July 13, 2018

This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points

This Shopify pre-launch checklist with over 70 points is made for beginners in a dropshipping business. When you think you're done with creating your dropshipping store and you're ready to launch, look through the points to be sure your online store is highly converting.

The Primary Members of Shopify Launch Checklist

GENERAL:

1. Passion oriented niche. Niche store converts better than a general store. Use the guide on how to find a business niche or the source with the ready business niche ideas that contain Facebook targeting parameters.

2. "Contact us" page for easy contacting. A form and your email is minimum. If you don't wish to show your address in contacts, don't state it. Don't forget to test the contact form.
Get local address: There are some services that allow getting addresses in a country you need for rent, for instance, in the USA. There are also services that may provide you with your own physical shipping address in the USA. In this case, your customers will get parcels with the local address.
Get local phone number: There are apps like Telos on Google Play and iTunes App Store that provide a local phone number for $5 per month. There are also services that offer virtual local phone numbers with forwarding incoming calls to different countries for a monthly fee, for instance, Sonetel.com. Moreover, there is Google Voice that costs from $0 to $30 per year.
3. "About us" or "Our story" page to share some information about the company and probably about your personality.

4. Mobile-first. Check your store on mobile. Or, simply go to Google Chrome, click F12 (or Function+F12 depending on your keyboard) to check if your website is responsive.
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
5. Special offers and discounts are displayed with the help of badges or marks.

6. Product images of one style, filter and only with or without a background to make collections, product pages, and the store, in general, to look professional.

7. Mistake-free text. Use Grammarly for free or Hemingwayapp for $19.99.

8. Fast loading speed. Use the PageSpeed tool from Google to check loading speed on both desktop and mobile. Explore another tool from Google to test your store mobile speed. If image compression without distortion is required, use Tinypng to resize images one by one, it's free. Or, use a Shopify app to compress all of them at once for 1-2 cents per an image.

9. 5-20 products. "Is a number of products in the store important?" is a frequent question that beginners in a dropshipping business ask. There is no a must-have number of items to launch a store. If you need an idea, from 5 to 20 is fine for Shopify launch.

10. URL with your own domain with .com ending. There should be no "myshopify" in the URL. Use a business name generator to generate your store name. Go to 1and1 or GoDaddy to buy a domain name. Google a discount code to save money before actually buying.

11. Information about safe transactions is displayed throughout your store to build trust. Note that this badge is used the most often by dropshipping store owners. If you still wish to use a similar trust badge, modify it before uploading. Or, use a free Shopify app to create one.
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
12. Automate forwarding orders to suppliers. Install a Shopify app for auto-forwarding consumers' orders to suppliers, otherwise, you will need to send orders one by one to suppliers yourself. Or, hire an hourly paid freelancer on Upwork.

13. Setup "Shipping" options. Decide how you're going to deal with shipping and delivery and what countries to target. Then make the necessary shipping settings.

14. Setup "Taxes".

15. Setup "Billing" information.

16. Setup analytics for your store. Shopify provides reports but not as detailed as Google Analytics. Add your website in Google Analytics and set Goals. Test Google Analytics setup and goals by visiting "Real-Time" reports. Focus on "Conversions" report.
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
17. Setup Google Webmaster and connect it with Google Analytics. It's a must-do for organic traffic from search engines (SEO) if you plan to work on organic traffic. If not, Google Webmaster is still a helpful tool which notifies a website owner about technical issues.

18. Social media buttons to get new followers and increase trust by letting new store visitors to see other consumers who purchase in your store. Setup social media accounts at least one on Facebook.

However, we all know each business niche has its own target audience with specific generation. Each generation is engaged in its own way by different social networks. For the beginning, Facebook is enough. Later you need to analyze your audience deeper to add other social media as sales channels.
How to Market and Drive Sales to New Products - Dropwow dropshipping marketplace
19. Facebook pixel is installed. Follow instructions to create Facebook pixel and add it to your website to track activity on your store, return store visitors and attract a similar audience.

20. Advanced matching Facebook pixel is activated. Enable Facebook to match your consumers even when they change browsers, devices or clean cookies.

21. Your store is integrated with Facebook. Add "Facebook" as a "Sales channel" to sell directly on a Facebook page with onsite checkout. It's free. Go to "Settings" > "Sales channels" > Click "Add sales channel" > "Facebook"

22. Your store is integrated with Instagram. Add "Instagram" as a "Sales channel" to sell directly on Instagram by tagging products in your posts. It's free. Go to "Settings" > "Sales channels" > Click "Add sales channel" > "Instagram"

23. A payment gateway is connected and tested. Shopify payments, PayPal, 2Checkout are the best for dropshipping. Read the rating with the most popular online payment methods by country and top 20 payment gateway providers 2018.

24. Test mode in your payment gateway is disabled. Go to "Settings" > "Payment providers" > Click "Edit" in "Shopify payments" > Untick "Use test mode" and "Save"
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
25. Tabs with product categories are added to the menu. It's preferable to supply categories with dropdown lists. As every store visitor should get to any destination page in a minimum number of clicks, 2 clicks are preferable.

26. Best-sellers' collection of the most popular items is created and added to the menu.

27. Shopify email notification templates are checked.

28. Setup SSL certificate for building consumers' trust and getting organic traffic (SEO). Read instructions to learn more.

29. Moderate quantity of pop-ups the first-time store visitors see. Consumers should feel activity on your store but minimalism is better than over the edge. I saw stores with 4 pop-ups that appeared at once: online chat welcome message, the first order discount code offer, a sale pop-up with the recent buyer, a web-based notification system requested to sign up. So, the whole screen was covered with pop-ups.

30. You mention what you offer a discount for, in case you display a triggered pop-up with discounts on tab close. It's a popular mistake of newly-made dropshippers. You may attach a discount to holiday gifts during holiday seasons, or new arrivals, etc. Don't offer just a discount but tell what this discount is for.

31. A currency converter app for international targeting is installed.

32. A Shopify app for automation email marketing is installed. For instance, MailChimp (free for 12,000 emails to 2,000 subscribers per month) or Klaviyo (not free).

33. Remove a Shopify store password.

34. Prepare 5-10 social media posts for publishing.

35. Prepare 5-10 emails. Tip: Look through the top Shopify stores, find the ones that have the same or a similar niche and sign up for their emails. This way you may get an inspiration and ideas for your first emails.
HOMEPAGE:

36. High-quality images are on a slideshow of the homepage. Use free image search tools to find them.

37. The call-to-action text is added to slideshow images on the homepage.

FOOTER:

38. Privacy policy page.

39. Terms of service page.

40. Return policy page.

41. Shipping and delivery page
is added as it's an essential page too.

42. Email list builder is on every page, for instance, in the footer.

43. "Powered by Shopify" is removed.

HEADER:

44. A shopping cart is on top to remind shoppers about the items added to the cart.

45. Favicon is uploaded. Use a free online logo maker to create your logo. Or, simply find an icon related to your niche on Flaticon and customize its color. It's free. Use a free logo editor to make size 32x32 px which is required for uploading a favicon. Or, order a logo design to a freelancer for $6 on Fiverr.

46. Free shipping over $X is displayed as a motivation to purchase more and don't spend a penny on shipping. Consumers expect free shipping. Go to "Settings" > "Shipping" > Click "Edit" in "Domestic shipping zone" > "Add rate" > Tick "Free shipping rate"
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
PRODUCT PAGE:

47. Trending products are imported to be sure you spend money on promoting products that are much-in-demand. Use a weekly updated trending products list.

48. Impulse products are imported to encourage impulsive buying. Use a weekly updated impulse products list.

49. White-labeled products are imported to the store not to have any legal issues related to copyrighted or trademarked products. Use the Global Brand Database and USPTO to check.

50. More than 1 image is uploaded on product pages.

51. High-quality images.

52. Zoom image function.

53. No watermarks or logos are on images. Use free photo editors

54. No celebrity prints are on clothing, no celebrities are on images. It's related to legal issues.

55. Rich lifestyle images are on product page galleries. Upload suppliers' photos and consumers' photo reviews. Lifestyle images help shoppers to image how they will look using or wearing products when they get them, unlike images with white background.

56. List of payment methods is displayed on product pages.

57. URL should be canonical. It should include a product category and a product name.

58. Unique product names and descriptions. A lot of new dropshipping stores have copied and pasted names and descriptions from wholesale suppliers. Wholesalers usually don't care much about copywriting. If you work with Asian suppliers, their English is not even good enough. Tell how a product will change lives of your customers. Think about your ideal consumer and address the message to her or him.

59. Preview titles, descriptions and URLs for search engines. Shoppers may get to your store, for instance, via Facebook ads for the first time and they may not buy anything during the first visit. When they search your store on Google or Bing, they should easily find your store. Or, you may be interested in organic traffic (SEO). In any case, you need to work on search engine listing optimization.
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
60. No suppliers' brand names are in a description. Exclude wholesalers' brand names from a description, unless you dropship Apple or Samsung.
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
61. Specifications are added. Provide information about materials, dimension, weight, colors, etc. that a consumer may need while making a purchase decision.

62. Size table for shoes and clothing to persuade a purchase will fit perfectly. Otherwise, expenditures for returns will be increased together with a number of dissatisfied customers.

63. Customers reviews and ratings. Install Loox Reviews, Product Reviews Addon or Shopify Reviews.

64. Social share to ease a possibility for consumers to impress their social media "friends" with a new purchase.

65. Information about delivery time is on product pages. Notify about expected delivery time, for instance, this way "All domestic orders take 8-20 days and up to 4 weeks for international shipping."

66. Call-to-action text with the desired action is added to the buttons.

67. Buttons are well-marked.

68. Phycological prices with .95 or .99 ending. Read 12 pricing strategies to get more ideas.

69. Social proof elements to show business and build trust of the first-time visitors to your new store that is unknown to them. Install a Shopify app with the features: Current viewers, Recent buyers, Recent add to carts.

70. Urgency elements to turn up the heat and persuade a shopper to buy here and now. Install a Shopify app with the features: Product timer, Product count, Cart timer.

71. Cross-sell and upsell elements to increase order value. For instance, "You may also like", "Get % off for another pair", "Frequently bought together", "Who bought this also bought" or "Finish the look", etc.

72. A video is very preferable. It will give a better idea of how a product looks like in a real life, what size it has in comparison with products around.
CHECKOUT:

73. Smooth checkout. It's preferable to make test orders on both desktop and mobile to be sure checkout process is smooth. Input all the necessary information about shipping and credit/debit card details like a real consumer to test transaction. Check all the related notification emails.

74. No additional/unexpected fees in the checkout process to decrease the number of abandoned carts.

75. Show how much shoppers save in case of special offers.
Some statistics for you:
This is a Shopify Store Checklist with 70+ Strong Points
What's next?
When you're done with the Shopify store launch checklist, ask your family and friends to check your store. They may not be professionals or your target audience but still, you will be able to get their feedback. Go to dropshipping forums on Facebook and Reddit and ask for a double check there before launching. Do you think any points are missing? Please leave your comment down below.
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Gulnur Ismailova
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