Converse allow you to customise sneakers online now.

Which is great!

It’s great that they have developed this.

And that they’ve launched it.

But what’s not great.

Is that they’re not ready.


I actually really like Converse.

As a brand and as a product.

So the opportunity to get a pair of Chucks.

A design and a quality that I know already.

With Izobel’s name on the side.

And the ability to customise the shoe design.

That sounded cool!

So that’s what I did.

Here’s how the experience went.


  1. is a funky place. It looks good. And that’s fine.
  2. The customisation engine is imperfect. Some customisation shows as-you-go. Some doesn’t. It seems that some customisation cancels out another kind of customisation. So you can’t have both. But I am not sure. And it wasn’t clear to me exactly how the name would appear on the side. So all of that is a bit crap. It’s not been user tested properly. So I didn’t actually know exactly what I was going to get. Nevertheless – on I went.
  3. The product. On arrival from China. Is literally stuffed into a brown outer package. No inner. So converse are giving me a  higher level product, with a much lower level experience. They are reminding me that these shoes have been spat  out of a factory. And this is such a shame. It feels like they are user testing on customers. And that’s not right.
  4. A final point is that the email correspondence from China (I chased the order) was quite nice. Responsive. But not well written and contained spelling mistakes. I don’t want the customisation arm of a business to write to me with spelling mistakes. It makes me uneasy.

Guinea Pigs.

‘Go before you are ready’.

We hear the a lot in business..

And you know what.

I agree.

But as with all things.

There is a line that defines a level of quality above which it is acceptable to take money off people for products and services.

And that same line also defines a level of quality below which it is not acceptable to take money off people for products and services.

Business owners have to know where that line is.

And Converse.

Because they are treating customers like Guinea Pigs.

Do not.

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