity and execution are so important
  • Where to look for funding for your startup ideas
  • Why feedback on your ideas, and sharing them, can save your business
  • What it’s like to run a virtual business, without an office, from anywhere in the world
  • How to use reviews from competitor’s products to carve out marketshare for yourself

Mentioned in this episode:

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Reinder de Vries

Reinder de Vries is a professional iOS developer. He teaches app developers how to build their own apps at Since 2009 he has developed a few dozen apps for iOS, worked for global brands and lead development at several startups. When he’s not coding, he enjoys strong espresso and traveling.

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