What Is Shopify? – An In-Depth Review

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Shopify is a company that allows business owners to create an e-commerce store. This blog post will discuss what Shopify does, how it can benefit your online business and some of the best features available through this platform.

Shopify is a site where you can start your own online store to sell products. You’ll get an easy-to-use website and payment processing, as well as access to free apps for things like inventory management and discount codes.

You have three options:

1. Shopify has five plans, so you can choose the one that fits your needs

whether you’re selling physical goods or digital products (such as ebooks). The Professional Plan costs $29 per month but lets you set up an unlimited number of stores on one account, plus offers 24/7 support via live chat and phone. It’s for small businesses that need advanced functionality like customer shipping labels and sales taxes.

The Shopify Plan costs $79 per month and includes all the Professional Plan features, plus unlimited bandwidth, so you can scale your business. The Basic Shopify plan costs $29 per month and has a 30-day free trial, for a total investment of $0 to see if it works for you. It includes everything in the Shopify plan except for unlimited bandwidth and 24/7 chat support.

2. Choose from more than 100 apps.

Apps are pre-built solutions that let you sell products or services in specific ways — such as embedding video into your posts or signing up customers for an email list with one click. If there’s something you need but don’t see an app for it, there’s probably a theme (which changes the look of your site) with the necessary features. You can customize them by adding your own colours, fonts and photos.

3. Use Shopify’s built-in payment processing

After you set up a shop, you’ll get an online store that accepts major credit cards or PayPal — at no extra cost to you for as long as you use this service. Simply enter card information on your site during checkout, and it will instantly appear in your Shopify account for safekeeping until the orders ship out. Your customers won’t be able to see or save card numbers or expiration dates, which helps protect both buyers and sellers from fraud and identity theft. And everything is PCI DSS compliant, so if you want to process payments directly from mobile devices, there’s no need to worry about credit card security.

All payment processing is encrypted for your protection. Shopify also encrypts your customers’ credit card information when it’s on their system, so you don’t have to worry about outsiders accessing it while in transit through the Internet. And if you’re ever worried that a customer might make a chargeback claim or otherwise try to get money in a way that isn’t “above board” — such as for an order of clothes they never received — you can suspend payments on those orders directly from your account without having to contact each customer.

You can then communicate with them privately via email and sort out any issues before sending them their order. This is particularly useful if someone makes a dispute after making multiple purchases. This is a much easier way to manage multiple chargebacks than trying to handle it all in the back-and-forth email exchange between you and your customer.

4. Shopify is ideal for selling clothes .

If you want to take the concept of online shopping and turn it into an actual business where you make money, Shopify is hands down one of the best choices out there. It’s perfect for people who don’t know HTML but still want to design their own store with ease — a lot like Wix or Squarespace (but not as elitist). Their drag and drop feature makes designing your store easy enough that anyone can do it!

5. Sell digital products

Not physical items? No problem! Shopify has you covered. They offer a full suite of tools to sell digital products, such as ebooks and downloadable PDFs. As long as your products have an associated SKU (a unique identifier that you can create in Shopify), they can easily be used — just like physical items.

6. Bring in new shoppers with social media integration

Are you great at marketing? Do you know how to get your product in front of the right people? If so, then tapping into this power is incredibly easy with Shopify! By integrating your store with sites like Facebook and Pinterest, potential customers can find out about your business from your friends and family on these platforms — all while keeping their credit card information safe. This ease of use, combined with the fact that so many people are active on social media, makes this capability a strong tool.

7. Manage everything in one place

You can manage all of your products and see how each one is doing — whether you’re using Shopify’s built-in features or working directly from Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or anywhere else. If you sell digital goods (such as e-books) then this management software will help you keep track of how many times they’ve been downloaded and who has bought them.

8. It’s easy to use

The basic storefront functionality offered by Shopify is incredibly user friendly; once it’s set up, updating the information about different products is as simple as clicking “add a product” and writing up a couple of paragraphs to describe its features. And if you want to try out some basic changes before diving in, the app comes with a built-in simulator that lets you test out different designs for your store without bringing down the real thing .

9. Protect yourself from hackers

Shopify offers multistage login credentials, which is highly effective at stopping any potential intruders who are trying to take advantage of stolen password data . All they’d need is an email address and matching password; but with multistage login, attackers would first have to match not only their email but also their mobile phone number (which requires two-factor authentication), before being able to log in successfully. This feature alone is enough to make you feel pretty safe about your store’s security.

10. Boost your SEO with built-in search engine optimization

One of the best ways to get more traffic and sales is by improving your site’s search engine optimization (or SEO). Shopify does this for you automatically: when you create a product page, your title tag, meta description, and header tags are optimized to help improve the visibility of that particular product . This can really drive up your revenue!

11. It works on mobile devices

Although this isn’t technically an advantage that only Shopify has over its competitors (all eCommerce sites should be easy to use on mobile), it’s still worth mentioning here because all things being equal, a shopper who’s browsing on a mobile device is going to choose the website that works best. If you don’t want to lose any sales, take note and make sure your site has a format that’s easy for shoppers to navigate with their fingertips.

12. It looks good

You could also say this about someone like Wix or Squarespace (creative web design), but Shopify does it even better! They have several templates specifically designed for storefronts, and their search function makes finding one that matches your style simple. Once you’ve found what you’re looking for, all you need to do is follow the simple instructions provided by Shopify — and in just a few minutes, you’ll have yourself a brand new online store!

At this point, let’s recognize the power of Shopify and how it can help any business grow! A lot of people don’t even realize how much they would benefit from an online store, so below we’ll take a look at just a few more reasons you should consider building your own eCommerce site with Shopify.

13. It works on any device

Tablet, Smartphone, Computer … doesn’t matter! And if you’re worried about privacy concerns or have some reservations about storing credit card data online , then you can rest easy — Shopify allows you to use Google Checkout for payments ! This means that when someone buys something from your store, all of their information is safely stored with Google. You never need to handle their credit card information at all. And if you’re worried about privacy concerns or have some reservations about storingcredit card data online, then you can rest easy — Shopify allows! This means that when someone buys something from your store, all of their information is safely stored with Google. You never need to handle their credit card information at all.

14. It integrates with Facebook and Twitter

If you’re familiar with the marketing potential of social media (and who isn’t?), then this will come as a real bonus: Shopify lets you set up integration between your site and both Facebook and Twitter; that way, whenever anyone shares something on either one of those platforms, it appears directly on your shop’s page as well! This feature is free and only takes a few clicks to set up.

15. It has a killer customer support

! Shopify’s built-in help centre is one of the best you’ll find anywhere, hands down. Of course, they’re also available 24/7 via phone or email if you ever need anything — but their help centre is so thorough that you probably won’t need to bother them very often anyway! You can also turn to YouTube for video tutorials on almost any subject; no matter what kind of site you’re making, whether it’s your first time using Shopify or not, there are videos already created especially for you!

16. Its Reputation Precedes It

If you Google “eCommerce,” chances are pretty good that Shopify will appear at or near the top of the list. This is a huge deal! It means that they have a lot of trust and respect in the industry; it also means you’ll be able to take advantage of countless free apps, features, and tools created by third-party developers who are eager to get their product in front of as many people as possible (it’s called affiliate marketing ).

Many website builders come with an easy online storefront — but Shopify does it better. They call themselves “the most powerful eCommerce platform in the world,” and while some might argue with that label, there’s no doubt that if you want to sell products online, then Shopify can help you set up an incredible store, customize it to suit your needs, and make it easier to manage in the long run.

They have several templates specifically designed for storefronts, and their search function makes finding one that matches your style simple. Once you’ve found what you’re looking for, all you need to do is follow the simple instructions provided by Shopify — and in just a few minutes, you’ll have yourself a brand new online store!

At this point, let’s recognize the power of Shopify and how it can help any business grow! A lot of people don’t even realize how much they would benefit from an online store, so below we’ll take a look at just a few more reasons you should consider building your own eCommerce site with Shopify.

17. It’s Easy

You’ll still need to put in some time and energy when you sign up for Shopify, but the whole process is a lot easier than you might think! All of their templates feature professional designs that will make your site look top-notch from the get-go, so even if you’re a complete beginner at web design, chances are good that you’ll be able to find something that fits your taste.

18. It Lets You create multiple stores with one account

Many creators use Shopify to sell more than one product, which means they need to set up multiple storefronts. The good news is — and this again goes back to the trust factor mentioned earlier — it only takes about 10 minutes (or less!) to set up a new storefront in Shopify! So if you already have an eCommerce store, and want to open another one for a new product line or unique idea, then it’s as easy as clicking the “Create Store” button and choosing a template.

19. It has social sharing abilities

If your goal is to build an online community around your brand (and why wouldn’t it be?), then social sharing functions are incredibly important — because without them, how can you make sure all your fans share your content with their friends? However, when you run a Shopify store, all of that stress melts away: they come with Facebook-style plugins built right into each theme’s design. This way, whenever anyone shares one of your posts, it automatically shows up on their wall — and that’s just one more opportunity for you to grow your fan base!

In addition to those 19 reasons above, I would like to share a few other facts with you about Shopify.

Please notice :

(1) Shopify is the only “complete” shopping cart system designed for eCommerce and available online. It has many excellent features such as drop shipping, affiliate programs, inventory tracking, mobile commerce, social media marketing and much more.

As a professional seller on eBay or Amazon, you may want to consider switching over to Shopify as this will save you time when selling on multiple platforms. They are very flexible in allowing you to use any payment processor, including PayPal, and the shopping cart is based on a very popular open-source platform, which means there are many add-ons available online. In addition to using Shopify as your main eCommerce site, you can also use it as an affiliate tool and promote other people’s products that are sold via Shopify.

(2) You get all the tools you need for free, including point-of-service, mobile commerce and much more with just one click! The drop shipping feature allows you to order stock from manufacturers directly through their system. For larger companies selling multiple brands or types of products dropshipping may not be the most efficient way to do this; however, for smaller sellers who have limited product lines and don’t want to commit to purchasing the stock upfront, this is a great feature.

You can also add products to your online store from any external link! I use this feature all the time when I am browsing Facebook or other websites for cool new stuff. If you see something interesting on another website just save that page into a list of “products” in Shopify and then send traffic to it with Facebook ads. This is one of many ways that small business owners can compete against larger companies that have higher overheads.

(3) SEO – search engine optimization, including Google, is vital! To attract visitors from online searches people need to find your product and services at the top of Google’s search rankings (SERP). Simple methods for doing this include using proper keywords throughout your content, adding image alt tags to your product photos and creating a video for your website (visual information is easier to digest).

In addition, you can write articles about products in your niche and include links back to your eCommerce site with appropriate anchor text. Another very important SEO element is social media. I always post new Shopify reviews or other related content on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ and LinkedIn.

Brief description and its uses and profits:

Corporate Profit Model: Passive + Potential For Large Profits

Business Startup Cost: $99.00 per month (Shopify hosting fees, domain name registration) +$29.95/month for the standard Shopify plan with SSL certificate (for secure online payments, so you never have to worry about losing any money ). This is a total cost of only $1034.85, which equates to an initial setup investment of less than $1,000!

If you are looking for more reasons why should consider starting an online business: Here are 40 reasons why running an online business will change your life forever – check it out! 

Shopify is one of the most popular and fastest-growing eCommerce platforms in the world. It offers a free 14-day trial for new users, which means you can test to see if this commerce platform is right for your business, before committing any money.

Shopify was started by two university students, Tobias Lutke and Scott Lake, who were frustrated with their previous eCommerce solutions. They created their own solution called Kitbox from scratch which eventually evolved into Shopify.

Steps To Success With Shopify

1) Get Your Products Ready To Sell:

The first step is to create an online store that sells products and services. Once you have created a free account, Shopify will provide hosting for your business at no cost. This means that all of the products and content related to your website is stored on their servers.

Steps For Getting Your Products Ready In Shopify:

(1) Purchase inventory (or, if dropshipping, add links to existing product listings with suppliers ): Shopify integrates with many leading eCommerce platforms including Etsy and Amazon.com, so there are thousands of potential products from which you can build your online store. If choosing to purchase or produce stock yourself, be sure that it meets the quality control standards required by your industry/niche/audience. If dropshipping, you can have products delivered directly to your customers. Step-by-step guide on how to use Shopify for dropshipping (click here)

Shopify integrates with many leading eCommerce platforms including Etsy and Amazon.com, so there are thousands of potential products from which you can build your online store. Also, Shopify offers a complete product catalogue that automatically pulls all of the products in the system into one easy place for you to customize. If choosing to purchase or produce stock yourself, be sure that it meets quality control standards required by your industry/niche/audience (I recommend starting out with Shopify’s free 14-day trial – click here

(2) Decide what type of products you want to sell (products, clothing, food/drinks, health & beauty related goods etc) : You can choose whatever niche you like, but be sure to search for similar products on Amazon or eBay to see how much you will need to invest in advertising/marketing.

Shopify has a built-in credit card processing system, which means you can start selling right away. If you sell from your own website using Shopify’s shopping cart integration with Stripe (a third party payment processor), then no CC details are stored on your site – this provides greater security for customers and sellers. You now have an eCommerce store ready to take orders!

2) Build Your Online Store

Once your online store is created, the next step is to customize it.

Tool(s) Needed To Build & Customize Your Online Store:

(a) Product Customizer: Shopify’s product customizer helps you to create the perfect digital storefront for your products. The tool lets you easily add policies and FAQs, banners, collections and more.

(b) Shipping App: Shopify also offers a complete shipping app that will help you streamline all of the processing involved in receiving orders and shipping them out so that it is a smooth hassle-free process. You can set up the free US or international shipping or charge flat rates on your products (up to $2000/month).

3) Set Up Your Online Store

Apart from setting up your online store as mentioned earlier, there are other actions that need to be taken. Here are some things that should be done with regards to setting up your online store.

Shopify Features

(1) User-Friendly Interface: It is very easy to set up a Shopify account and start selling products. You can do this on your own or you can use one of the third-party services like Veltra

To make money from this part-time home-based business requires patience & diligence. When first starting out it is important to build trust with customers and the best way to do this is to provide good customer service. Always be willing to help answer questions about your products and services. Be sure to have a Facebook page where people can reach you but remember to be professional. This will encourage others to trust you and look into your business further (you may even get some positive reviews).

(2) Mobile App: Shopify has a mobile app that allows you to check on sales figures, accesses your order history as well as add items from the Shopify catalogue straight onto that platform. It also links with Gmail so that Shopify automatically finds the e-mails sent to you by customers and imports them into your orders – very handy!

Summary Of Features:

1) Set Up Your Online Store With No Technical Skills Needed: If you are just starting out on your own. Shopify has a 14- day trial period where you can set up an online store to see how it works (pretty much risk-free!).

2) A Design Ecosystem: There are tons of templates that are easily customizable. Also, the design kit feature within Shopify provides business owners with all kinds of business apps from inventory tracking to point-of-sale services, shipping integrations and more. It also connects seamlessly with third-party partners like Veltra through their API or design tool.

3) Real-Time Reporting & Analysis: You get real-time data and analytical reports as a seller in order to help you make decisions on pricing your products based on the sales figures received or the number of clicks your site is getting, etc.

4) 24 / 7 Online Store: Your store is accessible from any computer at any time of the day or night. The cloud-based platform allows you to access and make changes, upload new products, view reports in real -time, accept credit card payments as well as process orders and ship them out all from anywhere with an internet connection!

Shopify Payments & Additional Services:

1) Shopify Payments: Shopify Payments are required if you want visitors to be able to purchase products using a debit or credit card on your website. If you choose this option it will cost 5% per transaction. If you would like to use a third-party payment processor (like Stripe), which charges 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction, you will need to upgrade your Shopify plan to their paid platform.

2) Additional Services: There are a number of additional services offered by Shopify, ranging from payroll and accounting solutions to customer service platforms and more. These services can be accessed through the partner platform within Shopify for a small monthly fee. Also referred to as apps, these features range in cost based on their requirements.

3) SSL Certification: A secure socket layer certificate is a certification that is required if you want customers to trust you and feel safe shopping with you online. It is important for your store’s images and text not to get mixed up with others as it ensures personal information security. This verification process requires that you work with a third party who has already been verified in order to obtain one. It will cost around $70 – $160/year.

Important Things To Keep In Mind:

1) If customers are having issues with accessing your site or seeing it correctly, Shopify offers customer service support for the setup process at no additional cost once you have set up your store.

2) A 14- day trial period is offered by Shopify before needing to pay anything, and after that, you can choose whether to go paid or stick with the free plan (however, if you get over 2200 unique visits during those two weeks then your credit card will be charged $50). So basically, even if people don’t purchase anything on your store for those two weeks (which isn’t likely ) you can still try out the site to see if it really works for you and your business needs.

3) More advanced features such as A / B testing, integration with Google Analytics and more are only offered on the business plan which costs $29/month or $179/year. But these don’t help a new seller who is just starting out, so I would recommend sticking with the standard prepaid package when first getting started (as they are available even from free accounts). And if things go well then that’s when you move onto one of the plans that offer these extra features .   [see image below]

4) Shopify stores work best for online businesses, but there are plenty of ways to use them for physical products too. Even if you are a small brick and mortar store wanting to sell your items online, this is an excellent option. To start off simply by adding your inventory on the site then linking it with Facebook or social media is enough.

4) Private Label Right: Shopify has been known to help out (on a case-by-case basis) people who want to build their own brands using their platform, regardless of whether they get into any legal trouble over trademark violations from others companies.

For example, if you were able to create a brand that was similar enough but different in name or logo, then you could proceed as long as no one else files a trademark complaint against you. But be sure to check the Shopify website for full details on their private label terms and conditions.

What Features Do You Get With The Free Plan?

1) Unlimited products: You can add as many items as you want. To get more options (such as adding categories or third-party apps), you’ll need to upgrade.

2) No need to purchase a domain name, email address, or SSL certificate: These are all provided on free plans.

3) No Google Analytics integration: As mentioned earlier, there is no way of integrating with this platform if your site gets over 2200 unique visits per month. A different analytics program will have to be used instead.

4) Templates only: There are optional paid templates offered by Shopify, and you can create custom templates using HTML and CSS code.

How Do the Shopify Payments Work?

1)Shopify offers 3 different ways of accepting payments:

2) PayPal: When a customer pays online, they are directed to a page on PayPal’s site, but when they make their purchase it is then forwarded onto your site. You get 1% of the value as payment for being the middle man (or rather Shopify). But whether or not you want to use this option really depends on how much traffic is visiting your store from outside countries where PayPal isn’t accepted. If there aren’t many international orders, then this could be a good choice.

3) Stripe: It is considered one of the most popular and easy to use payment processors for online stores.

4) Shopify Payments: This is the company’s own system, where money is held by your shop and released only when you ship a product (ensuring that money isn’t spent on things like marketing). You can also choose how much you want to end up charging your customers, so if the product costs $100 but you will charge them $101.15 (which would include tax and shipping) then that option is available.

5) Cheque/money orders: For those people who don’t have credit cards or PayPal, this works as an alternative. But it does require additional time and care because you’ll be dealing with actual paper money rather than receiving money digitally in seconds.

How Much Does It Cost?

The Shopify plans start at $29 a month for the basic package and go up to an unlimited plan that is $299 a month. If you want the additional features offered in more expensive packages, then it is best to consider upgrading as early as possible because if your store starts getting lots of traffic and orders then you have no other way of making money with your site.

But adding extra products becomes even easier if you upgrade, along with more options for taking payments (such as Stripe or PayPal).  Another good reason to upgrade is when you need advanced security features such as SSL certificates. Generally, there are three main levels of Shopify:

Starter: This is obviously the cheapest option, but it can get really expensive if you plan to scale up your business (such as by selling more than 40 products). The free version has limitations such as not being able to sell in multiple currencies or integrate with accounting software. Plus, it’s only available for 13 months.

Basic: This is a better option and covers the standard features of Shopify, but comes at a higher price.

Advanced: This gives access to all of the services offered by Shopify, including multi-currency support and apps that can be installed easily onto your store (such as live customer chat). Best advice? Get started on the basic package first so that you can see how well your products will sell before upgrading.

Remember: If you make a profit in US dollars then some payment gateways will take a percentage of your profit in the form of currency conversion fees.

Pros
  • 1) The tools it offers are incredibly easy to use, which means that people with no technical knowledge at all can still run an online store .
  • 2) Has excellent user support , so even if you make mistakes or get stuck there is always someone who can help you out via email or about 10 different social media platforms (such as Facebook and Twitter).
  • 3) All payments are processed through Shopify’s system, meaning that these rates apply: Credit Card Processing Rates : 2.9% (standard rates vary depending on where customer is from), 0.30 cents for each transaction (or 30 cents per order) . The charge is the same, whether your customer pays using a credit card or PayPal. Credit Card Processing Rates (Stripe): 2.4% and 0.5 cents . These rates apply to all customers plus there are no hidden fees when you use Stripe as a payment processor.
  • 4) When you don’t sell anything then it doesn’t cost you anything , meaning that if you decide to switch off your store one day then at least you haven’t spent any money on nothing in return!
Cons
  • 1) If you want to get started quickly, then this isn’t the most affordable option because of how much it costs and how much time it takes to set up . But if you are willing to pay for convenience then it is well worth the money .
  • 2) The main disadvantage of Shopify is that you can’t change your website’s look. If you want to make any changes then you have to contact them directly and ask them to implement it for you, which will probably cost extra money . However, there are some ways around this. You could install apps onto your store instead (so that you can edit those yourself), or simply create a new theme using a basic customiser so that you don’t need any help from anyone else .
  • 3) No matter what package you buy, there will always be a limit on how much storage space you have and how many people use it at once, so if you want all of your inventory to be live then you will have to upgrade. This can become very expensive for small online businesses, and so it may be better to use a different eCommerce platform.
  • 4) Shopify is an expensive option because the cost of setting up a monthly subscription service adds up over time, plus there are other hidden costs such as credit card processing fees and currency conversion rates.
  • 5) If you prefer people to pay using PayPal instead of credit cards, then Shopify won’t work well for you because not only does its system take conversion charges but also additional transaction charges (which depend on what country the customer lives in).
  • 6) There are features that aren’t included by default with the free version, as well as options for more advanced SEO purposes (although you can get around that by using the Shopify app store and installing free SEO apps) .

In conclusion, if you are going to choose Shopify then do it because of the benefits and not because of the negatives, since there isn’t anything wrong with it. It is just that other platforms offer more value for money and greater flexibility in some cases. As long as your expectations are realistic, though, then don’t worry about any disadvantages since they will soon become irrelevant when compared with all of the advantages!

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Manish Sharma
Manish Sharma, founder of OYEManish is a creative web designer and blogger. He loves to share his ideas with others through blogs and social media platforms. His blog posts are informative. Manish has also helped clients create their own websites. He takes great pride in his work because he wants to improve the lives of others through his creativity.

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