A few weeks ago, I went on the journey of opening my first Shopify store, The House Slippes. I had to go through a lot of trial and error to land my first sale. I have a habit of noting everything I do down, and as I was going through my notes, I was able to narrow down the top 3 tips I wish someone had told me when I was building my store. I am passionate about the last tip, as it can help you save so much time. Here are my three tips to get you started if you want to experiment and build your side hustle.
Tip 1: Find your Niche
Okay, I know that phrase can be daunting for a few of you, but I am not asking you to rethink your life. What I mean by finding your niche is to research the products you want to sell. Dig deep on the internet about a product you believe you can sell and market. Look at the various products you use and would recommend to your friends and family. Or simply look for some products on Oberlo.
When I started my store, The House Slippes, the lockdown in Canada, had just begun. Doing some research about what people need the most when staying at home for 24 hours a day is some comfortable house wear. Some great tools to research what niche products to sell are:
Google Trends: If you have ever wondered what people are Googling around the world, you can find the answer on Google trends. There are four filters, the daily search trend, real-time search trends, country and category. Follow my Instagram page to get notified when my detailed breakdown of how to use google trends is out.
Answer The Public: It does not get easier than answer the public. Just type in the keyword and Answer the Public will spit out all the searches related to the keyword. The tool is so great and straightforward that even the free plan is enough if you are just starting.
Amazon: The all-mighty Amazon is a great place to get some information on what people are buying. Check the top sellers and see what category you want to enter. In short, browse Amazon as a seller and not a consumer.
- Your Competitor's website: This only applies to those people who have already decided what product or service they want to sell. Look at how your competitors are doing their business. Write down the keywords they are using on their site, figure out their sales funnel, notice their marketing strategy. In my opinion, a competitor analysis is crucial to determine if your product will sell and the market share available for you to grasp.
Tip 2: Design your site
Designing your site is one of the trickiest parts of starting a Shopify store. Hey, if you are good with computers like me, then go ahead, get a Shopify account, fill in a few forms, upload images, pick the colours you need, and you have a complete website ready to launch. Shopify makes building a website easy and secure.
But if you don't like computers or computers don't want you, get in touch with your inner artist. Draw how you imagine your site should look. That will help a web developer like me build the exact website you had envisioned in your mind.
Tip 3: Automate, Automate, Automate
I cannot emphasize how important it is to set up these tiny apps to automate a lot of the clicking around you have to do while dropshipping. Ones again, Shopify comes clutch and has a vast amount of apps that can integrate with your store.
Save yourself the time and start automating how different parts of your website integrate unless you have the time every day to do the same tasks over and over again. Here are some tools I use for automation
- Email integrations: Convertkit.com, Shopify Mail
- Social Media Integration: Later.com
- Design Tools: Canva.com
- Dropshipping: Oberlo
I will be releasing a detailed breakdown of how I use these apps in a future blog. Follow me on Instagram to stay updated or subscribe to my newsletter to know when my next blog is out.
The biggest tip of them all is to take breaks, go for a walk, listen to music, spend time with your loved ones. If you want to build an online store, then it requires a bit of thinking and energy. If you like my content, follow me on social media or subscribe to my newsletter to get the latest updates and more tips like this.