Getting Started With Shopify Ecommerce - Part 1
Shopify is an industry leading hosted eCommerce solution. It features an intuitive interface for users and a powerful & easily configurable backend for developers. This guide will cover the basics and get you started.
We recently completed our third Shopify project The Whistler Sweater Shop (Amos and Andes). This site required features and customization beyond that which the theme offered and it also needed a high degree of SEO functionality. We were able to address all needs of the client as well as the technical needs for search engines. In this 3 part series, we'll review how to customize Shopify themes, some essential apps and SEO capabilities.
Shopify Themes & Apps
Shopify comes preinstalled with a basic theme to get you started. A number of free themes, as well as paid premium themes, can be found in the Shopify theme store. Varying configurations and styles are available to suit your needs. I recommend selecting a responsive theme to give your mobile users the best possible experience. You can easily edit the theme look and feel by using their theme editor or if you are an advanced user, you can edit the CSS and HTML to gain full control.
Shopify features a robust collection of apps that will enhance your online store Beyond its native abilities. Whether you need to add SEO functionality, enhance your product information or add visual enhancements, chances are there's an app for that.
Assuming you have selected a free or paid premium theme, the first thing you'll want to do is configure it to suit your needs. From your Dashboard, select Themes and click on Customize Theme. The theme configuration area is broken down into several areas such as Home Page, Footer, Carousel, Blog etc. Modify the options accordingly.
Content Pages, Collections & Products
Once you have the site looking how you want it, it's time to add your products and content pages. You'll want to start with your Collections. A Collection is any group of products you choose that have some feature in common that customers might look for when visiting your store. Products can appear in any number of collections. Typically, you display your collections on your storefront, to help customers find what they're looking for without having to click through your whole catalog. Fort more information about Collections, please visit Shopify Collections.
When you are finished setting up collections, it time to add some products. From your Dashboard, select Products and click on Add a Product. Here you can define your product details. Give it a descriptive title and summary, product type (shirt, dresser, tool etc), vendor & add your images. In part 2 of this series we will take about optimizing your images. You can also add products variants for your products (different colors, sizes etc).
Visit our blog next week for part 2 of the Getting Started With Shopify Ecommerce series. We'll discuss navigation, optimizing images, domain configuration, and additional hidden customizations. In part 3 we'll review SEO, advanced programming, debugging and redirects. See you soon!
Ready to get started with Shopify? Start you're free 14 day trial.
P.S. Don't eat too much candy tonight. It's halloween after all ;) Ok fine, pig out!