Dropshipping. It’s the word on the tip of everyone’s tongues and no platform is as strongly associated with it as Shopify. Shopify makes it easy for anyone to create and grow an online store.
Users can create websites, set up online shops, set up payment systems, find new clients, and run their day-to-day operations, all in one platform. Up until a few years ago, creating an online store required a TON of upfront capital. Nowadays, you can start your online shop with less than $100. Many users partner with print-on-demand websites to sell branded clothing, or larger bulk sites like AliBaba to produce and distribute their products.
Of course, you can use Shopify to sell your own products as well. This article will show budding entrepreneurs how to get started with Shopify and teach you all the things you MUST set up that no one tells you about. Except us, because we’ve got you covered.
Who is Shopify for?
Shopify is a great place to start for small businesses in the e-commerce world. If you’re looking for a one-stop shop, Shopify is for you. You could use website builders like Squarespace, Wix, or WordPress but Shopify is built specifically for the online store owner.
Shopify is best for:
- Small business owners
- Influencers who want to sell their own swag and products
- People who want to start online businesses
- Brick and mortar business owners building online stores (exp:coffee shops)
Things You Should Know When Setting Up Shopify
Starting a small business can be incredibly exciting. Whether your store is a full-time business or a means to generate passive income, you can find helpful resources to figure out your logo, marketing, and more. We're here to help you get set up.
Here are 3 guides built to set your new Shopify store up for success.
It can be exciting to think about getting your business into the digital world. We’ve all seen the online ads and Instagram posts of successful entrepreneurs making hundreds of thousands of dollars each month simply from drop shipping. The least glamorous (but one of the most important) things you need to set yourself up for long-term success is to ensure you’re handling taxes correctly for your shop. Install the Minerva browser extension and follow our guide and you’ll be on your way to avoiding costly penalties that could turn your dream shop into a nightmare.
Determine Where You Have a “Nexus”
According to Shopify, Forty-five states and the District of Columbia require merchants to collect sales tax from buyers. The good news is that you only have to collect sales tax in these states if you have what's called a “sales tax nexus.” A nexus is established when you have a significant business presence in a state, which can include things like:
- Having an office
- Having an employee
- Having a warehouse
- Having an affiliate
- Storing inventory
- Dropshipping from a 3rd party provider
- Temporarily doing physical business in a state for a limited amount of time, such as at a trade show or craft fair
If you suspect you might have a physical presence in a state, you could check with that state’s taxing authority to determine whether or not you have a sales tax nexus.
Once you’ve figured out whether you need to submit taxes or not, you can start setting up payments on Shopify. This part of setting up your online shopping is the most important because...well, you’re getting paid! Ka-ching!
It’s important to keep margins in mind - the price of your product or service has to account for labor costs (including your own!), the costs of production, and any other resource or expenditure that goes into the cost of the goods you are selling. Be wary of setting prices too low or too high when you’re first starting out. It is best to experiment a bit and get feedback from customers.
When it comes to payment, you want to use an accredited system that will protect both you and your customer. Plus, choosing a great system can increase conversion rates by up to 30%!!!
A service like Klarna breaks down payment into smaller monthly payments, making it easier for customers to make larger purchases. Or you can opt for Stripe, which is the world's largest payment system and can be integrated seamlessly into Shopify. Here’s a list of payment services on Shopify. Giving your customers MORE flexibility at checkout will grow your conversion rate. Use our guide to setting up Shopify payments to make this process a snap.
Want to get customers to click that purchase button? Make sure your shipping policy is on point.
Customers can easily be turned off by wait times that are too long or unclear shipping timelines. You’ll have happier customers if you give clear expectations of when they can expect their purchase to arrive. Amazon has trained many of us to have 2-day delivery expectations, so be aware that you may have to add a little “pizazz” in other areas if you can’t compete with that. This could mean extra branding in your packaging, a handwritten note, or simply a well-thought-out message explaining why your shipping takes longer than Amazon’s.
Setting clear expectations will also help mitigate complaints. Use our guide here to set up a shipping policy in Shopify.
Armed with these 5 must-know Shopify tips, you’re ready to get started!