Shopify a Great eCommerce Platform

Making your online shop a success comes down to the tools you have for the job and not just your ongoing marketing strategy.

Ensuring your eCommerce store is built well and is functional for your needs is an absolute must. Here at ExtraDigital we have built a high number of eCommerce stores on a variety of different eCommerce platforms, including Magento, WooCommerce, and of course Shopify.

Whilst Magento and WooCommerce appear to be hard favourites for many currently a lot of people forget that there is the option of Shopify. Indeed, choosing the right one for your business is hard.

To help you realise the brilliance of Shopify we have compiled the following review of the eCommerce platform.

Naturally, you can learn more about the Magento and WooCommerce platform specifically in our other blog post ‘Magento vs. WooCommerce – Which one is for you!’.

 

Shopify eCommerce platfirm

Shopify

Shopify as an eCommerce PlatformShopify is a leading eCommerce platform provider. There are currently over 300,000 online Shopify stores which take in around $20 billion worth of sales. Standard tools include…

  • Ability to insert product images and product descriptions easily
  • Manage your inventory online
  • Organise products into categories for ease of use
  • Offer discounts on products easily
  • Create landing pages and blogs for marketing purposes
  • Accept payments from over 70 different countries
  • Allow customers to have their own login areas
  • Reporting structure allows for you to filter your sales data by various factors to help you better understand your customer's behaviour
  • Can create multiple logins for various members of staff with various permission levels for security

What Shopify can Offer

Shopify can offer a great deal more than people are lead to believe. Features include…

Website Designs

Access to over 100 professional looking and responsive website designs. All of these designs are built with eCommerce in mind unlike other platforms offering themes such as GoDaddy.

You also have access to further premium themes which can cost up to around $150 – an achievable cost for many businesses.

Library of Functionality

Whilst Shopify comes with the basic and must have eCommerce functionalities, you also have access to a library of over 1,100 additional functionality which can be simply integrated.

The option to plug in and play with additional Shopify specific functions allows you to take better control over your business processes for better management and no fuss.

24/7 Support

A key feature for many Shopify users is their 24/7 support via phone, live chat and email.

This support option allows for quick troubleshooting and assistance on demand.

Point of Sale (POS) System

Back in 2013 Shopify launched their POS system which allows its users to integrate their sales system with their Shopify store.

This means that you do not need an offline stock management system or POS system, it can all be done via Shopify.

Abandoned Carts

With Shopify you have the option to add an abandoned cart recovery service to automatically take care of any abandoned baskets that your website may experience.

This is a great way of automating that part of online marketing to help encourage shoppers to buy from your online store.

Mobile Access

Shopify really understands the more practical side of running a business, one key element that most business owners lack is time.

Due to this back end function of the website can be viewed and used not just on a laptop but also on mobiles. 

Shopify Hosting

A great benefit for many companies with an eCommerce store is for your eCommerce hosting to be taken care of for you.

As part of your monthly service plan, Shopify will host your online shop for you and gives you unlimited bandwidth. The entire hosting process is managed by Shopify which takes the pressure off you, especially if it’s a technical element that you don’t understand.

Security is included in the hosting package (Level 1 PCA compliant and a SSL certificate for your shopping cart) and Shopify will automatically back up your data each day, leaving you to take care of other things.

The Downsides of Shopify

Like every eCommerce platform in the marketplace at the moment, even Shopify has its downsides. These are:

Transactional Fee Charged for Every Sale

One of the largest negatives to Shopify is the fact that on top of a monthly service fee the platform charges its customer a 0.5% to 2% transaction fee depending on the plan you have chosen to use - the higher the plan the lower the transaction fee you are charged. 

However when this is put into perspective if you make £1,000 worth of sales then you could be paying just £20 to Shopify, not a great deal in practice.

There is a way out of paying a service fee and that is to use Shopify payments to power your payment transactions instead of a payment service provider (PSP) like PayPal or WorldPay.

Library of Functionality is not Always Free

There are a great number of plugins in the Shopify library but it is worth remembering that not all of these are free, some incur a monthly fee and not just a one-off fee.

Liquid

No you don’t have to buy Shopify a drink. Liquid is the name of the Shopify coding language.

If you wish to customise the Shopify website beyond the themes on offer then you cannot edit the website through the use of just HTML and CSS (basic and most commonly used codes for websites). You must also edit the Liquid code of the website which means hiring a Liquid developer if you do not know how to code in Liquid yourself.

As Liquid is specific to Shopify there are not many developers who know this language and therefore you are tied to expert Shopify programmers and developers. This can be costly if you decide to customise your Shopify store further.

Is Shopify for Me?

Is Shopify for Me?

If you are looking for a robust and flexible online eCommerce store that not just helps you manage your sales but also helps you manage your business then Shopify is for you.

If you require custom features on your website then you might need to look at other eCommerce platforms like Magento. Whilst Shopify will allow you to customise your store, the Liquid code base can restrict your ability to find developers to work on it and to get the features that you want from it.

In terms of costs, there is the cost of the template (if you choose not to use a free one) and potentially the cost of plugins (if they aren’t free) to give you all the features that you are looking for. On top of this there is the monthly service fee which starts at $29 but can go up to $299 a month depending on the amount you wish to pay per transaction, the number of logins you require, and whether you want features like ‘Real Time Carrier Shipping’ or ‘Advanced Report Builders’.

A great option for you if you are considering using Shopify is its 14-day risk-free trial. This allows for you to see for yourself what the eCommerce platform can offer your business without spending any money with them.

Shopify with ExtraDigital

If you are looking for assistance in setting up your Shopify store the team here at ExtraDigital can help. We have the knowledge and experience of Shopify to get your custom eCommerce store set up without any fuss.

We also have lots of experience in marketing Shopify stores and lots of other eCommerce stores via the use of SEO, PPC, and even Social Media.

Contact us today on 01227 68 68 98 to learn more or tell us about your project below.

Tuesday 4th October 2016

⇐ Back to Blog | ⇐ Back to Blog

Request a Quote

For prices or more details call 01227 68 68 98 or complete the form below.


Join over
300 happy customers
Top of page