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Interview with a Shopify Store Owner: Tom Joseph Burden

CEO of GrypMat INC, Tom Joseph Burden, offers some words on what inspired his entrepreneurship and how using Shopify has elevated his business.
Joseph Burden, CEO of GrypMat INC

by Andrew Rosensweig

March 22, 2018

Frequent viewers of Shark Tank may recognize Tom Joseph Burden from being featured on the program and awarded funding from Mark Cuban. He is the CEO of Grypmat INC. While the ingenuity and simplicity of his product received the the high-profile exposure and funding, any webstore needs a platform to meet its needs. After a few trials, finding the right eCommerce platform for his product has led Tom to Shopify, a platform he now swears by.

GrypMat Trio on Plane Wing

Where did the idea for your business come from?

As an F-16 mechanic in the Air Force I was tired of my tools sliding off of the aircraft. After seeing a non-slip mat on my mom's dashboard, I realized that we could make larger ones for tools.

What was your biggest ‘a-ha’ moment as an eCommerce store owner?

When I found Shopify. I didn't know what website platform would be the best for what I needed to do. Shopify was my third platform. It has outperformed all of the competition.

If you had one piece of advice for someone just starting out, what would it be?

Start building your following: emails, social media, etc.

GrypMat Medium Size Tool Mat Hanging In Shop

What's your favorite 'productivity hack' that you use in your day to day life?

I have a picture of my product in use as the back ground on my phone as well as a different in use picture as my lock screen. Having this optimizes conversation with strangers when doing an elevator pitch.

What Shopify app could you not live without?


What book would you recommend to someone looking to grow their business?

The Like Switch by Jack Schafer and Marvin Karlins.

The Like Switch by Jack Schafer and Marvin Karlins

Do you have any other advice you would like to share?

Check out ManyChat for your company's Facebook account.

Visit, find them on Facebook, and follow on Instagram @GrypMat