Boosting Your Bottom Line: Expert Tips for Selling on Shopify

Little shopping cart filled with items bought from selling on shopify in front of laptop

Used in over 175 countries and hosting 62% of eCommerce stores in the United States, Shopify can justifiably be called an eCommerce giant [1]enterpriseappstoday. “Shopify Statistics By Financial Shopify, Market Share, Region, Country, Stores, Websites, Geography, Demographic and Traffic Source.” Accessed June 12, 2024 . Selling on Shopify is achievable for anyone—even those with little to no coding or technical knowledge. With its robust eCommerce features and user-friendliness, the platform appeals to solo entrepreneurs and mid-size and enterprise-level businesses.

However, having access to remarkable sales tools doesn’t help if you don’t implement them effectively. The key to a successful online business is strategically employing every feature Shopify offers to maximize sales potential. In this comprehensive guide, we explore expert tips for selling on Shopify. We’ll help you advance in a competitive eCommerce landscape, from business basics to payments and integrations.

Before You Start Selling on Shopify

Venturing into eCommerce with Shopify promises exciting prospects, but laying the proper groundwork first is crucial. Crystallizing your business vision and mastering the fundamentals of online store operations are key to navigating the digital marketplace. Before selling, you should have the following business basics in place.

computer screen with blue text bubble

Solidify the Business Idea Behind Your Shopify Store

A well-defined business concept is the cornerstone of any successful Shopify store. It’s not just about having any idea but one that resonates with a specific audience—the narrower the niche, the better. Understanding market trends, consumer behavior, and competitor strategies is fundamental. The eCommerce space is crowded, and a unique selling proposition (USP) is your golden ticket.

Research diligently to ensure your product or service fills a gap or serves a need unmet by others. Look ahead to the scalability of your idea—it should not just meet the current demands but also adapt and grow with the market’s evolution. A solid business idea on Shopify isn’t just a fleeting thought; it’s a carefully thought-out blueprint for long-term success.

Store building with blue and white awning and blue window.
A hand holding a green phone selling on shopify.

Your store’s name, domain, and logo are the trinity of your brand identity in the online marketplace. The name should be memorable, evoking the essence of your brand in a word or two. It’s the first step in creating a connection with your customers, so choose one that’s easy to recall and spell. Selecting an available domain name that aligns with your brand is equally important to maintain consistency across your online presence.

The logo, your visual beacon, must communicate your brand story at a glance, blending color schemes, typography, and imagery to strike an emotional chord with shoppers. A distinguished visual identity elevates your brand and can spark recognition.

laptop with blue gear on screen and a cloud with an orange arrow floating in the top righthand corner.

Find Helpful Product Images and Videos

In the cogs of the eCommerce machine, product images and videos are the fuel that drives conversions. They serve as your virtual storefront, providing customers with the closest experience to in-person shopping. High-resolution images that echo the quality and detail of your product can dramatically boost consumer confidence. Moreover, integrating videos allows potential buyers to see your products in action, offering a dynamic shopping experience.

Ensure images mirror the look and feel of your brand for a consistent narrative. In today’s visual culture, a gallery of multiple angles, zoomed-in details, and lifestyle shots can distinguish between an abandoned cart and a successful sale. Consider formats that work well across different mediums and platforms to reach a wider audience.

While quality is key, you should compress large product images to prevent delayed load times on your Shopify store, social media, and Amazon marketplace. Slow loading can increase bounce rates. On the flip side, remember that numerous Shopify themes include a zoom feature to inspect your photos closely. If your images are too small, this function becomes less effective.

You can use online tools such as TinyPNG or Compress JPEG to reduce file size. Photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop also offers file compression features. Investing in quality visuals is not a luxury but a necessity in the digital age, directly correlating to your store’s perceived value and professionalism.

graph with a blue line and an orange line trending up and a green and white circle with a dollar sign inside.

Organize Your Business Basics

Before entering digital sales, establish the required business fundamentals. Start with business registration to ensure your venture has legal standing and reflects credibility and trustworthiness.

Local regulations differ, so familiarize yourself with your area’s regional tax and financial obligation requirements to avoid penalties or business interruptions.

Open a dedicated business account to streamline and simplify accounting. Set up a transparent system for tracking income, expenses, and potential investments. These actions increase the security of your operations and offer insights to help plan for growth.

How to Start Selling on Shopify: A Quick Overview

Once you’ve done your business planning, it’s time to set up your online store. These steps will help you approach Shopify’s sales process methodically.

  1. Create Your Shopify Account. Sign up on the Shopify website and choose a pricing plan that fits your business. You’ll be prompted to create or add your domain name during sign-up.
  2. Configure Payments and Shipping. Set up your preferred payment gateways, including credit card processors and digital wallets. Define your shipping rates and policies, considering the cost, delivery times, and the regions you’ll serve.
  3. Set Up Your Online Store. Customize your Shopify store with a theme complementing your brand. The platform’s drag-and-drop interface can help you arrange content and product listings for a user-friendly shopping experience.
  4. Organize Your Products. Add products to your store with detailed descriptions, high-quality images, and clear pricing. Organize your offerings into collections to help customers navigate your store, with relevant tags and SEO details to improve visibility.
  5. Test Your Checkout Process. Before going live, conduct thorough testing to ensure everything is functioning as intended. Fix any issues interrupting a smooth experience.
  6. Launch Your Store. Once you remove password protections from your store, you can open your doors to the public! Utilize your customer channels to announce the launch, inviting feedback and interest from early visitors.
  7. Market Your Products. Strategic marketing efforts can help drive traffic to your store. Leverage social media, SEO, email marketing, and paid advertising to build your brand presence and attract potential customers.
  8. Analyze and Optimize. Use Shopify’s built-in analytics to monitor performance. Track sales, customer behavior, and traffic sources to understand what works and what needs improvement. Refine your selling strategies accordingly.

14 Expert Tips to Help Boost Sales on Shopify

Green shopping cart to buy products on shopify

Below are proven methods to enhance user experience, increase traffic, and drive sales, helping your Shopify business compete and thrive in online shopping.

1. Offer Buy Now, Pay Later Options

The “Buy Now, Pay Later” (BNPL) strategy is increasingly popular among eCommerce customers. It provides a flexible option to purchase and receive items immediately while spreading out payments over time.

BNPL increases purchasing power by allowing customers to buy more expensive items they might not be able to afford in a single payment. Customers appreciate the convenience of more manageable installments, often interest-free. For those with limited access to traditional credit, BNPL services offer an alternative that requires minimal credit checks.

Since shoppers receive their products immediately, this strategy provides instant gratification, a strong emotional driver in consumer behavior.

As an eCommerce store owner, you can benefit from offering BNPL via:

  • Increased conversion rates. A BNPL option can reduce cart abandonment and convert more browsers into buyers.
  • Higher average order values (AOV). Customers are more likely to add items to their cart if they don’t have to pay the entire cost upfront.
  • Increased customer loyalty. A positive buying experience with flexible payment options can foster customer loyalty and repeat business.

Afterpay, Affirm, and PayPal Credit are three popular service providers you can integrate to provide BNPL to your customers in your Shopify store.

Afterpay enables customers to pay in four interest-free installments. Affirm offers various payment terms, typically ranging from three to 36 months. With PayPal Credit, you, as the merchant, will receive immediate payment, while your customer can pay over time.

2. Get Email Alerts for Abandoned Carts

Cart abandonment is a common issue for online merchants. Shopify considers a purchase abandoned when customers do not complete it within ten minutes of entering their email. Recovery emails for these checkouts are only sent through the Online Store, Buy Button, or Plus Wholesale Channels. Checkouts abandoned on Shopify POS or external sales channels will not receive a checkout recovery email.

Tracking and recovering abandoned carts with email alerts can increase sales as you re-engage customers and encourage them to complete their transactions. Tracking abandonments also provides insights into where and why customers drop off. This knowledge can help with website and checkout optimizations.

Abandoned cart recovery emails provide additional personalization opportunities. You can create email content based on the items left in the cart, customer browsing behavior, and past purchases.

Best Practices for Crafting Compelling Recovery Emails

  • Send the first email within a few hours of cart abandonment.
  • Use a compelling subject line that clearly indicates the purpose of the email.
  • Address the customer by name and include details about the abandoned items for a personalized touch.
  • Offer a limited-time discount or free shipping to encourage customers to complete their purchase.
  • Make it easy for customers to return to their cart with a prominent CTA button.
  • Include high-quality images of the abandoned items to remind customers what they’re missing out on.
  • Ensure the email is mobile-friendly, as many users shop and read emails on their mobile devices.
  • Reduce friction by making the checkout process as simple as possible.
  • A/B test your email’s elements to optimize for the highest recovery rates.

Shopify includes a built-in cart recovery feature in all its eCommerce plans. After enabling it, store owners can send customers automated or manual abandoned cart emails.

3. Share New Products on Social Media

Social media is a dynamic way to increase your products’ visibility quickly. It encourages interaction with your brand since followers can like, comment, share, and purchase products directly through social platforms. Social media posts can also include links to your eCommerce store, leading to immediate sales opportunities.

Social media can be a more cost-effective way to reach potential customers than traditional advertising. In addition, teasing new product launches can create buzz and anticipation. Customer feedback on social media also provides quick insights into product reception and potential improvements.

Best Practices for Creating Engaging Social Media Posts

  • Use high-quality images and videos of your products reflecting your brand and quality.
  • Show the product in use to give context and create a connection with your audience.
  • Use relevant hashtags to increase the reach of your posts beyond immediate followers.
  • Encourage user-generated content by inviting customers to share their experiences with your products.
  • Use features like Instagram Stories, Shoppable posts, and live streams to showcase new products.
  • Include clear calls to action.
  • Engage with followers by responding to messages and comments promptly. This builds community and shows you value your customers.
  • Partner with influencers to introduce your products to a broader audience.
  • Track analytics to see which posts perform best—and refine accordingly.

4. Pick a Reliable Payment Processor

Choosing the right payment provider for your eCommerce business is critical for the success of an online business. Your payment provider handles all the transactions processed on your store, so selecting one that is reliable, secure, and suited to your business’s and customers’ needs is vital.

When choosing a payment provider, opt for one that offers transparent pricing without hidden costs. Ensure you clearly understand the cost structure, including transaction fees, monthly fees, setup fees, and any other applicable charges.

You’ll want to confirm that the provider supports a range of payment methods, including credit and debit cards, digital wallets, and international payment options, if appropriate. Choosing a provider that complies with industry security standards like PCI DSS and offers robust fraud prevention is important.

Check whether the payment gateway integrates seamlessly with Shopify. It should be compatible with other tools and plugins for reporting, accounting, and tax.

green bag holding the best products you're selling on shopify

Your chosen provider should offer reliable customer support for merchants and end customers. They should also offer a mobile-optimized payment experience and user-friendly navigation. Any difficulties with payment processing or navigation can lead to lost sales.

If you plan to sell internationally, choose a provider that supports multiple currencies and can handle cross-border transactions effectively at a reasonable cost. Two other important aspects to consider before committing to a payment provider are how easy it is to end your agreement with them if needed and whether the provider can scale with your business growth.

5. Improve Your Store SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) can help you outperform competitors by making your products and services more visible in search results. Websites that appear on the first page of search engines are often seen as more credible and trustworthy by consumers.

Compared to paid advertising, SEO is a cost-effective way to generate traffic and attract customers. Paid marketing tactics generally offer immediate results with short-term benefits. While SEO may take slightly longer to yield results, it sets the stage for sustained and cost-effective organic growth.

Some fundamental SEO practices when selling on Shopify include:

  • Identify and use keywords that potential customers use to search for products you offer.
  • Target keywords in product descriptions, meta titles, meta descriptions, image alt tags, and headers.
  • Ensure your website has a logical structure, fast load times, and mobile-friendly design.
  • Create content like blog posts, buying guides, and product reviews targeting relevant keywords.
  • Integrate high-quality backlinks from reputable sources to increase your website’s authority and rankings.
  • Optimize for local search with accurate business listings and geographically targeted keywords (if applicable).

Shopify offers some easy-to-use built-in SEO features for beginners. For more advanced SEO capabilities, you can install a third-party app from the Shopify App Store.

6. Make Your Shopify Store User-Friendly

A user-friendly website directly impacts your ability to attract and retain customers. A site that is intuitive and easy to navigate leads to a more satisfying shopping experience and higher conversion rates. Most importantly, a user-friendly checkout process can significantly decrease cart abandonment rates.

To optimize navigation, layout, and overall user experience:

  • Ensure your menu is organized logically.
  • Consider implementing a mega menu if your site features an extensive range of products.
  • Include a prominent and intuitive search bar.
  • Ensure your website is fully mobile-responsive and offers a seamless experience across device types.
  • Ensure your site loads quickly to prevent user drop-off.
  • Streamline the checkout process by minimizing the number of steps and information required.
  • Use high-quality product images and detailed descriptions.
  • Maintain a consistent layout and design across all pages to avoid confusion.
  • Strategically place calls-to-action (CTAs) to guide users toward the next step, whether signing up for a newsletter or purchasing.

7. Provide Great Customer Service

Effective customer service significantly influences customer satisfaction, loyalty, and brand reputation. Prompt and helpful customer service fosters trust, especially online, where customers do not interact face-to-face. Excellent customer service can set you apart from competitors.

Additionally, effective problem resolution can prevent negative reviews and social media backlash. Satisfied customers are more likely to refer their peers, organically expanding your customer base.

For effective customer service when selling on Shopify:

  • Make contact information easily available.
  • Allow customers to reach you in multiple ways, such as email, phone, live chat, and social media.
  • Respond to customer inquiries quickly to show you value their time and business.
  • Train customer service representatives to provide accurate information and resolve issues effectively.
  • Tailor your support by referencing past interactions and purchases.
  • Ensure your team practices active listening to fully understand customer concerns and address them appropriately.
  • Use positive, empathetic language to encourage more agreeable interactions.
  • After resolving issues, follow up to confirm customer satisfaction.
  • Set clear expectations with transparent policies on shipping, returns, refunds, and exchanges.

8. Partner With Influencers

Influencers have established audiences, often highly engaged and trusting. Working with an influencer can increase traffic and conversions. An influencer’s real-life endorsement can enhance brand recall and lend authenticity to your products.

To connect with niche-relevant influencers, start by researching hashtags and keywords associated with your industry on social platforms. Look for creators whose content aligns with your brand values and aesthetics. Engage with them organically before pitching a collaboration to establish a relationship.

For budget-friendly campaigns, consider partnering with micro- and nano-influencers. They may have smaller followings but often boast higher engagement rates and niche audiences, potentially offering a higher ROI. Connect directly via social media or email, presenting clear, mutually beneficial collaboration proposals highlighting how working with your brand can add value to their content and audience.

9. Add Extra Pages to Your Shopify Store

An eCommerce site creates a three-dimensional online presence by offering more than product listings. Adding content-rich pages helps boost SEO, increasing visibility and driving more traffic to your site. To foster trust in your brand, add the following additional pages or sections to your website:

  • About Us Page. This page tells the story of your brand. It helps customers connect emotionally by explaining the values, history, and people behind the products.
  • Contact Page. A dedicated contact page provides a straightforward way for customers to reach out with questions or concerns, enhancing customer service.
  • FAQ Page. FAQs address common customer queries, clarifying policies on shipping, returns, and product usage.
  • Privacy Policy/Terms and Conditions. These pages are crucial for running your business and may be legally mandatory in certain areas. They offer legal protection and establish your Shopify store’s credibility. While many customers overlook this “dry legal information,” having it readily available can reassure hesitant shoppers and boost confidence in your brand.

10. Optimize Product Images and Descriptions

Earlier, we discussed the importance of high-quality product images when selling on Shopify. However, compelling product descriptions and lifestyle images are just as important.

Well-crafted descriptions help inform customers, address hesitations, and answer questions that might prevent a sale. They act as the salesperson on the digital shop floor, directly influencing conversion rates, customer satisfaction, and the success of your business.

Creating informative and persuasive product descriptions is both an art and a science, requiring a blend of facts and sales copy.

Some writing tips for product descriptions:

  • Understand who you’re selling to—what motivates them, their pain points, and how your product can solve a problem.
  • Translate features into benefits. Explain how each feature improves the customer’s life or experience.
  • Provide precise details like dimensions, materials, and specifications to clearly and accurately represent the product.
  • Include relevant keywords naturally within descriptions to improve SEO without compromising readability.
  • Write unique content for each product to avoid duplicate content penalties from search engines.
  • If applicable, tell a story about the product’s development or how it fits into a broader context or lifestyle.
  • Break the description into easily digestible bullet points or sections.
  • Mention awards, endorsements, or customer testimonials reinforcing the product’s value.

By adding lifestyle images in addition to standard product photos, you can enhance the perceived value of products. Lifestyle images transcend mere product shots by showcasing items in use, helping customers visualize use in daily life, and establishing context.

11. Testimonials and Reviews

Testimonials and reviews serve as social proof, instilling confidence in potential customers. In a marketplace where physical examination of products isn’t possible, reviews provide the assurance of quality and reliability from other consumers’ perspectives. They reduce perceived risk, answer questions, and address concerns that product descriptions might not have covered.

To encourage and showcase positive customer feedback, send automated emails inviting them to leave a review after receiving their product. Simplify the review process with clear instructions and make review forms accessible on your website.

Social media can be especially effective in sharing positive testimonials. Encourage customers to tag your brand in posts. You might even offer discounts or loyalty points in exchange for reviews to motivate customers to share their experiences.

12. Plan Your Content Strategy

A well-thought-out content strategy is essential to foster engagement with potential customers. Intriguing customers with exciting content helps maintain and deepen relationships beyond the initial sale. Consistent, valuable content—such as blog posts, product updates, and educational material—positions your brand as an authority, providing reasons for customers to return to your site even if they’re not ready to purchase. This continual interaction builds a community around your brand and keeps it top of mind.

Moreover, such content can improve SEO, drive organic traffic, and increase visibility. It also serves as a customer resource, offering answers to questions and establishing trust. A strategic content plan fosters loyalty and customer retention by delivering relevant and useful information. It encourages repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals, both of which are invaluable for sustained growth.

13. Add Features With Apps and Integrations

Enhancing your Shopify store with third-party apps can greatly improve backend processes like accounting, staff management, and sales tax calculation. These tools can also enhance customers’ overall shopping experience. Shopify offers thousands of paid and free integrations to take your store’s functionality to the next level.

Here are just a few ways third-party apps can improve the overall shopping experience:

  • Store Design and Customization. Apps like Shogun enable more sophisticated design customizations, allowing you to tailor your storefront to your brand and enhance user experience.
  • Product Discovery. Use recommendation engines like Also Bought or Personalizer by LimeSpot to offer personalized recommendations, improve navigation, and help customers find products they love.
  • Reviews and Testimonials. Apps such as facilitate collecting and displaying customer reviews, providing social proof, and increasing buyer confidence.
  • Customer Service and Engagement. Live chat apps like Tidio or Zendesk Chat can improve customer service, encouraging immediate communication, while loyalty programs from apps like or LoyaltyLion can lead to repeat business.
  • Communication. Tools like Klaviyo empower you to improve customer relationships through effective email marketing and SMS. Tido Whatsapp Wolf enables seamless WhatsApp contact from your store.
  • Shipping and Fulfillment. Solutions like ShipStation and Easyship provide advanced shipping options, automation, and real-time tracking.

With so many apps on offer, you should tailor your selections to your specific business needs, customer demographics, and the type of products sold. Remember to monitor the impact of any third-party app on site performance and user experience, as adding too many apps can sometimes slow down your store or complicate the shopping process.

14. Start a Mailing List

Due to their direct and personalized nature, mailing lists are invaluable assets for nurturing customer relationships. They allow businesses to maintain customer communication, provide tailored content, and encourage loyalty with minimal cost.

Emails can be customized to address recipients by name, reference past purchases, and cater to their interests, fostering a more personal connection. Additionally, segmented mailing lists enable targeted campaigns that offer special deals and product recommendations based on the customer’s purchase behavior and interests.

Regular newsletters keep your brand top-of-mind, reinforcing brand values and messaging through consistent engagement. Furthermore, you can design email campaigns to correspond with different stages of the customer lifecycle, from welcoming new customers to re-engaging those who haven’t purchased in a while.

Shopify offers the following tools to build and manage your mailing list directly:

  • Customer Section. Collect customer information and consent for email marketing at checkout or through opt-in forms on your site.
  • Shopify Email. Create, send, and track email campaigns directly within Shopify’s interface.
  • Segmentation. Shopify lets you segment customers based on purchase history, location, and other variables to personalize communication.
  • Integration with Third-Party Apps. Shopify integrates with various email marketing platforms, like Mailchimp and Omnisend.

Your Pathway to Successfully Selling on Shopify

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PaymentCloud works alongside business owners to provide customized payment processing solutions that ensure a smooth and secure transaction experience. Our services include simple setup, rapid processing, and extensive integration options while maintaining PCI compliance. Furthermore, PaymentCloud stands out for its flexibility in pricing, working with you to tailor a solution that grows with your business and your budget. Start building your future today with an eCommerce merchant account.

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Selling on Shopify FAQs

Are there alternatives to Shopify?

Yes, there are many alternatives to Shopify, including platforms like WooCommerce, Magento, BigCommerce, and Wix eCommerce. Each comes with features, pricing models, and customization options for different business needs and technical expertise levels.

What should you sell on Shopify?

On Shopify, you can sell a wide range of products or services, including handmade, digital, electronics, fashion, home goods, subscriptions, and more. For the best chance of success, choose items that align with your passion, market demand, and niche specificity.

What products can’t you sell on Shopify?

Products prohibited on Shopify include certain firearms and related parts, regulated or illegal products like drugs, some alcohol and tobacco products, e-cigarettes, pharmaceuticals, and gambling-related items. Certain adult content and services, financial and legal services, and fireworks are also prohibited.

How much does Shopify cost?

Shopify offers several pricing plans suited to different business types and sizes. Plans can range anywhere from $5 per month for selling on social media without an eCommerce website to over $2000 a month for comprehensive enterprise-level plans. Other plans range between $25 to $399 per month, depending on whether you opt for monthly or annual billing. In addition to your monthly fees, you will pay transaction fees for all payments received and optional extras for premium themes and third-party app integrations.

How does Shopify pay you?

Shopify pays out via Shopify Payments, directly depositing earnings into your bank account after deducting any fees. The frequency of payouts can be set based on your preferences, ranging from daily to monthly. Alternative payment processors will follow their own payout structures.

Article Sources

  1. enterpriseappstoday. “Shopify Statistics By Financial Shopify, Market Share, Region, Country, Stores, Websites, Geography, Demographic and Traffic Source.” Accessed June 12, 2024

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