Starting a business online might seem really hard, but don’t worry, there’s lots of help out there for you.
In our blog post, we’re going to show you eight simple steps to start your own Shopify store. We’ll help you come up with product ideas and set up how people can pay you. It’s easy, we promise!
So, get ready to learn, and soon you’ll be running your own online store without any trouble!
Steps to launching your first Shopify store
Step 1: Product Idea
Okay, so you want to start an online store but without having a bunch of stuff to sell, right?
First things first, you need a great idea for what to sell.
And not just any idea, it has to be something people actually want to buy.
How do you figure that out?
Well, it’s like being a detective. You look at what’s popular using tools like Google Trends, social media stats, and keywords (basically, what people are searching for online).
Also, check out what other businesses similar to yours are selling and what’s really popular.
Here are some popular product ideas to consider for your Shopify store:
- Health and wellness products, (supplements, essential oils, and fitness equipment).
- Beauty and skincare products, (cosmetics, serums, and face masks).
- Home decor and furnishings, (rugs, lighting, and wall art).
- Pet products, (toys, treats, and grooming supplies).
- Fashion and accessories, (clothing, jewelry, and handbags).
- Tech and electronics, (phone accessories, smart home devices, and fitness trackers).
Once you’ve got this awesome idea, don’t just jump in headfirst.
Test it out with a small group of people who might want to buy it. Their opinions are like your secret weapon – they’ll tell you if your idea is a winner or not. So, take your time and do your homework!
Step 2: Fulfillment method
So, you’ve got this great product idea, but now you need to decide how to get it to your customers. There are a few ways to do this, each with its own good and bad points.
First off, there’s dropshipping. This means you don’t keep any products in stock. You only buy the product when you’ve made a sale.
It’s nice because you don’t need much money upfront, and you can grow your business easily.
But, the downside is that you don’t have much control over how things are shipped, and handling customer returns can be tricky.
Then, there’s print-on-demand. With this, you only pay for the items that you’ve sold.
You don’t have to worry about having a bunch of products stored somewhere, and you can offer lots of different things.
But, like dropshipping, dealing with returns and covering design and printing costs can be a hassle.
Lastly, there’s warehousing. This means you store your products in a warehouse.
It gives you more control over shipping, and you can offer faster delivery and more products.
However, you’ll need to invest in keeping products in stock, manage the warehouse, handle returns, and pay for shipping.
That is why it’s important to consider these points when thinking about what works best for your business.
It’s all about finding the easiest and most cost-effective way to get your products to your customers.
Step 3: Shopify Plan
When you’re setting up your online store with Shopify, choosing the right plan is key.
They offer three: Basic Shopify for $39 per month, Shopify for $105 per month, and Advanced Shopify for $399 per month.
Now, here’s what you need to think about:
- How many products are you selling?
- Expecting lots of visitors?
- Need special features like recovering abandoned carts or offering gift cards?
- And, of course, your budget.
Basic Shopify is like the starter pack. It costs $39 monthly and gives you support, unlimited products, basic reports, and a free domain for a year.
Step up to Shopify at $105 per month, and you get everything in Basic, plus features like recovering abandoned carts and offering gift cards.
Now, if you’re running a big operation and need top-notch support, Advanced Shopify at $399 per month is your go-to. It includes all Shopify features and adds unlimited file storage, advanced reports, and a dedicated account manager.
So, figure out what you need and what you can afford, and then pick the plan that suits you best.
A good advantage is that Shopify let you start for free, then get your first 3 months for $1/mo.
If in those 3 months you make sales, then your membership will be basically free as you going to be paying it with your profit.
Step 4: Supplier
Finding a good supplier for your online store is super important. It’s like picking the right ingredients for a recipe—you want the best stuff to make the best dish. Here’s what you need to consider:
- Quality is a must. You want products that are top-notch because that keeps your customers happy. So, when you’re looking for suppliers, make sure they offer really good stuff.
- Price is important too. You need to find a supplier who offers good quality at a price that works for your budget. It’s like shopping around to get the best deal.
- Reliability is a big deal as well. You want a supplier who sticks to their word and delivers things on time. Late deliveries can mess up your plans, so reliability is key.
- Communication is crucial. You want a supplier who listens to your questions and gives you clear answers. Good communication avoids confusion and keeps everything running smoothly.
Once you’ve got a few potential suppliers in mind, do some digging. Check online reviews or just talk to them directly. It’s like asking for recommendations before trying a new restaurant.
When you find a supplier that you’re happy with, work closely with them. Be clear about what you want, and make sure they understand. With a bit of effort, you’ll find a supplier that helps your online store shine.
Step 5: Target Audience
Defining your target audience and creating a marketing strategy to reach them is the foundation of any successful online store.
To achieve this, it’s essential to conduct thorough research and analysis to identify your ideal customer.
This can be done by collecting and analyzing data such as demographics, interests, behaviors, and buying habits.
Step 6: Design and Branding
A well-designed and branded store can make a big difference in your business. It can help you attract new customers, build brand loyalty, and increase sales.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Choose a theme that matches your brand’s personality and style.
- Add your branding elements, consistently throughout your store and use high-quality images.
- Write clear and concise product descriptions and add social media buttons to make it easy for customers to share your products.
Read More: How to become a Shopify Web Design Pro
Step 7: Shopify Apps
When it comes to managing an online store, Shopify provides a wide range of apps that can help you streamline your operations and improve the shopping experience for your customers.
The key is to choose the right apps that align with your business goals and needs.
So, if you’re looking to increase customer engagement and loyalty, you might consider installing an app that allows you to create a rewards program or send personalized follow-up emails to customers who have made a purchase.
On the other hand, if you’re finding it hard to manage your inventory, you might want to consider apps that help you track your stock levels or automatically reorder products when they run out.
When selecting apps, remember to think about how they will integrate with your existing systems and processes. You should also consider the cost of each app, as well as any ongoing fees or commissions that may be associated with them.
Step 8: Payment Gateways
Setting up payment gateways is an essential aspect of running an e-commerce website. Shopify offer various payment gateways like Shopify Payments, PayPal, and Stripe that you can integrate into your store.
It is important to note that each payment gateway has its own unique features, advantages, and fees. For example, Shopify Payments is an excellent option for Shopify users as it streamlines the payment process and provides lower transaction fees. PayPal is another popular payment gateway that offers easy integration with most e-commerce platforms and provides a secure and reliable payment processing experience.
Stripe is also a widely used payment gateway known for its simplicity and excellent developer tools. It offers competitive transaction fees and supports a wide range of payment methods, including Apple Pay and Google Pay.
Remember to always consider your company’s specific needs and budget.
Launching Your First Shopify Store
To conclude, launching your first Shopify store can be a daunting task, but by following these 8 essential steps, you can establish a successful online business without inventory.
Remember to do your research, choose the correct fulfillment method, pick the right Shopify plan, find a reliable supplier, define your target audience, design and brand your store, choose the right apps, and set up your payment gateways.
With the right tools and guidance, you can launch your own Shopify store and start selling your products online with confidence.
Here are some additional tips to help you succeed:
- Make sure your products are high quality and competitively priced.
- Provide excellent customer service.
- Promote your store through social media, search engine optimization, and other marketing channels.
- Keep up with the latest trends in e-commerce.
- Be patient and persistent. It takes time to build a successful online business.