Free Shopify Dropshipping Course 2018
Shopify in English: what does this online store have to offer?
Shopify is now probably the largest online shop platform in the world. It was founded in Canada in 2006 by the German emigrant Tobi Lütke. And that although he actually only wanted to create an online shop for a snowboard shop.
Dissatisfied with the solutions available at the time, he finally decided to program his own platform. The goal was clear: to create a convenient way to Selling products online and saving the seller all technical hurdles.
Its initially small e-commerce platform became a huge success: Today Shopify states that there are already more than 1,000,000 companies that rely on this platform to sell their products. Since there is only a 14-day free trial and no free plan, this number is really impressive.
Now Shopify is also attacking the German market. We want to find out in our test whether the localization was successful. We'll see how easy or difficult it is to set up and maintain an online store using Shopify.
We also take a look at the differences between each plan to give you a better idea of which one is best for you.
Let's reveal the secret of Shopify (if there is one at all)!
You can try Shopify for 14 days with no obligation.
Sell unlimited products and get access to features like abandoned cart recovery and coupon codes. Shopify charges a 2% transaction fee unless Shopify Payments is used. Support available in German.
With more e-commerce features like professional reports and international pricing. If Shopify Payments is not used, there is a 1% transaction fee.
Automatically calculated shipping costs and advanced reporting capabilities. If Shopify Payments is not used, a 0.5% transaction fee is charged.
Prices for monthly costs for an annual contract. All payments are calculated in US dollars. You can purchase a .de domain directly from Shopify or, alternatively, an external domain, e.g. B. from Domainfactory, and connect it to Shopify.
It makes sense to use Shopify Payments because Shopify then does not charge any transaction costs. You can find out more about Shopify costs here.
Shopify pros and cons
Fortunately, you don't have to worry about the technical stuff at all. Almost everything is done with just a few clicks. Shopify has excellent guides for beginners and extensive documentation.
The designs are excellent in terms of quality and quantity and are also optimized for mobile devices (responsive). If there is nothing suitable for you among the 170+ themes, you can either create your own or buy one.
The actual system and templates are great, but that's not enough. You have full access to the code and can add new features via the App Market or API (for programmers).
Shopify is very powerful, but still easy to use. It's easy to scale for both small and large online stores. Shopify is also one of the world's largest e-commerce solutions. The likelihood of this platform being shut down is practically zero.
Payment in USD only
It is somewhat impractical that you cannot currently pay your Shopify bill in euros. The final price fluctuates according to the current exchange rate.
Blog posts and the usual pages (e.g. About Us) have a URL structure that is not optimal for SEO. Shopify uses subdirectories like / pages / or / blog / news /, which doesn't really make sense in German.
Domain and email hosting
.de domains are not part of the premium packages, but can be purchased directly from Shopify. Email hosting also requires an external solution such as Google Workspace or Zoho Workplace.
This is not a standard feature. There are apps and templates available, but they are either expensive or quite limited in their functions.
Evaluation in detail
Shopify has many features, but it is built logically. Setting up an online shop is actually not complicated. The design and arrangement of the elements can be done with a live preview in the backend. There are also iPhone and Android apps that you can use to manage your shop on the go.
Choice and flexibility of templates
The Shopify templates look modern and are responsive (compatible with tablets and smartphones). In different categories (including fashion, food, art, or tech), Shopify offers different designs that look really good (9 free themes are available here). Paid themes can be purchased from the theme store. However, we feel that a price of up to $ 180 is too high. Alternatively, you can also program your own template. Some themes offer the option to display multiple languages. Since most of the themes are available in English, this can come in handy. Otherwise, multilingual shops can still be created using third-party apps.
Most of the SEO features that online stores need are there. A disadvantage is that terms are added to some URLs (e.g. / products / or / collections /). Unfortunately, you can't even change these terms to German.
Include zoom function, photo gallery, video - everything is possible.
First you define up to three options (e.g. size, color, material), then you add the variants (e.g. S, M, L, XL). Shopify then generates all possible combinations from this - up to 100! If you need more, you can use one of the apps. Adjustments for product customizations (e.g. if engravings are offered) can also be made, but this is a little more complex and possibly more expensive, as further apps or changes in the code are necessary.
Shopping cart function
In addition, the "Restore abandoned shopping cart" function is integrated as standard, now also for all tariffs, including Basic. This allows you to remind your visitors to complete their purchase with an automatic email, among other things.
Add your own stock keeping unit (SKU) numbers to each product.
Buyers can leave feedback and ratings via an app from the Shopify app store.
Checkout, payment & shipping
Credit card (via more than 30 providers for Germany including Stripe and Paymill for direct debit), PayPal, Amazon Pay, manual payment options and even BitPay for Bitcoins. Shopify Payments can also be used in Germany (as well as in Austria). This means that there are no additional shopfiy fees for credit card payments.
Sale of digital goods
In order to sell digital products and use all relevant features, an app must be installed (either Shopify's own app or that of a third-party provider).
It is possible to limit the number of downloads or the availability. The delivery takes place via email. Complies with the regulations on the collection of VAT on digital goods in the European Union.
The customer data and payment transactions are encrypted via SSL (https). Included, at no additional cost. You can also use your own checkout domain.
Login area for customers
Visitors can check out with a guest account or create a personal login. With the latter method, contact details and address are automatically filled in upon check-out. It is even possible to let your customers decide whether or not to create an account.
Shopify offers a range of flexible voucher code options - fixed price, percentage, and free shipping. You can set a maximum usage amount and an expiration date. You can also sell gift vouchers for your own shop.
There are tons of shipping options, including free shipping, flat rate shipping, and discounted shipping. The shipping costs can be set individually for each country or via a forwarding agency (DHL Express and UPS). You can also choose dropshipping with service providers like Amazon. Shipcloud offers integration with a large number of shipping service providers for German-speaking countries (including a return portal). In addition, shipping labels can be printed via Shopify's backend or a corresponding app.
Shopify's Oberlo app makes the process a lot easier. The entry-level version is free. Thanks to an extension, products can be imported directly from AliExpress and other providers.
A VAT rate is created centrally. Individual tax rates for other countries can also be specified. Gross or optionally also net prices can be displayed on your product pages. If you use ShopifyPlus, you also have access to Avalara AvaTax, an external app that can be used to automatically manage taxes.
Shopify keeps track of every item you have in stock. There are also settings to automatically receive notifications. There is also a POS system to sell directly in the store, but this is not yet available in Germany.
Order emails can be customized
Yes. You can edit any notification email as you like. The best thing to do here is to look through all the mails, because not everything was always Germanized.
Import of product data
Product data can be imported from Magento, eBay, WordPress and via CSV. With Shopify's own online shop import app, you can also import products from Etsy, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Prestashop and other providers. This saves a lot of time and makes moving existing stores to Shopify easier.
Export of product data
It is also possible to export a CSV file. With Shopify's integrated “Bulk Editor” (an editor for mass editing), changes can also be made to several products at the same time without having to export them.
With the Shopify plan and higher, Shopify offers professional reports such as product reports, order reports and much more (for example, you can see how orders fluctuate from month to month). It is also always possible to integrate Google Analytics.
Export of order data
Exports your orders to a CSV file for Excel or accounting tools like Billbee.
German support is available via FAQ, email, forum and Twitter. Unfortunately, chat support is only available in English. 24/7 support.
Shopify has the potential to become number one for e-commerce in Germany. Many functions that already exist in the USA have yet to be introduced and adapted. Once these teething problems have been resolved, you will be dealing with a first-class shop.
Bottom line on Shopify: is this online store for you?
In principle, Shopify is not particularly complicated to set up because you do not have to worry about technical matters. This is especially for small to medium-sized shops Interesting. However, we found out that Shopify is still in its infancy in Germany. Again and again we are over missing translations stumbled. Fortunately, almost everything can be adjusted. However, we assume that Shopify will fix such things in the ongoing beta phase.
If you prefer to wait here, you should take a look at the 1 & 1 e-shops or, for small shops, Jimdo. These two solutions are already 100% localized.
But if that doesn't bother you, you can uncomplicated Add products, payment and shipping options and much more. set up. Fortunately, DHL Express is already integrated so that you can conveniently print the shipping labels from home.
The layouts can be changed to a large extent without any programming knowledge. However, we find that the theme store layouts are too expensive. Professional layouts for WooCommerce usually cost a third of the price.
Shopify also allows you to post on Instagram, Facebook and much more. for sale. For this purpose, these sales channels were directly integrated, which makes the control uncomplicated and helps not to lose track.
If you miss a function or want to change the layout, you are usually only a click away. New templates and apps can be created with a simple click of the App Store to be installed. Additional functions can even be programmed using a powerful template language called "Liquid".
No matter how fast your business and needs grow, with Shopify you don't have to worry about moving to another platform and starting from scratch (unless you become the next Amazon).
Of course, quality has its price. Shopify is not the cheapest solution, and even the “Shopify” plan ($ 71 / month) incurs a 1% transaction fee if you choose to offer credit card. To avoid these extra costs, we recommend using Shopify Payments.
Shopify is only designed for one language by default. If you want to run your shop in several, you will have to fall back on an app for (quite hefty) $ 17.50 per month.
Legal Aspects you should definitely have it checked by an expert. Sample texts for the terms and conditions, cancellation policy and data protection guidelines were currently only available in English. Adaptation is not a problem. Tips on how to make your online shop legally secure can also be found in this Shopify webinar.
Try Shopify for free for 14 days. (no credit card required)
Should I open an online store with Shopify?
You want to sell physical and / or digital goods.
You need customer logins.
They need an easy way to integrate third-party e-commerce functions and applications.
You want to have full control over the templates.
You need a wide range of payment options.
You want to open a multilingual online shop.
Your shop is just a small sideline to your main website.
1 & 1 e-shops is 100% localized and can also be used as a multilingual shop without an app. A connection to other marketplaces is also possible. The templates also look good on cell phones to make mobile shopping as easy as possible. Amazingly, however, it is not possible to sell digital products such as eBooks directly. A blog is also missing.
WooCommerce should be your first choice if you're not afraid of terms like FTP, MySQL, and plugin updates because you need to install it on your own WordPress website. From our point of view, the main reason for the preference over Shopify comes into play when you need a multilingual website and a lot of flexibility. More information in our Shopify vs. WooCommerce comparison.
Wix Ecommerce plays in a different league as it is intended for smaller shops. So if all you want is a great looking website with a blog and an extra shopping cart, then Wix is for you. Since it's aimed at beginners, adding content and managing your store is a lot easier than it is with Shopify. But Wix Ecommerce is by no means to be underestimated, as it has customer accounts, many payment methods and the ability to sell digital products.
We have put together many other alternatives here in this overview.
Still not sure which store builder to use? Let our Smart Finder decide for you in 2 minutes.
Can I sell digital products like MP3, videos, or eBooks with Shopify?
Yes. You can sell files with Shopify.
What payment fees does Shopify charge?
There are no extra fees for standard payment methods such as bank transfer, collection, etc. However, if you offer credit card payment, fees will be charged by the respective payment portal. You can find the exact costs from the respective provider. In addition, Shopify adds a commission of 0.5-2%. It is therefore advisable to process credit card payments through Shopify Payments.This eliminates the extra fees.
How can I cancel my Shopify subscription?
To cancel your online shop, go to Settings> Account. Select “Close shop”.
Can I pause my Shopify online store?
Yes, there are two options on how you can pause your subscription if you are entitled to do so (i.e. you are at least 60 days after your free trial and do not have Shopify Plus):
1. Pause and Edit - This allows you to "freeze" your page and continue working on your online store for a reduced fee. Customers can still see your products but cannot make purchases.
2. Pause - This way you can close your shop for three months and don't have to pay any subscription fees. During this period you will not be able to make sales or make changes to your online shop.
About Armin Pinggera
Hi! I've been the techie of WebsiteToolTester since 2013 and have tested hundreds of web tools since then. I have come to believe that anyone can create a website or online shop. It doesn't always have to be complicated! Therefore, if you have any questions or suggestions about this article, just write me a comment. I am happy to hear from you!
Updates to the test report
05/11/2021 - Several minor updates.
04/20/2021 - Addition to shipping settings.
01/29/2021 - Support added.
10/22/2019 - DE domains can be purchased through Shopify.
05/17/2019 - Shopify video (German) added
09/28/2018 - Shopify Payments can be used in Germany
07/27/2018 - Publication of the test
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