Starting a Shopify store? Read this first.
Are you wanting to grow (or start) your product-based business? Then Shopify is where you want to be. It’s the gold-standard ecommerce platform and my personal favorite.
Shopify was built to sell products online, period.
Shopify is an ecommerce software that enables merchants to sell online, on social or even in person. Founded in 2014 in Canada, its grown into the most influential and powerful ecommerce platform in the world with over 1 million merchants currently using it.
Shopify is built for business newbies and ecommerce juggernauts like Kylie Cosmetics and Allbirds. That’s one of the reasons I love and confidently recommend Shopify to my clients: you won’t outgrow it.
Is Shopify right for you?
One of the top questions I get asked is if someone is “ready” for Shopify. My answer isn’t super cut and dry — but here’s my take.
- If you already have a validated product, then yes, you’re ready! A validated product is simply a product that you’ve tested in a marketplace of some kind (your local store, festival, Etsy, Facebook, etc) and it’s sold. OR
- If you’re invested in your business and want to grow.
There’s not a certain length of time or revenue threshold I recommend hitting before starting on Shopify. Plenty of people, some of my clients included, start with Shopify for brand new products and businesses because they know it’s the platform they want to be on to grow their business. For example, I have a client launching her new luxury lip balm brand on Shopify and she wants to have a beautiful and solid ecommerce store before she starts pitching big brands like Sephora to carry her products.
Since Shopify is a relatively low investment (the basic plan is $29/month), it’s not a huge jump for most. And yes, the basic plan is great and most of my clients are on it!
How much does it cost to build a Shopify store?
Here’s the cost breakdown for everything you’ll need to start your store:
- Your Shopify account (starting at $29/month)
- Your custom domain ($11/year from Shopify)
That’s it! You can use a free theme and apps aren’t required to run your store. They’re more of a “power-up” and plenty of apps have free versions.
If you hire a professional Shopify designer like Launch Party, then that will be an additional cost which would vary depending on your needs. But if you’re truly DIY-ing and keeping it minimal, all you need is your Shopify account and domain.
I also strongly recommend an email platform for all ecommerce businesses. My two recommendations are Mailchimp (free for first 2k subscribers) and Klavyio (free for first 250 subscribers). Mailchimp is a great place to start if you’re new or want to keep costs lower for longer. I do love Klavyio though because it’s made for ecommerce companies and has lots of powerful features built in.
Now let’s talk about how to set up shop.
Start your free 2 week trial on Shopify which will give you some time to get acquainted before you commit. Maximize your trial by following my steps outlined in my free guide, which discusses adding products, Shopify themes and apps too.
Transitioning from Etsy?
If you’re building your Shopify store after already having an Etsy shop, there are some big differences to be aware of. First, Etsy is a marketplace, which means you sign up to sell on their system and that comes with advantages and disadvantages. One of the biggest advantages (can be) that Etsy has their own built-in traffic. Though if you’ve been on Etsy for any length of time, you’ve probably realized you can’t rely on the algorithm and Etsy traffic alone. You need a way to get people to your Etsy shop.
The same is true with Shopify. Shopify is not a marketplace, so your store will be totally stand alone. As such, you’ll need a plan to get people to your store.
Calling all Etsy sellers, boutique owners and makers!
If you're tired of dealing with Etsy's fees, algorithm and ODR and want to build your business on a site that you own, keep reading!
Learn all about Shopify from a pro in my FREE workshop, Sell More with Shopify. I'm sharing my design secrets to turn visitors into customers.