Price: $9/month – $179/month
What is Shopify?
Shopify is an online store builder that allows you to sell products you want to sell on a website of your own.
There are many advantages to getting started online because of the number of people who can discover your product, the affordable cost it takes to start up, and you can even run a website almost on autopilot after the initial work is put in! Now when I say initial work I mean the amount of work you have to put in to build your website traffic (by creating engaging content, updating it regularly, getting feedback, etc.).
When you create a Shopify account you get a back office where you access, organize, and build your whole website. To me it seems very efficient and the support I had was very good as well.
Shopify is ideal for you if you want to create an online store, or if you already have a store and want it to have a website to sell your products.
You can create a website using any niche or something that interests you, such as art and photography, ebooks, electronics, food and beverage, jewelry, home and garden, furniture, toys and games, sports and recreation, etc.
Basically any sort of gadgets/widgets or physical products that you can sell, Shopify can help make this an easier process for you.
However, this is IF you know what you are doing and are familiar with creating a website. Newbies that want to create a website with Shopify are not as successful as experts.
How Does Shopify Work?
The Main focus of shopify is for you to be able to build a user-friendly and profitable online store.Building a website can be done even if you don’t know anything about coding or programming.
All you need to create an account with Shopify is your email, a password, and the name of your store or what you want it to be named. You also need a few other details, such as your name and address. You are then presented with a short series of questions where you can tell them a more about yourself. Like if you’re new to online business, if you already have a business, how much money your business makes, etc.
Once you do that Shopify begins to set up your store, and that’s it!
Using the back office you have access and the ability to:
- Create and insert content (webpages & blogs)
- Insert images
- Organize your products into categories (makes it easy for customers to find what they need)
- Manage your inventory
- Discount code engine (compare similar items and insert discounts)
- Track customer and order details
- Install secure shopping cart (with over 50 different payment processors in different currencies)
- Set up customer accounts (so your customers can login to their private accounts to manage their personal information such as address, credit card information) This makes it easier for hem to buy something from your site again.
- Sort your customers by location, money spent, etc. (this helps you better understand where your customers are coming from and their spending behaviors, so you can market to three better)
- Manage multiple staff login (if you have staff helping you, you can give them different permission levels to help you manage your online store)
Pros and Cons of Shopify
- Shopify offers you over 100 themes (templates) for your site (this makes your online store look professional and appealing to visitors). You can choose to have a free theme or pay for one, but I would definitly suggest starting with a free one!
- They have tools and Apps to help you with running your online store on autopilot (after you work to do all the initial set up)
- 24/7 support.
- They have no website hosting
- In addition to the monthly fee, Shopify charges a 1 – 2% transaction fee for their lower pricing plans but not for the “Unlimited” plan. (If you use Shopify Payments, it will waive all transaction fees)
- There is a monthly fee for some Apps.
Shopify Tools and Training
They don’t do a very good job of explaining what to do after you get everything set up. There wasn’t any kind of tour or any tips on how to get your online store to make a profit. On the Home tab they only give you little suggestions on what you should do, but it isn’t a great starting point. Especially for a newbies!
You get a “to-do-list” but it is also not very good information for beginners. Adding a product is the first thing on the list, which is important but I don’t think it’s the first thing you should do.
What you should start with is how to put a good title on your pages or how to create a page, which isn’t on there. People want to know “how do I set up my own website, what type of content should I be adding, how do I get customers?”, etc. These things are missing, and they are VERY important!
Here is a breakdown of the tools and training you get with Shopift.
- Live Webinars (there are also pre-recorded webinars)
- Tutorial Videos (two YouTube that can help after the initial setup)
- Design Videos (help with design and visual aspect of your website)
- Shopify Manual
Other available features:
- Point Of Sale (POS) System (you can create your sales system if you have an offline store)
- You can use your iPad or iPhone for your business (help customers, handle payments, etc.)
- Apps (you can use these for more tools and training). Such as a live chat app, an ad rating and review widget app, or an app for receipts
Some Apps are free and some have monthly fees. You can decide which ones you want.
How Much Does Shopify Cost?
There are 4 different types of plans you can purchase per month. With each increase in cost you get more from Shopify. You can get started with a free trial that lasts 14 days, which is great so you can try things out and make sure this is the program for you. Click here for a picture of all the prices and what you get with each! You can’t get the online store with the Lite package.
- Lite: $9/month
- Basic: $29/month
- Pro: $79/month
- Unlimited: $179/month
Even as a free trial member the support is pretty good, which is a major bonus! You are going to NEED help and Shopify does a good job providing that help. It’s 24/7 live chat so you can contact them ANYTIME! Here is a breakdown of the support provided.
- Live Chat
- Shopify Help Center (ask a question in the search bar)
- Community Forum (access other members for help)
- Hire An Expert (can cost between $300-$5,000 for design work, photography, marketing, and developers)
- Having this support is key in growing any business online. The support at Shoity is one of the most impressive key features.
I feel Shopify is an excellent source for people who are familiar with creating a website and want to put an existing business online.
It has all the tools and training you need to see success.
For newbies online interested in earning money online, this wouldn’t be the best option for you. You need to check out Wealthy Affiliate! It is how I built a successful business online and it has a FREE started membership that you can use forever, however you can get more out of it by joining the Premium membership at a VERY low price. They can help you if you are an expert or a newbie.
Here is how Shopify and Wealthy Affiliate compare:
If you have any questions or would like to share your experience with Shopify, please leave a comment below!