How to Set up a Shopify Store
Updated · Mar 06, 2023
If you're thinking of taking your business online, one of the best platforms to use is Shopify.
Shopify is a platform that allows you to create an online store quickly, easily, and in a variety of ways.
In this article, we'll show you the basics of how to setup a Shopify store.
We'll go from making an account through to setting up your order fulfillment.
We’ll end off with a few words on some alternative styles of ecommerce that Shopify does too, so if you’re ready to get started, read on.
No matter what business you want to start, it is important to first do your market research.
This will help you understand the needs and wants of your target market, as well as the competition that you will be up against.
With this knowledge, you can then create a business plan that will help you succeed in starting a Shopify store.
You’ll need to figure out your target demographic, and what products to sell them.
This can be done in any order. Maybe you have a demographic you want to sell to, but you don’t know what to sell them.
On the opposite end, maybe you have a product you want to sell but aren’t sure who to sell it to.
It might be best to start with products, as those are easier to get a handle on. There are a few ways to do this. Once you have product ideas, you can begin figuring out your demographic.
Shopify Create Account Step
Once you have your market research done, it’s time to get started and create a Shopify account.
That’s quick and easy.
You simply go to Shopify and begin a free trial. All you’ll need is your email address and a password.
The trial will give you 14 days to set up your store and test it out before having to select a payment plan, all the site will try very hard to get you to choose one early.
This means no lost investment if you want to back out.
Design The Storefront
With your account made, it’s time to build the website itself.
Shopify makes this simple by offering a range of templates you can choose from.
There are many free ones in the shop builder, but of course, premium ones offer more features. Start with a free one. You can always upgrade later.
Once you’ve chosen your template, you’ll have to edit it, mostly adding in catchy imagery and branding.
You can source images from a stock image site, and there are many tools out there for creating branding like logos.
Add Your Inventory
Next up, adding products.
Shopify makes it pretty easy.
All you have to do is click on the "Products" tab, and then click "Add product." From there, you will be able to enter all of the necessary information about your product, including its name, price, and description.
Writing good product descriptions is essential for your online storefront, in order to help potential customers understand what your product is, why they should buy it, and increase the chance of it showing up in search engines.
If you want quick product descriptions, AI writers can help. Some are built specifically to write product descriptions. It’s also worth investing some time into product SEO research.
Choose a Domain
Of course, your store has to actually be reachable, and so getting a domain is the next part of how to setup a Shopify store. Here you can choose a domain hosted by Shopify, or you can connect your store to an existing domain
In order to purchase a Shopify domain, or connect to an existing one, you’ll have to go to “settings” and then “domains” and follow the prompts.
When starting a Shopify store, whether you use a Shopify domain or a third party is up to you. If you don’t have one yet, a Shopify one is the easiest. If you’re a more advanced user, you may want to make use of a specific ecommerce host.
Set Up a Payment Process
Now, it’s time to make sure you get paid when using your new Shopifystore. Setting up a payment process is just as easy as every other step. Shopify has its own payment gateway, but it also offers integrations with every other big payment gateway out there.
You’ll have already set up your card info when creating your account, and selecting a payment plan. In order to add additional methods, navigate to settings, and choose payments. It’s straightforward from there.
Set Up Order Fulfillment
Order fulfillment is an important and sometimes complex process. Luckily Shopify has simplified this too and has existing arrangements with shipping companies in order to make it easy to sell. Just navigate to the shipping and delivery section
Note that it is often region-specific due to Shopify requirements, and so your choice of couriers will differ depending on where you’re based. In some regions, shipping can be managed through plugins that find the best quotes among a selection of companies.
Alternative Methods On Shopify
Alternative styles of ecommerce are on the rise, and Shopify is more than happy to accommodate.
Shopify supports dropshipping, which is a method of ecommerce in which you can ship straight from suppliers to buyers, without having to keep stock yourself. All you’ll have to do is admin.
You’ll need to identify a dropshipping supplier, and depending on which you settle on, your path of implementation will change. Thankfully, a lot of big names like AliExpress offer Shopify apps for more direct integration.
Shopify Print on Demand
Shopify also supports print on demand. This is done through multiple apps available on the platform that will link you to print-on-demand companies that will print and ship your designs on merchandise.
Shopify is staying on top of social ecommerce too. It offers selling through Facebook, and now through TikTok too, which is one of the fastest-growing social ecommerce platforms.
Shopify began when a few guys wanted to sell snowboards, but couldn’t find a site that did what they needed. It’s been growing ever since and adapting in time with ecommerce at large.
Now you know the basics of how to setup a Shopify store, and there’s never been a better time. The future of ecommerce looks good, but competition will be stiff.
Garan is a writer interested in how tech reshapes the environment, and how the environment reshapes tech. You'll usually find him inoculating against future shock and arguing with bots.