Want to put up a website for your online store? Skip all the technical and coding parts and head straight to the actual business.
With Shopify, you can set up everything you’ll need for your online store in an hour or two. But before all that, let’s get to know Shopify first!
What is Shopify?
Shopify is one of today’s most popular e-Commerce software that equips you with all the essentials for your dream online store without having to go through all the tedious technical processes. It allows you to set up and design your own website, post your products, manage your orders, and integrate your print provider’s website to make your business transactions smooth and efficient.
Why should you use Shopify?
The most common reason why people decide to use Shopify is that it provides all the essential tools and services for them to start a business online.
Here are the top reasons that could convince you more to give Shopify a try:
Exploring the ins and outs of e-commerce can be quite overwhelming. Shopify, however, can help you land softly with its user-friendly interface.
Shopify also offers a 3-day free trial and flexible plans you can choose from as you test the waters. Committing to one can be a bit scary so be sure to choose wisely and evaluate the features you think you’ll really need. These features include 24/7 Support, Staff Accounts, Sales Channels, and many more.
Trusted by many
According to the platform’s statistical reports, Shopify had only 42, 000 merchants in 2012. This number increased to 377,000 in 2016, and to over a million in 2020. Today, Shopify is trusted by over 1.75 million businesses in 175 countries across the globe.
The number of Shopify buyers has also massively grown. From 218 million in 2018, Shopify was reported to have over 457 million buyers in 2020. These figures prove the platform’s potential to constantly grow and become a go-to for the e-commerce community.
Some of the factors that contribute to its increasing popularity are the following:
- It offers built-in marketing tools. With the right Shopify plan, you won’t have to search somewhere else for marketing solutions. These tools include email campaigns and marketing dashboard reports. Shopify is also integrated to today’s most popular social media platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest.
- 24/7 Customer Support. The platform’s support team is always ready to hear and address its customers’ concerns through live chat, email, and even phone!
- Less stress and hassle. With Shopify, you won’t have to find and pay for other web hosting services. They also handle your software’s maintenance and ensure that their platform is free from security issues.
It’s secure and reliable!
Shopify’s security and reliability are maintained with global hosting services, which gives you protection 24/7. You can also opt for SSL or even PCI compliance to accept credit cards and store sensitive information without having to know the technical details of how it works. Shopify has strategically set its plans at a competitive price point so you can get started with little to no investment.
It makes your website rank!
If you’re looking for a platform that is easy to optimize, choose Shopify. It keeps your business page up-to-date with the latest releases and changes in search engine algorithms so your customers can easily discover your online store. Its SEO tools have all the features you need to optimize your store so it can rank higher in search engine results.
Before you jump into business…
I know it now seems pretty exciting. But before you create your account, are you sure your shop’s ready?
Alright, we got you. Here are a few things you must consider before signing up for a Shopify account.
Who’s your target market and what products are you selling?
Be certain of your niche and the products that you’re selling before you actually set up a store. While the initial planning stages can be quite taxing, knowing what you want to sell and who you want to sell them to will allow you to strategize easily.
How much should you value your products?
You must have a clear idea of your costs and the prices you’ll be setting for each product. Apart from helping you make your listings faster, this will also aid you in determining how you should present your brand and market your products.
Where are you promoting your products?
Shopify’s Sales Channels feature allows you to promote and sell your products across different marketplaces and social media platforms. Be sure to do your research and choose the ones frequented by your target audience.
How much should you invest in Shopify?
You must also know how much it will cost you to maintain your Shopify account so you can properly plan on how much money you should spend on improving your store, creating marketing materials, or even hiring experts to help with the technical aspects.
- Basic Shopify: $29 USD per month. Shopify’s Basic plan is really for eCommerce businesses that are new and have an occasional in-person sale. For example, if you’re selling a few items on Facebook or at a craft fair, then this plan will work well for you because it doesn’t require big monthly payments.
- Shopify: $79 USD per month. For businesses that are already making $5k in sales or more per month, this plan is best suited for you. It also comes with a discount of around 10% when you sign up for 6 months or 12 months to encourage businesses to invest long-term and build their brand.
- Advanced Shopify: $299 USD per month. This is the top-tier Shopify plan which offers everything you could ever need to run a business. It comes with huge discounts when you commit to a 2-year plan. This may seem expensive, but if you think about it for a moment, it isn’t really bad at all because it will ensure that your business succeeds in the long run!
You can see the details of the updated Shopify pricing list by clicking here.
Now that you’re ready, here are five simple steps to create your Shopify account!
Keep in mind that Shopify is a platform designed to help you build an online store. So, it’s not just about choosing the right plan for your needs. You also need to make sure that you have everything in place before you can get cracking with your eCommerce business!
Even technically challenged entrepreneurs can create a Shopify account. It’s as easy as signing up for any social media or online platform. Have a valid email ready, choose a password, and give all the necessary information as honestly as you can.
Just remember to give all the necessary information honestly because that will help you get your store running smoothly in no time!
- Open Shopify.com and create your store. A 14-day trial is available without requiring a credit card for new users. You can test the system and look at their other pricing plans to figure out which one you can afford.
- Pick your store name. Your Shopify store will use the name you give it as the default URL. You can stick with that, or you can change it later. Keep in mind that all the money you’ve spent on marketing and branding will be useless if your buyer can’t easily remember your store’s name!
- Answer a few questions. Shopify will ask “are you already selling?” and “what is your current revenue?” to help you figure out which plan is best suited for your business.
- Add an address and enter your new store. Shopify will guide you through a short process of entering basic information about your business, address, and contact details.
You’re now ready to start building your eCommerce store. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s add a domain now!
Add a domain address
Once your account is created, Shopify will give you your website’s URL or domain. In case you want to change it, you can purchase a custom one from Web.com, GoDaddy, BlueHost, Hostinger, etc.
Your domain would be the ultimate identity of your Shopify store and, since Shopify needs a website URL to work properly, it will be your Shopify store’s primary domain. A domain is a unique web address, for example, yourdomain.com instead of Shopify’s default domain store.myshopify.com.
If you are starting entirely from scratch, Shopify can help you register a Shopify custom domain instead. If you prefer to create your domain yourself, here are some easy steps to follow:
- Short and memorable. When choosing a domain, make sure that it’s easy to remember and that it encapsulates your brand. An acronym or a word with a few letters or syllables is best, as opposed to Shopify’s default domain that is hard for customers to remember.
- Spells easily. Keep in mind that customers will type your domain every time they go to your Shopify store. If it has a lot of tricky letters or characters in it, people might get confused and accidentally type other websites instead!
- Relevant to keywords. Shopify suggests choosing a domain name that is relevant to what you sell. Customers will use keywords when searching for your Shopify store.
- Unique. Finally, Shopify domains must be unique, so make sure that you’re not copying somebody else!
If you already have an existing domain, you can easily connect your Shopify store with it.
Set the vibe, make it “you!”
This is really only an aesthetic choice for now, but you want to start off on the right foot, so maybe choose one of Shopify’s free themes! Shopify offers over 1,000 themes and templates you can use for your online store. You can also invest in a premium theme available for purchase.
A premium Shopify theme is like buying the complete outfit when all you need are just a shirt and pants! While Shopify offers many themes for free, these paid ones are often more robust with more support from their designers and developers. This may make them seem expensive at first glance, but it’s really worth considering getting one if you want extra powerful features to help your store sell better.
But if you are selling on Shopify to get a living from your artistic gifts, you can customize your own theme and take full control. If you’re artsy or you just can’t find the one that suits your vibe, you can customize your theme and design it however you want.
Oh and remember, some customers would access your shop on their phones so be sure to make your layout mobile-friendly.
Add your products
Now that you have your store looking great, add a few products to start selling! If the sample products aren’t enough for you, go ahead and edit your theme so it matches how you want your website to look!
Publishing your items online will take time, though. Most of your time will be spent with the grunt work of uploading photos and adding detailed info about the product. But before you do that, here are 3 ways you can add products to Shopify:
- Manually type out each product detail one by one in the admin section. If you don’t have many products yet, you can add your products manually, upload their pictures one by one, and fill up all the necessary details. Yes, it’s the only time when we can recommend doing the hard work.
- Upload an Excel file with several rows of products from your computer. Now let’s say you’ll be selling 10 or more items, you can just import a CSV file to add these products with much ease and efficiency. Just make sure to follow Shopify’s guide in naming your file’s headings and importing.
- Sync your existing eCommerce website to Shopify. If you already have an existing online store, you can sync it to Shopify. That way, you can import your products, customers, and order history in a fast and efficient way.
Now that we’ve covered the basics of adding products manually or automatically to your store, let’s move on to some advanced tools to help you manage how your store works!
Step up your game! Install Shopify Apps
Yes, you can step up your game even if it hasn’t started yet! Know how you can track your shop’s performance and market your products better by utilizing Shopify apps.
In the Shopify App Store, you can find thousands of applications that can help you assess how your business is doing, carry out marketing strategies, and better manage your shop. Some of these apps include Pre-order Manager, SpeedUP: Fast Store Load, and One Click Upsell.
Finally, start selling!
Now that your store is up, there’s nothing left for you to do but to start selling. Apart from advertising your products and convincing your audience to purchase them, you must also keep tabs on your shop’s performance to come up with calculated decisions to make your brand known and loved by people!
As a bonus, here some other tips that can help you further promote your products and make them stand out from the rest:
- Invite friends and family members. People close to you are the biggest supporters of your business, so use their power to get more sales! Ask them to refer you and they’ll be rewarded with a discount or freebies.
- Offer promos. Do you have a special offer? Let everyone know by posting updates on social media and email marketing. Make sure that these are limited-time offers, people love deals!
- Build your email list. People who don’t want to miss out on any promotion from your brand can sign up for your newsletter through Shopify! You can also share upcoming events wherein they can see what cool things you have in store for them.
- Advertise on social media. Facebook and Instagram are great channels you can use to do marketing for your brand. Be sure to post interesting news about your products and the specifications of each one so that people would know what they’re getting into!
- Improve your product page. Do everything in your power to make people want to purchase your products. Keep it simple yet attractive, include a video if possible, and include info on how they could contact you should there be any concerns in their purchases.
And if you’re looking for a partner…
If you’re planning to sell customized products or items designed by you, well I guess it’s destiny that brought you here! Awkward Styles may just be the ideal partner for you.
Aside from our bulky catalog with over 100 items to choose from, we also make selling on Shopify more convenient. By integrating our website with your Shopify store, you won’t have to worry as much about tracking your orders and finding someone to print and ship them. All you have to do is sell, and we’ll fulfill!
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