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How to Set Up Your Shopify Store for the First Time

Ecommerce has been growing faster than we’ve ever seen before. In the year 2020, ecommerce sales are set to nearly double compared to 2019, and a lot of small businesses want to start selling online. Shopify is one of the best ways to start doing that.

Table of Contents

If you haven’t come across Shopify before, the basic idea is simple. Shopify is a service that allows you to quickly and simply create good-looking online stores. They’re easy to set up, easy to use, and work with a lot of other common business software.

With that in mind, we would like to show you how to get started on Shopify for the first time. This guide will show you how to set up your store.

Bear in mind that every Shopify store setup is a little bit different. One of the great things about Shopify is that you can choose between different themes to give your website a different look. Different themes come with slightly differently functionality, so you have to experiment to find exactly what you want.

Even with that said, we think this guide will give you the context you need to create a store on your own.

1. Go to Shopify’s website and click Start your free trial.
2. Enter your email address, a password, and your store name. Then click Create your store.
3. Answer questions on the following page. Then click Next.

These questions will change based on your answers, so they may not be exactly like what you see below.

4. Enter your name, business mailing address, phone number, and website. Then click Enter my store.

Once you enter basic information, Shopify will guide you through many of the remaining steps to setting up your store. That said, we’ll continue capturing the setup process so that you know what to expect. Bear in mind that your unique experience may differ from what we depict going forward.

5. Shopify will first recommend that you add products, so either click Add Product or go to the Products section.
6. Enter your product’s name and product description. Also enter your product’s type and, if applicable, vendor. Then upload any images that you have.

At this point, we recommend you check out our SEO guide. For best results, you will want to enter a long, detailed product description of around 1,000 words. You will also want to include detailed, high quality photos for each of your product.

Take your time and do this right! This is not the place to take shortcuts – well made product pages both bring in more sales and reduce returns.

7. Enter your price and inventory information.
8. Enter shipping weight and customs information.
9. Once you do this, preview your product page and see if there is anything that you would like to change.
10. Once you’re ready to move on, go back to your Shopify home page. Click on Customize theme.
11. Themes allow you to change the look and feel of your website. Shopify has lots of themes, both free and paid. To explore the free options, click on Explore free themes.
12. Select a theme that you like.
13. Pick your preferred theme style, then click Add to theme library.
14. Click Customize theme to tweak the new theme you just selected.
15. After you click Customize theme, you will be presented with a variety of options to customize your website.

The options that are available to you will differ based on the theme you choose. Broadly speaking, you can move sections on the page by dragging them up or down on the left sidebar. You can hide sections by clicking the eye icon, and delete pages by clicking the trash icon. Lastly, you can add sections by clicking Add section.

When you click on any individual section, you will be given unique options which you can change. The preview page on the right shows you what your changes will look like if published.

16. The first section you will want to edit is the header, so click Header.

The options that you will be presented with will differ based on the theme you are using. You can see an example of one possible setup below.

Once you’ve edited the header, repeat this process for each section on your website. Click Publish when you’re satisfied with your edits.

17. Go back to your Shopify home page. Click Add domain.
18. If you already have a domain name, click Transfer domain or Connect existing domain as appropriate. Otherwise, click Buy new domain and follow the prompts on the following pages.
19. Once you’ve chosen a domain, go to the home page and click View payment settings.
20. Click Complete account setup.
21. Enter your business information, including your EIN, routing number, and bank account number.
22. Connect your Shopify store to PayPal by navigating to the PayPal section and then clicking Complete account setup.
23. Sign in to your PayPal account and click Next.
24. Once your basic website is set up, consider installing Apps to enhance your store.

Every different Shopify app serves a different purpose and adds different features to your store. Knowing which apps to install, if any, can be difficult, so check our recommendations to get started.

Final Thoughts

With your first Shopify store set up, it will be a lot easier to sell online. To succeed from here, there are two things that you’ll want to do well: marketing and fulfillment.

To learn more about marketing, check out this guest post by 3dcart: A Simple Guide to Building an Ecommerce Website.

To learn more about fulfillment, check out our post, How Outsourcing Fulfillment Can Save You Money. Better yet, request a quote today and our staff can help you learn about order fulfillment for the first time!

A computer, internet, business mailing address, website, contact information, and product ideas. Oh, and our 24-step guide on the Fulfillrite Blog. The Shopify platform does a great job of walking you through the process, including asking you questions at the beginning to help get you started.

You’ve done everything by the book. Your Kickstarter campaign is almost ready to launch.

You made a great product. Built an audience. Set up a campaign page.

But how do you ship it?

We put this checklist together to help you get started. It's free.