Let us go through the Shopify website builder platform with the three different aspects.
- Additional apps with many different functions
- The Storefront themes
- Payments online and offline
Additional apps with many different functions
Shopify is a SaaS-based website builder which has been designed from the beginning to enable additional app integration. There are more than 1,000 apps – With both free and paid apps are available. The paid app model allows many great developers to create/invent new apps for the website builder. With some of the apps, an online business owner may automate many repetitive tasks, and focus on other important aspects in marketing to increasing website sales.
You may find many apps that would enhance your marketing efforts of your Shopify store, including Privy (which makes entry and exit pop-up windows available for user email capture and newsletter subscription), product reviews (which allows showing customers product reviews on your website), Nichescraper product spy tool (which provides other Shopify website owners’ data on the top selling products in almost real time), Kit (which enables you to improve almost every step in your Facebook marketing of your Shopify store).
The Storefront themes
Shopify is a website builder that comes directly with a few storefront themes that are free of charge. For online business entrepreneurs who have more specific requirements for themes or site appearance, there are many different choices of beautifully designed storefront themes. All you do is purchase the theme that you desire. There are different themes that can cover many industries or niches including computers and accessories, arts, photography, jewelry, food and beverage, home appliances, furniture, gardening, and more.
Another advantage of the free and paid themes is that they are all designed with user friendly and mobile friendly in mind. This means they are responsive design templates (or themes) that can also meet the requirements of SEO. As Google has announced that mobile-first indexing is an important element in search engine optimization, a website that is built with the mobile friendly element is really important.
Payments online and offline
Customers come to your website and purchase your product. It means there must be a way for the customers to perform the order transaction i.e. Payment methods. Shopify has made different payment methods available. There is a default built-in payment method i.e. Shopify Payments where no transaction fee is charged per order. The default payment method is however limited based on countries. Alternative or additional payment methods (from third-party gateways) are needed such as PayPal, Stripe, Amazon Pay, 2Checkout, etc. These third-party gateways would charge the Shopify owners for using their methods with a fee, depending on customer countries, etc. This especially adds additional cost to all the owners who are to sell products across multiple countries (or regions).
Some businesses may even have offline portion which is like a brick-and-mortar store. Shopify does provide POS. To top up the functions, the owner may want to also purchase the retail package which include the staff management feature and the POS related hardware.