Shopify – The best eCommerce platform for newbies

Shopify is one of the leading eCommerce platforms and has a strong following and reputation. You just sign up for a free 14-day trial, choose your store name and start adding products to sell. You have full control over the coding of your site but the user interface (UI) is user-friendly, and no coding skills are required. If setting up a store is too complicated, you can buy an existing Shopify store on their marketplace called Exchange and turn your side business dream into a reality.

Pros

  • No coding skills or knowledge is required to use Shopify. Anyone can add products to sell very quickly and easily. Setting up a store is simple, and there are plenty of resources to help. It is drag-and-drop, and it’s easy to edit the theme.
  • As Shopify is so popular, you can always rely on help from other users via the Shopify forum.
  • Shopify handles all web hosting and coding issues, so your customers have a fast, safe, and secure shopping experience.
  • Shopify offers market-leading 24/7 customer support.

Cons

  • Credit card charges: You need to pay the credit card rate on any payment you take when you make a sale. The maximum is 2.9% and $0.30 per purchase.
  • You need to pay 2% to use external payment gateways such as Braintree, Authorize.net or PayPal.
  • Extra expenses: Although Shopify offers ten free themes, most successful Shopify users either buy a custom theme or pay for extra customization. That adds significantly to the cost of setting up a store.
  • Shopify uses a coding language called Liquid which is proprietary. That means it is not freely available and cannot be modified.

If you just want to start a store and have no technical skills, Shopify is undoubtedly the most comfortable choice. You don’t need to find a web host, install anything or learn how to use a system. Your Shopify store will come with its own blog, although unlike WordPress, it doesn’t allow readers to post comments. The downside of Shopify is that you are paying for convenience. If you do manage to grow a successful store, your selling fees will rise accordingly. You will become frustrated by the lack of customization. However, if you just want a low-fuss, easy store, Shopify is the natural solution.

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