With the rise of internet-based businesses, there are many opportunities to generate sales in the E-commerce market.
No matter what products you have, you can create a store, list them, market over the internet, generate sales and make money. But it’s not as simple as it sounds!
To launch an E-commerce store, you will need a platform that is well-designed for your products, while giving you a simple interface to update content. Many people who are just starting their e-commerce store commit to one platform too early, without feeling if it fits well for their store.
This is where Shopify comes in.
Shopify is a well-engineered content management system that is purely developed for creating beautiful e-commerce stores. Creating a store with Shopify is very simple and doesn’t require much to begin.
What is Shopify?
Shopify is a Canadian multinational company that helps entrepreneurs sell their products with ease.
It is a website and online presence builder that is designed to be intuitive for creators.
The platform made its first public appearance in 2004, 15 years ago. From the time of its launch, it has helped thousands of offline businesses go online.
Whether you are a manufacturing company or a product retailer, you can use Shopify for your e-commerce website and start selling your products.
The Benefits of Using Shopify for E-Commerce
There are many reasons to use Shopify for your e-commerce store, and here are some of the top ones my team came up with:
- Shopify is Easy to Use
With a simple startup process and a great bundle of free themes to use, Shopify requires no technical skills. It’s simple to create pages, organize menus, add & manage products and even design the appearance of your website. Adding new functionality to your website is a breeze. Want to do email marketing or even add a popup? Look through the Shopify App Store!
- Large Custom Development Community
Similar to WooCommerce, Shopify has an extensive community of developers and freelancers that can create custom functionalities for your website. With a current library of over 3200 apps, you can find what you need out of the box, or work with a developer to tweak it exactly how you need it.
- Shopify is SEO-Friendly
When we say SEO-friendly, we are referring to how easy it is for anyone to log into their website and begin making adjustments to improve search rank. Most website framework will require custom development to access key SEO features, but Shopify has some basic ones built-in. From updating meta and title tags across your pages to organizing your menus in a way that makes sense, will let you tap into elements of Google Search.
- Shopify is Affordable
For anyone building their first e-commerce store, it can be hard to understand the value of investing in your e-commerce platforms. Many e-commerce platforms can require hours of development, and even some hired help. Before committing to a custom website, using a platform with a monthly payment system can be a great way to get a taste of premium e-commerce features without the full commitment.
- Cross-Channel Selling
Unlike other E-commerce CMS, Shopify has cross-channel selling built into the platform. Cross channel selling allows you to sell your products on other platforms like Twitter, Pinterest, Wanelo, and Houze while managing your sales and inventory on one platform. This even integrates with Facebook Catalog to easily integrate Facebook and Instagram Shopping to your E-commerce store.
Downsides to the Shopify Platform
Like every e-commerce platform, there are features that may be better on others. Here are some of the major problems with using Shopify for e-commerce:
- Professional reporting tools are disabled unless you upgrade from the Basic package
- Email management can be difficult with limited integrations from Mailchimp and Campaign Monitor
- Shopify Payments are limited to specific countries only, for other countries you must use a 3rd party provider
- Creating a custom look and feel to your site is hard without paying for a theme or hiring a developer
- Difficult to add and create schema on Shopify websites
Now that we have talked about some of the major fault points that Shopify currently has, let’s go into some of the basic steps that are required in setting up your first Shopify website.
How Do I Start a Shopify Website?
- Visit https://shopify.com/
- Login or press Start Free Trial
- Create your store!
With the Shopify free trial, you will have access to the Shopify basic package for 14 days to test out your store and to see if Shopify is a good fit for your brand and audience.
How Do I Design a Shopify Website?
Once you have set up your test Shopify website, you will now choose a theme. Themes are the most important part of designing a Shopify website, and there are several free Shopify themes available that will help you get insight into the direction you want to go.
In my experience, the hardest step that most store owners must take is designing their store and choosing a style. I always start with the Shopify Debut theme to give me a strong outline for any store.
Layout Your Shopify HomePage
Just like any brick and mortar store, you want to express your brand and vision of your products the first time people entire your store. The same is the case with your website homepage. This moment will be your first impression, and best shot at showing your potential customer why you are what they need.
Here is the basic structure for any Shopify Homepage:
- Hero / Slide image
- Product tile groupings
- About your brand / Your mission
- Newsletter Call out
If you are able to touch on each of these elements on your home page, you are set to make a good impression and connect with your visitor.
Is Shopify Good for SEO?
A lot of CPG brands I work with have considered using Shopify for their online e-commerce store. Most of the time, Shopify is a great option for any new CPG brand just getting started. If you are a larger CPG that has a well-established base for SEO, you might not want to use Shopify for SEO reasons.
When you use Shopify, it can be hard to optimize for essential features without paying for plugins. For example, when it comes to adding custom recipe schema to your Shopify pages, you may need to pay your developer a bit extra to implement the code on every page. This can be a hassle.
Right out of the box, Shopify has the most important SEO principles in place, and this is what makes it great for people who are not experienced in digital marketing. Just by optimizing the meta and titles on your most important pages, you can start generating traffic for your brand across the organic search.
Should I use Shopify For CPG E-Commerce?
As a final verdict, we say yes, you should try out Shopify for your e-commerce platform. After years of generating results in the industry, Shopify is an important part of the growth and development of e-commerce stores in the future.
With a low cost of entry and a large supportive community, it’s easy to jump into Shopify and start an e-commerce store.