By now, you’ve probably heard of Shopify – one of the most popular eCommerce platforms out there today. With nearly 4 million Shopify users in 2022 alone, it’s clear that Shopify is quickly becoming one of the top go-to platforms for eCommerce businesses. But what’s so good about it? In this article, we list out the top stand-out features that we think Shopify does really well. Whether you are an existing Shopify user, someone looking to try out Shopify or someone who has never even heard of Shopify, we hope that you will find this article useful.
What is Shopify?
Shopify is an ecommerce store-builder that lets you build your very own e-store without technical skills or coding knowledge. It is a SaaS (software as a solution) service, which means you don’t have to pay for your own web hosting provider. Rather than owning your website, you pay a monthly fee to use it instead.
Here is a brief overview of Shopify’s price plans:
|Starter||USD $5 per month|
|Basic||USD $29 per month|
|Shopify||USD $79 per month|
|Advanced||USD $299 per month|
|Shopify Plus||custom pricing|
Shopify also offers a 14-day free trial plan with no credit card required as a risk-free way for you to try it out.
Where Shopify excels
Shopify has a few features which really make it stand out from its competitors. Here are some of them that really caught our attention.
1) Point of Sale (POS)
POS is where you sell your products in person, rather than online. Shopify’s POS app allows you to sell at physical locations such as exhibitions and events, pop up stores, market stalls and ‘brick and mortar’ retail outlets.
The app lets you accept payment from buyers using a card reader, accept credit cards, offer store credits, sell gift cards, issue refunds and more. The best part? Shopify’s POS also automatically syncs between the app and the online store to keep your inventory and transactions up to date.
One thing to note is that POS is not available on the ‘Starter’ plan. You might also need to pay for the ‘Shopify POS Pro’ plan to get access to more features such as exchanges, work with an unlimited number of store staff, creating purchase orders and more.
2) Abandoned Cart Recovery
Did you know that nearly 70% of your customers will abandon their shopping carts at checkout? An abandoned cart refers to the situation where customers add a product to their shopping cart but then abandons the process without purchasing it. Being able to reduce this percentage will be crucial in improving your sales.
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, Shopify offers you a few ways to recover some of these shopping carts.
Shopify allows you to view a list of customers who have abandoned their carts and gives you the option to manually send them an email.
Alternatively, you can configure Shopify’s abandoned cart recovery feature to detect when a customer has abandoned products in their carts and automatically send an email to encourage them to complete their purchase (usually with a discount code).
This is where Shopify really shines, because this feature is included in all of Shopify’s plans by default – even the cheapest $5 Starter plan, so you don’t have to buy or install it from the app marketplace. You’ll be hard pressed to find this feature on competing platforms at such a low monthly price, so this is a huge plus on Shopify’s side. Considering that nearly half of all abandoned cart emails are opened and over a third of clicks lead to purchases back on site, this feature can help recover your revenue significantly.
Unlike emails, push notifications show up as mobile notifications for your users, and they are significantly shorter in length – usually less than 50 characters. Using push notifications, you can send personalised notifications with special discounts to customers who have abandoned carts to encourage them to complete the purchase.
While Shopify does not come natively with this feature, there are lots of great apps such as ‘Smart Push Marketing, Web Push’ and ‘PushOwl’ which you can easily install and run on your shop.
These apps also come with free plans that allow you to send ‘back-in-stock’ and ‘price drop’ notifications so you can always try it out for yourselves before deciding if you want to upgrade. However if you wish to use the abandoned cart feature, you’ll need to upgrade to a premium plan and the prices start from US $9.99 per month.
3) Automated Collections
Rather than just adding products manually to their specific categories one at a time, Shopify makes room for a new way to do it – namely automated collections. All you need to do is name or tag your products in a consistent manner, and Shopify will allow you to categorise your products based on a condition you set. This can potentially save you hundreds of hours – even more so if you have a very large product collection.
4) Digital Products
Whether you are aware of it or not, we consume digital products everyday, from video games to music, audiobooks, graphic arts and more. Digital products are ideal for making passive income, and this is especially true for artists, freelancers and bloggers who may not have the inventory, shipping, packaging or logistics.
Thankfully, Shopify provides a way for you to sell digital products through their Digital Downloads app. The app is completely free to download and use. You can upload digital files as products in your store, and when customers purchase the product, they will receive a link to download the file. Like every other CMS platform, there is a limit on the maximum file upload size – albeit a very generous one. Shopify lets you upload a file size of up to a whooping 5GB limit, a stark contrast to other platforms. To put things into perspective, Wix for example, limits downloadable product size to 1GB, BigCommerce to 512MB and Squarespace to 300MB.
While Shopify is easy to use and set up, you may still need a capable agency to assist you with custom design, content strategy and technical assistance. Here at eFusion Technology we offer a range of comprehensive Shopify development services that meets all your demands. Contact us today for a free consultation.
We hope that you will find these features useful for your eCommerce business. In the next and final article, we will cover the remaining features from Shopify that we think really stood out to us.