All you need to know about Shopify: Shopify Guide for Beginners

All you need to know about Shopify: Shopify Guide for Beginners

Shopify increased revenue by 90% in 2019, and it became so popular with the affordable price, easy to create a beautiful online store.

Please read this article before you jump into the Shopify business.


  1. What is Shopify? What does Shopify do?
  2. Is Shopify legit? Is Shopify safe?
  3. How to set up a store on Shopify
  4. Shopify VS Amazon
  5. Shopify VS WordPress
  6. Benefit of Shopify
  7. How to make money on Shopify
  8. What’s the fee for Shopify? How much does Shopify cost?
  9. What can you sell on Shopify ?
  10. How to dropshipping on Shopify
  11. How to close the Shopify store?
  12. How to find Shopify competitors? Examples of Shopify websites

Let’s get started.

1.What is Shopify? What does Shopify do?

Shopify is an eCommerce system that allows people to create online stores and selling on it. The stores hosted in Shopify are similar to the website created with WordPress. We may call it the Shopify website builder.

2. Is Shopify legit? Is Shopify safe?

Shopify Inc is a legit and safe company, founded in Canada in2004.  According to the Shopify statics, it has more than 1 million using its platform as of June 2019. It covers about 175 countries.

shopify website

3. How to set up a store on Shopify?

Shopify makes things easy for you to set up a store. You can create a store within a few hours. Here are there simple steps you can get this done:

  • The first step, sign up with Shopify, get a domain and email for your store.
  • The second step, choose a theme/template for your online website and customize it.
  • Third, upload products, shipping costs, and payment gateway.

If you want to follow the step-by-step Shopify store building guide, you may read this article: 3 steps to building a Shopify store that makes money at home.

4. Shopify VS Amazon

The most significant difference between Shopify and Amazon is:

Amazon is an online B2C marketplace. Amazon Prime is up to 112 million in the US. 

  • Products for selling

Every platform has its own pros and cons. Amazon is one of the most massive eCommerce market places in the United States, but it has some limits on the product categories. But you can sell any legit products if you want.

  • Traffic

You can more easily get customers on Amazon. It has existed Prime users in the marketplace. But selling on Shopify, you will use different marketing ways to get traffic and get orders, such as Facebook ads, Google ads, SEO, etc.

  • Trust and payment

Customers trust Amazon, and they don’t worry about the payment when they order on Amazon. And Amazon offers more payment solutions for customers.

As a Shopify store, you will need to make an effort to gain the trust of customers.

There are limited payment solutions for your store due to different countries.

shopify vs amazon vs wordpress

5. Shopify VS WordPress

You can use both Shopify and WordPress to build your own online website/store. But there are some differences between them:

  • Price

The Shopify fee starts at $29. It offers you the hosting, SSL, etc.

WordPress is free to use, but you will need to get hosting for your website and install the SSL etc.  The price deeps on the hosting you want to buy.

  • Theme

Both WordPress and Shopify have free themes. For example, Shopify has the Brooklyn Shopify theme for free.

WordPress is a CMS (Content Management System; you will have more theme and plugins selections for your website. You can extend your website functionality if you want.

If you want to focus on content marketing, WordPress is an excellent choice for you. It provides various plugin, including content SEO, media, social share, etc.

While Shopify is a hassle-free eCommerce platform, you can save much time and effort on the technical things. It has limited customized features you may choose.

  • Store set up and maintenance

WordPress is an open-source system, you will need to understand some necessary code and technical stuff.

Shopify is easy to set up, and no programming skills required. The store is SEO friendly, and you don’t need the maintenance work as a WordPress website.

  • Customer support

WordPress doesn’t offer direct customer support, and you will need to find the information on communities, forums, or other online sources.

You can get 7/24 online support Shopify, including email, online-chat, Shopify forums. Also, it offers FAQ on the Shopify help center. So, you can quickly get Shopify customer support online.

6. Benefit of Shopify

There are some significant benefits of using Shopify:

  • Quite easy to set up your own online store

You don’t need to be a website code expert, and you can set up a store within a few hours or days. Anyone can sell on Shopify.

  • Shopify offers hosting, SSL, and update-to-date software to keep your store running.
  • You can get Shopify free trial for 90 days during the Covid-19.

Frequently, it offers 14 days free trial. You can sign up for Shopify account to get 90 days trial for creating a shop at Shopify during the difficult Covid-19 situation.

  • It provides a wide range of apps on Shopify app stores.  

From website theme, marketing, fulfillment to Shopify payment, and store management, you can choose the right tools from the Shopify app store.

7. How to make money on Shopify?

There are three different ways to make income from Shopify business:

First, Shopify for dropshipping.

Dropshipping is an order fulfillment model that a business company or individual don’t keep products in stock. When the sellers receive orders, they order products from a third-party supplier, who then ships the order to the customer. The third-party can be a wholesaler or an eCommerce store. The drop shipper doesn’t directly handle the products, but they can track the shipment and fulfillment Shopify.

Second: Selling your own products or service

You can sell your own products, no matter there are digital products or physical products.

Third: Affiliate marketing 

Affiliate marketing is the type of business that you sell other people’s products or services, and you earn a commission from the sales.

The overall goal of an affiliate program creates a win-win system for both companies and partners. Let’s see how it works. You provide a product or service of other companies or individuals. And link it to your blog and audience, so your audience can purchase the product or service.

The link here is the key. It’s called an “affiliate link.” This link is unique to all of their affiliates, and it is how merchants (companies or individuals) to track the referral. The merchants will provide you with a unique link when you sign up and apply to be an affiliate.

If someone clicks on the affiliate link, a cookie is placed on their browser, and if they make a purchase, the merchant knows it to reward you for the referral.

When you get the link, you can place it in a different place and link it to the relevant posts when your readers can get a purchase.

You can make a commission off of that sale, but at zero additional cost to my reader.

Three different ways to make money from affiliate marketing:

First. Pay per sale (Commission).

The sales will be measured differently. The affiliate would get paid in various ways:

Affiliate marketing is a quick and inexpensive method of making money without the hassle of actually selling a product, and it is an excellent way to free you from 9-5 full-time work.

The consumer/your audience doesn’t always need to buy the products for the affiliate to get a kickback. It depends on the affiliate program, the affiliate’s contribution to them.

This is the standard affiliate marketing structure we know. The merchant pays the affiliate some percentage of the sale price of the product or service, after the consumer orders the product. We call it commission; the affiliate only can get paid when the audience pays the products or services.

Second. Pay per lead.

This is a more complex system then. The commission way, pay per lead affiliate programs, means the merchant compensates the affiliate partner based on the conversion of leads. By providing posts, the affiliate persuades the consumer to visit the merchant’s website and complete the desired action, for example, signing up for a trial of a product, subscribing to a newsletter, filling out a contact form, or downloading software or documents.

Third. Pay per click (Pop-ups)

This program focuses on redirecting the audience from their blogging to the merchant’s website. This means the affiliate needs to engage the audience to the extent that they will access to the merchant’s site. The affiliate is paid based on the website traffic they bring. It would be a text link or pop-ups, paid reviews, or advertising on your blog.

8. How to dropshipping on Shopify?

The process of dropshipping is quite simple. It includes three steps:

  • The store seller publishes products on the online store. The customer finds the product and places an order in the store.
  • The seller receives an order and then order manually or automatically from the dropship supplier.
  • The supplier packages and ships the required products directly to the customer. And the supplier gives the tracking number to the store seller.

Printing on demand Shopify is also a good choice for drop-shipping.

print on demand on a T shirt

The drop-shipping business profit depends on the brand and your supplier. You will need to source reliable suppliers for your business. 

If you want to source products from China, check this article:  Guide for purchasing from AliExpress, Alibaba, 1688 & Taobao.

9. What can you sell on Shopify?

No matter you are a small or medium-sized company, freelancers, startup, or college student, even a housewife, you can build the Shopify website and make money from it.

Generally speaking, there are four kinds of products available for Shopify store for sale:

  • Digital products: such as eBooks, software, photos, hosting, teaching course, etc.
  • Service: online teaching, consulting, coaching, website building, translation, etc.
  • Physical products: such as electronics, clothes, furniture, supplements, etc.
  • Drop-shipping business. You don’t need to keep any stock for the products. You just need to find trustworthy suppliers who offer products and handle the logistic services for you.   

10. What’s the fee for Shopify? How much does Shopify cost?

You may concern on the Shopify fee. The Shopify cost depends on the Shopify plan you choose. The Shopify pricing varies from $29 to $299 each month. The transaction cost is from 2.4% to 2.9%. Meanwhile Shopify platform offers Shopify plus for large enterprise, the price of Shopify plus stars at $2,000 each month.

There are three Shopify plans: Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify. They have different features, the fees for Shopify. You can choose the Shopify plan suitable for you. Of course, as a startup, you may start with the Basic plan, you can upgrade it to other plans if you need.

Shopify plan is the basic monthly cost; of course, you may pay it annually.

If you need other apps, such as Email marketing, shop master app, etc., you will need to pay for it. You may choose free apps if you have a very limited budget to start with.

11. How to close the Shopiafy store?

Due to the impact of COVID-19, store options have changed to suit new business needs.

Three different options: Pause and build, Pause, Sell, or Close store. If you want to close the Shopify store, you may choose the option “Close store completely. Just login into your account, click on the “setting,” “tap the “account,” choose “store status”. “If you can’t find the account, just search “account’ or “close store’ on the search bar. It will access the “account’ page.

how to close shopify store

12. How to find Shopify competitors? Examples of Shopify websites

If you want to check the Shopify competitors in your niche, you can search “ + your niche/keyword” in Google search bar.

Here are some Shopify store websites:

Kyliecosmetics website
leesa website


Shopify is a good eCommerce platform for both startup, freelance or middle size companies. You can consider combine different platforms for your business, such as selling up on Amazon or eBay, creating a Shopify store etc. Finding the best suitable way for your business.

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