Your Shopify store is the heart of your business...every single pixel should be working for you, and working hard. Once truly optimized, your store works for you 24/7 without complaint. (OK, we are talking about technology, so there are occasionally hiccups with some glitch or another, but while you are playing basketball or bingeing Netflix, your Shopify store should be making you money.)
Wasting opportunity at any step along the way not only loses you sales, but actually costs you money. Fewer sales mean higher overhead. You are already paying to be on the Shopify platform, paying hosting fees, ads to drive traffic to the site, so why get less than you can out of that online footprint?
Online shopping, at its best, is really much like brick-and-mortar shopping.
Think about it for a moment: you walk into your favorite store. You’re greeted with a friendly smile, then given space to explore. You feel good in this space...the vibe works for you. You can find what you want easily. Everything is organized and tagged well. Sales and promotions are clear and attractive. If you have questions, there is immediate help. You make your choices, go to the checkout counter, and are out the door with a smile on your face, texting to your friend about what you just bought.
Particularly now, in the era of Covid, customers are missing their more in-person shopping experiences. If you can come as close as possible, you win.
Take a hard look at your online store. Walk in the “door”, through the “aisles”, look at a few items for sale. Be the customer instead of the shop owner. Compare it to your favorite shopping experiences, and be honest about what is missing.
Seriously. If you don’t already have an app to show you customer behavior (and you should have one, FYI!), do this.
Real customer behavior analysis is much more involved, but this will give you an idea of what your pain points might be.
Your objective opinion, and that of your “test shopper”, need support from data. Dive in to your Google Analytics, your reports from social media accounts, your Shopify dashboard, and whatever else you have to work with.
If you are seeing problems with any of the above, it is time for a redesign or even a new store.
Shopify stores best practice says update/refresh your site regularly, with a new build every three years or so.
Your Shopify store might be in pretty good shape, needing only a few upgrades and tweaks. Maybe you want to add something to your cart page to encourage the “submit payment”. Or you think you might like a different header. Perhaps you want to change your branding, and work on your customer journey. Upgrade your cart or checkout page.
Maybe you want us to optimize what is already there. A good fit might be our ConversionBoost, where we make sure your existing site is doing all it can to get your customers to hit “submit payment”.
Or you need major work, and it will be best to start from scratch.
You’ve just got to discuss your pain points, frustrations, and unicorn dreams with a developer. Once you are clear on what options you have (and the budgets), you can decide between redesign, ConversionBoost, or building a new store.
It is important to find the right fit in a developer. Know what will be done, by whom.
We’d really like to talk to you about your Shopify store, of course. Go ahead and let us know more about what you need.
The best way to determine what you are looking for is to come up with a “scope”. This will help you discuss your pain points with potential developer partners. Include what problems you are seeing. Add screen shots and links to where the issue is happening. Link to other sites that you like, as examples of where you’d like to go. (You can see some examples of stores we’ve worked in here for some ideas.) Be clear about what you can do in house and what the developer will need to handle.
Be prepared to allow (and in most cases pay for, if you want good info) a “teardown” of your site, where a developer does a site evaluation. Developers know current best practices, and will be able to add valuable insight in addition to what you noticed on your own. They can also help you prioritize what needs to be done, and what is not as important for driving sales.
What seems like a minor change may be much more complicated on the back end, and what seems like a huge deal may not be complicated at all...so don’t assume.
Take snapshots of your metrics prior to work starting, and throughout the changes. This will be helpful when analyzing the results of the new features.
Make sure your site is backed up before any changes are “pushed”, or made live. Know how to revert to the old site, in case something goes wrong.
Often, faster is not better. Be patient if your developer builds in time between stages. Typically, one thing must be in place for another thing to be addressed. Your stage 2 options may be more clear once stage one has been up and working for a few weeks. Making changes slowly allows you to see what individual upgrades and additions are actually doing for you. If you change everything at once, it is harder to determine what had the biggest impact.
Good job, you’ve done the work.
Celebrate (but don’t relax).
Technology changes every day. Next week customers may find some trend they want. Google may change the way something works. Shopify may add new functionality.
So stay awake, and stay in touch with your developers. Kinda like raking leaves and shoveling snow, it is easier if you stay on top of it. Your developers are your allies in keeping the sales rolling in.