One-fifth of e-commerce stores use Shopify apps to sell.
Shopify is one of the best ways to set up an e-commerce business, falling behind only after WooCommerce.
Selling on Shopify has grown in 2020 by a whopping 86% compared to 2019. Considering its convenience and level of customer support, It is no wonder that so many businesses are investing in Shopify app development.
So, how do they do it? Let’s learn more!
- Why Shopify Apps Rock
- Best Practices of Shopify App Development
- Choose the Best Shopify App for Your Store
- Shopify Theme Selection
- Most Important Questions about Shopify Themes
- Expand User Experience with Shopify Plugins
- Shopify and Coding Skills: You Do Need to Be Web-Savvy
- How to Start Building Shopify Apps
- Scale Your E-Commerce with Freelance Shopify Experts
Why Shopify Apps Rock
You don’t need to be a Shopify expert to use Shopify.
Simple Shopify apps are quick and easy to set up and use, require almost no prior knowledge of e-commerce, and have highly customizable add-ons that provide a versatile user experience.
The Shopify app store provides ready SEO marketing tools, including support for successful selling on Facebook and Instagram, and Shopify dropshipping.
With Shopify, you can set up a business and focus on marketing and improving your offering while someone else does the inventory and the shipping of your products or services.
To build a top-notch e-commerce website without the possibility of failing (fails do happen), you need to take developing Shopify apps to a whole new level.
Building Shopify apps doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. If you have the tools and follow the best practices of Shopify app development and hire the right team of Shopify experts, you will boost revenues before you know it.
Best Practices of Shopify App Development
You can learn plenty about Shopify best practices from the best Shopify stores.
However, it makes for a steep learning curve to nail that knowledge in a short time. Time is the one scarce resource that should not be wasted. Therefore, we have compiled a list of the best practices of Shopify development to help you build successful Shopify Apps and avoid the most common mistakes.
So, where do you start?
Choose the Best Shopify App for Your Store
Considering you know what you will sell and to whom, you need to decide on the overall look, layout, and features of your new (or revamped) Shopify app store.
How do you choose the best back-end and front-end Shopify experience?
- Filter Shopify apps according to their score
- Look for quantity (how many reviews they have) and quality (how many great reviews they have)
- Explore the link to the live demo to see if the app is a right fit
- Check if it will improve front-end (store design) capabilities or back-end (your processes and site management) capabilities
- Find Shopify apps that provide reliable and timely support
You may also want to check for personalization support: lack of personalized offerings is often a major drawback of Shopify app development, giving many headaches to businesses requiring a high level of personalization.
For example, a personalized user experience can be hard to achieve with around 100 Shopify themes – your store will inevitably resemble someone else’s.
Consider using a Shopify plugin (Product Personalizer, Customify, AI Shopping Personalization, to name a few) for user personalization.
Theme personalization is another way to tweak your offering. You will need to be apt in some level of coding to tackle the code changes in the Shopify admin console (under Online Store – Themes- Actions – Edit Code)
For a maximum personalized user experience, your brand will require expert help from a team of talented Shopify developers.
Shopify Theme Selection
Selecting the theme is a key part of your success when selling on Shopify.
Most new sellers usually choose a design template for a web store by seeing some other store that they like. Even Shopify experts will ask you to point out Shopify app examples you like to serve them as references during the consultation process.
You may have reviewed all top Shopify themes, but your eyes are stuck on that one business’s template that you like, but you are unsure of the theme it is using. An easy way to find out which Shopify theme a brand uses is to use a Shopify detector.
- How a theme looks is only one side of the coin of running a successful e-store.
- How a theme works is equally important.
You won’t be able to notice backend functionalities by simply browsing a competitor’s website.
It may have taken ages for them to build it. The sheer amount of personalization they have invested in surpasses the theme applicability for your business. They have tons of support and don’t mind spending a substantial budget on managing the e-commerce store.
Most Important Questions about Shopify App Themes
On the other hand, you may like the theme, but don’t have the same resources to support it. Therefore, choosing Shopify themes can be tricky, requiring you to answer as many of the following questions as you can:
- Which are the best Shopify themes? (A tricky question, considering the multiverse of different niches).
- Is it worth paying for a theme? (Hint: Paying for a Shopify theme is a great investment in the long run).
- What is the best free Shopify theme? (The best theme should be easy to load, customize, and navigate even if you have a big inventory).
- Can I change a Shopify theme? (Yes. Make a backup copy of the theme you are currently running, choose and download a new one, and replace the old one with the current version.)
- Why are some Shopify themes so pricey? (More expensive themes provide better support for your Shopify apps, more features, higher coding quality, and more control over risks.)
You can customize your Shopify theme in the Shopify admin area, in the theme editor.
The good news about Shopify themes is that they are a one-off purchase. Because there are no recurring charges, you need to consider the theme costs vs. the costs of your Shopify account subscription.
How Much Does a Shopify Account Cost?
Shopify accounts can cost as little as $9 per month for the Shopify Lite plan to as much as +$2000 per month for Shopify Plus.
As you can see, there are numerous factors to consider when you decide how to create your Shopify app store.
Because Shopify apps use a template principle, thousands of Shopify developers build templates from scratch and then provide the support that varies according to market fluctuations.
You need to be on top of things to keep up with all these market trends if you want to provide the best user experience to your customers, which – you guessed it – requires a lot of learning time.
Often, it is much more effective to delegate the job to Shopify experts than to try doing it all by yourself and make capital mistakes that will be difficult (read: expensive) to rectify.
Expand User Experience with Shopify Plugins
To delight users with better features, increase conversion rates, reduce abandoned baskets, Shopify plugins are a must.
You can select from +3,000 plugins to improve your site’s functionalities.
There are e-commerce plugins, marketing plugins, dropshipping plugins, Facebook and Instagram plugins, and many more to extend basically any feature of your Shopify app store.
Some plugins are irreplaceable, such as security plugins.
How do you know which ones to install? Will their performance justify the cost? Will a marketing plugin be enough to optimize your products for SEO? Do you need Facebook integrations?
So many questions and not enough time – a major obstacle to any business progress!
Shopify and Coding Skills: You Do Need to Be (Somewhat) Web-Savvy
Unless you have a decent knowledge of code, it will be next to impossible to develop a Shopify app.
In contrast, developing Shopify apps is fairly easy for Shopify developers who can use the extensive documentation provided by the platform, to begin the development process. Shopify apps support a wide array of programming languages because they are HTTP-based. PHP, Ruby, and Node do make things easier.
However, setting up a Shopify store is not that difficult and does not require coding skills. You will find setting configurations in all Shopify themes.
Benefits of Shopify Apps
The majority of issues with Shopify development arise from the many confusing decisions you need to make while juggling multiple functionalities of Shopify apps and how they fit in your business.
It is practical to think in terms of scaling your business with Shopify. Consider every functionality as part of the larger business development plan.
Shopify apps are a resource, which, when used effectively, can help you grow your business without compromising essential stability.
Shopify developers work as a part of a large supportive network to create dream e-commerce solutions for entrepreneurs around the world.
A Shopify development team can build:
- A custom Shopify app or
- Use one or more Shopify plugins from the store to adjust existing features to what works for your target audience.
You may have all sorts of crazy and wonderful ideas to start selling on Shopify. An experienced Shopify development team can tell you whether your ideas border more on the side of wonderful or on the side of crazy (or both, in all the innovative sense of the word!)
How to Start Building Shopify Apps
In a nutshell, you can choose to:
- Do the setup yourself (devours time).
- Add various Shopify plugins by following tutorials (sharp learning curve).
- Rework an existing e-store ran on another CMS by adding Shopify e-commerce plugins (lack of functionalities and poor performance).
- Hire more people to do various backend development, inventory, and marketing tasks (requires a full month of recruitment work).
- Hire Shopify experts to do all the work for you starting from zero (expensive).
There are variations of the above basic actions; each brings advantages and disadvantages that are on the verge between risk and safety.
Scale Your E-Commerce with Freelance Shopify Experts
You can minimize risks and maximize safety in building your next Shopify app by scaling each of the elements that cause confusion, delays, and resource uncertainty.
How to eliminate time-wasters and get rid of blockages? You don’t have to have them – you can go beyond generic Shopify apps with the right support, even if you are building a huge e-commerce platform.
A Shopify app development team doesn’t have to cost beyond your means or charge you a fortune for hours of consulting.
With virtual teams of freelancers and e-commerce marketing experts, you can start selling on Shopify in a matter of days.