Table of Contents
Shopify$29 to $299
Ease of Use10.0/10
- Beginner friendly drag and drop.
- Amazing features for all purposes
- Great support willing to help you always.
- 14-day free trial without credit card.
- Transaction fees can be too high for the basic plan.
- High priced but worth it if you know what you are doing.
- Upselling with Shopify apps and themes.
In today’s world, setting up an online store is way easier than before. Earlier in order to set up a store, a lot of factors had to be taken into account like :
- Renting space for your shop.
- Buying inventory to fulfill potential customer orders.
- Manning the store.
These are just the three things I thought about right now. There are tonnes and tonnes of problems that come with setting up a brick-and-mortar store. Since I have no experience in that, I cannot talk about it obviously. Anyway, we are here to talk about online stores.
With the introduction of the World Wide Web, setting up an online store has become quite easy. Easy might not be the right word, but comparatively it is much easier than before.
So how do you set up an online store?
There are multiple ways to set up an online store with many services like WordPress, Woo Commerce and Big Commerce among others. However, in my personal experience and looking at the overall user response, it is safe to say that Shopify is the most preferred platform.
What is Shopify?
The Shopify platform offers a complete solution for setting up your online store. So if you are thinking about starting an online store I suggest you to try out Shopify.
The beauty about Shopify is its very easy interface, and this is what sets it apart from other e-commerce website builders. Usually, you are supposed to take time to adapt to a new platform, but Shopify makes it very easy for customers with zero technical knowledge to set up their store. Store owners need not worry about anything but their business, everything else is handled by Shopify.
Before writing about my experience with Shopify, let me just answer some of the frequently asked questions people have about Shopfiy
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Is shopify a good e-commerce platform?
Yes, I believe Shopify is a great e-commerce platform. It enables you to focus on selling your inventory and takes the responsibility of doing all the other things! It offers a great platform for someone with little technical knowledge to build an online store!
Shopify is certainly an amazing place to start your e-commerce business of any size and caters to a wide range of industries. Whether it is the best platform, you can figure it out yourself at the end of this article.
2) Is Shopify a good platform for beginners in e-commerce?
Yes Shopify is certainly up there with the best platforms. It offers a very easy to use website builder to its users. The process is straightforward and painless with the ready made store templates. It is a very user-friendly platform with a great support service
3) Which e-commerce platform will get more audience?
Well, this is a tricky question! The e-commerce platform will not have a large effect on whether your website will have more audience or not, however this is where Shopify excels! Shopify Apps plugs this gap brilliantly. They have apps for almost every purpose. You can use the Shopify apps to improve your marketing and SEO efforts drastically. I have used both Shopify and WooCommerce and I can certainly say that Shopify is the winner in between these two.
4) Why is Shopify more expensive than its competitors?
Let me just say, that Shopify is not at all expensive. It only looks expensive because they offer you a package deal. If you choose another provider, you will have to spend separately for each of the services Shopify offers. Having used both, I believe Shopify is actually decently priced. Might cost a bit more but that bit is completely justified!
You can leave any other questions you have in the comments below and I will be more than happy to clear your doubts!
Let us stop and take a look at Shopify
#1 Shopify Key Features :
- If you are someone with literally zero technical knowledge, you will still be able to build a successful online store with Shopify
- Smart, fast and elegant themes which makes your store look and feel good. (Leading to more sales of course!)
- Over a thousand applications which help you with marketing, SEO, social media among other things which help you to sell!
- And of course, a brilliant 24/7 customer support service which users genuinely love. Reach out to them any time through e-mail, phone or their live chat option. (I can personally vouch for this 24 hours service through my experience with it )
How to set up your online store on Shopify?
Shopify has made it incredibly easy for new users. They offer a 14-day free trial ( No Payment Information Required) for you to test the platform. Trust me, 14 days is enough time to get hooked. They know that and they are counting on that. Shopify makes it very easy to register!
- Head over to their website.
- Sign up with your e-mail address and select your store name
- If you have a domain name registered with registrars like GoDaddy, you can point it to your Shopify Store.
In case you don’t have a custom domain name yet, it is okay. You can use the sub-domains offered by Shopify. Your store will appear as “yourstore.myshopify.com” until you purchase a domain name! For the best results, it is advisable to use a custom domain.
- Choose a design/template according to your needs. You can choose to edit a template using their easy-to-use drag and drop tool or you can buy a premium theme offered by them.
- Now all that is left is to add your products!
#2 Shopify Payments
With Shopify, you have two ways to accept payments. They are as follows :
- Shopify Payments : If you decide to use Shopify payments, your transaction fees are fully waived! Of course, you will still need to pay credit card fees and there is no way for a merchant to get out of paying these fees.
The main advantage of using Shopify Payments is that you get access to its Payment Dashboard, where you can track your money in real-time. This removes the hustle of opening up another Payment site like PayPal and tracking your payments. There is no set-up time either since it is all built-in. Shopify Payments is not available in all countries yet so check if it is available for your country before proceeding.
- Using an external payment gateway: Or you can take the long route of using another payment gateway such as PayPal. Shopify charges a transaction fee ranging from 0.5% to 2.00 % depending on the plan you are using. Also, PayPal will charge you a processing fee, so this means that you will be paying fees twice!
Apart from this, Shopify has recently partnered with a payment processor which enables you to buy on Shopify with over 300 cryptocurrencies!
Shopify Pricing :
#3 Shopify Hosting
In all the above monthly plans, you get unlimited hosting! That means even if your store goes viral, and gets 1,00,000 visitors in a day, Shopify can and will handle that. The only question is, do you have the inventory ready ?
Apart from this Shopify offers you more features!
1.Unlimited E-mail forwarding :
You can create as many e-mail addresses as you want using your custom domain. For example, if your store is called uses the domain “dogstore.com” you can create unlimited number of e-mail accounts like “[email protected]”, “[email protected]” among others. You can forward these e-mails to your favourite e-mail ID. This makes you look professional as well as saves you the hassle of checking multiple inboxes.
2. Latest Updates
Shopify updates are automatic and be assured that you will receive the latest updates automatically and instantly as long as you are subscribed to Shopify.
3. Content Delivery Network
This one is special, Content Delivery Networks enable your website to load quickly from anywhere in the world. No more worrying about someone accessing your website from Singapore while your servers are in the United States. A CDN is a large network of servers placed across the world so visitors can load your website quickly!
We all know no one likes to visit, let alone buy, from a website which loads slowly!
#4 Abandoned Cart Recovery
This feature alone is worth paying the extra money for. An average of 69% users abandon their carts due to some or the other factors. Might be they lose their internet connection, may be they get distracted or maybe something else comes up. It is also important to know that most of cart abandonment comes from mobile phones.
Suppose you receive a call in the middle of checking out, you sometimes tend to forget about the purchase especially if it is a long call.
This functionality provided by Shopify is the reason so many people are migrating to Shopify. What Shopify does is, track the e-mail IDs of the users who have abandoned their shopping carts and remind them of it. This is not something new as you can make the use of Facebook Pixel or Google Analytics to track the same info and then setup remarketing advertisements. But, like you can see, this is a long process and costs more!
Shopify has all these features in-built for you. Many times people complain about the higher price of Shopify but this feature alone nets you extra revenue over time, after which you will believe that you are paying peanuts in exchange of this service!
Here are some facts about abandoned carts according to a survey by Moosend :
Fact #1 More than 40% of cart abandonment emails are opened:
Out of all cart-retention intended emails that our users sent, a staggering 45% of them were opened, almost half of them, that is.
Fact #2 50% of these are clicked on:
Out of the opened emails, 21% of them received click-throughs.
Fact #3 50% of the users who clicked also purchased:
Half of the recipients who engaged with the content of the email completed their purchase.
After reading this, you are free to decide by yourself if Shopify is worth it !
#5 Marketing and SEO
Your store is useless if people are never going to know about your store. No matter what you are selling, no matter how much discount you offer, if users are never going to find out about it, then it is as good as useless!
Shopify does a great job in offering you all the basic SEO tools you require to make your store noticed. They do a very good job in providing all the basic functionalities. You have many more options in the app store to further increase your marketing game but for starters, Shopify provides some great features.
- Clean and Crawlable Code
- Fully customizable title tags, meta descriptions, sitemaps and all the other things you need to get your SEO right.
- Provides seamless integration with Google Adwords and Facebook Ads
I have previously used WordPress with WooCommerce for setting up a store because I did not understand why Shopify cost so much more! It is a hassle managing everything from SEO, Google Schema, Remarketing Campaigns, E-mail campaigns etc etc. You have to do everything completely on your own (of course with the help of plugins). If you want to do it the hard way by pinching pennies then it is up to you.
After working on a Shopify store with a friend of mine, I realized how easy it is to develop. All the things I had to do manually for WooCommerce were already integrated into this platform. It saves you a lot of work and you can focus on selling. Earlier my friend had to take help from a SEO consultant as well as a paid marketing advisor who would help him set up all his marketing activities. So if you come to think about it, he was spending way more!
Even if you are finding it hard to set up your online store on Shopify, you can hire a developer for a one-time fee to set up your store. This still costs less than paying all the other expenses that you incur with setting up a self-hosted shop!
I only have experience with WooCommerce and Shopify so I cannot speak for other online store builders. But there is only one clear winner in that comparison.
Oh, and also Shopify offers you a 14-day free trial so you don’t have to worry about wasting any money!
If you are looking for an all-in-one platform to sell a decent number of products, Shopify is the right choice for you. If you do not have many products or only have a few digital products to sell, then you can start with something like WooCommerce or BigCommerce.
Check out Shopify’s Plans over here and choose the best one!
If you have any comments, questions or reviews you want to share, please comment below!
Start your FREE Shopify Trial now!
I will be adding to this post as I learn more new things about this platform because I am sure I have left out some things or haven’t explored the platform completely yet.
Also, there is another article you must read about how to start a profitable dropshipping business with Shopify!
If you have any unanswered queries about Shopify, you can head over here.