What is Shopify
Shopify is a hosted 'software as a service' ecommerce platform that enables online stores to be setup and launched quickly. Shopify is great for small businesses who need to get to market fast, have simple requirements, and are happy to use a basic templated approach that only requires a little bit of customisation, and no ongoing technical maintenance.
Projects start from HKD $150,000 and launch is possible in 4-6 weeks!
Shopify with Digital Butter
- Get to Market Fast
Using pre-configured themes with a short period of customisation, we can have your store up and running in as soon as 4 weeks time.
- Infinitely Scalable
Shopify provides unlimited, fast & secure web hosting deployed across one of the largest content delivery networks in the world, ensuring that your customers can load your site quickly no matter where they are in the world.
- Industry Leading Security
Let the experts worry about Security - Shopify is certified Level 1 PCI DSS compliant, meaning your database or products, orders and customers is safe.
- In Good Company
Some of the worlds largest brands such as Budweiser, Red Bull and Tesla trust Shopify as their ecommerce platform provider.
- Limited Customisation
If your business has special requirements that fall outside of the core features that Shopify provides it might not be the right tool for your business.
- Basic Content Management System
Compared to solutions like Craft CMS and even Wordpress, Shopify provides only the most basic Content Management System when it comes to designing pages outside of your e-commerce workflows, which may limit your options for creating heavily branded experiences.
- Ongoing fees and 3rd party charges
Shopify has scaled monthly subscription fees and transaction costs. Most valuable apps charge a monthly or volume-based fee - meaning costs can quickly add up when stores are launched.
Questions about Shopify
How much is Shopify per year? Which Shopify plan is best to choose from?
An annual subscription to the Shopify plan is US$348 (HKD$2,714), which is a monthly payment of US$29 (HKD$226). Shopify does offer a 10% discount on annual plans and a 20% discount on biennial plans, when they are paid upfront.
Don’t forget there is also an option to sign-up for a free 14-day trial when you get started.
Additional Shopify plans available are:
Shopify - US$79 per month / US$948 annual
Shopify Advanced - US$299 per month / US$3,588 annual
Shopify Plus - US$2,000 per month / US$24,000 annual - or a variable fee for higher volume business.
Each plan has different features and access. So be sure to check out the Shopify plan that is right for your needs.
Who is Shopify best suited for? Is Shopify a good platform for beginners in ecommerce?
Shopify is a great ‘out of the box’ solution that is best suited for merchants who want a stable, secure and scalable platform that takes the hassle out of technical infrastructure. Merchants who want to focus on marketing and merchandising benefit from Shopify’s hosting, payment solutions and back end platform functionalities.
Shopify is competitively priced, with plans starting at US$29 (HKD$226) per month. Shopify also has a 14 day free trial which is a great feature for beginners in e-commerce who want to practice on a platform prior to committing to an ongoing monthly subscription.
Shopify also has a burgeoning app ecosystem that enables merchants to install additional features and functionality that don’t come as standard. Shopify is a great option for a small business who is just starting out or looking to scale their online business.
How much does an ecommerce Shopify development website cost?
Shopify stores can come in different shapes and sizes. Shopify website development with Digital Butter as your partner starts at HKD$150,000 and up, with launch possible in under 2 months. More complex stores with custom themes & integrations can cost HK$250,000-$350,000.
At Digital Butter we can help walk you through your options for a Shopify development project. We will prepare your strategy through scoping your requirements. We have more than 5 years experience developing in the platform and have created stores for different industries and categories.
What are the USP’s of Shopify?
Shopify is a feature packed platform right out of the box. The features it comes with are many, here are a few worth mentioning:
A theme based or customisable online store
Hosted by Shopify with unlimited bandwidth,
Sell on social sales channels like Pinterest and Amazon.
One click integration with Shop Pay (payment gateway) or other popular payment gateways like Paypal
Streamlined fulfilment process through connecting 3rd party logistics apps
Sell internationally with multi-lingual and multi-currency support
24/7 customer support.
For merchants who want to understand Shopify’s features when it comes to marketing and sales - Shopify has an app marketplace which enables you to download, install and configure apps that help you sell. The marketplace makes it easy for a non-technical merchant to customise their store to get the most out of the platform.
From a developers perspective, we at Digital Butter believe Shopify’s USP’s are its innovation and scalability. Shopify is constantly releasing new products and features - that enable merchants to continually improve their online presence. Along with new features, Shopify handles the complex side of ecommerce platform hosting. As your store traffic grows, Shopify’s hassle free hosting takes care of ensuring your website visitors don’t experience any disruption.
How long does it take to launch a site on Shopify?
Working with Digital Butter, we aim to have you ready to launch in between 4 and 6 weeks, largely dependent on the scale of your inventory and how complete your content already is before we start. We spend this time collaborating with you on design, content development, search engine optimisation and in planning your Digital Strategy. It is important to note that in order to complete your project within this 4-6 week timeline, you will need to have your product database completed before we start. If you are not yet that far along, then your project may need longer to launch.
How do I choose a Shopify agency?
If we were you, we would look at these 6 key things to help you choose the right Shopify agency:
- Look at the history of the agency & their age - How long have they been in operation? The longer the better as mature agencies have learned their lessons the hard way. Alongside that, how has the agency developed and scaled over the years?
- Read through and ask for client testimonials - Look at the comments on their website along with the development work they did for that client. Go to the live store and see what you like or dislike. Some agencies (Butter included!) will offer to introduce you to current clients so you can do a proper background check!
- Ask about their process - Agencies are made up of (i) people and (ii) process. Get to know how they work and if you can see yourself fitting into their workflow and schedules. Development projects are demanding on both agency and client sides - so you need to be prepared.
- Evaluate how they communicate - Right from the first interaction, how have they communicated to build your trust? This will likely be how they communicate ongoing through the project.
- Do they understand your brief and your business goals? This goes without saying - if they get what you are trying to do and have helped similar merchants who are in your position, the agency can be worth their weight in gold!
- Review their services, solutions and team structure - think of the Shopify development project but also how the agency is structured to provide support and activation after the initial project. Are they long term partners?
If in doubt, ask us! We want all clients and agencies to experience success in order to build our industry. So we are willing to help - even if you work with someone else!
Does Shopify offer multi-language support
What we hear from Hong Kong merchants
We can’t use Shopify because we need an e-commerce solution that allows us to have our storefront in 3 languages - Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, and English.
What we know
Shopify with Multi-Language capability is possible but not without jumping through a few hoops!
You will need a combination of the following:
- A theme that supports translation
- One or more translation apps
Looking for an agency partner?
Send us a brief!
Do you need a Hong Kong Digital Marketing Agency to help with your project? Need some advice on which e-commerce platform you should use? Click below to send us your requirements and we'll reach out to talk you through our strategy process.