One of the great things about Shopify and prebuilt Shopify themes is that they significantly lower the barrier to entry for creating an ecommerce business — but how much can you expect to do yourself if you’re a novice and beginner?
While Shopify is an extremely powerful platform, it can also be relatively simple to get up and running selling your products or services.
While later stage businesses or speciality stores may have more advanced requirements that make getting launched more complex, many new or early-stage business owners won’t find this to be the case.
One concept that’s key to understanding as a novice, newbie Shopify store owner, is something called “minimal viable product.”
Often used in bootstrapping startups, this concept is generally interpreted as creating a product (or, in this case, online store) that performs the basic functionality needed. It still has enough value to be useful and adopted by the target audience, while remaining open to feedback and refinement after its launch.
For most stores, an MVP version of an online storefront includes these essentials:
When you think about it, these are pretty simple requirements and, luckily, are also possible to do, with little or no advanced knowledge, even by the inexperienced thanks to Shopify.
Since Shopify comes with such a rich “backbone” of features, many more advanced features aren’t always necessary to get started, such as:
Before worrying about these more advanced areas, carefully consider whether or not they are necessities for accomplishing the three main goals of an online store.
In many ways, even a Shopify MVP store has a richer feature set that is beyond “minimal.”
While there are numerous Shopify Experts out there that can help out newbies to the Shopify universe, these also require an investment.
If you’re starting your online store on a small budget, your best defense is to read, research and educate yourself:
It’s also important to keep in mind that if you’re not able to invest money in your business at this time, which is nothing to be ashamed of, you may need to focus more on an MVP without the bells and whistles — at least as you get started with your new business.
Other areas that don’t cost money — but that can have a huge impact on your store:
It’s also tempting to start tinkering with your Shopify theme’s design. However, when purchasing a Shopify theme from a premium theme developer, you’ll likely get these advantages that make it easier to get an MVP store online:
At the end of the day, if you have a strong product with compelling copy and a well organized store, you will likely be able to grow beyond a simple basic store and start investing in theme customizations, apps and more.
But a decent MVP will suffice to get the ball rolling in the meantime.
Given that Shopify is an ecommerce platform, it’s only natural that some technical knowledge is needed to get started.
However, keep in mind that the Shopify platform and premium Shopify themes give you access to simple — and even more advanced — functionality and settings without touching code.
Not only does not editing code reduce the potential for conflicts or errors, this also means that most new, non-technical Shopify store owners can get up and running by using the more user friendly Shopify backend and “customize theme” editor interface.