Shopify was the first of its kind in the world of E-commerce. The legend says there was a German-born computer programmer. His name was Tobias Lütke. He had a love of snowboarding. He tried to set up an online shop to sell snowboards. He got frustrated by the lack of a decent E-commerce platform on which to build his business. So he set about developing the software to make that E-commerce platform himself.
With the help of a few friends and some kind investors, he put his business out there on the market. The rest is history. Sixteen years on, Shopify has this amazing reputation. It brought out the Shopify Plus plan to take on the high-end E-commerce market.
From newbies to E-commerce veterans, Shopify serves all levels of E-commerce entrepreneurs. Some users think Shopify is great and rave about it. Others think Shopify is bad and rant about it. Who is right and who is wrong? Online sellers have been using the platform down the years.
Through their feedback, we learn about the advantages and disadvantages of this platform.
The Shopify app store
Shopify has a huge selection of apps to add functionality to the customer’s online store. Some of these apps are free and many cost money. Some of the apps are helpful and free as well. The apps with dropshipping functionality are well appreciated.
Shopify and dropshipping
Dropshipping has made business accessible for many online sellers. There are some who dreamed of going into the retail business but couldn’t do it because of financial stress. Dropshipping makes it possible to sell goods online without storing them.
The seller shows the goods on the website. When they sell an item, they buy it from the supplier and have it shipped to the customer. As mentioned, the dropshipping apps on Shopify are good and most of them are free too.
Shopify POS (Point of Sale)
Shopify’s POS (Point of Sale) tools are a great asset. Merchants who like to keep their sale operations synchronized find them helpful. The POS tools are in the form of both hardware and software. The software goes well with iOs and Android smartphones and iPad tablets. The hardware makes it possible for the seller to receive in-person transactions. This is besides online transactions. E-sellers find it helpful that POS synchronizes that their online and offline transactions.
Abandoned cart reminder
Shopify has recently made abandoned cart functionality available in all the plans. Suppose a customer leaves something in the cart and fails to complete the sale? They will receive an email within a few hours to remind them to complete their sale. Many E-commerce platforms make this functionality available in the more expensive plans.
24/7 Excellent customer service
Shopify makes 24 hours support available to clients, by phone, email or chat. The service is responsive and helpful too.
Looking for reasons why Shopify is bad? stay tuned.
Shopify doesn’t allow clients to create email IDs related to their domain. This is unlike some competitors. Sometimes the client can somehow set one up. Then they have it sent to their personal email account. But the reply will not come from the same email ID. This can cause confusion and looks rather unprofessional.
Technical bugs on themes
There are reportedly some technical issues on Shopify themes. A client was checking the theme he’d taken for his store. To his surprise, he found that the theme didn’t respond as he’d hoped it would. It created duplicate content for his website. He hadn’t planned that. The duplicate content could have caused him ‘search engine optimization’ (SEO) trouble. He only spotted it because he has technical knowledge.
High transaction fees
Shopify works great if the online seller uses Shopify Payment Systems. Yet, when a customer pays by credit card, the transaction fees are quite high. If a lot of card payments take place, the customer loses a lot of money. The customer can switch. to another payment system, they still have to pay an amount per transaction to Shopify.
Some of Shopify’s apps are free and some are not. Some customers complain about this. There may be a small but important piece of functionality they need for their site. They have to use a paid app, which is inconvenient.
Too simple reporting
The reporting functionality for online stores is thorough and detailed. But only on the higher-level plans. This is an area where Shopify doesn’t look well in comparison to its competitors.
No Platform is Perfect
Different E-commerce platforms are all good in individual ways. Each one has areas where it shines in comparison with others. They also have areas where they are not as good as others. No platform is perfect.
Yet it’s important to appreciate that not all E-commerce platforms are a good fit for every seller. The seller needs to find the platform which suits them best and use it to its full potential. They are all different in the way they function. it might take a while to figure out which one is the right one.