Top 14 Shopify Tips for Beginners by Shopify Website Experts
Are you excited to start your journey with Shopify? We are too! But before you start, there are a few things we think could help make things easier for you. So if you haven’t started yet or if you're curious about what this is all about, then keep reading on for our top ten Shopify tips for beginners from our in-house Shopify website experts.
Mistakes to Avoid When Starting Your Shopify Journey
Before anything else, we'd like to kick things off by making sure you're headed in the right direction. As such, we've compiled some of the most common mistakes Shopify store owners make so you can avoid them at your discretion.
1. Try to Do Everything on Your Own
It's important to note that you don't always have to do everything yourself. While it's rewarding and satisfying to start your own online store, it's also easy to get carried away, leading you down a path of disappointment.
Not only that, but trying to be everything and everyone for your store is a recipe for disaster. Think about it this way, would you rather get a custom suit from someone that has experience in tailoring or from someone that has no experience in workwear?
Going for custom-designed clothes will always be the better option when picking what to wear, so why make a drastic decision to go it alone when setting up your store?
We suggest adding team members who are experts at what they do. After all, you should focus on doing the things you love and let your expert hirelings tackle their respective tasks. Ultimately, this gives you more time to focus on what's important: building your business instead of doing the menial work.
2. Forget About Customer Support
What are all those customer support emails for? The simple answer is: they're there for you to reply to! Unfortunately, many store owners make the mistake of treating their inbox as a place where customer support inquiries go into a black hole, never to be heard from again.
But customer support is an essential part of running your store. It's the quickest way to get in touch with customers, answer questions and keep them happy. As such, you can't guarantee a donation or even a sale if you don't have customer support set up correctly.
To help out before you go any further, we suggest investing in some quality customer support software such as Salesforce, Zendesk or Intercom so that when customers have issues, they can contact you at the touch of a button.
3. Forget About Data Protection
GDPR compliance plays a big part in your Shopify success. You don't want to run into legal issues in the future, so you need to ensure that you're keeping your data safe.
Many Shopify store owners underestimate the importance of data protection. They don't think about the repercussions if their website were to be hacked or how it could affect their business if someone downloaded all of their customer information.
For a shop owner, it's essential to have a firewall, and encrypted SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) installed on your website. It's simple to set up and will make a world of difference in the long run.
4. Forget to Connect Your Marketing Efforts
If you want your website to be successful, make sure that your other marketing efforts are on track. This means you should make sure there's consistency between your blog posts, social media content, advertising and other marketing efforts.
If you've got a solid marketing plan in place, we urge you to ensure that the information you present on your posts and other platforms is consistent.
The way you advertise will affect the types of visitors your website attracts—it's essential to make sure that visitors are attracted to what you want them for.
5. Forget About SEO
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) has a massive effect on your Shopify store's success. If you don't think about SEO early on, then you'll struggle later on to grow traffic and sales.
Try not to make this mistake—remember that your website can only be as successful if it is easy to find. When people have trouble finding your site, they're going to move to a competitor's store, or they're going to type in something else into the search bar simply.
To avoid this, there are a few things you can do. Firstly, add keywords to your website's URL to make it easier for people to find what they're looking for.
Second, you can install Google Analytics on your site so that you can track where visitors came from and where they went next. Think of this as a way to keep track of how far your brand name has spread, and then use that information to make decisions as you go.
6. Leave Your Shopify Theme As Is
While Shopify has a great theme selection, you should pay attention to your branding and make sure your website is as unique as possible.
It's not enough to use a Shopify theme for inspiration—you need to make sure that your website is distinct from the rest of the Shopify store owners out there. You may have the same design, but you might as well be using a template provided by another store owner.
If you don't want this to happen, then we recommend checking out a professional Shopify theme developer. These people can take your design, implement it into a Shopify theme, and seamlessly make everything fit.
Despite Shopify's user-friendly drag and drop interface, we recommend getting in touch with our Shopify website experts to help you craft the best possible website. Don't worry; we work very hard to make sure you're happy about the output. In fact, we offer unlimited revisions and changes. Yup, we don't stop until you're 100% satisfied!
7. Skip the Onboarding Process
Despite Shopify's intuitive UI, there are still many aspects of it that are easy to miss. As such, you want to take advantage of Shopify's helpful onboarding process so you can get started on the right foot.
The onboarding process allows you to learn how Shopify works in a way that is easy to understand. As a result, you can easily get your store up and running without worrying about making mistakes.
While most new store owners make the mistake of skipping over this step, you need to take advantage of it if you want your business to succeed. In short, don't skip the onboarding process—find out what it has in store for you and try it out!
Top Tips for Shopify Beginners
Now that you know what to avoid, it's time to learn from the best. If you want to set up a store and make it successful, then you should learn from the experts. Below are some tips so that you can make your Shopify store as popular as possible:
1. Pay Attention to Mobile Responsiveness
You don't want to leave your Shopify store out there as a digital howling wolf. Instead, you want to make sure that your shop is optimized for every device, so it loads properly on every device.
Shopify's themes are generally mobile responsive. However, if you plan to make changes, you should be prepared to ensure that those changes still look good on mobile devices. But it goes beyond aesthetics. For example, Google now employs a mobile-first indexing approach. This means, that only mobile-responsive pages will get indexed on its main page.
So unless you want your Shopify store to be left under the radar, then you might want to consider going mobile-friendly.
2. Stick with Shopify Hosting
We know you have a lot of options out there, but we urge you to stick with Shopify's in-house hosting solution. Shopify is constantly working on its servers so that your website can load faster for people across the world.
Meanwhile, you have to know that Shopify is not just a platform. It's an all-inclusive solution that provides everything you need from start to finish. The main reason why we recommend this is because Shopify has the most reliable servers in the entire world.
3. Plugins are Your Friend
If you're going to go with Shopify, then don't be afraid to experiment with what they have to offer. In fact, the best way to get started is by installing the right plugins that will help you realize your vision.
Shopify has thousands of plugins and apps available for your use. If you want to create the best website possible, then you should make sure that you take advantage of Shopify's plugins. This way, you'll be able to achieve a stunning site in no time at all. Here are some plugins you should consider installing for your website:
- Pop-ups - Pop-ups are similar to pop-unders. When people click on a link, they get a popup instead of a page refresh. This is a fun way to interact with your visitors so that you can communicate with them quickly. Not only will this help increase conversion rates, but it will also get people to come back.
- Reviews - One of the best ways to get more sales is by earning positive reviews from your customers. Shopify offers you the ability to do this easily. By adding the "Customer Reviews" app, you can drive a lot more traffic to your store and make your brand recognizable around the web.
- Marketing automation - Marketing automation allows you to create automatic emails that get sent out depending on the actions of your customers. In short, marketing automation lets you build an interactive email system that helps to communicate with your buyers and make them feel a lot more comfortable buying from your store.
- Social log-ins - If you want to build your brand, then you have to make sure that your website is recognizable. One way to do this is by implementing social logins. This allows people to sign up for your email list, subscribe to other products and make an account on your site without actually going through Shopify's sign-up process.
- Social sharing buttons - We know this is a little bit more advanced, but it still works really well. As you know, social media plays a massive role in digital marketing. It allows people to share your content easily and quickly.
4. Focus on Your Photography
As you're probably aware, a picture is worth a thousand words. In other words, there's no better way to give your visitors an idea of what the site or store has to offer than by having great photography. The good news is that Shopify has a lot of tools out there to help you get started on the right foot.
While you can learn how to take great photos, try and keep your shots consistent. In other words, don't focus on various types of images. Instead, pick one or two types of images and stick with them. This way, your viewers will get used to the look of your photography and know what to expect when they visit your site.
Think about the following things when it comes to your photos:
- Don't overdo it - Keep your photos appropriate. Don't put too many ads or buy links in your images. The same goes for text. You should also avoid putting too much text that is not related to the images or the subject of the page as this can make people feel like they have a headache.
- Spend time on each shot - Make sure you're going through each photo and thinking about how you can improve it before you submit it to Shopify's approval process. Take time out to make sure that you have the perfect shot. Not only will this help you improve your sales and conversion, but it will also help your brand gain recognition.
5. Keep it Up-to-Date
Making sure you update your website regularly is a sure-fire way to help you improve your traffic. As a matter of fact, Google has been known to favor new and updated content. This means that the more you add, the more likely you'll be to achieve high rankings on their search engine.
In other words, staying relevant is key if you want your website to be successful. So how do you stay relevant? It's all about engaging people with what's going on in your industry. It's not necessarily about hard sells or promotions. Rather, it's all about content creation and curating the best possible information that you can find.
Don't overdo it, but if you're looking for ways to improve your site, then consider adding a blog. This way, you'll be able to put out content on a regular basis and keep your visitors interested in what you have to say.
6. Design with Purpose
If there's one thing that you should remember from this article, it's this: design matters. Not only does it matter in terms of aesthetics, but it's also about your brand.
In today's digital world, people are more likely to buy from a brand they trust. This means that you have to make sure your website is easy on the eyes and looks professional. You also want to make sure that people can easily read the text and understand what you're trying to say.
Not only will this make people feel more comfortable about buying from your site, but it'll also help you achieve better rankings on Google.
There are plenty of great tools out there that can help you improve your website's look and feel. You can use these to design a site that's both professional and eye-catching.
7. Get Customer Feedback
When you're building your website, it's important to keep your customers in mind. That's why you should always aim to get some feedback from them. This will help you improve the usability of your website, as well as make it easier for visitors to find what they're looking for.
To get feedback, make sure you ask your customers what they like and dislike about the site and fix any issues that they might have before they leave negative comments. It'll only take a few minutes of your time but it'll have a huge impact on your overall business.
While you're just starting out and might not be selling just yet, this is one thing you should think about . You don't want to make it too complicated, but you also want to build something that's easy for people to use.
That said, if you're just starting out then you don't have a lot of options to choose from. Don't worry! Remember, you can always change your design. In fact, you should do this as often as possible. That way, you will continue to get more and more ideas on how to improve your website and increase your traffic.
8. Familiarize Yourself with the Best SEO Practices
This section might sound a little bit advanced, but it's actually the last tip on our list. If you want to be successful with your online store and grow your traffic, then you need to understand how search engines work. You also need to use these techniques every day if you want to make sure that they are working as well as possible.
The good news is that there are many different ways to get this done. You could read books or learn from other people who have been in the same situation as you are in now. However, there are also a lot of tools out there that can help you improve your rankings.
For example, you could use software to spy on your competitor’s sites to see what they're doing and how they're ranking their pages. Here are a few tips for using this tool:
- Monitor your competitors - You should do this as often as you can. In other words, it's important to monitor your competitors' sites every day to see what they're doing. Take note of what changes they make and how they're ranking their pages. It's all about making sure that you have the best information on hand so that you can improve your site's SEO.
- Create content - You should start keeping track of your competitor's content. In other words, you should create as much quality content for your site as you can. This will help to increase your visibility and give you more options for search engine placement.
9. Install a Chat Box
Getting in touch with your customers is a great way to get them to feel welcome, as well as to let them know that you're willing to help them. In fact, many people love getting an online chatbox on their site because it's a great way for them to get help with any problems that they may have.
You can set up your own online chatbox on your website and assign someone to respond to customer inquiries in a timely manner to make it easier for your visitors to get the answers they need.
While some of your customers might be buying from you and others might just be browsing, you should at least let them know that you're there to help them if they need it.
10. Create a Sticky Menu Item
One of the best ways to improve your site's traffic is by creating a sticky menu item. You see, search engines see this link as high-quality content and will place it higher in their rankings. That said, you have to make sure that the content you've created is relevant and is going to be helpful for your visitors.
For example, you can switch out your "About Us" page with a sticky menu item. That way, when someone decides to look at your site, they'll see this link right away. It's important to have this link because if someone finds it then they might click on it and will be able to get answers about your brand or company. That way, it can only benefit you in the long run.
11. Use RSS Feeds
This is another one of those advanced techniques that will help you to improve your website's traffic. You see, when you publish an RSS feed, it'll tell search engines that your site has fresh content. This means that they will be able to rank it higher and if someone decides to click on the link then they'll be able to get the latest news from your site.
To use this strategy, you need to make sure that you have a lot of relevant and high-quality content. That way, search engines will be able to tell that your site is relevant and you'll get more traffic.
12. Create a Mobile App
Mobile apps are all the rage these days. With the rise of smartphones and the need for more convenient shopping options, mobile apps make it easier for your audience to find you. Not to mention, it makes it much easier to shop on their phones.
Mobile apps are very popular, which is why you should start thinking about how you can incorporate this into your business. Start by creating an app that your customers will want to download and use regularly. You can set up special discounts and exclusive promotions that they won't be able to get anywhere else.
Creating a mobile app can be tricky, which is why you should consider hiring a developer to do this for you. That way, it'll only cost you a few hundred dollars and you'll be able to start taking advantage of your newfound traffic. If you'd like to get in touch with mobile app creation experts, our team of Shopify website experts can craft the best app for your business that not only improves your conversions, but also your SEO.
13. Pay Attention to Your Meta Titles and Descriptions
It's true that Google has confirmed that meta descriptions aren't as important as they used to be. However, it's not a bad idea to have this on your site regardless.
When someone is browsing a search engine, they are going to see your description and title for each of your pages. This means that it's going to be the first thing that they see and the first impression you make on them.
This means that you need to take the time to write a killer description and title for each of your pages. This will help people get a better understanding of what you're trying to sell, as well as tell them what they can expect to see when they land on your page.
Here are some things you should keep in mind when it comes to meta descriptions and titles:
- Make sure that the title is about what your page is about. Don't overdo it, but make sure that it's descriptive enough to grab their attention.
- Use a keyword that you think your customers are going to use to search. You can use "top," "buy," or any other word you think will rank well.
- Put a keyword in your description that could be found on another page on your site too. This will tell the search engines that your site is relevant.
- Make sure that it's not too long, but also make sure that it's not short and doesn't have any substance.
14. Set Up Your Policies and Make Them Easy to Find
One of the best ways to protect your interests as a business is by making your shop policies clear and easy to follow. These are rules that you have set in place so that you can ensure that your customers' expectations are met and they don't feel like they're being taken advantage of.
When you have these types of policies in place, then your customers will know exactly what to expect when they place an order with you. They'll know how the payment system works, how long the delivery time is and what kind of quality is expected.
Keep in mind that these policies don't really matter if they're not easily accessible. Make sure that you've set up your policies in your page footer so that you can have them easily accessible at all times.
For example, if you sell things that need to be shipped, then you should specify how long the shipping time will be. If your customers are placed into a certain timeframe, they'll know that they need to order as soon as possible. Make sure that you include this information in the shipping section of your site so that your customers know what to expect and can take action accordingly.
Take your time and think about these strategies and the tactics you'd like to use so that you can implement them into your website. While some of these might seem like overkill, you should never underestimate the power of some of these tactics. In the end, it's best to hire Shopify website experts to give you a helping hand. We at Webinopoly are fully equipped to handle all your Shopify needs to make sure you're set up for success the moment you launch your first product line. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation.