Building a Shopify store
Building My Shopify Store
Building online stores can become super complex. There are so many things you can do. Even though having all these opportunities is just great, it can be overwhelming. There’s no doubt about that. Additionally, there’s a ton of content online where people try to convince you from their approach. Some people even say opposite things. And, to make it even worse, all ideas seem to make sense in your head.
Obviously, this whole case study is just my approach and I’m definitely not the most experienced or most successful e-commerce entrepreneur ever. In fact, I’m far away from being even close to that. So everything you learn in this case study is my way to deal with certain things. This also applies to building an online shop.
I hate to overcomplicate things.
For me, an online store is mostly a place on the internet where my customers feel comfortable spending some money in exchange for good products. That’s it.
I don’t want to have a super fancy website with all kind of cool features. Most of them, at least in my experience, are useless anyway. If you’d like to play business, those apps/tools are great. But if you want to run a real business, I can highly recommend sticking to the proven things. New is not always better.Note: If you never built a Shopify store before, I recommend watching this video from Oberlo.
I signed up for the Basic Shopify Plan (incl 14 days free trial) and started my store building process.
Building The Backend Of My Shopify Store
Before doing anything frontend (the part your customer will see) related, I wanted to make sure the backend was ready. The backend work contains everything which makes operating the business actually possible. Having a weak backend can lead to big issues which will be so time-consuming I wouldn’t have any time left to work on the important things.
The very first steps I wanted to do was to implement my Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel code to my website. This is crucial for figuring out how customers actually behave and for growing my business.Note: Never miss to have Google Analytics and your Facebook Pixel all set up on your website.
Important Shopify Apps
Next up, I wanted to do is to add some apps which I believe help me and my business. Apps are a wonderful thing to expand a business. But it also can become very noisy and expensive. I just want to have apps at my store which bring real value.
Because I had plans to give other people the chance to make commissions if they refer customers to my store, I needed an affiliate system in place. Affiliatly was my go-to app.
Easy GDPR + Cookie Bar
Due to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which was set in place from the European Union to protect website visitor’s/customer’s data there are now certain things a website owner/business owner has to take care of. An app like “Easy GDPR + Cookie Bar” can help here and cover some things.Note: I’m not allowed to give any legal advice. Please make sure you have done everything to have a GDPR safe website in place. Google helps a lot.
MailChimp for Shopify
For the purpose of proper email marketing, I needed an app which allows me to collect email addresses and push those into one big list so I can set up automated email campaigns. I choose to go with MailChimp as the free features are just incredible and the tool itself is very intuitive.
I used Oberlo as my go-to app for product importing and order fulfillment. Unless I reached 50 orders per month it’s free forever. Worked great with my no-budget approach.
For the purpose of product research, I also had Spocket as one of my apps installed.
Besides of MailChimp, I wanted to have another email marketing tool in place. Not necessary for sending emails, but for great ways to collect the email addresses of my potential customers. Additionally, the Sumo app for Shopify allowed me to create a call to action pop up which I could have used to force people on pages of my website I’d like to have them.
At this point in time, I didn’t feel that I would need more apps than those six. I was good to go.
Every online store needs at least some pages. Some of those pages are required by law and others are just nice to have for your customers.
I didn’t want to overdo it, so I only focused on a few important pages.
- Terms of Service*
- Refund Policy*
- Contact Us
*Those are legal pages and I’m not allowed to give any templates and/or advice on it.
I put all those pages into the footer of my website.
Obviously, I needed a way a customer could give me their money in exchange for the products. Payment gateways are the solution.
I decided to go with PayPal Express and Shopify Payments (credit card). There are definitely more gateways I could have added, but my experience told me that those two are more than enough. Note: If PayPal and/or Shopify Payments is not available in your country, don’t worry. People these days usually don’t have just one way to pay you. If they like what you do, they’ll figure it out. Don’t let a payment gateway stop you!