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Shopify in 21 Days - Lesson 1: Overview and Pricing

Shopify Overview

  • Shopify is a platform. Unlike popular marketplaces, Shopify is a platform that allows you to build your own brand.
  • Shopify is all in one. They handle web-hosting, payments, and make sure everything is secure for your customers.
  • Shopify runs on themes. A theme provides the basic functionality and design for your brand.
  • Plugins add functionality to themes. Developers create plugins to expand the functionality of Shopify themes.

Actionable Items

  1. Familiarize yourself with the themes that Shopify offers. Remember all themes are highly flexible but some are just better suited for some niches. A premium theme is definitely not a requirement.
  2. Head over to the app store and check out some of the plugins. There are apps for email marketing, retargeting, and print on demand. Shopify's partner developers are constantly innovating to create new solutions.
  3. Start brainstorming niche ideas for your webstore. Two great resources are Google Trends and, both can give you idea of what products are being searched for most in large niches. For more niche ideas, I like this exhaustive article by Neil Patel.

Shopify Pricing Options

Shopify has a tiered pricing structure based primarily on how much money is coming in on monthly basis.

  • Basic Plan. This plan is $29 a month and charges 2.9% of the total sale plus a $0.30 transaction fee. This is comparable to what you would pay to sell using PayPal or other third party payment processors. Please note that if you plan on using your own merchant account then you'll pay their fees plus a 1% fee from Shopify.
  • Standard Plan. This plan is $79 a month and is similar to the basic plan except that the percent on each sale goes down to 2.6% plus the transaction fee. You also get a few extra features like abandoned cart recovery, professional reports, and digital or physical gift cards. Plus, you receive a larger shipping discount with USPS, UPS, or DHL.
  • Advanced Plan. This plan is $299 a month and comes with all the bells and whistles. Also, the fees are lowered to 2.4% plus the transaction fees.
  • Shopify Lite. This plan is $9 a month and is limited to creating buy buttons for your blog or integrating with Facebook store. If you already have a site and simply want to add products to it to monetize it or you're planning on building a store on Facebook then this could be a great low cost option.

Which plan should you choose? It all depends on how much you anticipate selling. If you have an established store and are switching platforms you may want one of the higher tiers. If not it makes sense to start with the basic plan and you can upgrade as you scale up your business. You can also check out this Shopify fee calculator to help you decide.

Actionable Steps

  1. Review plan pricing and features.
  2. Determine which plan will work best with where your business is at right now. Remember that plans cab be upgraded at any time if needed.

Tomorrow's Lesson

Getting started with your free 14 day trial of Shopify.

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