Launch Your Business and Sell Your Products On The Best E-Commerce Platform Today

Undoubtedly the best E-commerce platform today, Shopify is a Canadian E-commerce company headquartered in Ottawa and created by, like many other companies, people who sought out for something, didn’t get it and decided to make it and avail it to the public.

Shopify has had rapid growth through the years and their purchasing of resources, or better yet other small business brands to further build the company is impressive. What’s more impressive is their easy-to-remember slogan: “Whether you sell, on social media, in store or out of the trunk of your car, Shopify has you covered”. A better version is: “Shopify, the best place to sell online, in person, and anywhere in-between”.

Shopify doesn’t leave you hanging either. The platform hosts a Podcast and avails several resources to business owners in the form of blog posts. In fact, you could be an affiliate, investor or someone whom just follows the platform and they wouldn’t let you down.

You’re new to business and the platform in general? You get posts to help you get your first sale. You’re an affiliate? You get the resources you need to help you better understand and promote the platform. You’re a professional Entrepreneur with lots of experience? Believe it, Shopify has you covered.

But a platform as this does have its drawbacks, especially since the evident rise of drop shipping in 2015 where it became saturated with people thinking that outsourcing products from AliExpress was a good idea (even though drop shipping has been here since people thought of selling stuff to other people) and everyone who failed labeled it a “Get rich quick” scheme, even though Shopify has never publicly, or privately insinuated that using their platform assures/insures success.

WHY SHOPIFY?

There are a lot of attributes that make Shopify a sexy platform; particularly that it can be customized according to ones wishes. They are listed below;

• User friendly interface.

• Plans catering to your needs.

• World class customer support.

• Easy customization.

• A blog for your store.

• Access to Shopify experts that’ll help with your store at a negotiable cost.

• An app store with apps to help you manage your store and many more.

SHOPIFY PLANS

Shopify has plans with features that fits every criteria one may garner. There are generally five shopify plans with specific features available for them. The plans and respective features are discussed below;

THE LITE SHOPIFY PLAN

If you have a Facebook page about a particular activity or service and you have products you could sell on your page, then this is the plan for you. It is limited to only selling on Facebook and costs $9.

THE BASIC SHOPIFY PLAN

This plan costs $29 and has cards rates of: 2.9%+30¢ for Canadian cards, 3.5%+30¢ for Amex or international cards and an in- person card rate of 2.7%+0¢. There are no transaction fees for using Shopify payments as your payment gateway, but using external payment gateways has a transaction fee of 2.0% percent.

With this plan you get these features: two (2) staff accounts, ability to add an unlimited number of products, an unlimited amount of file storage space, a $49 retail package, a “good” Shopify shipping discount, shipping labels printed, 24/7 hour support, fraud analysis, the ability to create orders manually, discount codes, a website and a blog and finally a free SSL certificate. Features you do not get on this plan are: gift cards, professional reports, advanced cart recovery, advanced report builder nor third-party calculated rates.

THE SHOPIFY PLAN

This plan costs $79 and has cards rates of: 2.7%+30¢ for Canadian cards, 3.4%+30¢ for Amex or international cards and an in- person card rate of 2.6%+0¢. There are no transaction fees for using Shopify payments as your payment gateway, but using external payment gateways has a transaction fee of 1.0% percent.

With this plan you get these features: five (5) staff accounts, ability to add an unlimited number of products, an unlimited amount of file storage space, a $49 retail package, a “better” Shopify shipping discount (than the basic plan), shipping labels printed, 24/7 hour support, fraud analysis, the ability to create orders manually, discount codes, a website and a blog, a free SSL certificate, gift cards, professional reports and advanced cart recovery. Features you do not get on this plan are: advanced report builder and third-party calculated rates.

THE ADVANCED SHOPIFY PLAN

This plan costs $299 with cards rates of: 2.4%+30¢ for Canadian cards, 3.3%+30¢ for Amex or international cards and an in- person card rate of 2.4%+0¢. There are no transaction fees (, as usual) for using Shopify payments as your payment gateway, but using external payment gateways has a transaction fee of 0.5% percent.

On this plan, every feature is made available to you. Specifically, fifteen (15) staff accounts, ability to add an unlimited number of products, an unlimited amount of file storage space, a $49 retail package, the “best” Shopify shipping discount, printed shipping labels, 24/7 hour support, fraud analysis, the ability to create orders manually, discount codes, a website and a blog, free SSL certificate, gift cards, professional reports, advanced cart recovery, advanced report builder and third-party calculated rates.

THE SHOPIFY PLUS PLAN

Shopify plus plan is Shopify’s “custom” plan. There is barely any information of this plan except that you get what you agree on with Shopify. If a business gets intereste in the plan, they contact an affiliate or some affiliate brands of Shopify and they will submit/refer you to Shopify. After which Shopify will call you and create a store for you based on your agreed criteria.

PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WITH SHOPIFY

My personal journey with Shopify has been very interesting. In my first week of opening my first two stores, I’ve had several abandoned carts. Why so many abandoned carts? You ask! Because living in a third world country, Nigeria, I couldn’t get a payment processor. All good options required that a business be registered (Until recently but only for new accounts). It’s sad. So if you fail, it’s always easier to blame it on your country rather than the platform. It’s like back lashing at Google because they didn’t have results for a weird name/word you were searching for.

My first store sold geek merchandise and the second store that I still work on, sells Long Boards. I still can’t get a payment processor and so have a vast amount of abandoned carts while I simultaneously try to make it look appealing and trustworthy. I haven’t given up!

So, I saved the best for last. Shopify allows a 14 day free trial after which you’ll need to buy a plan to keep using the platform unless a development store is created for you. There is still no loophole because once a store is 14 days old; you’ll need to still buy a plan regardless of if it was created as a development store. The only other option is for you to be added as an employee and when the store makes 50 orders, you’ll need to buy a plan and the store gets handed to you. You also have the opportunity to employ Shopify Experts to help you with your store based on what you agreed on.

If you have a product, whether you made it or had it made for you and would like or are ready Launch, then there is no better platform to sell on than Shopify.

How to Motivate Your Client to Go For Good Design on the Onset of a Product Launch

Launching a new business or a new product is always tricky, especially with today’s more competitive landscape. As much as business people want to be profitable, there is no escaping the fact that it can only be achieved by being relevant and unique to their target market forever. Otherwise, why else would they continue purchasing the product, right?

As a designer, this where you come in and play a critical role in the success of that launch. Leading the way and guiding the client to choose to invest in design from the very beginning of the process guarantees its success outright.

And here are some ways to motivate your client to do so during the pitch:

1. Talk about research.

More often, designers fail not because of their design but because it’s not grounded in reality, with reality being charts and numbers that the client can appreciate. Instead of simply aesthetics, be a more proactive designer by coming up with market research to back your design. It can be as simple as a SWOT analysis of the design of the packaging or a market study of items which it may look like in the market. If the client’s product is food and their outside packaging resembles that of a detergent, share it; that would be much appreciated by the client as they know that you took the time to check the market than simply giving out designs from a computer.

With your design knowledge, the research phase of your pitch can also be a teachable moment for the client. You can explain why your design chooses the colors that it does and its psychological impact to the market that you are trying to penetrate.

2. Explain the joy of failing in testing

Although it may seem counterintuitive, encouraging testing even for something as simple as a focus group discussion can pay off well in the long run. Testing with the actual product through 3D rendering can also be smart as actual people can get to the item and give feedback even before it hits the shelves and the paying hands of the customers.

Tell your client this: would they rather produce the product and fail or fail now and iterate and then go into production? Would firing, shooting, before aiming a much more expensive activity to undergo?

3. Make the process fun and economical.

So okay, your client is 50 percent sold to the idea of great design. But be reminded that these are business people with real targets whose missed targets have a lot of effect on their work and that of their companies. Make it fun, a learning time, but have a solid strategy and timeline. Delaying the launch of the product is one thing, but not being able to launch due to your delays is another.

Be smart and objective, have a schedule, and win the case for great design.

Jeff Walker’s Product Launch Formula Review (Program Review)

Jeff Walker has recently come out with his latest system Product Launch Formula. What is this program and can it truly help you create the success you are hoping for online? Here is a simple review of this program.

Product Launch Formula is the latest creation of successful Internet marketer Jeff Walker. The PLF program is designed to help many individuals through a systematic approach launch their niche business or products online with hopefully greater effect. Many individuals today are looking to truly learn how to harness the power of the Internet and, for the most part, as quickly as they can.

PLF does have a simple break down of how to effectively create a ripple and turn it into a wave for the individuals business, products or services. There are a few things to take into consideration however. Although Jeff Walker’s program does break down the simplicity behind creating the need, want and even necessity of your business or products, this program itself will require some basic understanding of Internet marketing.

For those of us who have had success online and continue to thrive is because we understood that the basics of Internet marketing. It is for example if you were to attend college for a specific education for one specific career. You still have to have the basic fundamentals down and this is the reason for…freshman year.

Product Launch Formula for those with a basic understanding of Internet marketing will find that this could be a great catapult to the success they seek. For those without training and a solid foundation of the basics of Internet marketing, they might find themselves in the deep end, even with a solid program such as this.

Product Launch Campaigns – The Lifeblood Of The Business

Few company events are more critical than launching new products and services. Many firms just go through the motions during product launches, repeating the same worn-out formulas they've always used-but every product launch is an opportunity to turn a new page in your company history, and it can make the difference between rags and riches.

Any new product can be directed toward an existing market (a set of known prospects and customers) or it can tackle new markets. But when introducing a new product or service, you need to innovate, going beyond what has been done in the past. You have a choice-let your product get lost in the noise or launch it differently.

The introduction of a new product requires a major launch effort if your company is marketing a new family of products (or services) towards a new target market-a different class of user or a different application emphasis than you have worked with before. You might also be trying to revitalize sales of an existing product or service, which requires a launch to sustain revenues, attract new customers, and ward off competitors.

In either scenario, avoid limiting the product launch campaign to a single, big-bang event with no plan for follow-up. You are positioning the product for its life cycle. Successful product introductions are company-wide events. They must be the focus of your entire organization.

Setting the Stage for a Product Launch

Long before product launch happens, you need to spend time on pre-launch activities that build the opportunity base. This pre-launch research will provide insights on the validity of the product, the features it needs, pricing and packaging considerations, and so on. Think in terms of projected revenue (at 12 to 18 months after launch, for starters), the profits you will need to break even, and the potential return on your investment.

Front-end research and analysis is the process of gaining insight and collecting data that will shape the product launch campaign. You are not simply collecting information, but interpreting it. Avoid focusing simply on the launch – consider the product life-cycle in your planning. Chances are, the data you gather to support your launch campaign may be a year or more old by the time the actual product hits the market. In the words of the Great One – Hockey Legend Wayne Gretzky, make sure you are going where the puck will be, not where it is. Otherwise, your launch campaign may miss the mark.

Elements to research during data collection

Market-based

– Competition for your product or service
– Potential customers' buying influences and attitudes
– Market readiness and demand for your product

Product-based

– Key applications, features and advantages (from the customer's viewpoint)
– Service and support components your product will include
– Packaging considerations

External-based

– State of the economy – by Industry Sector, Area or Region
– Regulatory changes in your Industry
– Technological considerations (current and future)

Developing the Right Concept for Your Product

Creativity is essential to a product launch-but balance it with the sobering thought that the concept you choose will be critical to launching a product that must generate revenue. Avoid the temptation to be clever in your campaign-it could lose the audience, diminish your credibility or worse, be a source of entertainment.

A good theme for a product launch campaign focuses on the problem solved, not merely the product's use. Just as important as choosing the right concept is selecting the right launch vehicles for your campaign. Consider media and PR, direct-response pieces, catalogs, e-mail communiqués, Web site promotions, industry guides, e-casts, and telemarketing. The vehicles you choose will depend on what works in your specific business and what your appetite and budget can tolerate.

Choosing Your Message

The essence of your whole campaign will be its message. The right message captures your audience's attention, explains your new product or service, distinguishes it from its competition, creates action, and has the ability to perpetuate the theme of the campaign (for the product's intended life). Themed campaigns tend to do better than product-focused ones. They can also be perpetuated for a longer life.

Your message must be expressed in the attitude, tone, and language of your intended customer. It must also speak to your product, and your product alone. Put your message through the logo test. If you can replace your company logo with your competitor's logo, and the campaign message still makes sense, go back to the drawing board. Work at it until you get it right.

While You Are Waiting

While campaign materials are being produced, you can be readying your company for the formal launch. Use this time to talk to media sources, investors, and other interested parties. Create a written campaign action plan that describes key tasks you must complete, target dates for their completion, the resources you require, and how you will measure your progress.

Promote and publish early-stage successes for your new product frequently. Whenever you can demonstrate customer acceptance for the new product, it will breed confidence with your Target Audience including your internal company employees.

After the Launch

Done correctly, the work you put into developing a successful product launch will stay with your product for its entire sales life. But when the product reaches maturity, you may need to revisit this process, innovating new uses for the product, repackaging it, adding value, finding a different distribution mechanism, introducing new incentives, and so on to ensure that it continues to generate revenue.

Once you have mastered the process of a successful product launch, you can extend the marketability of any product and give it new life.

Your launch methodology can make or break you in the competitive business jungle.
Is your launch method keeping pace?

Are you confident that your upcoming launch is positioned for success?

Copyright 2007

Performance Marketing Group