If you are looking to build a quick eCommerce store, Shopify has the tools to do so. With over 50,000 store built using Shopify, it has become one of the fastest growing eCommerce solutions on the market.
Overall, the shopping cart has extensive features needed for the running and the development of your store. It’s also one of the top hosted carts that provides you with a big selection of additional apps. Shopify is integrated with the free and popular Stripe payment gateway, which is a big plus. The only issue with with them is that they charge transaction fees, up to 2%, depending on the plan.
Continue reading our Shopify review to see if it is right for your business.
Shopify Review – Features Overview
The shopping cart is filled with features that are useful in today’s market. The features themselves are very competitive and match well to just about any other shopping cart. Here is a look at some key features:
- Storefront Design – With over 100 professional looking themes, there is something for every business. Fully customize any theme by changing colors and the layout. If you do not like any of their themes, you can create your own or hire a designer to do it for you. You have unlimited access to HTML and CSS. However, the $14/mo plan restricts any editing to the theme.
- Running & Managing Your Store – You are ready to sell as soon as you add some content and products to your store. Accept orders right from your dashboard. Customers are able to create accounts and you have the ability to create customer groups and view their full profiles. You have full control over the content management system, allows you to create pages, navigation and different designs. Every store comes with a fully functional blog.
- Store Configuration – Shipping can be configured as fixed-price, weight-based, tiered, or based on location. Automatic UPS, USPS and FedEx shipping rates can easily be integrated. You can easily add multiple languages, currencies, and taxes. Adding, editing, or deleting products is a simple process through your dashboard. Attractive looking single page checkout process.
- Marketing and SEO Tools – Automatically generates sitemaps for search engines. SEO friendly, edit H1, meta, and title tags. Discount codes and coupons, easily create promotions within your dashboard. Social networking integration with Facebook, Twitter, and more. Email marketing tools to keep your customers up-to-date with new products and promotions. Advanced store statistics to view sales, orders, and other conversion rates.
- Mobile Commerce – Manage your store right from your mobile or tablet device. With nice looking mobile templates, your customers can shop right from a mobile device.
- Payment Gateways – Over 70 payment gateways including PayPal, Google Wallet, Authorize.Net, Stripe, and much more.
- Hosting and Security – You have unlimited hosting (no bandwidth fees) and receive a free SSL certificate with all plans. All customer data is secured with their Level 1 PCI Compliance. They guarantee a 99.94% uptime for your website.
You can view a complete list of features by visiting Shopify.
Shopify Review – Pricing & Plans
Regardless of the plan you choose, they start you off with a 14-day free trail, no credit card is required. This gives you a chance to see if the software is right for you. After the trail period ends, you have 4 plans that range from $14 to $179 a month. The $14/mo plan gives you the ability to list 25 products along with a 1 GB of file storage. However, you do not have any access to HTML or CSS theme editing. So basically, the template you select cannot be edited, you can add pages, content, and logos. Every plan includes a free SSL and unlimited hosting. However, Shopify charges up to 2% for every transaction you complete, unless you go with the $179/mo plan. Let’s say you do $1000 in monthly sales, Shopify would charge you $20 in transaction fees, which is very little. Depending on how you look at it, the transaction fee can be your deciding factor when comparing shopping carts.
Theme Selection – There is over 100 premium and free themes, however only about 15 are actually free. Most of them look professional and all come with a blog. Here is a look at their free themes (not all of them):
Marketing tools are an important aspect of running an online business. That being said, Shopify offers a wide range of marketing tools to help your business succeed. Coupons and promotions are included with every plan. You also have targeted email marketing tools to help attract customers to your store. On top of all of this, you receive $100 in Google AdWords credit – when you spend $25.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO Tools)
Most hosted ecommerce carts are good when it comes to SEO. Shopify helps your store rank high on search engines by giving you full control over meta and title tags, along with custom keywords.
Shopify Review – Ease of Use
Your store is ready for editing and adding content within seconds after starting a free trail. Although, you have to share your name, address, and phone number, before you gain access to your store. Any configuration or design of your store is done directly from a good looking dashboard. They also give you some basic recommendations that you should complete before opening for business. Regardless if you are migrating from other shopping carts or simply just starting out, Shopify is easy to use.
Help and Support
Customer support is available 24/7 via phone and email. They also have a live customer feedback based on the previous 100 customers, basically it shows the customer satisfaction rate. It is usually above 94%, which is good. There are also guides & documentations, how-to videos, and community forums that will answer most of your questions and avoid the need for calling their support team.
Pros and Cons
✓70+ payment gateways (including Stripe)
✓Help and support
If you do not mind the transaction fees, Shopify is one of the quickest and easiest platforms that will get you online and selling, literally within minutes. The transaction fees should not be the reason that you overlook this incredible shopping cart. On the plus side, you will have a free Stripe credit card gateway.