If you’re reading this article, chances are, you’re planning to start a profitable business on Shopify. A heads up, though, setting up and launching a Shopify store can be a bit challenging for beginners.
But don’t hesitate and kickstart your prosperous Shopify business with our ultimate guide on how to launch Shopify store, within 30 minutes or less!
This guide will assist you in reaching a larger audience and expanding your business, regardless of your level of experience. Learn everything from setting up a Shopify store to tips for getting your business off the ground smoothly.
Let’s get started!
What Is Shopify?
Shopify, an eCommerce platform, founded in 2004, offers services to thousands of businesses in over 170 countries. The platform has processed more than 1 billion orders to date, and merchants have generated more than $55 billion in sales overall.
As an all-in-one eCommerce platform solution, Shopify is ideal for companies of all sizes. It is intended to make it simple for business owners to set up an online store without having to worry about hosting or other technological issues.
If you’re a first-timer, you can enjoy a 3-day Shopify free trial to test out all its capabilities, including store design, themes, apps, inventory management, payment processing, and other crucial elements. Following the trial, you will need to subscribe to one of the Shopify pricing plans, which is relatively cost-effective based on your business size.
Plus, Shopify offers distinct features and values to fit merchants’ unique needs. To learn more about what Shopify has to offer, read our detailed guide here.
|💡 Want to see how Shopify stands out from its competitors? Check out our comparison:|
Having said that, continue reading if you decide to learn how to launch Shopify store. The next parts will lead you through a how-to Shopify launch checklist to help you start your business swiftly and effectively.
How To Set Up Your Shopify Store Before Launch?
Before jumping to the guide on how to launch Shopify store, you need to prepare a Shopify store. Setting up a Shopify store is quite simple; you can complete all the necessary steps in under an hour.
For a more visualized tutorial on post-launch Shopify store setup, we’ve got everything covered in this video:
Step 1: Create a Shopify account
Choosing a name for your store should be one of your first tasks when learning how to launch Shopify store.
The most optimal way to do it is to choose a name that’s both easy to remember and professional. Then, you will need to confirm the availability of the domain name connected to your store.
After you have a store name in mind, creating a Shopify account is simple and only requires entering your name, email address, and a new password. Then, begin managing and personalizing your store. Remember that you can change your Shopify store name later if you want to.
Step 2: Pick your Shopify theme
Now that your Shopify account has been set up, time to choose a suitable theme. Choosing a theme for your store has a big impact on how well customers engage with and interact with your online store.
Pick a theme that captures the entire style and feel of your online business as well as your products. Plus, pay extra attention to editing your Shopify theme including menu setup, product selection, navigation, and content layout.
There are lots of lovely themes available, both for purchase and for free. So choosing an appropriate theme for your store may be a little time-consuming, but will be worthwhile in a long way.
Step 3: Add products to your Shopify store
A must-have in setting up a Shopify store: adding products. For each product you add, be sure to provide all relevant information and crisp photos. Additionally, if a product has many versions, you will need to make variants for each available option.
Steps to add products to your Shopify store are as follows:
- Go to the Shopify admin
- Choose Product, then choose Add product
- Fill in all the vital information, including product descriptions, titles, tags, etc.
- Choose Save.
Step 4: Build key pages for your store
You must have a few pages that visitors can read to understand more about your business and products. The majority of these pages can be created by going to the Online Store -> Pages.
Keep in mind, not every page needs to be completed before launch, the following are some of the most useful ones:
- Contact page: This page provides buyers with clear contact information in case they have inquiries or directs them to a resource where they can get answers, such as a FAQ page.
- About page: This page establishes a personal connection with customers, clarifies your business strategy, and/or provides the inspiration behind your business idea. When creating your online store, bear in mind that a strong About page can go a long way toward helping new brands gain credibility.
- FAQ page: Some of the more frequent customer service questions are alleviated by a frequently asked questions page.
|💡 Pro tip: Consider using Shopify page builder third-party apps to simplify the process!|
Step 5: Provide your payment information
The payment processing options offered by Shopify include PayPal, Meta Pay, Apple Pay, and Amazon Pay. Additionally, you can accept credit cards from well-known issuers like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express.
Customers can select their preferred way of payment once you finish setting up all these payment options.
Step 6: Set up shipping
One of the trickiest factors to manage when running a Shopify store is shipping. There are several factors to consider, including product weights, packaging expenses, shipping locations, carrier rates, and your potential profit per order.
- Setting up shipping zones: In Shopify, go to Settings > Shipping and Delivery to put your shipment plan into action. You can establish your shipping prices for customers in specific countries by creating shipping zones here.
- Setting conditional Shopify shipping rates: In the shipping zone, the Add Rate button allows you to define customized rates depending on particular criteria. In general, encouraging buyers to buy more goods will help you save time and money on delivery while earning more per transaction.
- Setting up real-time calculated shipping rates: The shipping information you provided when adding your products and the package measurements on the Settings -> Shipping page are used to calculate real-time shipping costs. At checkout, customers can select their chosen service and rate.
Once you have done your shipping settings, you should take a look at Shopify Shipping – a fantastic service offered by Shopify. With Shopify Shipping, you can handle order fulfillment, generate shipping labels, and receive discounted rates all in one spot.
Step 7: Set up taxes
Every time someone orders from your store, as a business selling goods or services, you must collect taxes to give to the government (with some exceptions, such as for digital items in many jurisdictions).
Utilizing global default sales tax rates, Shopify will assist you in handling the majority of tax calculations automatically. To be sure you’re charging the appropriate amount of sales tax, it’s a good idea to do some study or consult a tax expert.
There is no standard list of steps for your tax preparation, but you can use Shopify’s general tax set-up steps as a guide.
To set up your tax regions in Shopify, go to Settings -> Taxes and Duties. If you’d like, you can change the default rates here, or if certain conditions apply to your products or region, you can apply overrides.
The Ultimate 12-Step Shopify Launch Checklist
Congratulations on creating a basic Shopify store, importing all the products, and creating all the required legal paperwork. You have done a great job so far! Now, you are ready to finalize it and launch your Shopify store.
The following 12 steps on how to launch Shopify store will make your job a piece of cake:
1. Add your custom domain
The first item on this Shopify launch checklist is to have your domain ready. Branding requires a unique domain.
For example, you might purchase yourstore.com to replace yourstore.myshopify.com as your public URL. That way you will replace the default URL that was generated based on the store name you selected during setup with a custom domain that is fully branded.
You can quickly purchase a domain through Shopify under Settings -> Domains. Don’t be upset if your preferred domain name isn’t available for any reason. Make some adjustments. Add a phrase associated with your brand before it, or use a creative top-level domain (TLD).
💡 Pro tip: You can generate a domain name with the Shopify domain name generator, completely free to use. After you find a domain name that suits your brand, you can buy it through Shopify and link it to your account easily. Just make sure that the domain name is not already taken or trademarked by someone else.
2. Select your sales channels
Now, you might be wondering how to reach more customers and increase your sales with Shopify. What you need is a multi-channel sales strategy. This means selling your products on various online channels and platforms, such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, eBay, and more.
This strategy will help you access new markets and audiences, improve your exposure and credibility, and create a consistent and smooth shopping experience for your customers. You can easily manage your multi-channel sales strategy from one Shopify dashboard, where you can track and optimize your inventory, reports, products, and orders.
While not all of the channels must be linked to launching your online store, it is a good idea to keep them in mind when you’re ready to look at fresh approaches to getting your goods in front of as many customers as possible.
The following ones are noteworthy:
- Shopify POS: Shopify’s point-of-sale system makes it simple to connect physical retail sales with your online Shopify store and inventory as well as collect payments in person.
- Social networks: Through a Facebook Shop on your Facebook page, product tags in your Instagram posts, TikTok Shop, and other channels, you can sell more goods and increase sales on Shopify.
- Marketplaces: Shoppers frequently begin their shopping process on online markets like Amazon or eBay.
- Google & YouTube: You can manage Google Shopping campaigns and add your products for free to the Shopping tab in Google search results using the Google & YouTube app.
- Buy Button: If you already have a website or blog where you wish to sell your items, you can install the Buy Button sales channel so that customers may buy your products and complete the checkout process there. Even better, you can create checkout links that customers may click on to proceed directly to the checkout.
3. Verify your payment settings
Verify that your finance and shipping settings are the two fundamental items on any Shopify launch checklist that you’ve or will come across.
Shopify supports over 100 payment gateways, so be sure your account is set up correctly to function with the ones you select.
To be frank: Set up your payment gateway accounts properly and correctly so that you can get paid by your bank at the time interval of your choosing. To set up your payment provider, go to Settings -> Payment.
Luckily, with Shopify Payments, you can accept all popular payment methods easily and pay no extra fees. Shopify Payments can be activated with just one click, and there are no additional transaction fees to pay as long as your business is located in one of the supported countries and is not regarded as a prohibited enterprise.
Moreover, you can offer customers extra payment alternatives, such as PayPal, or pick from over 100 third-party payment providers. Last but not least, under Settings -> General, you can choose the currency in which your products will be sold.
4. Evaluate the checkout experience
According to the research by Baymard Institute, the typical rate of cart abandonment is 69.8%. In other words, 7 out of 10 customers will often depart your store without ever making a transaction. So, it is necessary to make sure buyers can complete the checkout process.
As an eCommerce business owner, the best thing you can do here is to preview your checkout procedure and edit your checkout page. Make it simple and as informative as you can.
Follow this Shopify launch checklist and tick off the items one by one to optimize your checkout:
- Showing delivery costs in the checkout
- Allowing customers to apply discount codes in the cart
- Allowing shoppers to edit their carts
- Making familiar and trusted payment methods available for customers to choose
- Providing an option to track order status
- Sending email confirmation of order receipt/purchase confirmation
- Displaying shipping policies for international sales
- Providing language and currency conversion options for international sales
5. Check your email notification settings
From marketing to direct contact with customers, email is an essential component of running a Shopify business.
Spend some time setting up the email notifications so they are consistent with the rest of your branding. For editing your email templates, go to Settings -> Notifications. You are free to tweak the messaging, add your logo, change the colors, etc. as you see fit.
In this guide, we focus on 4 types of notification emails below:
- Customer emails: Account Information, Account Welcome, Password Reset, Contact Customer
- Shipping emails: Confirmation, Update, Out for Delivery, Delivered
- Local pickup and delivery emails: Ready for Pickup, Picked Up, Out for Delivery, Delivered, Missed Delivery
- Order emails: Confirmation, Edited, Canceled, Refunded, Draft Order Invoice, Email Cart from POS, Abandoned Checkout, POS Exchange Receipt, Gift Card Created, Payment Error
6. Conduct a content audit
It might be challenging to identify small mistakes when it comes to spelling, punctuation, and broken links. Not to mention, customers’ trust in your store and product line can be affected by grammatical, typographical, and factual errors.
“How to launch Shopify store without having setbacks or errors?“. The answer lies in a regular audit.
Be sure to properly proofread all of the information on your website and fix any problems you find. It’s ideal to have someone else perform this because a new set of eyes can frequently spot issues more quickly.
Similarly, bad graphics may undermine trust and shopping experience in a website, so test your Shopify store theme on all platforms to make sure it functions as intended and displays properly on mobile, tablet, and desktop gadgets.
You should pay attention to the technical aspect, too. Make sure that all the links function by clicking on them, and if any are broken, update the URLs. Broken links can frustrate your customers, lower your ranking on search engines, and damage your credibility.
7. Focus on search engine optimization
Optimization is a key step in how to launch Shopify store. The user experience is impacted when photos take a long time to load. Google won’t be too eager to rank your site highly in the search results if that occurs frequently.
Following our Shopify SEO checklists, you can make sure your content is optimized. Here, we summarize some of the common things you can do:
- Naming your files with descriptors: You should describe what’s in the image and, when appropriate, include the keywords you’re seeking to rank for.
- Entering image ALT attributes for all images: This is important not just for SEO, but also for web accessibility. To make sure that any users with a visual disability can easily access the content of your store, add and optimize ALT text for images, and ensure your content is understandable and navigable.
- Using the proper file size: The larger the file is, the longer it takes to load. You don’t have to upload a file that large for thumbnails.
- Using the suitable file types: Some file types work better on the web than others. For photography, JPG is advised, whereas PNG is the best format for icons and graphics.
- Examining every factor: Split testing, sometimes referred to as A/B tests, can be used to determine what is and is not functioning. Try some photographs with a white background and others that are contextual. See what most appeals to your audience.
8. Double-check tax and shipping settings
Ensure that your shipping options are compatible with the products you’re selling. You run the risk of losing money if they’re wrong because you may not be charging enough. Learn how to calculate shipping on Shopify with our detailed guide here!
In addition, you might need to configure Shopify sales tax depending on where your store is located. Don’t forget to include this sum in your product’s price; otherwise, you’ll be responsible for covering the sales tax out of your pocket.
If you’re unsure of the proper tax settings, speak with an accountant who is knowledgeable about the taxes in your region.
9. Examine your contact information
Although we have already discussed how crucial it is to set up your contact page, it’s not the only location on your website where this information should be.
Include your contact information in the footer of your website so that anyone visiting it can find it and get in touch with you. Set up a live chat option on most of your website’s pages so that visitors may contact sales or customer service whenever they have a query or problem.
Why is this necessary in this Shopify launch checklist? Forrester estimates that 50% of adults will back out of a purchase if they don’t receive a prompt response to their query. Want to increase e-commerce website sales? Making communication quick and easy is one approach to it.
Grifols, a multinational healthcare corporation, has a great contact page. There is a map, the main international office’s address, and phone number, followed by the contact form.
10. Enact two-factor authentication
Security and credibility are other factors that you must pay full attention to when learning how to launch Shopify store.
Make sure to use two-factor authentication before launching to increase security for your Shopify store. This puts you in line with data protection laws and makes it far more difficult for hackers to attack your Shopify website.
When using two-factor authentication (also known as two-step or multi-factor authentication), you must enter both a password and additional information to access your store.
A one-time security code given to your email or phone number, or a biometric identification method like face or fingerprint recognition, could be used.
11. Install profit analytics tools
Analytics are essential for understanding what your audience is doing on your website. You can use this data to learn important details about your store’s general position, such as: How many people have purchased from my store? How many orders has it fulfilled, or how many sales does it generate?
You can even mix different methods to analyze your business, but we advise you to start by keeping track of these 20+ crucial eCommerce metrics.
Shopify has its own set of reports and analytical tools, however, using only these resources might be not enough. Other e-commerce analytics programs like Google Search Console, Adobe Analytics, or Google Analytics are available for installation.
Another option, which is also the number one go-to choice for the majority of Shopify merchants, is to find third-party apps on the Shopify App Store.
You’ll need an application that tracks and calculates all your order metrics, costs, and ad spends in one place, or simply put, an all-in-one solution to optimize your investments. In this case, all-rounder apps like TrueProfit are definitely a great, if not, the best choice to help you make informed, data-driven decisions for your business.
💡 Need some more options to choose from? Check out 9 Best Shopify Profit Tracker Apps for Your Business!
12. Launch your Shopify store
Launching your Shopify store is the last step in this Shopify launch checklist. This entails eliminating the password protection that is set as the default on all new accounts.
Give everything one last review to look for any problems, and then announce that you are open for business. When everything is done, your business is up to gain profit.
Bonus Tips On How To Launch Shopify Store
By taking all the steps on the above Shopify launch checklist, you can expect to have your first sales quickly. Yet, to succeed in the long run, there is more you should do. For that reason, we have put up 5 tips for how to launch Shopify store to help increase your chances of success.
1. Use stunning product photos
To make your Shopify store look professional, you should take product images in high resolution. It can boost sales by influencing how well-made your products are perceived by consumers.
You can utilize a professional entry-level camera or for better convenience, smartphones are a good choice for producing the best product images.
Make sure to take your pictures in a well-lit environment if you’re taking them at home. Your images ought to be sharp, draw attention to the most important aspects of the product, and display it from a variety of perspectives.
2. Build a solid email marketing plan
How to launch Shopify store successfully without any marketing strategies and initiatives? Well, in case you already had a loyal customer base and strong connections, you will be just fine without any extensive marketing.
But, for a new thriving business, things won’t be as easy. From marketing to direct contact with customers, marketing, or more specifically, email marketing is an essential component of running a Shopify business.
Additionally, email marketing can help you to attract organic traffic immediately, unlike other channels like search, which may take some time. For this reason, you will need to spend time and money creating an effective Shopify email marketing campaign!
There’s no need to only write and send emails all the time. Instead, you should create a series of automated email marketing campaigns to boost your earnings to make life simpler for yourself.
When you’re ready to start promoting your online store, open accounts on the social media sites that your target audience utilizes most frequently.
Then, provide interesting material to pique people’s interest in your products. To increase interaction, use compelling calls to action, eye-catching visuals, and relevant hashtags.
Top social media platforms for your store to consider include:
- Facebook: The biggest social media platform in the world is a great place to start with. With the right Facebook marketing strategy in place, you can quickly connect with new customers.
- Instagram: A visually-focused platform where you can post pictures and short videos of your products. Learn the best Instagram feed ideas so that you can display your visuals more wisely.
- Twitter: A quick-paced social networking platform where you can share and promote your products effectively with our Twitter SEO tips.
- TikTok: The newest social networking platform, which is quickly gaining popularity. You can leverage TikTok to drive traffic and sales to your Shopify store.
4. Start a Shopify blog
Promoting your Shopify website through blogging is a terrific idea. Blogging may efficiently increase traffic and provide useful information associated with your items.
Some advantages of having a Shopify blog:
- Boosting your SEO
- Driving more traffic
- Generating more leads
- Increasing your sales
- Creating loyal fans
It is easy to start a Shopify blog and it won’t cost you much, but it has to portray your brand and what you have to offer! For example, Gymshark has a blog to provide knowledge about exercise, health, and more.
5. Install necessary business tools
You can maintain and expand a successful online business with the aid of a variety of sales and marketing tools available in the Shopify App Store.
You can choose from hundreds of free Shopify apps or spend money on premium plug-ins to increase your store’s functionality and facilitate your process of how to launch Shopify store.
Kudos on completing this Shopify launch checklist! You have followed this comprehensive tutorial on how to launch Shopify store and learned to set up your store step by step. Your Shopify store is now ready to launch and connect with customers.
This is a fantastic achievement for you and your business, but it is also just the start. You still have many goals and tasks ahead of you, such as making sales, taking care of your customers, and growing your brand.
We hope you will continue to use Shopify as your partner in your e-commerce journey. We wish you all the best!