The fact that you are reading this very article means that you probably have an interest in starting a Shopify store and likely already know how lucrative starting one can be.
This is however only true if done correctly. What you likely did not know is that over 95% of Shopify stores fail. That’s a shocking statistic. But you can make the 5% with a bit of planning and knowledge ahead of time.
In this article, we will dive into exactly why stores fail so that you know what to avoid when starting your very own Shopify store!
So, Why Do Shopify Stores Fail? The Top 10 reasons why most Shopify stores fail are;
- Wrong Niche
- Wrong Shopify Theme
- Lack of Niche Research
- Lack of Product Research
- Ineffective Marketing
- Starting without Capital
- Starting Uneducated
- Poor Customer Service
- Not Being Creative
- Giving up Too Soon
Perhaps the main benefit of building a store through Shopify is that you get access to all the eCommerce tools you need; from store design all the way through to payment processors. Its an incredibly easy to use platform, easy for beginners, and you can start with a comprehensive Free Trial where no credit card details are required.
Let us know take a closer look at every one of these potential mistakes and equally, how you can avoid or overcome them.
#1 Wrong Niche
Hopefully, by now you are already aware of what a niche is.
In short, it is basically the general topic of what you will be selling, such as (Beauty, Sports, Jewelry, Electronics etc..).
Choosing the correct niche is vital and many new store owners go wrong here.
People often choose something that they are passionate about. Being passionate about the product is good but it is no use if no one else has an interest in the niche of those products. Or if there no demand for them.
That is ultimately what building an eCommerce business is all about. Supplying the demand!
When choosing a niche you want to make sure that it is popular and desired; not just last year but now and in the future too!
This will ensure that you are entering a market that is thriving.
Doing this will give you the best chance at success since people are currently interested in purchasing products in this niche. It makes the entire customer acquisition and marketing process far easier (and cost-effective). Think about how much harder it will be to sell a product nobody has an interest in compared to those customers actively looking for what you are selling.
In order to find out the best niches, you should definitely spend some time researching to make sure you choose the right one. Tools like Google Trends can be invaluable here.
#2 Wrong Shopify Theme
Believe it or not, many potential customers make their decision on the first impression they get upon visiting a store/website.
You could have the best product in the world but if your website doesn’t look, load or work right, they will likely not be inclined to purchase your product.
Many store owners make the simple yet crucial mistake of choosing the wrong Shopify store theme.
Before choosing your theme, you need to consider if your product(s) can be effectively positioned on it. You need to be able to completely customize your store.
From there, you must ensure that the theme loads well on mobile devices, it loads fast, is user friendly etc.
Before launching your store, I definitely recommend testing out some of the free themes on the Shopify store to begin with.
From there, it is strongly advised that you upgrade to a premium theme, one focused upon conversions.
You should then fully test the theme when implemented, and also get the opinion of family members and friends to make sure that your store looks and works great before launching.
#3 Lack of Niche Research
Again revisiting the niche topic.
Where most people go wrong is not doing their research upfront!
Yes, it can be exciting to decide that you want to begin your new venture.
However, this excitement should not prevent you from doing adequate research ahead of time.
Many people pick the wrong niche without the data to back it up.
The solution to this problem is simple, just spend the time to do the research – discover what is selling well and what isnt. Try to find out why – what is going on in the world? Why would a product be desired or even required?
Doing this will prevent a massive headache later when you realize that you picked the wrong niche and need to divert with new products!
#4 Lack of Product Research
This is perhaps the biggest reason why Shopify stores fail.
The product you choose to sell is extremely important.
After all, it is what your entire business revolves around.
Many people go wrong by just trying to sell the first product they see. Or, they think they will sell based on a hunch.
You can have the best looking store but if you do not have a desired product, at the right price, better than what the competition can offer, then no one will buy it.
Product research is something you should spend most of your time on. You do not want to waste all of your advertising money on a product that has no potential.
#5 Ineffective Marketing
Marketing is what will actually acquire customers.
Lots of people get the first few things right.
They have a great looking store and a fantastic range of products.
Where they end up going wrong is that they are not properly marketing.
Since you will be running your own standalone store, you’re unlikely to get direct traffic just like Amazon.
You are responsible for bringing in the customers. Without proper marketing no one will see your products.
People often launch marketing campaigns on platforms they do not understand, with ad copy, images and strategies in which do not interest customers.
To avoid this I suggest you learn at least the basics of marketing prior to setting up your store. Learn all about your potential customers and whom you need to target. What age, demographic; where are they spending their time online. What can you afford regarding your marketing budget etc.
This will allow you to formulate a game plan to get the ball rolling as soon as you launch your store.
#6 Starting Without Capital
One of the many attractions of starting a Shopify business is that it is far less expensive compared to launching a brick and mortar business. In fact, its very cheap compared to most business opportunities out there.
Even though it does not thousands of upfront capital, you must still be willing to invest a decent amount of capital.
Many people start a Shopify business with the idea that they don’t need any money to get started and will start making millions from the get-go.
This is of course not the case.
You must understand that this is a legitimate business and will at least require some investment to get it up and off the ground.
The main cost of starting a Shopify store is not buying inventory. Since you will most likely use the dropshipping model you will not need to buy inventory upfront.
So where does the cost come in?
The main cost of running a Shopify store is marketing.
There are small fees here and there such as the monthly Shopify plan, although this is not significant compared to the amount you will need for marketing.
Marketing is costly but it is necessary in order to get your product in front of your target customers.
I suggest that you set aside at least $500-$1000 before setting up your Shopify store.
Depending on your situation this may or may not seem like a hefty amount of startup capital.
This is a good amount to start with since it will give you the room to test out products until you find the one that you can scale.
Many people decide to close their stores because they run out of money to continue, don’t make this mistake, and wait until you have enough capital before you start!
#7 Starting Uneducated
Yes starting a store and the thought of making your first sale is attractive.
What is not attractive is starting with your eyes closed, not knowing anything about the business model.
Not educating is why many people fail.
Before starting you should first spend a good amount of time learning as much as you can.
The internet makes this the golden age of information.
Buying courses are also an option if you are looking to accelerate your learning and get all the information in one place.
However, there are a lot of expensive courses on the market that do not live up to their price tag and some are highly ineffective.
If you are a beginner to eCommerce, I would actually recommend that you do get on a course. But, the course I recommend is eCom Elites by Franklin Hatchett. For a fair, one-off price, you’ll get all the information you’ll ever need.
Youtube is also a great free resource to learn.
You should spend at least a few weeks minimum learning everything you can about how Shopify works.
This will give you the best chance of success since you will know what you doing before you even begin.
#8 Poor Customer Service
Something many store owners ignore is that taking care of customers should not be forgotten.
Since you will be running an online business where you are selling products to customers, it is inevitable that you will have customer complaints.
Many store owners make the fatal mistake of not taking care of their customers.
If a customer emails you why their product has not arrived yet, don’t just ignore them.
Help the customer out in the best way possible.
If you know why the product is taking so long to ship, kindly explain the situation to them.
If a customer receives a damaged product, except the return and replace it for them.
Treating your customers right will pay off in the long run.
Customers that are satisfied with your customer service are much more likely to remain long term customers and revisit your store to buy more products in the future.
Good customer service will also result in word of mouth marketing as they are much more likely to recommend your store to their friends if you treated them right.
Overall good customer service is very important and the lack of it is what causes many stores to fail.
#9 Not Being Creative
Sure it most likely will be much easier to just copy a Shopify store that is doing well.
However, this is what most people who fail do.
It is alright to take inspiration from stores that are doing well, but you should not just copy them.
This does nothing to differentiate you.
You should implement your own creativity into your store.
Think outside the box and add stuff to your store that customers have never seen before.
If customers see something unique then this will set you apart from the rest.
This will give your store uniqueness and therefore give you a competitive advantage over similar stores.
Many people who fail choose to copy another store and not add any creativity.
This results in market saturation as well as a bunch of stores that look virtually the same.
Due to this, these people don’t end up getting a lot of sales since people have no reason to buy from their store over another.
Keep this in mind and add your own creativity when designing and setting up your own Shopify store.
#10 Giving Up Too Soon
The final reason why so many Shopify stores fail is that people give up too easily.
I’m sure you’ve seen ads and videos of successful people making it look so easy and instilling the “Get Rich Quick Mentality”. In reality, starting a Shopify store will likely not make you rich, right away that is.
All good things take time. If you don’t see success in your first month don’t throw in the towel and give up right away. You have to understand that it will take time to learn what works and what doesn’t.
Not giving up will definitely pay off in the long run when you find the perfect product and achieve success.
This is a major reason why stores fail. It’s because they give up too early when they don’t see instant success.
If you really want to achieve success then you must be willing to persevere and keep trying until you finally make it!
Now you know the top 10 reasons why most Shopify stores fail. Use this knowledge to your advantage and make sure that you do not fall victim to these things.
Do your due diligence to properly educate yourself and take the time to research.
If I could leave you with one final recommendation, it would be this. Get on a reputable and insightful training course like eCom Elites. You can learn exactly what you will need to do from start to finish, even as a beginner with no knowledge or experience. It will help overcome every issue listed here today.
It covers extensive niche and product research, store design/optimization, marketing (Google Ads, Facebook, SEO) all the way through to Email Marketing, Sales Funnels and Automation.
Ultimately, avoiding these 10 things will pay off well when you beat the statistics and join the 5% of Shopify stores that do succeed!