6 Tips From Shopify Experts For Creating An Online Store
To celebrate the launch of shopify.de and the German Shopify blog, we asked six established Shopify experts from Germany and Switzerland for their top tips for budding e-commerce entrepreneurs.
Deniz Demirsoy, Natascha Laußmann, Thomas Borowski, Jörn Fischer, Heiko Vogelgesang and Marco Pusceddu have already set up over 600 Shopify stores for customers in German-speaking Europe between them. The six of them know how to successfully launch a store and what is especially important to lay the foundation for long-term business success. The six experts answer the following question for you:
What is the most important thing when creating a new online store?
Less is more! It’s better to do a few things very well than to try to implement every detail.
Deniz Demirsoy (Dual Citizen, Munich)
“First, you shouldn’t try to start with an egg-laying willow sow. Less is more! It is better to do a few things very well than to try to implement every detail or push the whole range forward.
Second: A very good web reporting from the beginning – for example with Google Analytics – helps to continuously improve the store.
Third: Don’t be afraid of IT! With Shopify, you can be on the market with a professional online store within a short time, without having to deal with technical details.”
We always advise merchants to have an online store (…) because merchants simply can’t get around it anymore if they want to continue to “survive.”
Natascha Laußmann (Latori GmbH, Wuppertal)
“If I could only give one tip for the launch, it would be to put a lot of emphasis on good marketing and programming. You really shouldn’t take the cheapest route in a hurry. Most of the time, the creation of a store drags on a bit because store owners don’t give enough thought to what they need: Product data, own expectations of the store, legal texts and much more. Our agency has now even created a longer checklist for this.
Nevertheless, we always advise retailers to have an online store, even if they already have a local store, because retailers simply can’t get around it anymore if they want to continue to “survive”. We always recommend Shopify, for a number of reasons: For example, Shopify hosts the stores and you don’t have to take care of the server, which in my opinion is a huge advantage over other providers. The updates cost nothing and the stores, i.e. the backend, are intuitive to use. Shopify offers good service and you can reach someone quickly.”
Many get bogged down in the smallest details of their store’s appearance before launch (…) but as long as the store is not yet there for all the world to see, it might as well not exist at all.
Thomas Borowski (Thomas Borowski GmbH, Eurasburg)
“The whole thing has to pay off, otherwise the store will remain a nice hobby. You should know exactly what it costs to manufacture or purchase the products, what costs you can expect for setting up and running the store and for marketing and advertising (the latter in particular is often forgotten or underestimated), and what prices you have to charge for your products so that you have a decent return and, if you want to sell your own “private label” products, there’s still room for retail.
Then you should start with the store and marketing as soon as possible. Many people get bogged down in the smallest details of their store’s appearance before the start. You can always tinker with the design later, but as long as the store is not yet there for all the world to see, it might as well not exist at all. Therefore, pick a nice theme to start with, set up some products, sort out the legal aspects, and then put the “We’re Open” sign in the virtual storefront!
Shopify has a selection of top-notch designs (themes) that will make your own online store look professional right from the start, even without any design knowledge. In addition, Shopify is extremely user-friendly and the store can be extended with customizations and apps as needed.”
Your product is the most important cornerstone of your store. Take the time to create a good store concept and meaningful product descriptions.
Jörn Fischer (OneByte AG, Uster, Switzerland)
“Never forget that your product is the most important cornerstone of your store. Take your time for a good store concept and sensible product descriptions. Everything else you can put together intuitively and quickly with Shopify!
Shopify is also easily extensible with apps and easily configurable to get your store online as fast as possible.”
There is no other store system on the market that can be used as easily and intuitively as Shopify without prior knowledge.
Heiko Vogelgesang (webserviceXXL, Berlin)
“The most important thing is good preparation and planning of the work around the store. On a day-to-day basis, the actual online store is the least work due to Shopify’s sophisticated solution. That’s why, despite all the enthusiasm, you should definitely not forget the trappings: creating and maintaining good content (i.e. product images and texts), sensibly recording and organizing invoices, finding practical and scalable shipping solutions, thinking through possible traffic sources if necessary, etc.
Many customers want a “perfect” online store right from the start. Shopify already offers a more than solid base with its e-commerce solution and ready-made themes from the official directory. You should start with that and focus more on the actual business and on the product in the beginning, less on every detail of the theme. There is no other store system on the market that can be used so easily and intuitively without prior knowledge.”
We always advise our customers: don’t be afraid of costs and new ways. Use Shopify, but start “lean” and grow from that base.
Marco Pusceddu (vinofy, Koblenz)
“From my point of view, the overall concept is the most important. You should not build castles in the air, but start the project sustainably and not with too high expectations. We always advise our customers: don’t be afraid of costs and new ways. Use Shopify, but start “lean” and grow from that base.
It is also very important not to underestimate the Internet as a sales channel. You should definitely deal with this topic. From my point of view, it is important not to approach this topic too naively and to make a plan together with professionals. For sure, you can work very inexpensively with Shopify, but a certain budget is already important here. Not only for the creation, but also for the time after the launch of the store.
So starting an online store is not that difficult, our six experts agree. If you follow their tips and start your store with a focus on the essentials, without getting lost in the minutiae or trying to make everything perfect, you’ll be on the right track. Shopify is there for you and will grow with you when the time is right to grow your business.