The Definitive Legal Guide to Ecommerce

feature

Whether you're starting a brand new business or you're an established company, taking your business online is a fantastic and exciting growth opportunity.

In fact, there has never been a better time to start an ecommerce business.

However, with all of the advantages an online business brings, there are also some complex legal issues that go along with them. Different countries have different laws and knowing which ones apply to you is critical. In addition to the large variety of laws to take into account, you must remember that the law is fluid and subject to change. In order to reap the rewards that a successful online store can bring, it's important to stay informed and protect yourself and your business.

And that's exactly why we created this guide.

The Definitive Legal Guide to Ecommerce is a comprehensive - but easy to understand - resource that outlines the most common legal issues online business owners face.

Continue reading article ›

How Two Ecommerce Entrepreneurs Generated $91,470 in Three Months Selling Cloud Notebooks

feature

Marshall Haas and Jon Wheatley are two serious entrepreneurs.

Their company Need/Want specializes in physical products. There are half-a-dozen ideas between the two of them, including a novel dice game, classic paintings like the Mona Lisa re-painted with your face, and their most recent product, Mod Notebooks, physical notebooks that can be synced to the cloud.

Jon and Marshall are radical, and not only for the number of businesses they work on. Along their journey starting these two businesses they’ve provided unparalleled transparency of their progress, and sometimes lack thereof. These posts included the detailed thought process behind cancelling a Kickstarter campaign, the profit from leasing apartments and listing them on Airbnb, and most importantly for ecommerce entrepreneurs, the costs and revenues of launching their businesses.

After they announced that their most recent product, Mod Notebooks, made $91,470 in three months, we decided to catch up with them to see if they may share their advice for other entrepreneurs.

Here’s the interview, spliced with a few of the choicest excerpts from our favorite Need/Want posts.

Continue reading article ›

Ecommerce Shipping Toolbox: Apps, Tools, and Resources to Help You Streamline Your Business

feature

You've spent months building your online store and preparing your marketing strategy. You launch your business and cha-ching!, you make your first sale. Now what? 

Many new ecommerce entrepreneurs tend to neglect their fulfillment and shipping strategy. The reason tends to be the fact that the world of shipping is complex and confusing. However, a well educated shipping strategy is a core element of every successful ecommerce business.

In this post, we round up of some of the most practical and important tools, resources and apps to help you develop a rock solid shipping strategy for your business.

Continue reading article ›

Make Your Pins Count: 7 Ways to Drive Sales and Traffic with Pinterest

feature

It is Pinterest’s fault that I now own a 1970 camper trailer.

It all started quite innocently at the apex of the glamping trend, when my childhood nostalgia collided with a romance for adventure travel and a Pinterest Board called “Mobile Abodes”. It climaxed in a parking lot cash-for-goods exchange. This is discovery commerce.

On Pinterest – the social platform built on beautiful, shareable imagery – opportunities for shopping come cleverly disguised as outfit inspiration and smoothie recipes and DIY centrepieces and VW bus renovations and french bulldog puppies. These collectible, bite-sized visuals feed our human instincts to covet and hoard and categorize. For consumers, it’s a place to hunt and gather. For brands, it’s a goldmine. Take my money.

Last year, we told you why your business should be using Pinterest. Since then, the reasons to join become more and more impossible to ignore. We recently analyzed data from over 529,000 Shopify store orders to find that Pinterest was the second largest social source for traffic (over Twitter), and resulting visits had the third highest average order value (beating Facebook).

If you’re still not convinced, consider this: sales and traffic from Pins can occur long after the item is pinned. In fact, 50 percent of visits happen after 3.5 months, according to Piqora. Compared to Twitter and Facebook where the content half-life is around 5 minutes and 80 minutes, respectively, Pinterest is more bang for your social buck.

As a merchant, there are several ways to maximize your efforts on Pinterest, including choosing the right content, running contests, and engaging with your community. We’ve compiled seven ideas to add to your Pinterest marketing strategy now:

Continue reading article ›

Pinterest Rich Pins Now Automatically Enabled for Shopify Merchants

feature

We’re pleased to announce that we have partnered with Pinterest to automatically enable Rich Pins for all Shopify merchants.

Rich Pins are enhanced Pins that make your images even more shoppable. They contain additional information right inside the Pin. There are five types of Rich Pins – Movie, Place, Recipe, Article and Product. Online retailers can benefit from Product Pins which include real-time pricing and stock availability.

Previously, setting up Rich Pins for your site involved adding meta data to your site’s code and validating the Rich Pins on Pinterest. We’ve partnered with Pinterest to make the process much easier for our merchants. As of today, any images Pinned from your product pages (by you or anyone else) will be automatically published as Rich Pins.

Continue reading article ›

Shopify Merchants Can Now Accept Bitcoin Payments With Coinbase

feature

Today we’re pleased to announce that we’ve integrated with Coinbase, giving Shopify merchants more ways to accept bitcoin payments online.

Coinbase is an international bitcoin wallet and platform service already used by companies like Overstock.com, Expedia, and Google. Our new Coinbase integration can be used alongside other payment services, like Shopify Payments and PayPal.

Coinbase offers a two-click checkout experience and simple refunds that make accepting bitcoin payments easy and convenient. All Shopify merchants can currently use Coinbase to accept bitcoin and anyone with a U.S. bank account can convert their bitcoin to USD.

A select group of Shopify merchants have been beta testing our new Coinbase integration including Soylent, Leap Motion, and iOgrapher.

Since enabling bitcoin support earlier this year, thousands of Shopify merchants have enthusiastically adopted it as an alternate payment method.

Continue reading article ›

Ten Mistakes I Made Running Two Online Stores (And How You Can Avoid Them)

feature

This is a guest post by Shabbir Nooruddin, ecommerce entrepreneur and blogger over at Bootstrapping Ecommerce.

Getting into ecommerce has been one of the best educational experiences of my life. The things that I've learned (and you're learning) by actually running a business are often things you won’t find in an MBA or any business course.

With that said, the lessons I've learned were all borne from mistakes I made. Each mistake set me up to do better in the future, and I’d like to share some of the lessons I learned with you so you don’t make the same mistakes I did, and you can succeed even faster.

Continue reading article ›

A Beginner's Guide to Local SEO for Small Businesses

feature

As a small business with a physical location, you've probably heard about "local SEO" or have been told that you should really be optimized for local search.

In return, perhaps you've had a confused or overwhelmed look on your face, wondering 'what exactly is local SEO?, 'how's it different from your existing SEO efforts?', and 'how exactly do you get started?'

Not to fret, this is the first of a series of posts outlining how your business can be optimized for local search engine marketing. As a subset of a broader SEO marketing practices, basic local SEO encompasses the following three factors:

  1. Local Listings and Citations
  2. Online Reviews
  3. On-Site Local SEO optimization

I'll be providing an introduction to each of these three components in this post and providing more in-depth posts in the weeks to come. If you're ready to start cashing in on greater local search visibility, you've come to the right place. But first, we'll look at how the modern day consumer searches and shops in today's world. 

Let's dive in. 

Continue reading article ›

Announcing Shopify's 4th Build-A-Business Competition Winners

feature

Today we’re excited to announce the winners of Shopify’s fourth annual Build-A-Business Competition.

During the eight month competition, more than 21,000 entrepreneurs created new businesses that sold more than $120 million in products.

When they entered the competition, each participant chose a category best describing their shop. The store that sold the most in each category during a two month period would take home the prize.

Each of our winners will receive $50,000 and a VIP trip to New York City to meet with industry experts who will become their mentors. In addition to the money and NYC trip, winners will also receive a Shopify POS package with an iPad.

The number of participants in this year’s competition more than doubled over last year, and the total amount of revenue generated nearly tripled. It’s pretty inspiring to witness brand new businesses go from zero to multi-million dollar companies on Shopify in the span of a few short months.

Here’s a visual overview of the competition, including our 10 winners. 

Continue reading article ›

How to Track Your Marketing Campaigns in Google Analytics

feature

On the Shopify blog we discuss a lot of different ways to increase sales. Whether it's Facebook ads, Google Adwords, email marketing, guest blogging or product reviews, there are a lot of different methods to market your store and products. However, marketing only represents half of the equation. The second half, and arguably the most important, is tracking your efforts. Without proper tracking and analysis, you'll always just be guessing the true success of your campaigns.

In this post, we're going to look at how to track your campaigns in Google Analytics so you'll know what's working, what isn't, and how to make the most of your time and marketing budget.

Continue reading article ›

Create an online store in minutesTry Shopify Free