Shopify Expert Insights

E-Com Advice from our experienced in-house team

This particular topic came from someone running a mattress store. This is an extremely competitive space and tight market. Despite being in a difficult market, there are still some tips that can apply to everyone.

  • strong>Analyze the quality of your traffic. Where are they being directed from? If it’s all cold, you’re going to have problems with conversion.
  • Is your store set up ideally for your target audience? If you are an international store, make sure your currency converters are functioning and that your product descriptions are welcoming to those different markets. Clean graphics and overall brand guidelines give a more polished professional feel as well.
  • Talk to those who aren’t purchasing. Set up a live chat widget on your site that’s manned by someone. This way you can address objections in real time. After 30 days analyze the data and see if any common questions came up to address.
  • Utilize an exit intent pop up. The free Hotjar plan is my favorite for this. The way it works is when the person’s mouse goes up out of the browser viewport, a window pops open. You ask them one question, “If you didn’t make a purchase today, why not?”

First, an affiliate program is a scenario where a website that reviews the best tech gadgets, recommends their favorites, then tells you where to buy them.

On the plus side you are letting others sell for you and it’s another advertising channel. On the down side, you usually need to seek out these opportunities and do the work to find partners. There are apps that will help you facilitate this process, but they won’t do the work for you.

Affiliate partners always get a portion of the sale through their website.The percentage will depend on the product, the niche and the industry. Use common sense here and figure out what makes sense for you. My personal affiliate links on Amazon range between 2-8%.

Pro tip: My personal preference for affiliate program apps is Refersion. I’ve set this app up for several stores, big and small. I’ve also been an affiliate on the receiving end. I know it does exactly what it says it’ll do. It’s really easy to set up and will give you a couple options for promotions. For example, someone can use a coupon code to promote your site.

This all depends on your financial position as an entrepreneur and as a company. In a perfect world, you can find a phenomenal SEO consultant who will probably use some SEO apps in order to best implement their SEO strategy, right? But, a good SEO consultant costs a lot of money and if they don’t cost a lot of money, they’re not that good. That’s where I think it’s important to realize a lot of SEO can be learned and then you can implement your DIY strategy through use of a good app.

An important thing to remember is that an app is the tool, it doesn’t do the work for you.

If you’re on a budget, the best option is to hire a consultant to do a strategy plan for you and then you implement the plan yourself. That way you’re not hiring the consultant and paying for every hour that they’re working on your store and you’re just hiring for that initial action plan.

Now, if you’re a major brand, Plus store, you’re selling $10 million, and you’re trying to rank up against Nike for example, that’s a whole different story.

There are a few loyalty programs on Shopify, but the one I like best is I’ve never had a bad experience with it, the support is good and it is insanely easy to set up. It’s just a widget launcher that you can easily customize. It is a no code solution that works well.

The catch with loyalty programs is that you have to promote it. You can’t just put it up there and expect it will just work for you. Make sure you have a web page explaining it. Include information about it as part of your welcome and post purchase sequences. It will also integrate with Klaviyo, so that you can make sure you’re not just sending people things or inviting them to the loyalty program if they’re already a member.

The key idea is to reward your best customers and then do a good job explaining and promoting it.

For an example of this in action, check out Hoonigan. They are all in on their loyalty program. They have a really nice explainer page that easily shows what you get out of the program.

Other options: Swell Rewards that were bought by Yotpo and LoyaltyLion

The best abandoned cart subject lines are ones that are short, customer service focused and unexpected.

1. Can I help you?

Why: Ideally you are sending three or four emails in your abandoned cart sequence. It’s important that the first one is not a discount offer. The customer was interested, then something happened, maybe the phone rang, the baby woke up from a nap or they just had a question that stopped the process. A good customer service experience from the very beginning will set you apart. The follow up email subject I like to use is, “Hey, if you had any questions, just hit reply. I’m happy to help.”

2. Do you have any questions about [insert product category]?

Why: This title is longer, but gives opportunity for more personalization. Beware! This example can be tricky to set up. If you want it to be dynamic, you will need to set up liquid “if” statements in the subject line based on product. Alternatively, you can simplify it by using a generic descriptor like your niche.

3. Your incomplete order

Why: It’s three words and unexpected. People are used to seeing “Your order is complete.” This subject plays on that in a new way. A business in our community that suggested this line has a 55% open rate.

4. Your order is NOT on the way

Why: This one is a bit tongue and cheek. Another business in our community that suggested this line says it gets a lot of engagement and customers enjoy the joke.

Pro tip: Split test subject lines using Klaviyo. See which ones get better response rates from your audience.

An entirely unsolicited website teardown of, the Chubbies Shorts Shopify store.

Chubbies has both built a shorts empire on Shopify and established themselves as one of the best marketers in the DTC space.

I've long admired their website, and spent hundreds with them, so it's about time we did a store teardown of Chubbies to see what we can learn.

In this scenario you want to provide a discount on the number of products and not discounts on multiples of the same.

Shopify Plus makes this very easy with a line item script. You can set the qualifying products based on an ID or tag. Then when the customer selects any three products in that qualifying list the discount will be applied. There are many sale variations you can set up without coupon codes (BOGO, free gift with purchase). The downside is that anything with scripts requires the help of a developer because they are written in Ruby code.

We've put together some free Shopify scripts you can copy & paste.

Shopify Plus is a great solution, but it is an investment. Unless this represents an amazing sale for your business, you would want to make sure you could leverage at least three of the Plus features to make it worthwhile.

Currently Shopify Plus is $2,000 a month. If various sales throughout the year net you an extra 10-20% of revenue at least $24,000, Plus just paid for itself.

Some quick background. There are a million Shopify merchants, 12,000 app partners. Only a fraction of those are Shopify theme developers. So the best case scenario is that there are 100 merchants for every Shopify partner. Most agencies can handle eight clients at a time. I say this to preface the importance of communication here. You will get the best response when you are professional and realistic about your needs.

The Jenga tower problem

In this situation there have been many cooks in the kitchen, changes and moving pieces. If you pull out one wrong block, the entire thing falls apart. Partners are afraid to work on these types of projects because of the risk. If they are hired for one standard project, they do what they normally would in that situation, then the tower collapses and they are blamed for breaking your site. It doesn’t feel good or build relationships for either party.

The solution

It might be time to recognize that you need to start over with a fresh new theme that’s simpler and easier to manage. If you approach partners with this mindset you’ll get a better response. Take everything you learned about what does and doesn't work, what you like and don’t and bring that into the new theme.

SEO is a single tactic under a greater umbrella. Most technical SEO is handled out of the box by Shopify. If the brand is well established and huge you’re not going to beat them in the SEO game, so you have to beat them in a different game.

My favorite solution is focusing on great content for people, which will drive organic traffic.

Lean into one thing that works for you. Do you already have one blog post that does pretty well? Keep going. Can you create more articles on that topic? Can you provide it in different formats? Now imagine you are publishing content to your website two to three times per week. At some point you would overwhelm the competition with organic traffic and quickly become an authority in your space.

Creating this much content is not as intimidating as you think. You don’t want to be starting from scratch every single time. Take everything out of what you already have and create templates. For example, my podcast is recorded in audio and video. Then, I’m able to take snippets and make them social media posts. I also transcribe them and they get turned into blog posts. One podcast turns into several pieces of content.

Niche down. Always niche down. You will make your life easier, the tighter that niche is. When you niche down you’re selling a single product, you laser focus your advertising and you laser focus the point of your store. There’s only one thing you need to pack and one thing you need to ship.

At that point if you feel like you need to expand your sales or your customer lifetime value, the next move would be for accessories for that product. A great example of a business that does this well is KeySmart. They have one flagship product and then a majority of their sales come from accessories you put in your KeySmart.

It’s very easy to fall into the trap of casting a wider net to get more sales, but sometimes that just doesn’t make sense. That’s going to be weird for everybody. The people who shop those generic variety items are gonna say, “Well, what’s this niche stuff? This doesn’t seem right. I’m not gonna buy from this.” Or the people who are buying the niche stuff are like, “Well, why does this guy also sell boxer briefs? What’s going on here?”

Don’t do yourself the disservice, just stay narrow, stay focused. That will make life easier, I promise.