Shopify Review 2018 – When You Should (And Shouldn’t) Use It

We welcome you to this review of the Shopify e-commerce platform! If you have ever bought an article online, chances are that you did it through one of Shopify’s over 90,000 online stores. Unlike eBay or Amazon Market Places, Shopify allows you to sell your products on your OWN website. In this review, we try to find an answer to whether it is really possible to set up an online store without any programming skills.

At first glance, Shopify seems a bit expensive. However, there is a $14 per month plan available, which is little bit hidden on the pricing page. You can upgrade and cancel anytime you want. For all plans, there is a 14 day free trial that doesn’t require your credit card.

After having registered, we see our dashboard. It’s great that Shopify takes you by the hand and gives you hints regarding what to do next. Normally, you would start by picking and modifying your layout. Of course, you could also start immediately by adding new products. Let’s now take a look at the theme.

Here we see our active theme. It looks like this.

As you can see, we have already set up a little online store that sells vintage postcards and envelopes. Let’s now go back to the editor.

Under “Theme Settings,” you can adapt your layout without any programming skills. You see the result in the preview. In case you don’t like the theme, no problem! Visit the Theme Store and pick another one. Provided you or your programmer knows how to code the “Liquid” language, you can also create your very own theme.

Before we add our first product, take a look at some general settings. First, we inspect the checkout. As expected, here you find everything related to the checkout process. You lay down the means of payment, decide if customers need an account to buy a product, set the rules for order processing and give other information, such as “Terms of service” and more.

Let’s now head to the shipping settings. Here you can define your shipping rates worldwide or for each country individually based on order price or weight.

It’s also possible to calculate the costs with a carrier or fulfillment/dropship service. Finally, let’s have a brief look at taxes. The tax rates are added automatically when you add a shipping destination. Of course, it is possible to change the rate with a tax override as well. Enough preparations. Let’s add a product.

Under “Products” we see a list of our existing products. In the upper right corner, we can “Add a product.” Since this process is quite self-explanatory, we’ll show you the settings on an existing example.

Give your product a name and a description. It works like a simple text editor. If you want, you can add a “Type” and a “Vendor.”

Of course you can also add variants so you don’t need to add the same product over and over again. Upload your images and decide if you want to add your product to a collection. Tags can help your customers find similar products.

Very important: don’t forget to set your search engine settings for higher rankings.

Last but not least, save everything.

This is what our product looks like. Nice, huh?!

Before you launch your online shop, you can do some test orders. If you have received a new order, you will be notified. That’s what it looks like.

By clicking on the order, Shopify provides you with detailed information of the customer and the current state of the order.

Also, very powerful is the Shopify App Store. For instance, the site-wide contact button you see here is from the app store. There are plenty more useful apps available for free.

Similar to a website builder, Shopify also features a blog with all the bells and whistles. A blog is essential for a content marketing strategy in order to pull in search engine traffic. Keep this in mind when deciding on an e-commerce platform.

Here you would fill in your blog posts. Add a picture, some tags, and all the other typical stuff you’d expect in a blog. You can also edit comments in your blog. Here’s the result.

Shopify makes selling online an easy task. Beginners won’t have to face a programming language barrier and pros have the possibility of creating a tailor-made web store. The dashboard is structured logically and that makes working really smooth. Even if you don’t understand every last feature in detail, it’s easy to understand the big picture. Either way, there is a big help forum with tutorials and even telephone support available.

Of course, all this quality has its price. You could say it’s quite expensive compared to other online stores, but we think it’s justified. Shopify provides you with all the tools you need set up a successful online store. The rest is up to you!

If you want to know more about Shopify, please go to our detailed Shopify review.

And if you want to find more information about different online shop providers, please make sure to check out WebsiteToolTester.com.

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A quick note about the reviews on this site: I am an affiliate for every product I review. The vendors of these products give me them without charge in order for me to test them. However all my reviews are done as honestly as possible and I make no promises to the vendor prior to writing my review. Should you click a link on this site that takes you to a paid product this link will be an affiliate link and I will be paid a percentage of the sales price should you decide to purchase that product.
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