If you are on the road to setting up your eCommerce store, then it’s highly not likely to be true that you have not stumbled upon Shopify. Shopify today is one of the most popular platforms among entrepreneurs who are looking for a shopping cart software. To start selling on Shopify you need to first take a Shopify plan, and find some products to sell. Shopify lets you sell almost anywhere your customers are – on your shop, on other online marketplaces, and on social media.
Shopify today is one of the most popular platforms with shopping cart software. Shopify lets you sell almost anywhere your customers are – on your shop, other online marketplaces, and social media. – Tweet This!
However, it is more than that. There are certain things about Shopify that can overwhelm you, especially if you are not well-versed with the dynamics of eCommerce platforms. Good news? This article will give you a detailed insight on how to start selling on Shopify and most importantly, why you should sell on Shopify.
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To give you a brief overview, Shopify is a hosted platform, and an all-inclusive software built to create online stores. The platform has everything — from hosting to order management, besides it provides a seamless set up that only takes a couple of hours. There are more than 800,000 active Shopify stores in the world, generating more than $100 billion in sales.
So, why should you sell on Shopify?
Well, the simplest answer to that would be “because it’s an all-in-one solution”.
Moreover, Shopify is one of the best choices for new business owners, especially if they have little or no coding knowledge. Any novice can build a website in Shopify. So, if your focus is to sell rather than to deal with the technical aspects of creating an online store, then Shopify is the platform for you in 2020.
There are some more benefits of selling on Shopify which can be listed as follows:
- You can sell across multiple channels – including Instagram, Facebook, eBay and Amazon.
- The platform has a brilliant inventory system.
- It has well-designed themes, powerful management tools, and world-class apps.
- Your customers will love the simplicity of the interface. It’s clean, clear and convenient.
- Shopify’s sales features are the best around, consisting of all the core tools you need, from analytical tracking, payment gateways, multi-channel integration to abandoned cart recovery.
- Shopify supports more than 100 payment gateways.
- It has partnerships with shipping giants like DHL Express, USPS, UPS and Canada Post – enabling your customers a seamless shipping experience for their products.
- Shopify’s storefronts can also be made multi-lingual, allowing auto translation depending on the target regions you serve. The languages currently available are English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Brazilian, Portuguese, and Italian.
Cost of Selling on Shopify
There are five Shopify pricing plans you can choose from:
- ‘Shopify Lite’ – $9 per month
- ‘Basic Shopify’ – $29 per month
- ‘Shopify’ – $79 per month
- ‘Advanced Shopify’ – $299 per month
- ‘Shopify Plus’- fees are negotiable, but in the region of $2000 per month.
Shopify is one of the cheaper ways of selling online, with its basic plan, the “Shopify Lite” costing $9 per month allowing you to sell unlimited number of products.
How to start selling on Shopify?
Given below are the basic steps on how to start selling on Shopify:
- The first step on how to sell on Shopify is to register an account on Shopify.com. For starters, begin with a free 14-day trial first. It won’t require a credit card to sign up. You need to give a unique store name while signing up.
- Once you have created your Shopify store credentials, you will be prompted to answer if you’re an existing seller or not. If you’re already doing business, you will also be asked for your current revenue.
The first two questions above will branch out to some further questions, which you will need to answer before you can proceed. You have the option to skip this part, but it’s always advisable that you try and answer these because then Shopify can recommend the best course of action for you. But either ways, you will still be required to add your default business address in the next section:
After you are finished with this page, you will see the admin panel and your Shopify store will officially be set up now.
All you need to do after this is:
- Enter a domain address for your eCommerce store. This is the name your customers will type when they search for your store online.
- Select an attractive and functional Shopify theme. Choosing a good theme for your Shopify store is of utmost importance, because it is this theme that will ensure that you are conveying an engaging and high-quality store to your customers. Shopify has a good selection of free and paid themes to choose from.
- Now that you have a good looking Shopify store, it’s time to add products to your store.
- On your Shopify admin panel, just click on “Products”. If you are selling your own products on Shopify, you have the option to either manually add a product or import products from a CSV file. If you want to be a dropshipping business, you can find the best products to sell on different online resources like this.
- The next step is to install apps and extensions to support and expand your business. With the large number of Shopify apps available, you can extend the functionality of your online store manifold, resulting in more sales and faster growth.
- You are now ready for selling products on Shopify.
Selling on Shopify vs Amazon: which is better?
Both Amazon and Shopify are big names in the world of eCommerce, and offer big opportunities for online retailers. With Amazon having over 150 million visitors per month in the USA alone, and Shopify powering more than 600,000 businesses, choosing one over another is a constant battle.
Well, I can tell you that Shopify has come across as the best all-round eCommerce platform currently on the market. It has been ranked very highly on parameters such as design flexibility, customer score, sales feature, website features, and help and support.
One important thing to remember is that Shopify is a specialized eCommerce platform and Amazon is an online marketplace. Shopify gives you the tools to build your own online store, whereas Amazon allows you sell through its marketplace alongside other online sellers. So when you are on Amazon, you have to keep in mind that you are competing with thousands of sellers selling similar products, and customers are not particularly looking for your brand. While when you are on Shopify, you have your own store and customers actually come looking for you. There’s more opportunity to create a unique image for yourself, although it may seem somewhat of a harder work building up that regular customer base.
It’s because of these differences that Shopify and Amazon cater to very different types of online sellers. Amazon is attractive for individual sellers up to small and medium sized businesses, whereas Shopify is ideal for everything from small businesses up to much larger brands.
The following Shopify store for instance, offers clothing for babies and was conceived in 2016.
Selling on Shopify vs Etsy
Similarly when comparing Shopify with Etsy, it’s more about which method of selling makes more sense to you and less about which platform to choose.
Shopify like I said is a webstore. Etsy is a marketplace. And although they’re both very popular eCommerce sales channels, they are two fundamentally different ways to sell online. And hence, there is really no right answer as to which one you want to choose. Some sellers choose to sell on both. You are definitely likely to get more exposure with Etsy than you would on your own webstore because Etsy already has a built in audience, unlike Shopify where you’ll have to build your own traffic.
Choosing one of these two platforms also somewhat depends on the kind of products you are looking to sell. Etsy is a creative marketplace only for vintage, handmade goods, and craft supplies. Shopify, on the other hand, is an eCommerce platform where there are no restrictions on what type of products you can sell, barring some legalities.
On Etsy, merchants have to a pay a transaction fee, whereas Shopify takes a subscription from its sellers. While Shopify may seem more expensive upfront, Etsy can be more expensive in the long run.
Also, when it comes to your Etsy listings, you’re pretty much limited to pictures and text.
With Shopify, you have a better control over your listings. You can create your website and product pages to look however you want them to. Hence, when it comes to having a control over your listings, Shopify is the clear winner.
Selling on Shopify vs eBay
Shopify and eBay have just one thing in common – both these platforms encourage small businesses to sell their products. But that’s pretty much where their similarities end. Although merchants can list their products on eBay, they don’t have much control over their page or the store’s customization. Also, eBay doesn’t offer a lot of store-management features. Shopify on the other hand, is a full-service eCommerce platform allowing businesses to build, customize, and manage fully blown online stores. Shopify store owners also have control over their CRM (customer relationship management). This in turn opens up a world of small business marketing, which helps store owners perpetuate their brand identity.
As far as pricing is concerned, if you are using eBay to sell a one-off product, it won’t charge you a monthly service fee—but they do charge several types of selling fees when you list your products on this platform. The exact fees will depend upon the category of your listing.
We have already talked about Shopify’s pricing plans. It’s important to remember that no matter which plan you choose, you’ll be able to list unlimited products on your site and access a host of other features, including apps and extensions to improve your store.
Selling on Facebook with Shopify
Connecting your Shopify store with your social media accounts in today’s day and age is crucial for the simple reason that it allows you to increase your reach, because a huge chunk of your audience might be on these networks (particularly Facebook and Instagram).
Integrating your Shopify store with Facebook makes marketing for your store easier, saving you time and effort. The Facebook Messenger Ads for eCommerce, the Messenger bot, and Facebook Ads for Shopify – all of these help increase your store’s engagement, boost profits and sales, and gain customer trust.
Selling on Shopify allows you to create a Facebook shop that’s completely synced with your store. You can sell products directly on Facebook, and your inventory (including prices and sales) will automatically be updated on Facebook when it’s updated on Shopify, without any intervention from your end. You can even choose to sell only selected products on Facebook.
Shopify’s Facebook app makes selling on Facebook with Shopify a cakewalk. The app is free, but it requires a minimum of the Shopify Lite package at $9 per month. To set up your Facebook shop after you’ve installed the app, you’ll first need to connect your Facebook page.
Selling on Shopify allows you to create a Facebook shop that’s completely synced with your store. You can sell products directly on Facebook, and your inventory (including prices and sales) will automatically be updated on Facebook when it’s updated on Shopify. – Tweet This!
Selling on Instagram with Shopify
A Shopify and Instagram integration allows you to sell more effectively both on your Instagram and your Shopify account. Selling on Instagram with Shopify increases the selling potential of both these platforms and helps you reach more customers where they’re most active. And the best part is that Shopify and Instagram integration options are all free of cost through Shopify, and some of them (like the Shoppable Instagram) offer features that aren’t available to all non-Shopify users. There are a host of Instagram features that you can use with your Shopify store. And if you can combine all this with some smart marketing on Instagram, then the results can be quite pleasing.
With over 700 million monthly active users and a wide range of software integration capabilities, it is safe to say that it is a wise decision for any brand to start an Instagram account, especially because it is now proven that almost 70% of Instagram users have looked up and researched a brand through its platform.
Shopify has emerged a clear winner as a perfect blend of aesthetics and functionalities when it comes to designing an eCommerce store. The platform is continuously evolving to include more and more features to help business owners design and run their shops more efficiently on Shopify. So, do you like selling on Shopify? How has your experience been with the platform? Let us know.