Shopify is one of the most widely used ecommerce platforms. There are many resources and tips to help you get the most out of it. We have previously covered tips and resources for ecommerce customers. Perhaps you recall this list of general tips and tricks for ecommerce websites we created a while ago.
This article will list the top 10 resources as well as offer many Shopify tips. This article is geared towards beginners and will provide a great introduction to ecommerce.
Each point will highlight key takeaways and provide a link to the resource for further reading.
Shopify is an excellent platform for ecommerce stores. Check out our detailed review.
1. Set up your store
Your eagerness to succeed in ecommerce can lead you to be overwhelmed. The ambitions of starting your own brand and conquering the world can cause you to forget the basics.
First, you must ensure that your store is properly set up. Here’s a great place to start: Beginner’s Guide to Shopify.
MonetizePros has a great resource for you. This guide covers important topics such as pricing and setting up an online store. The app store is also covered.
The Key Takeaways
- Hosting Shopify does not offer email or domain hosting. You will need to contact an Internet domain registrar like GoDaddy, Namecheap. GoDaddy allows you to register domains for as low as 99c per year. You can also register an email address for your company and pay around $2 per month. Use the code GET30OFF to get 30% off your first order.
- Payment: When you make your first payment to Shopify, you will get a 10% discount on an annual plan and 20% off a biennial plan (two years).
- Domain– Having trouble finding a name to go with your store? If you are unsure of what is available, check out the business name generator tool to find out what domains are available
- Theme is one of the most essential elements you should consider. Shopify comes with 9 free themes, including the popular Brooklyn theme. If you are serious about your business, we recommend that you choose one of the paid options or to contact a developer to build a custom theme. These can help you stand out from your competition, which we will cover later.
How to create product pages
It is crucial to ensure the success of your online business. Here are some product page best practices.
- Metadata Shopify provides a preview of search engine listings when you build your pages. A concise title of 50-60 characters that matches your URL is a good idea. The meta description is perhaps the most overlooked element. It is not a ranking factor but it can help increase your click-through rates, which will in turn help you rank higher. This is the ideal character count.
- Content Writing product descriptions is one of the most important things you will do. So how can you do it well. They should be long and thorough. Use bullet points and use headings to space out key points. Alt text is also a good idea for images. Search engines won’t be able to see your product, so they will depend on what you describe it in order to rank it.
- Customer Services – There are two main elements to this, and they are reviews as well as FAQs. You will need to show the complete written reviews on your page. Yotpo is our favorite plugin. It is free if your monthly orders are less than 50. This is perfect for startups. The FAQ should be included on every product page. These should be searchable by the user. A voting system is another tip. This will allow the most popular answers to rise to the top.
2. Domain setup
When you initially set up your s you are given a free myshopify.com domain, so your store URL, for example, would look like “http://sportshoes.myshopify.com“. This is not a good idea for users and doesn’t help build a strong brand. It’s also not easy to recognize your URL if it is printed on materials.
It is important to buy a domain name from Namecheap or GoDaddy and point it to Shopify. The latter even wrote an article about how to do this.
The Key Takeaways
- Domain is not connecting – At first, you might see an error message telling you that your domain has not been connected. It is possible for DNS records to take up to 24 hours to update your domain name.
- SSL. If you want to obtain an SSL certificate for your website and make it HTTPS-ready (which you should), then Shopify is the best place to go.
Connecting to a third-party Domain
We prefer to purchase domains from these companies. These are some things to keep in mind when you connect your custom domain with your Shopify store.
- Transferring: Once you have purchased your domain you can transfer it into Shopify. This allows you to control all domain settings from your Shopify admin area.
- Delay It can take up 48 hours for your custom domain connection to Shopify. This could cause delays for your store launch.
- TTL There is a way to solve the above problem. This is by lowering your domain’s time-of-live (TTL) value. Talk to your provider to find out if you can reduce this.
3. Launching your store
Now that you know the basics, it is time to open your store and make it available to the rest of the world.
It’s worth temporarily putting your foot down and making sure everything is in order before you go. Shopify’s essential Shopify store launch checklist has been prepared for you.
This article will cover everything, from image optimization and additional sales channels to tax and shipping settings. You don’t want admin tasks to worry about when your website launches. Instead, you want to be able to concentrate on content marketing and making sure your store is off to the best possible start.
The Key Takeaways
- Sales Channels Shopify users can become too focused on their Shopify online shop when they start their journey. However, research by Harvard shows that 73% customers use multiple channels for making purchases from the same brand. To sell your products on these marketplaces, you will need to use inventory management software.
- Analytics– Setting up analytics on your website will provide you with invaluable feedback about how visitors interact with it. Google Analytics is the obvious choice. You can refer to their setup documentation for more information. This topic is also covered in detail in the next step.
- Shipping is a tedious but essential task. You must ensure that shipping costs are correct and you can deliver to the destinations you have specified. If you’re a UK seller, would you like to ship to Northern Ireland? Although it’s part the UK, shipping to Northern Ireland is more expensive than the mainland UK.
Customer support options
After you’ve launched your website, it is important to be ready for customer inquiries. This is best achieved through live chat, and specifically Shopify’s Shopify Ping live chat plugin. Shopify reported an 85 percent increase in conversations through their app between March and July 2020.
- Recommendations Ping allows you to share product recommendations, discount codes, and build relationships with customers
- Direct Purchases Customers can purchase directly from Ping via Apple Pay without leaving the Shopify app
- Management: Not only can you manage customer conversations, but you can also use it to collaborate with your team members and use it as an instant messenger app
Google Analytics is the best tool to track website performance for beginners. This stage is not too complicated. Take a look at this How to Add Google Analytics to Shopify.
This guide will help you to set up the tool, as well as how to better understand your reports. This brief guide also explains briefly how to get started with your social media analytics.
The Key Takeaways
- Funnels You need to know at which stage people are leaving your marketing campaigns. Knowing where your customers are dropping out of your marketing campaigns can help you to understand their psychology and improve your future campaigns.
- Tracking– It is the worst thing an ecommerce site owner can do when they spend money on campaigns and then have no proof that it worked. Using UTM codes to track all your campaigns will help you know if the money was well spent.
- Facebook Facebook gives you insights into your fans that can help you understand your customers better. Access to data on demographics, purchase history, and language is available. It is very powerful to start using Facebook ads.
The best social media analytics tools
Are you unsure which social media platforms are best for you? These tools can help you determine if you have the right social media platforms for you.
- Spout Social – This tool has some amazing advanced listing options that allow you to track audience demographics, identify industry influencers and review campaign performance
- HubSpot – If you’re willing to spend a little more, it’s worth checking out HubSpot’s advertising platform. This powerful tool is not just about social media.
- TapInfluence – If influencer marketing is a major marketing strategy for your company, TapInfluence is the right choice. Before you begin your outreach, this tool matches you up with potential connections.
It’s easy to get lost in the long list of plugins. Here are the top Shopify plugins.
This is a great list with plugins to help with email marketing, product posting, and more. This article is great for startups before you dive deeper into the dozens of plugins.
The Key Takeaways
- Launching Your Store Shopify’s app stores are separated into various collections. Our launching Your Store Guide contains all you need. Many of these apps are free, which is important if you want to keep your launch costs low.
- Reviews You can quickly see which apps are most popular by looking at the ratings and user reviews next to each one. Click on each app and take the time to read the descriptions and video guides. You won’t be surprised by unexpected fees if you read the fine print.
Three of the best Shopify plugins to help you get started
Shopify store owners have many powerful plugins. But which ones are best for beginners?
- Yotpo – Reviews can help customers make a good impression of your business. You could offer a giveaway for customers who leave reviews. Yotpo is an excellent way to collect them
- Trust badge This free tool lets you attach badges to product pages to assure customers that their payments are secure. This is a great way to reassure customers and increase conversions.
- Shipping bar – People love free shipping! You can add a banner on any page with this free shipping bar. We love the fact that you can target specific locations. Do you offer local delivery? Set the standard for local customers
6. Website Design
This guide is for web designers who wish to create their Shopify store. A Web Designers Introduction To Shopify.
This article will explain how Shopify themes are developed. It also includes introductions to Liquid which is Shopify’s template language. Shopify offers many templates, but having your own theme can make your site stand out.
The Key Takeaways
- Partner Program – The partner program is worth considering if you’re capable of designing your store. This allows you to design as many stores you want for free, and then list them on the partner program for a fee. This will allow you to supplement your website spending.
Shopify website design tips
While it is great to learn the technical aspects of Shopify’s Liquid designer program, it’s not enough to see the larger picture.
- Long loading times could kill your business. Make sure all images are compressed with a tool like Compressor. Avoid carousels. They can slow down your site and cause confusion for customers.
- Conversions: a/b testing is important. Just because you like your design, doesn’t necessarily mean that others will. You can test colours, messaging, navigation, and CTAs.
- USP– A beautiful website is fantastic, but what are your goals? This is not the slogan, but the product. It is crucial to make this prominent.
7. Shopify SEO
Joe’s Ultimate Shopify SEO Guide is an excellent guide for beginners and experts alike when it comes SEO.
It takes about half an hour to read, and you will find almost everything there. This includes the first steps up to Google Search Console as well as site migrations from other platforms to Shopify.
The Key Takeaways
- Meta Description You’ll get an auto-populated description of your store. However, you need to fill it in to make it attractive so that people click on it from search engine results.
- Search console – Add Google Search console. This will enable you to identify errors related to missing pages or server-related issues. It will inform you about broken links, and offer suggestions for improving your HTML title tags and meta description.
- Sitemaps – Shopify comes with XML sitemap functionality. A sitemap is a list listing all pages on your website. This information is required to submit your website for Google Search Console.
Three of the best SEO Shopify tools available for beginners
Ecommerce Platforms loves a tool, as you can see. The tools they provide for SEO are unbeatable.
- Search Booster This app is used by more than 40,000 stores and helps you to build your Google sitemap. It also allows you bulk upload alt text, which can save you time.
- This tool includes an SEO scan to identify any issues on your website. This tool allows you to fix broken links, headings and alt text.
- Schema plus Schema can be confusing, especially for those who are new to SEO. Schema is a tool that helps search engines understand your product and improve your ranking.
8. Build a Theme
Another resource for web developers is this. While we have already covered the basics of Shopify’s web design, here are some additional details on building your first theme.
This is a great resource if you don’t have the Shopify app to help you find the theme you want. This guide will give you additional tips about Liquid and great ideas on how to be creative in order for you to create your own theme.
The Key Takeaways
- Liquid Shopify uses a Ruby-based language to help them run their themes. Shopify has created a comprehensive and detailed guide for Liquid that teaches you how to use different tags, filters, and objects.
- Slate– The Shopify community was looking for a modern tooling platform. They have created the Slate Starter Theme, which includes all the necessary elements to get you started. These include snippets, templates, and the standard tags that Liquid needs. This theme doesn’t contain any CSS. It is a starting point.
These are the key pages you should focus on when using Shopify.
It’s fine to learn about Liquid and Slate, but it is important to understand your customer journey and the pages that need the most attention. Here are some landing pages that you should be focusing your attention on.
- Homepage It’s obvious that this is your most important page. What can you do to give it that extra boost? Clear and concise information about your product that explains how it can help. Simple navigation is best, with a clear call-to-action. Use high-quality imagery and make the contact options easily visible to grab their attention.
- Product Page Highlight the key features of your product using a list format. To provide additional information about your products, such as size, specifications and shipping information, use a tab system.
- Collection page Users don’t want endless scrolling through your website. Collecting your products is an important step. Allow them to quickly select the brands, sizes, pricing, and product types they prefer.
9. Video guides
If you feel that a video course would be more appealing, then check out Lynda‘s online video courses. These courses will help you set up and launch your store, as well as how to ship your products.
Patrick, an expert in ecommerce, runs this course and provides great insight into how to run an online store. Lynda courses are now available through LinkedIn Learning. You can access over 6,000 courses. Start by getting the first month free.
The Key Takeaways
- Discounts– You can not only set up a discount code, but you can also display a banner on the website to promote your discount. Patrick shows you how to do this to maximize your sales during peak sales periods like Black Friday.
- Shipping labels Patrick walks you through how to create your own shipping labels within Shopify. This will help you save a lot of time and avoid waiting in line at the postoffice to send your parcels.
- Orders Patrick explains how Shopify can sometimes tell you that an order is ‘unpaid’ when it uses 3rd party gateways like Paypal. This happens because Paypal has to redirect the user to the site. If the user does not wait, it may show as unpaid. To match your orders with third-party gateways, it’s worth checking your orders screen every day.
Lynda offers 3 online Lynda courses for Shopify Store Owners
Lynda is an amazing resource that will teach you everything from the basics to advanced Shopify techniques. What are the best courses for your hard-earned cash?
- Shopify Essential Course As mentioned, Patrick Rauland’s essential course is a must-have for all ecommerce merchants. Patrick guides you through the process of setting up an account and configuring a point-of-sale (POS) system for your business. This book is packed with dynamite tips and tricks to help you master Shopify. It lasts three hours. Highly recommended
- Shopify for Marketers – Once you’ve got the admin side of things in place, it’s time that you can hone your marketing skills. Sam Dey from Deytips will lead the discussion on Shopify’s marketing tools and how to use them. This includes email marketing, targeting and how the Shopify affiliate program works.
- SEO Ecommerce Strategies The two courses listed above are for beginners. After you’ve completed the courses, it’s time for you to move up to the intermediate level. Sam is back to show you how to improve keyword rankings and drive traffic to your site.
10. Photographs of products
It is important to use eye-catching, high-quality images to make your products attractive to visitors. You may be setting yourself up for failure if your visitors can’t see the product clearly on your website.
A professional photographer can be expensive, especially if you have many products. Out of the Sandbox ( see their template collection) has put together a handy guide titled “Secrets to taking great product photos in Shopify Theme”. It’s easier than ever to take great photos with your smartphone in this age of smartphones.
Dropshipping is a great option if you have high-quality photos.
The Key Takeaways
- Background Visitors to your website will want to focus on your product. It is important to have a white background. Out of the Sandbox, we recommend simply using a piece of white poster board against a wall.
- Lighting– Your flash won’t do the trick so make sure you have excellent lighting to really make your images stand apart. Both clamp-on utility lamps as well as painters lights are recommended in this article. They’re both extremely affordable.
- Upload – After you have completed your photoshoot, you can upload them to Shopify’s backend. You can also use the airdrop feature if you’re an Apple or Mac user to quickly and efficiently transfer your photos.
The essential tools to create beautiful product photography even on a tight budget
- Camera– You don’t need to break the bank and many smartphones are powerful enough for great product photos. We recommend the Canon Powershot SX430 if you are looking to expand your photography options. It is an affordable entry-level camera that captures great images at a very low price of $200.
- Tripod: To get the best shot, you will need to lower the aperture of your camera. While this will give you a wide field of view, it can also cause blurring to the image. A sufficient tripod is not expensive and can be purchased on Amazon for $20
- Table It may seem obvious, but your products will need to be on a flat surface. For storage, aim for something that is at least 20 inches wide and foldable.